Howard Dean makes clear what went wrong:
Former Vermont Governor Howard Dean believes Democrats suffered a bad midterm election because they lacked a clear message. “Where the hell is the Democratic party?” he asked on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday. “You’ve got to stand for something if you want to win.”
The beauty of Dean is that he’s matter, he knows what’s wrong and how to fix it because he did it. Remember he was the chair of the DNC when Democrats took back the House in 2006.
And Elizabeth Warren gives us direction and hope, It’s time to work on America’s agenda.
The solution to this isn’t a basket of quickly passed laws designed to prove Congress can do something — anything. The solution isn’t for the president to cut deals — any deals — just to show he can do business. The solution requires an honest recognition of the kind of changes needed if families are going to get a shot at building a secure future.
It’s not about big government or small government. It’s not the size of government that worries people; rather it’s deep-down concern over who government works for. People are ready to work, ready to do their part, ready to fight for their futures and their kids’ futures, but they see a government that bows and scrapes for big corporations, big banks, big oil companies and big political donors — and they know this government does not work for them.
The American people want a fighting chance to build better lives for their families. They want a government that will stand up to the big banks when they break the law. A government that helps out students who are getting crushed by debt. A government that will protect and expand Social Security for our seniors and raise the minimum wage.
Americans understand that building a prosperous future isn’t free. They want us to invest carefully and prudently, sharply aware that Congress spends the people’s money. They want us to make investments that will pay off in their lives, investments in the roads and power grids that make it easier for businesses to create good jobs here in America, investments in medical and scientific research that spur new discoveries and economic growth, and investments in educating our children so they can build a future for themselves and their children.
Before leaders in Congress and the president get caught up in proving they can pass some new laws, everyone should take a skeptical look at whom those new laws will serve. At this very minute, lobbyists and lawyers are lining up by the thousands to push for new laws — laws that will help their rich and powerful clients get richer and more powerful. Hoping to catch a wave of dealmaking, these lobbyists and lawyers — and their well-heeled clients — are looking for the chance to rig the game just a little more.
But the lobbyists’ agenda is not America’s agenda. Americans are deeply suspicious of trade deals negotiated in secret, with chief executives invited into the room while the workers whose jobs are on the line are locked outside. They have been burned enough times on tax deals that carefully protect the tender fannies of billionaires and big oil and other big political donors, while working families just get hammered. They are appalled by Wall Street banks that got taxpayer bailouts and now whine that the laws are too tough, even as they rake in billions in profits. If cutting deals means helping big corporations, Wall Street banks and the already-powerful, that isn’t a victory for the American people — it’s just another round of the same old rigged game.
Democrats have to make sure everyone in America knows they are the party of the people again.
The Texas Progressive Alliance believes that it’s not whether you stumble that matters but whether you get up and keep going as it brings you this week’s roundup.
As the Fifth Circuit gets set to hear arguments over Texas’ ban on same sex marriage, Off the Kuff reminds us that public opinion is much more favorable towards same sex marriage in Texas now.
Libby Shaw writing for Daily Kos and Texas Kaos believes that although we lost this election, big time, giving up is not an option. We Lost the Election but We Are Not Giving Up.
The first beatings in the Republican takeover in Harris County were administered at their election night watch party, as the media that dared to speak during a prayer experienced first-hand the love of Christ and his believers. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs wonders if assaulting a reporter on camera, physically or verbally, is really what Jesus would do.
Despite the ugly results from last Tuesday, CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme refuses to be discouraged. We learn from our mistakes. PS: The Valley went for Davis.
From WCNews at Eye on Williamson. Less than 30% of eligible voters turned out to vote in the 2014 mid-terms in Texas. Needless to say, 2014 Turnout Was Horrible.
Election night may have been tough for Democrats, but it was a big win for the Minimum Wage. This got Texas Leftist wondering… If poorer states like Arkansas and Nebraska can raise wages for their citizens, why can’t Texas’ major cities like Houston, Dallas Austin, San Antonio and El Paso do the same? With skyrocketing costs of living, our citizens definitely can’t survive on $7.25
And here are some posts of interest from other Texas blogs.
Hair Balls informs us that the Fifth Circuit wasn’t always a judicial wingnut backwater.
John Wright updates us on Connie Wilson’s efforts to get a drivers license that properly uses her wife’s surname.
The Lunch Tray divines what the elections mean for school food.
Nonsequiteuse has a message for those who would dump on Battleground Texas.
Texas Vox says that just because air is better doesn’t mean it’s good.
Turnout in Tuesday’s election was horrible. The numbers aren’t finalized yet but it looks like nationwide it was around 36% (and that may be too generous) and in Texas around 28%. [See here and here.]
The interesting part from the charts in this article, Actual election turnout far lower than reported, is to notice the turnout numbers in the states that have Voter ID laws.
What this means is that in the US 64% of the voting eligible population (VEP), and in Texas 72%, saw no reason to vote. It’s likely they didn’t vote because no one really spoke to issues they care about.
This article about the US Senate race in Virginia shows the predicament pretty well. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Virginia) won big in 2012 and barely squeaked out a win on Tuesday. He ran both times as a self-described “radical centrist”.
But what is also clear from that margin — and from the final weeks of the campaign — is that Warner’s operation didn’t really adapt to the partisan reality of the new mood. A self-described “radical centrist” who prided himself on his appeal among Republicans and independents, Warner steadfastly continued to court those voters despite strong evidence that their tolerance for Democrats had dramatically waned.
Warner also may have missed out on a new advantage for politicians with D’s after their names in Virginia’s changing demographic landscape.
Republican Ed Gillespie gives remarks at his election night party in Springfield, Va. (Kate Patterson/For The Washington Post)
By positioning himself as a moderate, he may have missed a chance to gin up more enthusiasm within the state’s expanding Democratic base, earning fewer votes in such deep-blue communities as Arlington County and Alexandria than left-of-Warner Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) did a year ago.
All of it has left some to wonder whether Warner would have won bigger if he had eschewed the middle and embraced the left, and whether the winning path for moderates that Warner forged during his own bid for governor 13 years ago is becoming extinct.
The most interesting part of the article is how dismissive Sen. Warner was and is of a message that was more friendly to the Democratic base.
The playbook that allowed Warner to dominate the commonwealth’s old electoral map barely worked Tuesday in Virginia, where some once-blue, union-friendly counties are now deep red — and vote-rich Northern Virginia is the place that delivers Democrats their wins.
That’s how McAuliffe did it last year — and how Sen. Timothy M. Kaine did it the year before.
They also did it by throwing out more partisan rhetoric to jazz up Democratic voters — something some Warner confidants suggested that he do, too.
“I was an advocate of him introducing more base red-meat topics, and he resisted because he is still speaking to the ‘radical centrist’ voter,” longtime adviser Ellen Qualls, who helped Warner prepare for debates, said before the election. “I wanted him to talk a lot more about personhood and birth control than he actually does.”
Instead, aside from a few debate references, Warner helped Gillespie stay away from such divisive issues as abortion and same-sex marriage. Warner’s TV commercials were silent on those issues, too.
“My path has been very different from Terry’s or Tim’s or others’,” Warner said in an interview with The Washington Post before the election. “To the annoyance of some of my so-called staff, I’m going to Abingdon and Russell County now because Southwest Virginia gave me a start, and I’m not going to cede one part.”
It was so different that he almost lost. What Warner stated at the end was the most baffling.
“I think there are enough of us in both parties who realize that this process that one side puts up an ideological bill and the other side filibusters and it’s rinse and repeat and we never get to debate . . . ” he said. “I don’t want this job to vote on deputy secretaries and ambassadors. If you want the job, you’ve got to wrestle with the big problems, and that means that those of us who want to do something, [we have] to be willing to shake things up no matter who’s in charge.”
Yes, the radical centrist will shake things up by working out a deal on…..what exactly no one knows.
Warner and many other Democrats would likely have changed the numbers and maybe a few outcomes if they had spoken to the millions of voters around the country that are left out of most election conversations. Just look at the issues that are being mentioned for possible compromise between President Obama and the GOP Congress.
- Corporate Income Taxes
- International Trade Deal
- Keystone XL Pipeline
- Emergency Ebola Funds
- Authorizing Military Force Against ISIS
- and Infrastructure/Transportation Spending
Of those the only ones that may be of interest to those who didn’t vote are the last two. All the rest are basically give-aways to corporations, big money donors, or both.
It’s a chicken and egg scenario. The majority of Americans aren’t voting because no one is speaking to their issues. And no one is speaking to their issues because the majority of Americans are not voting.
There’s no sugar-coating it, Tuesday was a bloodbath for Democrats.
It’s painfully obvious that the Democrats, in Texas and around the country, gave far too many people no reason to show up and vote for them this year. This graphic is illustrates the issue very well.
In Texas the wing nuts are calling the Democratic Party no better then a student council. While that’s not the case it’s hard not to feel like it’s true right now.
Mike Lux, Democrats Failed To Tell Their Story, makes it clear that Democrats did little to give voters a reason to vote for them in 2014. And the immigration decision was really destructive to their chances.
You don’t win elections with a depressed and discouraged base, and you don’t win elections without a narrative that explains to voters why we you should win. Democrats failed on both scores. What my party needs to learn is that our candidates need to tell voters why they have a D behind their name on the ballot, and our entire party- candidates, top elected officials, Democratically-aligned organizations, the grassroots and Netroots- needs to have a unified story about what the election is about.
And here’s the thing: good stories have both a villain and a hero who overcomes the villain. It can’t be a villain-less story about how we all just need to all work together in bipartisan fashion, and it can’t be a hero-less story that is all negative about the Republicans either. It has to be both: in red states, in tough elections, voters who are wary of the Democratic party will not be moved by the Democrats saying they are not Obama. In order to embrace the Democratic candidate, they need to understand why that candidate is a Democrat.
We should have crafted a message around what this election was about. It should have had elements of a strong economic agenda for hard-pressed women and young voters; it should have painted a picture of the agenda of the Koch brothers and the other big money special interests trying to buy the election on the other side. And you know what else: it should have included a story about the big things the Democrats are doing to help people, all the things I talked about above but also including immigration reform.
Looking at the cratered numbers for people like Pryor and Grimes who spoke against the executive order and got no more old white folks voting for them as a result , I woke up this morning convinced that one of the biggest mistakes of this election was Obama’s failure to do the immigration executive order before the election. Republicans would have screamed bloody murder, which would have gotten a more fired up reaction from our base; and it would have been a jolt of energy not just to Hispanics but to young people and other elements of the Rising American Electorate that pollsters like Stan Greenberg are so focused on.
Instead of a jolt of energy, what Democratic voters got instead was a dose of depression. Look at Alison Grimes: when she was running populist ads against the Koch brothers and bringing Elizabeth Warren to the state to fire up the troops, she was right in the game, in a dead heat against McConnell. When she refused to say who she voted for in 2012, and then ran a right wing immigration ad, her numbers deflated like a flat tire, and she ended up getting crushed.
Texas Democrats did little, if anything, that inspired people to come out and vote for their candidates. Jim Moore takes apart the Wendy Davis campaign in his post, Wendy Made it Worse. I don’t want to focus on the issue he has with the consultants and such. But more on his issues with the messaging fail of the campaign.
Davis spent the entirety of her campaign attacking her opponent, a man who clearly needs a serious political comeuppance. But it is axiomatic in American politics that when you run negative ads you drive up your own negatives almost as much as you do those of your opponent. Voters had a hard time turning on their TVs and seeing anything positive from Davis. No one today can effectively articulate how a Governor Davis would have made their lives different than a Governor Abbott because Davis simply did an ineffectual job of communicating on pocketbook and daily life issues.
In fact, on some issues she simply failed to communicate. Up until about the last 6-8 weeks of the campaign, Davis had nothing on her website about immigration or health care, and, in a state where the candidates for the top office talk constantly about the border, Davis was virtually silent on it. Never mind that it is a federal government responsibility and the state doesn’t have the resources to really have an impact; voters want to know what their governor thinks about securing the border.
Davis might have even won the campaign (Yeah, I know, wild assertion), if she simply talked about Medicaid. Estimates are that Texas has close to two million residents that would be eligible for Medicaid if Governor Rick Perry would allow it to be expanded under Obamacare. But Davis did not use the issue on the stump. Texas is expected to lose $22 billion by 2020 in federal tax money by not participating in Medicaid.
Instead of ads on that topic, though, Davis ran a commercial about a woman who was raped by a vacuum cleaner salesman, and her opponent, as attorney general, defended the company. The spot had the usual sonorous voice explaining how Abbott argued to protect the company against the victim’s lawsuit and it used grayish video of a man getting out of a car and going to a door with a vacuum cleaner. Bad ad. Bad idea. Even worse, the Davis team did not tell the woman who had been victimized that the political ad about her tragedy was going to be a part of the statewide discourse.
Davis did nothing but attack. And that did nothing toward communicating her vision for Texas, assuming she had pondered a future for the state. On education, she got sucked into a fight with Abbott over Pre-k and never effectively explained how she would improve public schools. Property taxes in the state are onerous but she never addressed that beyond a vague mention of looking at corporate tax breaks. In a state where roads are crowded and water is running low, she hardly even had generalities to offer on those two critical concerns. But in one day she put out twelve news releases on ending the statute of limitations on rape.
Davis lost because she deserved to lose. And Texas is a very conservative, Republican state that will take time to turn the purple Obama’s acolytes were convinced it could be colored this year. The pros from Dover can go home now. They’ve made a lot of money on the Davis campaign. There will be no statue erected to honor Jeremy Bird on the grounds of the Texas capitol. And Battleground Texas will likely become another historical Texas footnote about the outlanders who came down to show us how to make it happen, but didn’t.
This is a huge setback for those of us who love Texas and dream of a progressive government. More uniforms will patrol the border and turn it into an armed camp. An increasing number of toll roads will be built and there will be little or no advancement in mass transit and rail. Religion will creep back into public schools and our textbooks will teach evolution as a theory.
It’s not all her fault, obviously. She would’ve had made a much better governor than Greg Abbott. But there is no denying Wendy Davis made things worse for Democrats in Texas.
The one thing I kept thinking in the closing week or two of the election was when are we going to see the sunny/inspiring closing ad from the Davis campaign. The one issue that often gets overlooked, that made Davis and the Democrats job extremely hard, is the economic conditions in Texas. It’s really hard to take down the incumbent party when the economy is in good shape.
In the end it was a long-shot, and most knew she had to run a perfect campaign and get some luck. Neither of those happened. The dissatisfying part of the results on Tuesday was, as Moore points out, that things seem to have gotten worse and not better for Democrats in Texas.
The one lone bright spot, and an issue/organizing template for the future was the Denton Fracking Ban that passed overwhelmingly.
All of this leaves me wondering – how in the world did a crooked party, that only cares about the rich, become the “party of the working folk”? It’s because far too many weren’t reminded of that, What really went wrong for Democrats.
Pollster Celinda Lake, who polled on multiple races, says the broader failure to articulate this — from the President on down — led these voters to opt instead for vague promises of a change in direction.
“We have a huge problem: People do not think the recovery has affected them, and this is particularly true of blue collar white voters,” Lake said. “What is the Democratic economic platform for guaranteeing a chance at prosperity for everyone? Voters can’t articulate it. In the absence of that, you vote for change.”
“Our number one imperative for 2016,” Lake concluded, “is to articulate a clear economic vision to get this country going again.”
It’s because every Democrat in America doesn’t use that as the guiding light of their campaign. Things are never as good or as bad as they seem. And this is no reason to stop working hard and give up hope. It’s OK if it’s impossible.
“It’s OK if it’s impossible; it’s OK! Now I’m going to speak to you as organizers. Listen carefully. The object is not to win. That’s not the objective. The object is to do the right and good thing. If you decide not to do anything, because it’s too hard or too impossible, then nothing will be done, and when you’re on your death bed, you’re gonna say, “I wish I had done something. But if you go and do the right thing NOW, and you do it long enough “good things will happen—something’s gonna happen.”
To end I’ll post Rick Perlstein’s “Rules of Liberal Political Success”.
Got to make people feel good.
No liberal regime has ever succeeded in American History without successfully stigmatizing the conservatism that preceded it as a failure that ruined ordinary people’s lives.
A transformational Democratic president must be a credible defender of the economic interests of ordinary Americans to a preponderance of those ordinary Americans sufficient to push through their distrust of cosmopolitan liberals as such. (Anti Big Business Populism).
No liberal regime has ever succeeded in American History without successfully stigmatizing it’s opposition as extreme, as alien, as strange, as frightening to ordinary Americans who want order in their lives.
To all the Democratic candidates and everyone who worked so hard on all the campaigns, registering voters, phone banking, and getting voters to the polls – thank you very much. Better days are ahead, it’s just going to take time and hard work.
It’s election day folks. Get to the polls and do you duty.
Here’s a great list of newspaper endorsements for statewide candidates.
Here’s a list of statewide and local Democrats that are on the ballot.
Click here to view a sample ballot.
Here’s the list of where to vote in Williamson County on Election Day.
The polls will be open from 7am to 7pm Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Los centros electorales estarán abiertos 07 a.m.-7 p.m. Martes, 4 de noviembre 2014
As a registered voter of Williamson County you may vote at ANY Vote Center on Election Day.
Como votante registrado en el condado de Williamson puede votar en CUALQUIER Voto Center el día de las elecciones.
|Anderson Mill Limited District
||11500 El Salido Parkway
|Bethany United Methodist Church
||10010 Anderson Mill Rd
|Clairmont Retirement Community
||12463 Los Indios Trail
|Kelly Reeves Athletic Complex
||10211 W Parmer Lane
|La Quinta Inn & Suites
||10701 Lakeline Mall Dr
|Lord of Life Lutheran Church
||9700 Neenah Ave
||13427 Pond Springs Rd
|Rattan Creek Park Community Center
||7617 Elkhorn Mountain Trail
|Bartlett Town Hall
||140 W Clark St
|Cedar Park City Hall
||450 Cypress Creek Rd Bldg 3
|Cedar Park High School
||2150 Cypress Creek Rd
|Cedar Park Library
||550 Discovery Blvd
|Cedar Park Randalls
||1400 Cypress Creek Rd
|Cedar Park Recreation Center
||1435 Main St Town Center
|Highland Estates Ind Retirement Living
||1500 N Lakeline Blvd
|Vista Ridge High School
||200 S Vista Ridge Blvd
||620 S Commerce St
|Andice Comm Center
||6600 FM 970 Andice
|Florence City Hall
||106 S Patterson Ave
|County Central Maintenance Facility
||3151 SE Inner Loop
|Cowan Creek Amenity Center
||1433 Cool Springs Way
|Estrella Oaks Rehab & Care
||4011 Williams Dr
|First Baptist Church
||1333 W University Ave
|Georgetown Airport – Terminal Bldg
||500 Terminal Dr
|GISD Administration Bldg
||603 Lakeway Dr
|Main Street Baptist Church
||1001 S Main St – Fellowship Hall
|Parks and Recreation Administration
||1101 N College St
|San Gabriel Presbyterian Church
||5404 Williams Dr
|Sun City Social Center
||2 Texas Dr
|The Caring Place Annex
||2001 Railroad Ave
|Williamson County Inner Loop Annex
||301 S E Inner Loop
||114 W Davilla St
|Hutto City Hall
||401 W Front St
|Hutto Middle School
||1005 Exchange Blvd
|Jarrell Memorial Park Community Center
||1651 CR 305
|Leander Church of Christ
||300 Crystal Falls Parkway
|Leander High School
||3301 S Bagdad Rd
|Leander Public Library
||1011 S Bagdad Rd
|Pat Bryson Municipal Hall
||201 N Brushy St
|Rouse High School
||1501 CR 271
|Liberty Hill High School
||16500 W SH 29
|Baca Senior Center
||301 W Bagdad Ave Bldg 2
|Bluebonnet Trail Community Services
||1009 N Georgetown Ave
|Brushy Creek Community Center
||16318 Great Oaks Dr
|Cedar Ridge High School
||2801 Gattis School Rd
|Central Texas Beauty College
||1400 N Mays St
|Dell Diamond Heritage Center
||3400 E Palm Valley Blvd
|Faith Baptist Church
||3625 Gattis School Rd
|Fern Bluff MUD Community Center
||7320 Wyoming Springs Rd
|Hilton Garden Inn
||2310 North IH-35
|JB & Hallie Jester Annex
||1801 E Old Settlers Blvd
|Round Rock High School
||300 N Lake Creek Dr
|Round Rock Presbyterian Church
||4010 Sam Bass Rd
|Round Rock Randalls
||2051 Gattis School Road
|San Gabriel Rehab & Care
||4100 College Park Dr
|Sleep Inn & Suites
||1980 South IH 35 Exit 251 McNeil Rd
|Teravista Community Center
||4211 Teravista Club Dr
|Main Street Events Center
||3101 North Main
|Taylor City Hall
||400 Porter St
|Taylor Public Library
||801 Vance St
|St John Lutheran Church
||409 S Main St
|First Baptist Church of Weir
||315 FM 1105
The Texas Progressive Alliance fervently hopes that all of the election winners have our state’s best interests at heart as we bring you this week’s roundup.
Off the Kuff discusses what the Republicans didn’t tell us about voter ID, and the bigger question about it that has yet to be decided.
Libby Shaw writing for Texas Kaos and Daily Kos notes that when fascism comes to America it will come wrapped in a law that should have never been passed in the first place. I will not sit down and shut up about voter suppression in Texas.
From WCNews at Eye on Williamson. The Voter ID law in Texas is causing problems. Considering it’s always been a solution in search of a problem this is no surprise, TX GOP Voter ID Law Denied 93-Year-Old Veteran A Ballot.
Control of the US Senate will be decided in a runoff in Louisiana in December, or maybe in January in Georgia. So sayeth PDiddie at Brains and Eggs.
And here are some posts of interest from other Texas blogs.
Lone Star Ma was blockwalking to the end.
The Great God Pan Is Dead explains the activism of Working Artists and the Greater Economy (W.A.G.E.), who advocate for paying artists fairly for their labor.
The Texas Election Law Blog reports on the “sub-rosa approval” of veterans health cards as voter ID.
Colin Strother asks if you know who your voters are.
Kevin Barton calls for lower municipal speed limits in the name of pedestrian safety.
Jackie Young updates us on the San Jacinto Waste Pits trial.
Scott Braddock discusses the new (and likely to be short-lived) “dark money” rules.
Forrest Wilder recaps how Greg Abbott crushed Houston Votes in 2010.
The Lunch Tray reminds us that in terms of what they eat, every day is like Halloween for American kids.
Texas Election Judge Had To Turn Away 93-Year-Old Veteran Due To Strict Voter ID Law.
In the six days that early voting has been underway in Texas, election judge William Parsley on Sunday said he has only seen one potential voter turned away at his polling location, the Metropolitan Multi-Services Center in downtown Houston.
“An elderly man, a veteran. Ninety-three years old,” Parsley, an election judge for the last 15 years, told ThinkProgress. “His license had expired.”
Under Texas’ new voter ID law, one of the strictest in the nation, citizens are required to present one of seven forms of photo identification to vote. The identification can be a Texas-issued driver’s license, a federally-issued veteran’s ID card, or a gun registration card, among other forms. Licenses can be expired, but not for more than 60 days.
The man Parsley said he had to turn away was a registered voter, but his license had been expired for a few years, likely because he had stopped driving. Parsley said the man had never gotten a veteran’s identification card. And though he had “all sorts” of other identification cards with his picture on it, they weren’t valid under the law — so the election judges told him he had to go to the Department of Public Safety, and renew his license.
“He just felt real bad, you know, because he’s voted all his life,” Parsley said.
The Texas GOP’s excuse back in 2011 for passing such a restrictive bill, that if there is just one case of “voter fraud” that’s too many, can now be seen for what it was. An attempt to keep certain types of voters from voting. The reality is this law will disenfranchise many times more voters then ever voted fraudulently.
And there are hundreds of thousands of Texans that are losing their right to vote because of this law. The worst part about this story is that this was the Texas GOP’s plan all along. They knew this was going to happen when they passed the law back in 2011, Republicans Knew Voter ID Law Would Disenfranchise over 500,000 Voters.
There have been only two cases of voter impersonation in the past ten years in Texas. To prevent a third case, Republicans have passed a law that will prevent over half a million registered Texans from voting. What makes it worse is that they knew how many people would be disenfranchised.
In 2011, Republican lawmakers requested information from the Texas Secretary of State and Department of Public Safety regarding how many registered voters did not have state-issued photo IDs. The answer was at least 504,000 and potentially as many as 844,000. But that didn’t stop them.
According to the Texas Tribune, “Republican state officials working to pass a voter photo ID law in 2011 knew that more than 500,000 of the state’s registered voters did not have the credentials needed to cast ballots under the new requirement. But they did not share that information with lawmakers rushing to pass the legislation.”
David Dewhurst was one of them. According to an elections official, “Lt. Gov. Dewhurst was aware of the no-match list results showing 678,000 to 844,000 voters being potentially disenfranchised.”
They knew so many would lose their right to vote and that didn’t matter to them. As long as it kept them in power, damn the rights of others. Kuff has more, The larger issue on voter ID.
The Texas Progressive Alliance says VOTE VOTE VOTE as it brings you this week’s roundup.
Off the Kuff published an index to all his interviews and judicial Q&As for the 2014 cycle.
Libby Shaw writing for Texas Kaos and Daily Kos is not going to be quiet about the blatantly discriminatory Voter Photo ID poll tax law. Texas Voter Photo ID Law Disenfranchises 600,000 to 744,980 American citizens.
From WCNews at Eye on Williamson. Proposition 1 will do little if anything to address the neglect of the last 20 plus years. Is it worth voting for? Probably not, but it’s likely to pass anyway. Proposition 1 – The Least They Could Do.
A very powerful statute designed to short-circuit the anti-First Amendment SLAPP suits filed in Texas is explained in this post at PDiddie’s Brains and Eggs.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme urges you to vote and support not only women’s health, but the health care for all Texans.
Neil at All People Have Value offered his 2014 ballot for elections in Texas and Harris County. APHV is one of many interesting pages to see at NeilAquino.com.
And here are some posts of interest from other Texas blogs.
BOR offers endorsements in the Austin City Council races.
Hair Balls profiles the outside agitators that are fighting to repeal the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance.
Texans for Public Justice documents just how much the payday lenders love Greg Abbott.
Lone Star Q rounds up Texas candidate endorsements by LGBT groups around the state.
The Texas Election Law Blog makes a valiant effort to calculate the administrative cost of voter ID in Texas.
Robert Rivard wants to know why you’re not voting.
Texas Clean Air Matters calls out the Heartland Institute for misinformation about wind energy.
Nancy Sims explains how voter ID disenfranchised her (straight-GOP-ticket-voting) father.
Mary Flood urges everyone to make informed votes for judicial candidates.
The transportation issue over the last decade has always been a microcosm of what is wrong with the way Texas is currently governed. Roads are something that effect almost every Texans’ life on a daily basis. And for the most part they’ve been neglected and allowed to deteriorate. Over that time it’s become apparent to anyone who lives and drives in Texas that we have a transportation problem.
The reason we can’t fix this issue is not because we lack resources, it’s because we lack leadership. This did not just happen since Rick Perry took office, although he’s been a more than willing facilitator of the neglect. It’s the Reagan-era narrative, the story too many believe, of how things work. Government is the problem, and if it would just get out of the way, then everything will flourish. Obviously, that has not happened.
That mentality shows up in this statement from a WSJ article, In Texas, Toll Roads Proliferate—and a Backlash Builds.
“It’s almost impossible to get around without paying a toll now,” said Bobby Tillman, a 63-year-old web developer from Sachse, Texas, who spoke against the road at a public hearing last month that filled a 1,500-seat high-school auditorium. “We pay taxes for roads and bridges, and if that’s not enough, if you can’t afford it, don’t build it.”
The utter foolishness of his statement may not be clear until this reality sets in. It’s not enough, that’s why they’re not building roads, and why toll roads, which you spoke against, are being built everywhere.
The toll boom is taking place in part because a primary source of highway-construction funding in the U.S., a federal tax of 18.4 cents per gallon on gasoline, hasn’t changed since 1993. Many states also haven’t raised state gasoline taxes for decades, including Texas, which hasn’t increased its 20-cents- per-gallon tax since 1991.
I wonder how much food Mr. Sachse would be able to afford if he hadn’t had a rise in income since 1991? The cost of everything has gone up since 1991. Certainly the cost of road construction materials have gone up since 1991. For anyone to seriously believe that current/1991 tax levels are adequate to maintain and build new transportation infrastructure shows their ignorance.
But they’ve been lead to believe that the government is wasteful, ineffective, and can do nothing to bring positive change to their lives. And the Texas GOP, since taking over control of Texas government, has been doing their best to prove them right. How can anyone expect a political party that believes government is the problem to use government to solve problems?
But it’s worse then that. The GOP is not just wrecking government, they’re using government to make themselves and their friends and donors rich.
“We can go through the list over and over, but at the end of every line is this: Republicans believe this country should work for those who are rich, those who are powerful, those who can hire armies of lobbyists and lawyers,” she said Friday in Englewood, Colo. “I will tell you we can whimper about it, we can whine about it or we can fight back. I’m here with [Sen.] Mark Udall so we can fight back.”
Her grand theme is economic inequality and her critique, both populist and progressive, includes a searing indictment of Wall Street. Liberals eat it up.
“The game is rigged, and the Republicans rigged it,” she said Saturday at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn. The line drew a huge ovation — as did mention of legislation she has sponsored to allow students to refinance their student loans.
The centerpiece, though, is her progressive analysis of how bad decisions in Washington have allowed powerful interests to re-engineer the financial system so that it serves the wealthy and well-connected, not the middle class.
There once was consensus on the need for government investment in areas such as education and infrastructure that produced long-term dividends, she said. “Here’s the amazing thing: It worked. It absolutely, positively worked.”
That last part is the most important part of what Sen. Elizabeth Warren said. We know how to fix this problem, but far too few are telling the story in the way that Warren is telling it.
Now for proposition 1. At best it’s a “band aid” or will “build a flyover or two“. It will do little if anything to address the neglect of the last 20 plus years. Is it worth voting for? Probably not, but it’s likely to pass anyway. Because when something that’s needed is being held hostage the ransom gets paid.
Our GOP run state government did all it is capable of doing right now, the least they could do.
Generally speaking in the biggest statewide races the Democratic candidates are raking in most of the editorial board endorsements. Especially in the races for Lt. Gov., Attorney General, and Comptroller. The governor’s race is close to even.
The GOP’s worst candidates are likely Dan Patrick and Ken Paxton. Here’s one description of Patrick:
“.. potentially explosive, impact unclear.
His primary governing tools are fear and division.
Some of his ideas are singularly disruptive. Taken together, they could destabilize state government, the enemy of sound business practices. “
Dan Patrick’s governing style is likely to be unstable and frantic, like that of a radio shock jock – which he is. EOW has often time referred to Patrick as Texas Rush, meaning he’s Texas’ version of Rush Limbaugh. Who would want someone like that in a position of real power?
This is not new territory for Texas. We’ve elected folks like this in the past.
Paxton, on the other hand is literally running an invisible campaign. And his candidacy would be comical if he didn’t have such a legitimate shot of actually winning.
Republican Ken Paxton should be disqualified from consideration because his compromised ethics are a matter of record. We’re disturbed that Republican voters didn’t do that in the primary or the runoff.
But the consensus worst endorsement is the DMN’s endorsement of Greg Abbott. Not that they did it, but their shoddy reasoning. I can’t remember where I read it but someone referred to it as similar to “Stockholm Syndrome”.
These two uphold Texas’ fighting spirit. When this newspaper weighs all the issues, however, Abbott tips the balance as the candidate most capable of sustaining the state’s economic success and holding in check growing extremism in the state GOP.
Texas Republicans’ hard-right swing in recent years is troubling. Too many Texans feel alienated by a ruling party that seems indifferent, for example, to the plight of the working poor, the uninsured or youths caught through no fault of their own in immigration limbo.
As governor, Abbott must be a moderating influence and guide a realignment of his party.
Yes, Abbott’s moderating influence of wanting to wake up and sue the federal government. Abbott’s as right wing as they come, and to think he’ll moderate is folly. The best way to moderate the GOP would be to elect a Democrat. Make that many Democrats.
For a score card on the endorsements go to here, Roundup: Newspaper endorsements in statewide races. Of just vote a straight Democratic ticket.
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