Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Progressive Breakfast: Our Protest Tradition – And Why Now More Than Ever We Must Cherish It


As this election season comes to full boil, we should remember the importance of civil disobedience to our history. It is one of the few tools ordinary people still have to organize for change. With corporations spending unlimited campaign cash, and states requiring photo ID at voting booths, it’s through protest that we loudly proclaim that we won’t be silenced ... We must all confront a challenger aiming to make racism mainstream. We are called at this moment to make sure that never happens. Decency will defeat hate, but we must speak up and speak publicly.


Congress returns with hopes of avoiding government shutdown. W. Post: “Lawmakers have four weeks to hammer out a spending deal before the fiscal year ends Sept. 30 … Conservatives want to pass a six-month CR that would kick the larger budget fight into next year … The opposition to a lame-duck spending deal in the House is being led by the approximately 40-member House Freedom Caucus with the backing of several prominent conservative groups.”
Republican leaders face additional challenges from right-wing congresspeople. Politico: “…they’re already making merciless demands on Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) that will put him in a real pinch. One is to force an impeachment vote against IRS Commissioner John Koskinen … The GOP is also under pressure from Florida Republican lawmakers to approve a Zika rescue package — even if it means caving to some Democratic demands.”


Bernie stumps for Hillary in NH. W. Post: “Clinton, he said, would ‘nominate Supreme Court justices who will overturn Citizens United’ and ‘fight for real criminal justice reform, something that has never occurred to Donald Trump.’ After adding that Clinton would fight to make public college affordable, he noted that his campaign had moved her toward that position.”
Not all Bernie supporters are persuaded. NYT: “… remaining tensions were plainly on display. A woman waved a sign that said ‘No Corruption, No Clinton,’ while another held a painting of Mr. Sanders that said ‘#StillBernie … Still, polls show that the majority of Mr. Sanders’s former supporters … plan to vote for Mrs. Clinton.”
Sen. Elizabeth Warren prepares to shape Clinton administration. Politico: “Warren’s coalition is developing a hit list of the types of people they’ll oppose … nominees with ties to big banks, and … corporate executives assuming government roles in regulating the industries that made them rich … Rohit Chopra, who was hired by Warren at the CFPB, is joining Clinton’s transition team. And Heather Boushey, popular among progressives because of her focus on income inequality, was recently chosen as the team’s chief economist.”


Dems hope to flip state legislatures. The Hill: “[Today,] Republicans control 69 of the 99 state legislative chambers in America … Democrats have decent chances to win eleven Republican-held legislative chambers. Six of those chambers, state Senates in Colorado, Nevada, New York, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia, would change hands if Democrats are able to win only a single seat. Democrats hope to make more substantial gains in the Maine Senate, and in state House chambers in Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico and Pennsylvania.”
Voting rights advocates make gains with Supreme Court. W. Post: “… the death of Justice Antonin Scalia has removed the Supreme Court as a crucial conservative backstop for [restrictive] measures … Texas and North Carolina are now under judicial order to shelve comprehensive voting laws … In Wisconsin, federal courts restored some early-voting opportunities …”


One subprime lender trying to avoid CFPB regulation. NYT: “…the nation’s largest subprime installment lender, OneMain Financial, may well avoid the new [payday lending] regulation. OneMain caps its loans at 36 percent interest and would arguably gain an advantage from federal rules that rein in its higher-cost and more aggressive competitors … OneMain is not currently lobbying the federal consumer agency, it regularly writes legislation introduced at the state level. OneMain did not win every battle, but it already helped change laws this year in … Arizona, Mississippi and Florida.”
CA court ruling opens door to public pension cuts. Bloomberg: “…a state appellate court said benefit cuts are permissible if the pensions remain ‘reasonable’ for workers … The Marin Association of Public Employees … will ask the state’s Supreme Court to overturn the ruling … While the California court case has no impact beyond the state, it could inspire challenges elsewhere by local governments seeking to push through changes over the objections of workers.”
Denver airport shows the value of infrastructure investment, says Bloomberg’s Matthew Winkler: “…elected officials of both parties trace an economic boom to a decision 27 years ago to spend more than $2 billion on a new Denver airport … It was assailed as a boondoggle [at the time] by some local businessmen in a campaign led by Roger Ailes … the DIA’s annual economic impact today exceeds $26 billion … the city’s and state’s unemployment rates remain among the lowest at 3.8 percent…”

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