Perhaps The Oddest Moment Of The Week

Grassley praying that the president would do what any sane person would do and what he (the president) had promised he would do.

This little snippet says a lot. 

The very first thing it says is that Grassley – and most likely the whole Republican Party – can’t trust their president. After all, he had once before promised he would sign a similar bill only to flip and veto said bill upon criticism from Sean Hannity. Since Trump wasn’t right there to be watched, could they trust him? Could they trust Trump to stand up to near certain criticism from the usual group of idiots?

Grassley’s utterances were not really a prayer but more of a wish thrown to the universe. More of a thinking out loud kind of a moment. Grassley is basically thinking to himself that this is not the way things are supposed to work. Oh, please, may this man do what he is supposed to do. 

Grassley has been in the senate forever. Now he has to deal with a person who is less adult and more like a child. Grassley’s utterance is more like a hope that the children will behave. He asks that the president have “wisdom.” That is can the president act like an adult?

At the end Grassley states “we don’t want the government to shut down.” Grassley is almost begging Trump not to cut the throat of his own party again. The last shutdown was basically a lockout by Trump. Republicans were blamed, especially when none of them would stand up to their Dear Leader and call him out. It was a huge disaster for the Republican Party that will not be forgotten by voters in 2020.

Most every family in the country was affected in some small way by the 35 day Trump lockout. Stating that government doesn’t work and must be “drowned in a bathtub” has been the Republican mantra for over 30 years. Trump’s lockout proved that mantra to be yet another of the Republican Party’s false beliefs. We need government and we need it to work effectively and efficiently. Grassley doesn’t want another round of lockout to reinforce the need for good government.

Finally we have Grassley performing what has become one of the most useless acts that craven politicians resort to. That is “praying” rather than acting. Praying is simply wishing that something does or doesn’t happen when actually doing something could really affect the outcome. Instead of “praying” that Trump would do what he was supposed to, why not send a delegation to discuss the situation. That would be doing something.

I send many emails to the Ernst office. I comment on a problem and almost always end my emails with “What are you going to do?” I seldom get a response anymore. Once upon a time I would get responses that filibustered the issue with no answer as to what she would do. Now I get nothing. Which is her way of saying I am not going to do anything.

Time for Republicans to quit wishing and face up to the real problems.

https://youtu.be/G4YEg8kMVUw

Grassley praying that the president would do what any sane person would do and what he (the president) had promised he would do.

This little snippet says a lot. 

The very first thing it says is that Grassley – and most likely the whole Republican Party – can’t trust their president. After all, he had once before promised he would sign a similar bill only to flip and veto said bill upon criticism from Sean Hannity. Since Trump wasn’t right there to be watched, could they trust him? Could they trust Trump to stand up to near certain criticism from the usual group of idiots?

Grassley’s utterances were not really a prayer but more of a wish thrown to the universe. More of a thinking out loud kind of a moment. Grassley is basically thinking to himself that this is not the way things are supposed to work. Oh, please, may this man do what he is supposed to do. 

Grassley has been in the senate forever. Now he has to deal with a person who is less adult and more like a child. Grassley’s utterance is more like a hope that the children will behave. He asks that the president have “wisdom.” That is can the president act like an adult?

At the end Grassley states “we don’t want the government to shut down.” Grassley is almost begging Trump not to cut the throat of his own party again. The last shutdown was basically a lockout by Trump. Republicans were blamed, especially when none of them would stand up to their Dear Leader and call him out. It was a huge disaster for the Republican Party that will not be forgotten by voters in 2020.

Most every family in the country was affected in some small way by the 35 day Trump lockout. Stating that government doesn’t work and must be “drowned in a bathtub” has been the Republican mantra for over 30 years. Trump’s lockout proved that mantra to be yet another of the Republican Party’s false beliefs. We need government and we need it to work effectively and efficiently. Grassley doesn’t want another round of lockout to reinforce the need for good government.

Finally we have Grassley performing what has become one of the most useless acts that craven politicians resort to. That is “praying” rather than acting. Praying is simply wishing that something does or doesn’t happen when actually doing something could really affect the outcome. Instead of “praying” that Trump would do what he was supposed to, why not send a delegation to discuss the situation. That would be doing something.

I send many emails to the Ernst office. I comment on a problem and almost always end my emails with “What are you going to do?” I seldom get a response anymore. Once upon a time I would get responses that filibustered the issue with no answer as to what she would do. Now I get nothing. Which is her way of saying I am not going to do something.

Time for Republicans to quit wishing and face up to the real problems.

Posted in #trumpresistance, 2020 election campaign, Blog for Iowa, Charles Grassley, Joni Ernst | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Legislative Forums And Issues Feb. 16 – 22

Yet another reason to go to your legislative forum (14.5 minutes)

As we have been doing weekly we will print the weekly legislative forum schedule. This runs from Saturday morning to next Friday evening. Forums are listed in date and time order. When you find one near you, click on the link to find the specific address:

02/16/2019 Event Time TBD Legislative Forum – Oakland

02/16/2019 7:30 AM – 9:30 AM Eggs & Issues – Burlington

02/16/2019 7:30 AM – 9:00 AM Public Forum – Fairfield

02/16/2019 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM Legislative Forum – Anamosa

02/16/2019 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM Legislative Forum – Spencer

02/16/2019 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM Legislative Forum – Arlington

02/16/2019 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM Legislative Forum – Newton

02/16/2019 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM Legislative Forum – Clinton

02/16/2019 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM Town Hall – Denver

02/16/2019 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM Legislative Forum – Burlington

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Legislative Coffee – Harlan

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM Legislative Coffee – Washington

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Legislative Forum – Monroe

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Legislative Forum – Storm Lake

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Listening Post – Waukee

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM Legislative Forum – Cedar Rapids

02/16/2019 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM Legislative Forum – Algona

02/16/2019 10:30 AM – 12:00 PM Legislative Forum – Des Moines

02/16/2019 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM Town Hall – Dunkerton

02/16/2019 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM Legislative Forum – Waukon

02/16/2019 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM Legislative Forum – Okoboji

02/16/2019 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM Legislative Forum – Knoxville

02/18/2019 9:45 AM – 11:15 AM Office Hours – Ankeny

02/18/2019 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Town Hall – Rock Rapids

02/19/2019 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM Town Meeting – Hampton

02/20/2019 7:45 AM – 8:45 AM Town Meeting – Traer

02/20/2019 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM Legislative Forum – West Des Moines

02/22/2019 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM Legislative Forum – Grimes

02/22/2019 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Public Forum – Keokuk

02/22/2019 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM Legislative Forum – Rock Valley

02/22/2019 4:00 PM – 5:30 PM Education Forum – Iowa City

02/22/2019 4:30 PM – 6:30 PM Legislative Forum – Waterloo

Thanks again to the folks at infonetiowa.org for putting this info together.   http://www.infonetiowa.org/calendar/events/

Legislative activity is really starting to crank in Des Moines. It sounds like Education funding has been pretty much put to bed for the session, with schools once again coming up short.  https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/politics/2019/02/13/iowa-education-schools-money-funding-classrooms-legislature-kim-reynolds-debate-kids-k-12-budget/2859348002/ 

Questions that are still out there include what will happen to IPERS. Also whether Republicans are still so mad about the gay marriage decision some 10 years ago that they will throw out one of the best judicial nominating processes in the country in order to turn Iowa’s courts into partisan shops. That would be devastating.

Another question not looming large yet, but may in the future is what will happen to Iowa’s cities when the property tax backfill ends. This could really devastate many of Iowa’s smaller (and often idealized) cities. As noted by the Des Moines Register this week, Iowa’s cities are deeper in debt than ever and the future doesn’t look promising.  https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/2019/02/11/iowa-city-debt-surpasses-6-billion-dollars-first-time-state-history/2747227002/#

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Eric Swalwell Will Visit Iowa Over Presidents Day Weekend

Eric Swalwell Returns to Iowa for Presidents Day Weekend

Congressman Eric Swalwell will return to Iowa for the Presidents Day weekend, from Saturday, February 16 through Monday, February 18, with events planned in eight cities.

Swalwell, 38, is an Iowa native and this will be his 16th visit to the state since the start of 2017. He is serving his fourth term representing California’s 15th Congressional District, including much of the eastern part of the San Francisco Bay Area.

He is co-chair of the House Democratic Steering and Policy Committee; founder and chairman emeritus of Future Forum, House Democrats’ millennial engagement group; chairman of the Intelligence Modernization and Readiness Subcommittee of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence; and a member of the House Judiciary Committee.

The weekend’s events will include:

Saturday, Feb. 16

  • 2-3:30pmCT, Council Bluffs – Meet & Greet with Pottawattamie County Democrats and Omaha Students Union, Lincoln’s Pub, 157 W Broadway, Council Bluffs, IA 51503
  • 5-7pmCT, Sioux City – Woodbury County Democratic Party Truman Club Event, 3472 Lindenwood St., Sioux City, IA 51104

Sunday, Feb. 17

·         2-3:30pmCT, Creston – Meet & Greet with Union County Democrats, The Windrow, 102 W Taylor St., Creston, IA 50801

·         5-6pmCT, Albia – Monroe County Democratic Party Spaghetti Supper, First Christian Church, 219 Washington Ave. E, Albia, IA 52531

Monday, Feb. 18

  • 1-2:30pm, Iowa City – Town Hall with Working Hero Iowa co-founder J.D. Scholten, Iowa City Public Library, 123 S Linn St., Iowa City, IA 52240
  • 5-7pmCT, Indianola – Warren County Democratic Party Soup Supper, Summerset Winery, 15101 Fairfax St., Indianola, IA 50125
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Right Wing Propaganda Machine Goes After Green New Deal

If you get a chance to ask a candidate a question between now and the Iowa caucuses, why not find out how they think we’re going to govern/get anything done on climate change or anything else when Fox News and conservative radio keep around 30-40% of the public completely misinformed on every important issue?  Or we could ask how they feel about bringing back the Fairness Doctrine.  Twelve years is not a lot of time. Everyone is going to need to be on board.  Here’s Samantha Bee showing us how they operate.

 

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This Is What Representation Looks Like

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It’s Oversight Time For The FCC

https://www.broadcastingcable.com/news/house-e-c-dems-to-fcc-show-your-work

House Energy & Commerce leadership have asked FCC Chairman Ajit Pai for a bunch of documents, signaling, literally, that the time for vigorous oversight of the agency, oversight it said was lacking under its Republican predecessors, has begun. Literally because the e-mail supplying a link to a Feb. 4 letter to the chairman seeking lots of info was headlined: “It’s Oversight Time,” evoking, perhaps, the “it’s clobbering time” advisory from the Fantastic Four’s The Thing.

One piece of information they are looking for is how many items are pending before the FCC’s Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). The highest profile one of those is the designation for hearing of the Sinclair-Tribune deal, which has since been scrapped. The FCC unanimously referred the deal to the ALJ over candor issues. The Enforcement Bureau recommended closing the investigation after the deal cratered, but House Dems have said it should go forward to resolve the FCC commissioners’ concerns about whether Sinclair misrepresented the deal, an issue that could be used against it at renewal time if the FCC doesn’t assuage those concerns.

The letter said the committee, now under Democratic leadership, was resuming its “traditional” oversight role. E&C Chair Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.) and Communications Chair Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) noted that Pai had not supplied adequate responses to requests while they were in the minority, and that hose chickens were now coming home to roost.

They were not shy about why they thought Pai had given them short shrift, saying under his leadership the FCC had failed to act in the public interest repeatedly and had prioritized corporate over consumer interests.

The request for info was general and wide ranging: “We ask that the FCC update the Committee with information about, among other things, the FCC’s current workload, the work of its bureaus and field offices, and the FCC’s interactions with the public through its handling of consumer complaints and Freedom of Information Act requests. They want answers to a lot of questions by March 4, including the number complaints filed about privacy issues, net neutrality, wireless coverage, customer service, internet availability and more. They also want lots of info on FOIA requests between 2016 and 2019.

And finally, seemingly to make their point about the need for responsiveness, they ask for a list of every letter sent to the FCC between 2016 and 2019 “to which the FCC has not yet provided a response.” The Dems have the power to subpoena documents if Pai does not comply.

Read more at Broadcasting and Cable

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Democrats Roll Out 2020 Caucus Changes

Iowa City precinct caucus 2016 standing room only


The Iowa Democratic party is now accepting public comments on proposed caucus and delegate selection changes.  Click here to read the 65-page Delegate Selection Plan (DSP)  and to submit your comment.  The public comment period will end on March 13, 2019. 

Here’s the word from the IDP:

The 2020 Iowa Caucuses will be held on February 3rd, 2020. We are proud to be First in the Nation once again and we are excited to be a part of the presidential selection process.

Over the last three years, the Iowa Democratic Party has been reviewing ways to increase accessibility, transparency, and participation in Iowa’s Democratic Caucuses. The IDP has held thousands of hours of conversation from people across Iowa and across the country. These conversations have included volunteers, activists, party leaders, former campaign staffers, and political scientists. The results of these conversations have resulted in the most significant changes to the Iowa Caucuses since 1972.

We are confident that these proposed changes will make the Iowa Caucuses the most accessible, transparent, and successful caucuses ever.

Watch the video of IDP Chair Troy Price giving an overview of the changes.

Posted in Blog for Iowa | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

Shutdown Possible: Tell Congress No Beds No Boots No Wall


This week’s action alert by Indivisible.  If you haven’t joined Indivisible Iowa yet, click here to join.

###

Indivisibles,

T-minus four days until the government could shut down again over Trump’s hateful wall and deportation agenda. Today, Indivisibles across the country hosted events to tell their members of Congress (MoCs): stop playing games with our lives (check out one of our favorite moments so far here). But we’re not done just yet.

This week, it’s critical that you keep up the pressure, both in-person and on the phones, and tell Congress no additional money for Trump’s wall, ICE agents, or detention beds.

Your #1 priority for Congress this week

Post-shutdown negotiations on the border wall have stalled. In return for ending the longest shutdown in history (that cost the economy $11 billion), Democrats and Republicans agreed to convene a joint “conference committee” to negotiate an agreement on Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funding, including the border wall. According to news reports and our intel from Capitol Hill, those talks have stalled — and Trump’s temper tantrum over funding for his wall and other hateful immigration policies continues.

If negotiators fail to reach a deal, the government will shut down again at midnight this Friday. Let’s be clear: this fight isn’t just about the border wall; it’s about rejecting Trump’s white nationalist, anti-immigrant agenda. House Democrats must stay strong and reject any more money that would allow Trump to tear more families apart.

As we approach that deadline, there are three critical pieces of negotiations to watch closely and to pressure your MoCs on: no beds, no boots, no wall.

  1. No beds. Congress has set a limit of 40,500 detention beds, and yet ICE continues to dramatically increase the average daily population of detainees. This is because ICE is able to freely transfer money from other accounts to increase the number of individuals and families they jail. You may remember that last year, Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) shone a light on the practice, revealing that the Trump administration diverted nearly $10 million from FEMA to ICE for detention beds. Without limits to ICE’s transfer authority, they’ll continue to jail tens of thousands of immigrants and families.
  2. No boots. We’re hearing that negotiators are going to give Trump more Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) agents. Don’t be fooled. HSI agents are ICE agents — and funding for HSI agents is funding for Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda. In fact, HSI is responsible for many high-profile, highly militarized worksite raids. The National Immigration Law Center has a great resource with more information on HSI agents here. Congress shouldn’t increase HSI’s funding — it should cut it and prohibit HSI from arresting workers while conducting this type of enforcement.
  3. No wall. The latest intel is that negotiators are discussing anywhere between $1.3 to 2 billion for wall money. Make no mistake, this money will devastate local communities so that Trump can fulfill his hateful campaign promise to build a wall along the southern border. It’s critical to keep up the pressure on your MoCs and tell them not one more dollar for Trump’s hateful wall.

Also moving on the Hill…

We know there’s a lot happening this week with the looming partial shutdown, but that doesn’t mean that everything is stalled. Here’s what else to watch this week:

  • Oversight hearings on Trump’s inhumane family separation policy continue. If you’re anything like us, you’ve watched Progressive Caucus Co-Chair and friend of Indivisible Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s (D-WA) amazing grilling of Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker on the Trump administrations vicious family separation policy. This week there will be two oversight hearings into the horrific family separation policy, one in the House Judiciary Committee and another in the House Oversight Committee.
  • The House could make (good) history this week and reject the war in Yemen. The House is set to aggressively assert its constitutional powers and pass a resolution ordering Trump to end the unauthorized and immoral US support for the Saudi-backed Yemen war. Here’s what you need to know about why this is such a big deal.
  • Hearings on the For the People Act (H.R. 1) wrap up in the House. Has your Representative co-sponsored H.R. 1 yet? This week, the Homeland Security Committee will hear testimony on election security, and the House Administration Committee will examine expert testimony on the many intersectional reforms included in this bill. This takes us closer to getting the bill on the floor of the House, which is expected to happen in early March.

 Your 5 weekly to-dos

  1. Tell your MoCs: no boots, no beds, no wall and push for a clean, year-long CR. Your MoCs need to hear from you this week before the government could partially shut down again this Friday. Use our updated call script here.
  2. Prepare now if Trump declares a national emergency over the wall. Trump continues to threaten to declare a fake emergency to get his way on the border wall, making a mockery of real national security emergencies and taking us another step toward authoritarianism. Read up on the three things Congress can and should do if it happens.
  3. Tell your MoC to cosponsor H.R. 1. Check here to see if your Dem MoC has co-sponsored H.R. 1. If they haven’t, use our call script to ask that they support this critical pro-democracy reform legislation.
  4. Start planning for February recess. While the looming partial shutdown could change Congress’ plans for February recess, check to see if your MoCs are holding an event and starting planning to ask the hard questions. Find town halls near you on our map here.
  5. Our March National Activist call is already in the works! Sign up here to make sure you don’t miss the latest Indivisible updates.

 Indivisible in your state

Every day, we are blown away by the power of Indivisibles across the country taking their activism to their statehouse! Just last week:

Read our Indivisible States Guide to join the Indivisible movement in taking the fight to your state!


IndivisiWin of the week

 

Indivisible Little Rock and Central Arkansas went to Senator Tom Cotton’s office today and left him an important message about keeping the government open with no additional money for Trump’s deportation machine.

Can you make a gift to keep up the momentum?

We’ve already defeated Trump’s demands for border wall funding once and we are sure that we can do it again. But it’s going to take all of us — showing up at district offices, making calls, and organizing. Our team is working day and night to support this growing movement of Indivisible groups and activated individuals as we tackle these challenges. But real talk: we’re depending on people like you, responding to emails like this one, to sustain our work.

Right now, we are running ads all over the country to bring new people into this movement (and into local groups!), hiring more on-the-ground organizers to support the work of Indivisibles from coast to coast, building out tools to make it easier for Indivisible groups to organize on the ground and communicate with their members, and gearing up to engage this movement in the most important election of our lives (those doors aren’t going to knock themselves!). If you can, please make a contribution of $10, $25, $50, or whatever you can afford, to fuel Indivisible, grow this movement, and defeat the worst of this administration’s attacks on our country.

It’s going to be a long week as we hurdle toward the next possible government shutdown and a possible fake national emergency. Stay tuned for updates on the latest developments on Twitter and Facebook. Keep up your pressure, keep organizing, and together we will win.

In solidarity,
The Indivisible Team

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This Is What Leadership Looks Like

ICYMI – must see

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Polar Vortex, The Electric Grid And National Emergencies

Image (8) prayer-wont-solve-climate-change-150x150.jpg for post 4400

Let’s Talk About Real National Emergencies

Considering that our current administration and his party are putting huge emphasis on building an antiquated wall system on our southern border for a problem that is mostly fiction you would think that they may really throw some effort into a real problems with real life serious consequences. You would be wrong.

As we were going through the deep freeze the last couple of weeks, my mind kept returning to an article I wrote nearly two years ago concerning the possibility that Russians have been able to hack into our electric system. Imagine the havoc that Russians or some other enemy could wreak if they decided to hack into our electric systems with a temperature of -26 degrees F and a wind chill of -50 degrees F. 

People would literally be freezing to death in their homes or dying in the fires they set trying to stay warm. Water pipes and sewage systems would be frozen and broken. Food would be frozen in a short time. The damage done in a short period of time would be among the greatest catastrophes we have ever faced.  A good, short analysis of what a cyber attack on the US electric system could lead to can be found here.    

The cyber attacks I wrote about in that article took place in the spring of 2017, fully 2 years ago. Has our government done anything to make our system less vulnerable in the mean time? No. Maybe the fact that most experts point at Russia as the source of the hacking has made investigations and actions against the perpetrators a low priority in this administration.

The antiquated and highly vulnerable electric infrastructure is a national emergency winter or summer.

What else is a national emergency? How about a banking system that has consolidated itself into a few companies that are truly too big to fail? After citing a too consolidated banking system as one of the major factors in the Republican depression of 2008, we have done little to fix the problem, thanks to obstruction from Republican legislators. Thus the problem has only grown worse and leaves the American people.

Other national emergencies? How about gun violence that kills nearly 40,000 a year and injures more than 100,000. Every one of those deaths or injuries leaves behind a multitude of shattered relatives and friends. For those who are injured the rest of their lives could well be the stuff of your worst nightmares of pain and poverty. 

How about some more national emergencies? The policy of separating the babies and children of those seeking refuge in the US at the border. This is a policy that would be at home in the Middle Ages, not in the modern world. These policies will come back to haunt us in the future.

Our aging population is yet another looming national emergency. There are other smaller emergencies, but there is one over riding national and global emergency that deserves our full attention and effort.

That is of course climate change. Anything made by man, no matter how technologically supreme, will not be able to stand the fury of nature on steroids fueled by the trapped heating caused by carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. We have been warned and warned and warned. The US in particular has ignored warnings while contributing the greatest amount to the problem.

So when our Dear Leader may once again threaten to lockout the government this coming Friday to get his worthless wall. His next move will be to declare his worthless wall a national emergency. Based on the few things listed above, a wall at the border is very unimportant by comparison.

Posted in #trumpresistance, Blog for Iowa, Children, Climate Change | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment