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I served in the US Navy from 2002-08; four of those years were as a Nuclear Propulsion Operator aboard an aircraft carrier. I engage in political activism in various Democratic circles when I am able to. I have a cat, and I am an uncle.

All opinions that I express are my own and do not reflect the views of any organization that I represent.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

NIGHT AND DAY





During the 8PM (CT) broadcast of The Rachel Maddow Show on Monday Night, Rachel Maddow opened her program showing the difference between the 111th Congress and Congresses where the Republicans have been in charge of the House.

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Despite what people say about Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, she got shit done when she held the speaker's gavel.


In the two-and-a-half years the Republicans have been in charge in the United States House, they have got nothing done except their endless pursuit to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (AKA: "ObamaCare") which became law in March 2010 after passing BOTH chambers of Congress by a majority of votes and signed by the President, survived a Supreme Court challenge in June 2012 in which a majority of the justices validated its constitutionality, and validated by the 2012 Presidential Election with Barack Obama winning with a majority in the Electoral College and though the popular vote is not official but a good metric of the public, won with 51% of the popular vote.

After 12:01 AM (ET) on Tuesday "ObamaCare" enrollment opened. The website has experienced some technical difficulties due to amount of people signing up so they can now get the affordable care they need regardless of pre-existing conditions or whether they are a woman. President Obama and Senate Democrats did not need to buckle because they have the upper hand. Again, the election and the fact that "ObamaCare" is the law of the land while Republicans have nothing to offer.

The battle over "ObamaCare" is long past done. If the Republican Party wishes to continue debating over a piece of legislation that has been law for a little more than 3 years then they can do so at their own pleasure preferably nowhere near the halls of Congress.

I am looking forward to voting every Republican out of office in November 2014. This madness has to end now. House Republicans have no interest in doing the country's business. We have real problems in this country that need real solutions. Right now the Democrats are the ones doing the heavy lifting while Republicans are sitting on the weight complaining about "How come you guys haven't solved the country's problems," and screaming "REPEAL OBAMACARE!!"

Remember Rachel Maddow's piece the day after the election? Pay attention to this part of her speech about why we need a functioning two-party system in government.

We are clearly not getting the basic government functions as it has become apparent the Republican Party did not learn a damn thing from 2012. This shutdown is on them. They have been oblivious to the real issues that this country faces that .

Remember when the I-5 bridge collapsed? Where's a highway funding bill so that we can fix our roads and keep another I-5 bridge from collapsing in a major metropolitan area during a heavy traffic period? It would create something that the Republicans campaigned on in 2010... you remember? That thing called: JOBS!



So... how about providing some job security for LGBT folks, like my fellow football prognosticator Ms. Monica Roberts of the TransGriot? I attended LGBT Lobby Day to try to get Texas' version of Employee Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) passed (it didn't, the Texas Lege decided to focus on OTHER things... *cough*abortion*cough*). The national version of ENDA is stalled because the House won't take it up.

Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR). Now here's something the Republican Party could get on board with. As you recall from 2012, Barack Obama won with 71% of the Hispanic vote. This is an ever increasing voting bloc and they will have a lot of power in future elections. If the trends continue, the Hispanic vote could flip Arizona or, the nightmare scenario for any Republican strategist, a BLUE TEXAS.

Political scientists and strategists feel that because of the strong religious and family background of most Hispanics, they would align with the Republican Party. However, they are very tolerant when it comes to social issues such as gay marriage and abortion. Other issues that Hispanics care about and align themselves with the Democratic Party on: Health care reform, access to higher education, and CIR.

Republicans could try to make themselves more favorable to Hispanics. Not only will they NOT take up CIR in the House... but... well... there's this... and even though it is a state rep, this... and this.


Firearm legislation reforms given the events at Sandy Hook and the Washington Navy Yard. Controversial and higher degree of difficulty, but it can be done. Here's the thing: there is near universal support for background checks among Democrats, Independents, Republicans, Tea Partiers, NRA Members, and Firearm Owners. Now in a recent study among UC-Davis shows that Firearm Dealers support background checks before purchasing a firearm. But the House and other Republicans won't take it up because the NRA has them scared about what they will do to them.

Are you noticing a pattern here?

In 2010, Republicans said that their goal was to create jobs but their real motive was to shutdown the government in order to crash the economy for political gain in the next presidential election. Republicans were (thankfully) unable to do that in 2011 during the debt ceiling talks, but it did have an impact on job creation and caused our credit rating to be downgraded. The public saw through the Republican's plans in 2012 and not only re-elected President Obama but also kept Democrats in charge of the Senate and gave more voted to Democratic candidates over Republican candidates.

Now in 2013, House Republicans have shutdown the government and it is not looking like there will be a resolution anytime soon. President Obama and Congressional Democrats are holding their ground to push for the passage of a clean Continuing Resolution (the clean CR that would re-open the government without any amendments) while House Republicans controlled by the Tea Party are saying that will only happen with the repeal or delay of "ObamaCare." Well, "ObamaCare" is happening so the House Republicans are at a much weaker position and the voting public is seeing the Republican Party for what they are: a bunch of sore losers and spoiled children because they didn't get their way in 2012.

If this shutdown continues any longer it could complicate the debt ceiling crisis which is poised to happen three weeks from now. If the United States does not raise the debt ceiling it could cause an economic crisis that has worldwide consequences and could further downgrade our country's credit rating.

I started this post with Rachel Maddow and I will end with it.

Remember the sequester? I mentioned in this post, but it is worth repeating. This is what Maddow said about the sequester, specifically this line:

"The bigger problem is crisis-to-crisis-to-crisis is not the way the biggest country on earth should govern itself. Other countries spend their time trying to build up their resilience. We, instead, invent our own crises."

This is no way to govern a country.

It's time to restore sanity to our government and stop this madness.

It's time to get shit done. This country needs it.


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