Category: Action Alert

03/10/05

Permalink Categories: Action Alert   English (US)

Red and Blue Bloggers have Come Together on this, the New Bankrupts bill is a Bad Idea for all of America

In what looks to be a meeting of the minds, the Red and Blue Bloggers have come together on this...

Red Ones

Left Ones

It is good to see that both sides of the debate are willing to come togther and try to defeat a bad bill. You can should call your members now... Senate and the House or

Broken Promises - The Death of Deliberative Democracy

Rep Louise M. Slaughter's Office released a great report that catalogs the Republicans agenda to destroy democracy ay all cost. While I have not been able to get myself around the entire 147 pages, I wanted to share with you the executive summery, and a few choose excerpts.

Here is the PDF

Broken Promises: The Death of Deliberative Democracy

A Congressional Report on the Unprecedented Erosion of the Democratic Process in the 108th Congress.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

In the 108th Congress, House Republicans became the most arrogant, unethical and corrupt majority in modern Congressional history. When they took control of the House after the 1994 elections, Republicans vowed they would be different than previous Congresses. They promised they would manage the House in a way that fostered what they called “deliberative democracy,” which they defined as “the full and free airing of conflicting opinions through hearings, debates, and amendments for the purpose of developing and improving legislation deserving of the respect and support of the people.

This report documents how, ten years after their “revolution,” House Republicans have completely abandoned this standard of deliberative democracy they set for themselves. Furthermore, they have abandoned any other principle of procedural fairness or democratic accountability. In the opinion of many non-partisan observers of Congress, the 108th Congress not only matched the worst abuses of earlier Congresses; it set a whole new benchmark.
This report examines in detail how, over the past two years, the Republican leadership ignored the House Rules and the basic standards of legislative fairness and regular order with an impunity that is unprecedented in the history of the House of Representatives. this report shows that:

  • Despite their vows to open up the rules process and restore deliberative democracy to the House chamber, House Republicans took unprecedented steps in the 108th Congress to make the House floor a “democracy-free zone.” They used closed and highly restrictive rules to prevent Members from offering amendments that would have provoked real debate and forced Members to go on the record on real issues. The end result of this policy was that special interests, not U.S. Representatives, wrote the major bills in the 108th Congress. Even former Speaker Newt Gingrich recently suggested House Republicans “should open up the rules more.”
  • House Republicans continued to squeeze out real debate on controversial issues in the House by devoting more and more floor time to suspension bills. In the 108th Congress, Republican leaders apparently decided that the House should spend two out of the three days of its already abbreviated legislative week on noncontroversial legislation, such as bills that name post offices and congratulate sports teams. At the same time, they allowed less time and fewer amendments and votes on the serious, substantive legislation the House considers.
  • Rules Committee Republicans intentionally used emergency meeting procedures and late-night meetings in the 108th Congress to discourage Members and the press from participating in the legislative process. These tactics not only discouraged Members from bringing amendments to the Committee and participating in the legislative process; they also appeared to be drive Republican Rules Members off the Committee.
  • House Republicans repeatedly embarrassed the House by granting blanket waivers to conference reports and rushing them through the House before Members could read them. The 108th Congress was repeatedly ridiculed for the special-interest provisions Republican leaders stuck into conference bills, such as the infamous “Hooters” provision in the Energy bill and the provision allowingCongressional staffers to snoop on American citizens’ tax returns.

We conclude this report with some modest recommendations to curtail the most egregious abuses we observed in the 108th Congress and restore a small measure of accountability and democratic deliberation to a legislative body that is supposed to be a model of those two values.

  • Open up the process by allowing debate and votes on more serious amendments. The Republican leadership should heed the advice of former Speaker Newt Gingrich and “open up the House Rules more.” They should allow, and even encourage, serious amendments that enjoy the support of a “substantial number of Members” to come to the House floor for debate and up-or-down votes.
  • Allow more bills to be considered under open rules. In the 109th Congress, the Republican leadership should increase the percentage of bills it allows to be debated under an open rule process, and decrease the percentage of bills it jams through the House under closed rules.
  • Spend more time on major, substantive legislation and less time on suspension bills. Instead of using the suspension of the rules procedure to crowd out debate on major legislation, the Republican leadership in the 109th Congress should expand debate time and the consideration of amendments by restricting suspensions to Mondays and Tuesdays. The House should spend the majority of its time in session debating and voting on the major policy issues of our day, not naming post offices and congratulating sports teams.
  • Bring back regular order and reduce the number of late-night or earlymorning “emergencies.” The House Rules Committee should only use the “emergency meeting” procedure in the small number of cases, before recesses or at the end of sessions, when the House moves legislation more quickly through the process than regular order allows. Regular order should be the rule, not the exception. Instead of meeting late at night or early in the morning, the Rules Committee should do its business during regular “business” hours so that Members and the press can attend and participate in the House rule-making process.
  • Give Members three days to read conference reports. The Rules Committee and Republican leadership should end its practice of granting “blanket waivers” to conference reports. The Committee should protect Members’ rights to know the content of conference reports by waiving only those provisions that are absolutely necessary for the orderly consideration of the conference report. The three-day layover requirement should be waived only in the most exigent circumstances, and then only by a two-thirds vote of the House.

It is good to see that Congresswoman Louse Slaughter is doing her part to fight to save this nation from those that wish to dismantle it. I will do my part by urging you to please read as much of it as you can, and share the URL with your friends and family. We need to save this nation, it is on the brink.

03/08/05

Democrats Are Allowing GOP to Win in the Keystone State.

One of leaders of the GOP’s “Campaign Against Americans” Rick Santorum of PA is up for re-election in 2006. It would be a huge blow to the “Campaign Against Americans” if this gent was unseated.

Here is the issue at hand; the DNC is preening a pro-life democrat Robert P. Casey Jr. to run against Santorum. The DNC is basically willing to throw away many of the “core beliefs” of DNC in order to win a seat. The DNC is putting up a Republican-Lite, in order to unseat a Republican. How is this really a win for us?

Now, less you forgot, we are still in a nation that allows almost anyone to run for senator, and it looks like a read Democrat is doing just that. Chuck Pennacchio, PhD is running for the office as well, you would not know that if you asked the DNC. Here are some of the things that I love about this man, he has 2 children, a wife, and is a real Democrat. Pro-Choose, Pro Family, Pro America.

I want to bring this up because like I said, the DNC is pushing for a Republican-lite canadate, vs. a real Democrat.

Did we not learn our lesson in 2000 and 2004? If you want people to vote between a Republican and a kind of Republican you often elect a Republican. Casey is a great man, and while a win for the DNC is a win, I am not so sure that he will help the situation, do we need another Lieberman?

Go to this gents Website Chuck2006.com, if you have a few bucks, throw it his way, and if you live in the Keystone support this man!

02/22/05

Permalink Categories: Issues, Media, Action Alert   English (US)

Senator Durbin Calling for Investigation on Jeff and the Gang

Action Alert

The Senate Democratic leadership is privately circulating a letter calling for other senators to join a call for an investigation into discredited White House reporter Jeff Gannon, RAW STORY has learned.

The letter, issued from Minority Whip Richard Durbin (D-IL), calls on President Bush to “order a full inquiry” into how a “fake” journalist working for a “sham” news organization got access to the president.

Write your Senator Now, and ask that they sign this letter
Write your Senator

Here is Senator Durbin's Letter

Dear Mr. President,

At a press conference in the White House on January 26, you stated that “there needs to be a nice, independent relationship between the White House and the press.” In that same press conference, you called on a reporter then known as Jeff Gannon, who worked for an organization called Talon News.

Since that time, the public has learned that the real name of that reporter is James Dale Guckert, not Jeff Gannon, and that he had regular access to the White House press facilities for more than a year. We have also learned that the questions he posed at White House press briefings and the stories he filed for Talon News frequently mirrored Republican Party talking points, that Talon News is a news organization in name only and that it has apparently close connections to the Republican party.

Given the unprecedented level of security in Washington since 9/11, it is troubling that that a non-journalist using a false name and working for a sham news organization could have gained regular access to the White House for such an extended period of time.

Another reason the Gannon/Guckert affair is disturbing is because of what we have recently learned about apparent efforts by some in your Administration to try to “buy” favorable news coverage. These other efforts include paying news personalities Armstrong Williams and Maggie Gallagher large sums of money to promote your Administration’s education and marriage initiatives, and using tax payer dollars to produce video news releases promoting the new prescription drug benefit for Medicare beneficiaries and other policies the Administration regards as accomplishments. A recent report by the General Accountability Office called such video news releases illegal uses of public funds. More recently, we have heard troubling reports that Social Security Administration officials may be using public funds and pressuring public employees to promote your goal of privatizing Social Security.

As you know, concerns that government officials may be trying to deceive the public by manipulating the media can be extremely corrosive to public

trust. For that reason, we respectfully request that you order an immediate and thorough investigation into the Gannon/Guckert matter. How is it possible that a man using a fake name, with dubious journalism credentials, was able to clear the White House’s extensive security screening process and gain such close access to you and your staff for such an extended period of time? Have there been other, similar breaches of security and journalism standards?

We appreciate your prompt attention to this important matter. We urge you to order a full inquiry so that the American people know the facts.

Life in Bush's America

Sadly, November of 2000 put this great nation on a track of destruction. Four years later the fundamentalist whack-jobs used fear and a tangle of lies to scare people into voting for this nut bag again.

BushsAmerica.com Store BushsAmerica.com Store

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