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Our Corrupt Supreme Court

by: Andy Schmookler

Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 10:38:43 AM EDT

( - promoted by lowkell)

The Supreme Court in our times is troubled with more that an "appearance of corruption." With its recent decisions gutting the regulation of campaign finance, the majority on the Roberts Court has shown itself a partisan combatant on the side of a most dangerously corrupt form of injustice.  

Justice should be understood as the antidote to the rule of power.
When there is no justice, then we fall into the kind of world described by the ancient Athenians as they sought to compel a weaker people to do their bidding--  or else:

"[Y]ou know as well as we do that right, as the world goes, is only in question between equals in power, while the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must"

Our founders' great contribution to human history was to devise a government to solve that problem. Saying that "all men are created equal," they established a system to equalize power among the citizens. With each citizen given an equal voice in deciding the nation's destiny through the election process- that equality would eliminate the dichotomy between the strong and the weak.

That's the justice of our democracy.

But here comes John Roberts and his majority - Republican appointees every one of them - telling us with a straight face that there is no problem of corruption (or even its appearance) unless there's outright bribery. That kind of quid pro quo of selling favors is, of course, already against the law. But anyone with half a brain can see that government can be bought without such blatant transactions. And these justices are not stupid.

Can anyone honestly say, when we see presidential hopefuls trooping to Las Vegas to kiss the ring of a billionaire, that there is no appearance of corruption?

There's More... :: (1 Comments, 920 words in story)

Virginia News Headlines: Monday Morning

by: lowkell

Mon Apr 14, 2014 at 06:36:40 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Monday, April 14. The photo is of Barack Obama and Drew Kleibrink, who passed away suddenly late last week. Drew was a great photographer, environmentalist, progressive, and Democrat. As Del. Mark Keam writes, "Drew (and his camera) was ubiquitous throughout both 2008 and 2012 campaigns, and he did everything you can ask a campaign volunteer to do. Drew worked hard, and his advice was always sound. He was principled in speaking his mind, and as an intellectual, he could engage in a deep conversation with anyone about any issue. Above all, he was a man with incredible empathy and love for fellow human beings." Drew will be greatly missed by everyone who know him, including me.

*The 3 Most Sobering Graphics From The U.N.'s New Climate Report (Very, very scary; this should be priority #1 for every country around the world.)
*Ukraine President threatens military operation as unrest grows
*Man with history of anti-Semitism jailed in fatal shooting of three at Johnson County Jewish centers
*Triumph of the Drill: How Big Oil Clings to Billions in Government Giveaways
*Democrats refine their message to avoid repeat of 2010 midterm disaster
*Searchers to Deploy Submersible in Hunt for Missing Jet
*Va. Republicans aren't budging on Medicaid ("Although expansion of coverage is backed by some important donors and a state government shutdown hangs in the balance, GOP lawmakers are maintaining their opposition, hoping to help the party this fall.")
*Missing in House: Common sense ("In other words, a so-called 'clean budget' can't even be found in the House. The sooner Republican delegates recognize as much, the sooner this stalemate can end.")
*Our view: Prudence on climate ("The Climate Change Commission can complement those efforts with strategies for reducing greenhouse gases and slowing, if not reversing, the literal sea change occurring as a result of a rapidly warming planet.")
*Prayer time makes strange bedfellows
*Ethics bill (of goods) ("But it doesn't take a seasoned political analyst to recognize that lawmakers' efforts to police themselves tend to be big on talk and short on action. The bill recently signed by Gov. Terry McAuliffe bears that out. What the lawmakers managed to accomplish fails to live up to the hype.")
*In Prince William budget process, focus is on libraries
*Braves bash Nationals, sweeping the series
*From summer to winter - in one day ("If you thought the summer-like weather was here to stay, think again.")

Discuss :: (1 Comments)

We Are Living in Extraordinary Times

by: aprilmoore

Sun Apr 13, 2014 at 19:24:44 PM EDT

( - promoted by lowkell)

I have been thinking lately that we live in a highly unusual time.  But because we have no direct experience of any other time in history than our own lifetimes, it is natural to look around us and assume that what we see is normal.  And if it's normal, then it must be okay.

But what is happening around us on our planet these days is far from normal.  And it's far from okay.  

For example, amphibians, mammals, birds, and other animals are disappearing rapidly, at a rate far higher than normal. Scientists tell us that a major cause of these current extinctions is the changing climate. Habitat loss and habitat degradation are also playing a role.

Despite these alarming losses of fauna, I find that many people do not grasp the enormity of it. When I talk with others about the great number of species that have gone-or are going-extinct as a result of climate disruption, I am often met with a shrug, and "well, there have always been extinctions."

Even knowing that today's extinctions are abnormally numerous, I was shocked recently to learn that the current rate of extinctions is SO high that scientists are calling our time "the Sixth Extinction." In other words, current extinction rates are comparable to the five major waves of extinctions the planet has experienced in its entire 4.5 billion year history!

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, by science writer Elizabeth Kolbert, introduced me to the term 'background extinction rate.' This is the term biologists use to describe the rate of extinctions that would occur naturally, if human impact were not a factor.

The background extinction rate for amphibians, reports Kolbert, would be about one species lost every 1,000 years. Yet I know of at least three frog species that have gone extinct in just the last few years.  

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 326 words in story)

Video: First Virginia 8th CD Democratic "Forum" of 2014

by: lowkell

Sun Apr 13, 2014 at 06:33:11 AM EDT

Here's video from yesterday's 8th CD Democratic debate (aka, "forum") at Mt. Vernon High School. FYI, I had to save the battery power on my video camera so I didn't get everything, but I did get a lot. Jim Southworth of Fairfax County Public Access TV was videotaping and should have the rest. Also, I'm not going to attempt to put these in strict chronological order. Anyway, here's the first video; I'll be uploading the rest in the comments section of this post. Thanks.

P.S. Also note that in the interest of saving video and battery power, I sometimes skipped the candidates who I believe have absolutely zero chance of winning (e.g., Derek Hyra). Jim Southworth's video should be of the complete debate.

1. Name the top three foreign policy issues facing our nation and the world today.
*Levine - Energy security; aggression from foreign leaders like Putin, Iran; genocide in places like Syria, where he'd put a no-fly zone into place.
*Herring - She speaks barely above a whisper, with absolutely no confidence, struggles badly in trying to answer this straightforward question (which she should have been prepared for, but apparently wasn't). Bottom line: it's clear that Charniele Herring's's wayyyyy out of her league when it comes to foreign policy. This is very close to diqualifying in and of itself for someone running for Congress, which deals with crucial foreign policy questions all the time.
*Shuttleworth: Show restraint in foreign policy, be "much more non-interventionist...much more on the sideline."
*Bill Euille: Security, terrorism, energy.
*Don Beyer: We can't allow a nuclear Iran; we must avoid a 2nd Cold War with Russia; climate change is the greatest weapon of mass destruction.
*Satish Korpe: Rogue states, Russia, not sure what his third point was exactly, but he did say we need an "old-fashioned carrot-and-stick policy."
*Lavern Chatman: Says she met with the "Truman Group" on "just this issue" (I'm sure she meant the Truman National Security Project, which "recruits, trains, and positions progressives across America to lead on national security," not the Truman Group, which "provides high quality psychological care to North American and Western European expatriates living overseas"). Cybersecurity and...nothing else mentioned. She's clearly far out of her league on foreign policy.
*Patrick Hope: Climate change; Putin's invasion of Crimea ("we need to solve that problem"); do more nation building at home and less overseas.
*Adam Ebbin: He squeezed in more than 3 items -- Russia, nuclear Iran, Syrian regime and their atrocities; climate change; cybsersecurity; threats to democracy anywhere, but there are limits to American military intervention so focus on diplomacy before the fact and sanctions during or after the fact.

Discuss :: (57 Comments)

Virginia News Headlines: Sunday Morning

by: lowkell

Sun Apr 13, 2014 at 07:18:26 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Sunday, April 13. Also check out the "lightning round" question on which committees the 8th CD Democratic candidates would want to serve on if they're elected to Congress. See here for a lot more video and my notes from yesterday's 8th CD Democratic "forum" at Mt. Vernon High School.

*U.N. Climate Panel Warns Speedier Action Is Needed
*World must end 'dirty' fuel use - UN (Note to politicians, both left and right: that means phasing out fossil fuels as fast as possible and replacing them with efficiency, solar, wind, geothermal, wave, tidal, etc. Thank you.)
*Just what is Marketplace Virginia? ("Lawmakers, experts explain private insurance proposal")
*Schapiro: McAuliffe dismantling McDonnell transportation legacy ("Unless Congress acts by January on an enforcement mechanism for applying sales taxes to Internet purchases, Virginia could lose $841 million by 2018. Near term, the revenue would be made up incrementally at the pump, by automatically increasing the percentage-based sales tax on gasoline.")
*Fewer tests, more learning ("Reforming Virginia's approach to public education and, perhaps more specifically, its methods of measuring students' performance, will take years. But the effort is off to a good start under a bill approved by the General Assembly and signed recently by Gov. Terry McAuliffe.")
*4 GOP candidates get ready for Warner
*Dem congressional candidate Beyer: 'We need to ban super PACs' ("Direct disagreements were rare occurrences in the 120-minute session Saturday.")
*Challenger Brat seeks to hold debate with Cantor
*Senate hopefuls to attend Shad Planking in Wakefield
*Our view: Restless seas for Virginia's port
*Coal ash storage a New River worry
*The story behind building the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel
*Few answers known weeks after Navy base shooting
*Virginia Beach sees first increase in property values since 2009
*Momentum building for better Richmond schools
*Ryan Zimmerman breaks thumb in Nationals' loss to Braves (Ouch, that more ways than one!)
*D.C. area forecast: Warm spell continues but midweek rain and chill lurking

Discuss :: (0 Comments)

AG Mark Herring: "Virginia's same-sex couples are entitled to equal justice under law"

by: lowkell

Sat Apr 12, 2014 at 11:55:39 AM EDT

More great work by Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring - thank you! Also, check out the "flip" of this post for selected quotes from Virginia's brief in the Bostic case (oral arguments will begin on May 13). As Herring's office says, "Hopefully this will make it a little easier to identify the conclusions of the Commonwealth's arguments, as well as some of Attorney General Herring's more noteworthy points."

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 1641 words in story)

Years of Living Dangerously: Watch the First Episode Free

by: TheGreenMiles

Sat Apr 12, 2014 at 08:20:29 AM EDT

A new climate change documentary series, Years of Living Dangerously, premieres Sunday night on Showtime. Watch the first full episode for free & like the series on Facebook:

Discuss :: (0 Comments)

Virginia News Headlines: Saturday Morning

by: lowkell

Sat Apr 12, 2014 at 06:47:54 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Saturday, April 12. Also see President Obama's weekly address, in which he "highlights the steps his Administration has taken to expand opportunity and narrow the pay gap that exists between men and women."

*As Darrell Issa shows, it's a bad time to be a demagogue
*A national ID card could reshape the irrational way Americans vote
*Obama: GOP wants to stop Democrats from voting (Correct.)
*Objectively bad: Ezra Klein, Nate Silver, Jonathan Chait and return of the "view from nowhere" (From a purely subjective point of view, my own, this is an interesting article! LOL)
*The Heartbleed Bug Reveals We're Willing To Give Up Online Security To Feel More Connected (Which should give us all heartBURN!)
*Virginia Democrats pick new executive director ("Sources said Friday the state Democratic Party has chosen as its new executive director veteran political hand Robert Dempsey -- he recently held the same role for the North Carolina party -- barely one week after Virginia's Republican Party picked a new staff leader.")
*Virginia AG Files Brief Supporting Gay Marriage ("Same-sex couples have the same right to marry as interracial heterosexual couples, Virginia's attorney general said Friday in papers urging an appellate court to uphold a judge's ruling that the state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional.")
*Our view: He's gotta be kidding ("Rep. Jim Moran, poor fellow, has not had a raise in three years, and wants people to know that it's darn hard living in the D.C. area on only $174,000 a year.")
*Virginia GOPer: Incest exceptions in abortion restrictions unnecessary because sometimes incest is "voluntary" (Add this to the loooooong list of insane s*** "Sideshow Bob" has said over the years. The question is, who keeps voting to reelect him?!?)
*Amid public pressure, McAuliffe OKs prayer rally time ("The first reply - a permit denial from the Department of General Services - was not well received by the Family Foundation or the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia.")
*License-plate data and privacy rights
*Owners voluntarily protecting land along the Mattaponi
*Webb among Founder's Day honorees at U.Va.
*Vihstadt Sworn in as County Board Member (A sad day for Arlington County.)
*Washington's population growth in midst of slowdown
*Nats fall 7-6 to Braves in 10 innings
*Weekend weather looks nearly perfect

Discuss :: (3 Comments)

Right-Wing Media #FAIL - Mediaite and Faux "News" Edition

by: lowkell

Fri Apr 11, 2014 at 12:47:26 PM EDT

UPDATE 2:27 pm: Mediaite has posted a correction. That puts them several notches above Faux "News," which rarely corrects its misinformation.

Just one slight problem here: as of 5 pm yesterday, which was the filing deadline, the individual referenced below by Mediaite as a supposed "Dem candidate" in Virginia's 7th CD, had not filed and therefore had not met the requirements to be on the ballot. On the 7th CD Virginia Democratic Committee website it says clearly, "Due to No Candidate filing, there will be no local caucuses or District Convention." Yet somehow neither right-wing media outlets Faux "News" or Mediaite could figure that out. Much better to claim that this individual, with an...uh, colorful a "Democratic congressional hopeful attempting to unseat House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA)." Again, at least as of last night's filing deadline, there is no "Democratic congressional hopeful attempting to unseat House Majority Leader Eric Cantor." Of course, we wouldn't want little things like "facts" to get in the way of the right-wing media's false narrative, now would we? LOL

Discuss :: (11 Comments)

A Few Things Alan Howze and the Arlington County Board Should and Shouldn't Do

by: lowkell

Fri Apr 11, 2014 at 07:28:45 AM EDT

1. They absolutely, positively should NOT back off on the streetcar project. All the evidence indicates that this is a huge winner for Arlington, generating billions of dollars in development and enough tax revenue to more than pay for the streetcar. If that's not a "no brainer," I don't know what it is. Also, politically, backing off the streetcar at this point will just look politically craven, phony, etc, after all the strong arguments made by the Board and by Alan Howze in favor of the project. Flip-flopping now, after a low-turnout special election, would be a lose-lose any way you look at it.

2. They absolutely, positively SHOULD forcefully counter the disinformation, distortions, and outright lies about the streetcar project. For instance, the claim that the streetcar has taken away from "core services" is utterly absurd, since the county hasn't even spent any money (other than a small amount in studying it) on the streetcar yet -- so how could it have taken away funds from anything else? Also, in the future, the streetcar will NOT take money away from "core services," since it will a) have a dedicated funding source that isn't "fungible" with other things; and b) again, it will bring in enough new revenues to MORE than pay for itself. Finally: if anything, the streetcar will - ceteris parabis - results in lower tax rates for Arlingtonians, not higher ones. The list goes on and out the lies!

3. The Board absolutely, positively SHOULD examine the way it does business. The perceptions of "arrogance," "insularity," "non-communicativeness"  and "opacity" are most definitely NOT figments of people's imaginations. Heck, I've experienced them many times myself. So did Cord Thomas, who told the story about how hard it was to get a simple response from County officials, when he was offering to create jobs and economic activity in Arlington County. That's unacceptable. It's also unacceptable that the Clarendon businesses assessment fiasco reported by ArlNow back in February has STILL not been seriously addressed. Also, why on earth aren't those assessments available online, for all Arlingtonians to see, on a real-time basis? And why can't reporters get any answers from the Director of Real Estate Assessments in Arlington County? I tried weeks ago, for instance, and never heard back. Why not?

4. Alan Howze needs to give people reasons to vote FOR him. That includes calling out - angrily/passionately when justified - Arlington County government when it's seriously off course, as with the assessment fiasco. It also includes giving voters a vision for what he might bring to the board, for instance from his experience at IBM. As an Arlington Democratic friend of mine said yesterday: "How about making the county a wi-fi hot spot? turning crystal city into a tech incubator? working with his old boss Warner to bring tech businesses here. upgrading county computer systems so people have an easier time doing x, y, z. Gimme something. Honest to god that was what he came up with. GPSs on snowplows."

5. Any Democrat who says that we should chill out because we'll "win easily" in November, when Mark Warner is on the ballot and turnout is way up, needs to stop talking. Immediately. And everyone else needs to stop listening to them if they DO talk. Seriously, that's one of the stupidest and most arrogant/clueless things I've ever heard in my life. Whether in sports, business, politics, or any other field, the LAST thing you want to do is take your opponent lightly (especially when said opponent just kicked your a**), to assume you're going to win (which is exactly when you are most likely to lose!), and in general to take your pedal off the metal. Instead, assume we're a run or two down in the final innings of the baseball game, and play like your future career in the major leagues depends on how you perform in the final weeks/months of the season! I'd also argue that the argument's just fundamentally flawed, that just because turnout will be higher, that those voters will go overwhelmingly for the Democratic candidate for County Board. To the contrary, I'd argue that if voters could easily split their ballots, going for Mark Warner, the Democratic nominee for House of Representatives, and John Vihstadt for County Board (especially if he performs well from now through election day in November). Assuming anything else is simply political malpractice of the highest order.

Discuss :: (9 Comments)

Ed's Events: March Edition

by: lowkell

Thu Apr 10, 2014 at 15:37:08 PM EDT

From the Democratic Party of Virginia: 

RICHMOND -- As Senator Mark Warner travels the Commonwealth speaking to constituents about real issues facing Virginia, it has been 84 days since the launch of Ed Gillespie's campaign and he's yet to hold an event open to press. While he's found plenty of time to talk to right-wing reporters and pundits, we have found no evidence that Ed allowed Virginia reporters into a single campaign event in March.

“As a seasoned spokesman, Ed Gillespie has never been one to shy from the cameras. However, now that he's the candidate, he's in hiding," said DPVA Spokesperson Ashley Bauman. "It's time Ed Gillespie show his face and answer questions on some of the most pressing issues facing the Commonwealth today, including where he stands on closing the coverage gap, helping unemployed Virginians, protecting health care choices for Virginia women, and other important issues."


Discuss :: (0 Comments)

Virginia News Headlines: Friday Morning

by: lowkell

Fri Apr 11, 2014 at 06:05:28 AM EDT

Here are a few national and Virginia news headlines, political and otherwise, for Friday, April 11.

*Sebelius resigns after flawed rollout of health-care site
*Colbert Will Host 'Late Show,' Playing Himself for a Change
*Dems Slam MSNBC's 'Double Standard' Over Morning Joe Keynoting GOP Event
*Reports: 'Shoe' thrown at Hillary Clinton in Las Vegas
*Kathleen Sebelius' Biggest Achievement Is The One No One Is Talking About
*Psychiatric admissions spike after Deeds tragedyfc
*Dorothy McAuliffe listens to stories about employed but uninsured in Virginia
*Tough on crime and budgets ("Virginia is proud to be one of the best states in the country in which to do business. Its public education system also ranks highly. But its criminal justice policies should not inspire emulation. The commonwealth will spend more than $1 billion in the coming year to arrest and incarcerate people; $3 billion when the court system is included with public safety costs.")
*AG Herring defends Chesapeake Bay cleanup plan
*GOP's Gillespie visits Spotsylvania, dubs Warner 'very vulnerable' (Dream on...)
*Virginia Republican Bob Marshall stands by remarks that raise eyebrows (That's "Sideshow Bob" for ya!)
*Howell misguided to reject Medicaid money
*Herring: premature to consider governor's spending authority ("Attorney General Mark Herring says he's watching developments in the General Assembly budget impasse closely, but says it is premature to start considering the legal issues if the legislature misses its budget writing deadline.")
*7th Congressional District Democratic Nominating Convention Cancelled ("no candidates filed to be considered for the nomination" against Eric Can'tor)
*Deeds calls for end to politicking on health care coverage
*Stephen Strasburg strikes out 12, Ian Desmond hits grand slam as Nationals roll, 7-1 (Lookin' good so far!)
*D.C.'s cherry blossoms hit peak bloom as a brutal winter finally moves on (Yay!)
*Showers make appearance late today ahead of a warm, delightful weekend

Discuss :: (1 Comments)

Virginia House Republicans Vote Unanimously for Anti-Woman, Anti-Working-Class Ryan Budget

by: lowkell

Thu Apr 10, 2014 at 18:57:55 PM EDT

Before we get into why the vote earlier today for the ruinous Ryan budget was so godawful, let's first list the Virginia Hall of Shame - the Virginia Republicans who voted for this monstrosity.

Eric Cantor, Randy Forbes, Bob Goodlatte, Robert Hurt, Scott Rigell, Rob Wittman, Frank Wolf

Now, why was this vote so horrendous?

*According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, "some 69 percent of the cuts in House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan's new budget would come from programs that serve people of limited means." For instance, "Under the Ryan plan, at least 40 million low- and moderate-income people - that's 1 in 8 Americans - would become uninsured by 2024."

*As if that's not bad enough, the "Ryan budget cuts SNAP (formerly food stamps) by $137 billion over the next decade."

*The Ryan/Republican budget also "cuts Pell Grants for low- and moderate-income students by up to $125 billion" and "cuts an additional $385 billion - beyond its SNAP cuts - from the budget category containing many mandatory programs for low - and moderate-income Americans, such as Supplemental Security Income for the elderly and disabled, the school lunch and child nutrition programs, and the Earned Income and Child Tax Credits for lower-income working families."

*In addition, the Ryan/Republican budget would "cut Medicare spending by $356 billion over the 2013 - 2023 period compared to CBPP's current-policy baseline" and "replace Medicare's guarantee of health coverage with a flat premium-support payment, or voucher."

*Finally, can we say "war on women?" According to the National Women's Law Center, this budget would: "Put families at risk for losing coverage;" "Prevent low-income women from receiving the services they need;" "Put coverage for the most vulnerable women at risk;" "Roll back coverage for women currently insured by Medicaid;" "Threaten older women's economic well-being;" "Allow insurance companies to discriminate against women;" "Cause millions of women to lose [health care] coverage;" etc.

Next time you hear a Republican try to claim that the "war on women" is a figment of Democrats' imaginations, just point them to the National Women's Law Center - and laugh at them. As for Republicans being anything other than the party of the rich and privileged, the near-unanimous GOP adoption of this Ayn Randian fever dream of a budget settles that argument. Oh, and note how even supposed "moderate" Republicans like Frank Wolf voted for this war on working people and women? Hmmmm...perhaps the Washington Post and others who claimed for years that Wolf really was a "moderate" were not quite right about that?  

Discuss :: (4 Comments)

Virginia Files Amicus Brief in Support of Chesapeake Bay Restoration

by: lowkell

Thu Apr 10, 2014 at 15:06:38 PM EDT

More great work by Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring. It's even greater when you compare it to the horrendous record of former AG Ken Cuccinelli, climate science denier and all around anti-environment extremist.


~ Brief defends Virginia's Bay restoration plan and ability to work cooperatively with other Bay states and federal partners ~


RICHMOND--Attorney General Mark R. Herring today announced that he has filed an amicus brief to protect Virginia's efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay and to defend the right of Virginia and other Bay states to work together to protect and restore the Bay. The brief in American Farm Bureau v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agencywhich was decided in favor of the Bay states at the district level and is currently on appeal before the Third Circuit, lays out the economic, environmental and historic reasons Virginia is compelled to weigh in on the case and the reasons that the long history of cooperation between Bay states should be honored. Virginia is the first Bay state to defend the Bay restoration plan in the case.


The brief also refutes the arguments in the recently filed amicus brief from 21 attorneys general, all but one of whom are from outside the Bay watershed, that opposed the ability of Bay states and the EPA to work cooperatively to address the health of the Bay, which is North America's largest estuary and a major economic force for the region, annually contributing an estimated $2 billion and 41,000 jobs from commercial fishing, $1.6 billion and 13,000 jobs in saltwater angling, $70 million in crabs, and $680 million in tourism.


"The Chesapeake Bay is unequaled in its economic impact, environmental significance, and its ability to bring together the states whose rivers and streams flow to its waters," said Attorney General Herring."When the most promising plan to protect and restore the Bay comes under attack, I am going to stand up for the health of Virginia's families, for Virginia's economic interests, for Virginia's efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay. This case is simply about whether Virginia and the other Bay states have the authority to work cooperatively to manage and restore the Bay, as they have done for decades. Each Bay state, including Virginia, voluntarily entered into the current Bay restoration plan because of the economic, recreational, environmental, and intrinsic value of a healthy Chesapeake Bay. I hope the courts and my colleagues, none of whom serve a state which touches the Bay, recognize that fact and allow Virginia and its partners to continue their work."

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 1256 words in story)

A Path to Democratic Victory this Fall

by: Andy Schmookler

Thu Apr 10, 2014 at 10:28:33 AM EDT

( - promoted by lowkell)

Do the 2014 elections look promising for the Democrats? Not so far as I can tell.

Do the Democrats have a bold plan to inspire the American people to turn the House back over to them? Not so far as I've heard.

Is there a solution available? I think there is.

We've got a Supreme Court that just doubled down on its disgraceful 2010 decision in Citizens United, continuing in the new case (McCutcheon vs. FEC) to pretend to believe that opening the floodgates still wider for big money to flow into our elections does not corrupt our political system.

And we've got poll data  that indicates that the overwhelming majority of the American people - across the political spectrum - believe there's too much money in our politics, and that the rich are getting too large a voice at the expense of average Americans. The people, it seems, understand that our "democracy" is being put up for auction. And they don't like it.

There's an opportunity there. It's an opportunity that not only could benefit the Democrats, but also would be right and noble to seize. It could help rescue this nation from its present descent into oligarchy, in betrayal of the democracy our founders had in mind.

There's More... :: (1 Comments, 433 words in story)
<< Previous Next >>
8th CD Dem Candidates
*Don Beyer *Lavern Chatman *Adam Ebbin *Bill Euille *Charniele Herring *Patrick Hope *Derek Hyra *Mark Levine *Alfonso Lopez *Bruce Shuttleworth *Mark Sickles *Nancy Najarian *Satish Korpe


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