Judge Amy Coney Barret Does Not Think SCOTUS 5-4 Split Decisions Are A Sign Of Political Partisanship

Federal Appeals Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett At Hillsdale College In May 2019

In an interview at Hillsdale College in May 2019, Federal Appeals Court Judge and now Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett said she does not think the increasing 5-4 split decisions at the U.S. Supreme Court are a sign of political partisanship. This is a very strange assessment given the fact that much of the public angst against the U.S. Supreme Court can be attributed to the increasing number of these 5-4 split decisions between the 5 conservative and 4 liberal justices, which people have reasonably attributed to partisan political differences.

Judge Barrett’s strange position that Supreme Court 5-4 split decisions are not as a result of partisan political differences will certainly draw the attention of Democratic Senators at her confirmation hearings, which are already expected to be the most contentious Supreme Court confirmation hearings ever.

Bottom line folks, with Justice Amy Coney Barrett in the U.S. Supreme Court, Americans better get used to “non-partisan” 6-3 split decisions on ACA, voting rights, DACA, Trump’s tax returns, 2020 election challenges…….. Simply put, get used to “non-partisan” 6-3 split decisions on steroids!!

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Amy Coney Barrett Feared “A Very Marked Shift” In SCOTUS Composition If Hillary Clinton Won In 2016

University of Notre Dame Law Professor Amy Coney Barrett giving a presentation at Jacksonville University On November 3, 2016 , five days before the general elections

An interesting presentation then Professor Amy Coney Barrett gave at Jacksonville University in November 2016, five days before the elections, begs for further scrutiny now that President Trump has formally nominated her to fill the U.S. Supreme Court seat left vacant after the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. In her hour long presentation at Jacksonville University, which reasonable people will agree was highly impressive, Professor Barrett delved into a whole host of issues dealing with the U.S. Supreme Court and its Justices. Of particular relevance today, is the fear Professor Barrett expressed of “a very marked shift” in the Supreme Court to the left, were Hillary Clinton to win the presidency in 2016.(see clip below)

Professor Barrett’s concerns in November 2016 are of particular concern today because the “very marked shift” in the U.S. Supreme Court she feared in 2016 has come to pass. The only difference is that the marked shift in the court has been to the right, with Trump as President. More importantly, the very concerns she had about a future President Clinton replacing Justice Scalia with a liberal, is the exact situation we currently find ourselves in, with President Trump getting ready to replace liberal Justice Ginsburg with her–a staunch conservative. Given her fears in 2016, should Trump have nominated someone more liberal to replace Justice Ginsburg? In other words, is Judge Amy Barrett only worried about the U.S. Supreme Court markedly shifting to the left but okay if the shift is to the right?

Specifically, then Professor Barrett argued in her presentation that whoever won the presidency in 2016, who she assumed like many would be Clinton, would have a chance to replace up to four Supreme Court justices, given their advanced ages. Clinton, she argued, would not only fill the vacant Scalia seat with a reliable liberal, tipping the balance of the court leftward, but would also likely replace Justices Ginsburg, Breyer and Kennedy with much younger reliable liberals, essentially turning the U.S. Supreme Court into a reliably liberal court. Trump on the other hand, Professor Barrett argued, would fill the vacancies with a “mixed bag” of justices resulting in a somewhat center-right court but definitely not a far right Supreme Court.

Reasonable people will agree that with the appointments of Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, President Trump has already shifted the U.S. Supreme Court to the right. Trump’s nomination of conservative Judge Amy Barrett to replace reliably liberal Justice Ginsburg will therefore lead to the very “marked shift” in the U.S. Supreme Court that then Professor Amy Barrett feared with a Clinton presidency. The question Democratic Senators need to confront Judge Barrett with at her confirmation hearings, is whether she is now comfortable with the marked shift in the Supreme Court to the right. Should Trump have nominated a Supreme Court justice more in the mold of Justice Ginsburg to prevent the marked shift to the right?

It bears pointing out however that Professor Barrett espoused an interpretation of the role of judges generally, and supreme court justices in particular, that many legal scholars will find very refreshing. She stated very clearly that the role of a judge is not to placate to the partisan political camps but rather to follow the law, wherever it leads. She illustrated her point with Justice Scalia, who sided with the liberal justices time and time again on criminal law issues even though as a conservative, Republican voters expected him to be a “law and order” judge, always siding with law enforcement in criminal cases. Professor Barrett said Justice Scalia did so not because he liked criminals, but because that was what the text of the constitution required him to do. This should be a warning shot to Trump Republicans who are fast-tracking her confirmation in the hopes that she will rubber stamp GOP policy positions at the Supreme Court.

Bottom line folks, as things currently stand, Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s ascension to the U.S. Supreme Court is all but certain. There’s literally nothing Democrats can do procedurally or otherwise, to stop her confirmation to the high court. One only hopes that during her confirmation hearings, Democratic Senators will confront her with tough questions, among them, her fears in 2016 of a “marked shift” in the composition of the U.S. Supreme Court. Specifically, Democratic Senators should ask Judge Barrett why she feared a marked shift of the high court to the left but is now seemingly comfortable with a marked shift to the right, thanks to her confirmation.

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Biden Scolds Trump Over Military “Suckers” And “Losers” Remarks And Shakes Up The 2020 Presidential Race

Democratic Presidential Nominee Joe Biden

Ever since he became President in 2016, Donald Trump has repeatedly boasted about the overwhelming support he has among military families, often claiming without evidence, that he has “rebuilt the military” which was dilapidated under his predecessor Obama. However events spurred by a recent bombshell report on The Atlantic have turned Trump’s military talking points upside down, and now appear to be a serious threat to his presidency, with less than two months to go before the 2020 elections. The bombshell report on The Atlantic gives a picture of Trump that stands in stark contrast to his public pronouncements of affection towards members of the military, and instead provides troubling examples of how Trump privately harbors deep disdain for them, even referring to dead and wounded soldiers with demeaning terms like “suckers” and “losers”

In a 2018 visit to Paris for example, Trump reportedly told members of his administration accompanying him on the trip that he did not want to visit Aisne-Marne American Cemetery saying, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” Trump on the same trip, also reportedly referred to the 1,800 U.S. Marines who laid down their lives for the country at the battle of Belleau Wood in France, as “suckers”. These are the kinds of disgusting remarks you simply never expect to hear from an American Commander-in-Chief regarding American troops–dead, wounded or alive. As expected, Trump’s disgusting “suckers” and “losers” remarks have created a political firestorm which seriously threatens his chances for reelection because his remarks credibly call into question his fitness to serve as the U.S. Commander-in-Chief. Trump’s remarks have also thrown his 2020 reelection campaign into a tailspin with top surrogates uncomfortably trying to reassure the public that he loves service members despite his remarks.

One such top surrogate is Trump’s former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, whose attempt to defend Trump’s “suckers” and “losers” remarks was met with severe backlash on Twitter. Haley had tweeted a rare request to Trump’s Democratic challenger Joe Biden, asking Biden to take down a campaign ad saying Trump was unfit to be Commander-in-Chief based on the piece in The Atlantic. Twitter clearly did not take lightly to Haley’s request.

But as MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow correctly pointed out, Trump’s troubling behavior towards service members was evident way before the piece in The Atlantic came along. The bombshell piece in The Atlantic resonated with a lot of people because in many ways, it was simply a confirmation of Trump’s deep disdain for military service members, which many people had suspected all along. The 09/04/2020 edition of The Rachel Maddow Show took a deep dive into Trump’s troubling behavior towards service members and their families, the most notable one being his encounter with Myeshia Johnson, the wife of Sgt LaDavid Johnson, who was killed in Niger in late 2017.

The Maddow segment featured a clip from an October 2017 Good Morning America interview in which Myeshia Johnson lamented the cruel way President Trump had spoken to her on the phone regarding the death of her husband. Mrs Johnson said the phone conversation with Trump, which traditionally was meant to comfort/console military spouses who had lost loved ones, ended up being very traumatic, making her “cry even more” because Trump apparently said her dead husband “knew what he was signing up for.” Mrs Johnson was also distressed because Trump could not even remember her husband’s name, something she found very odd and annoying.

Maddow’s segment also delved into how Trump rudely dealt with Lt. Col Alexander Vindman, a wounded veteran who was a witness at Trump’s impeachment proceedings, especially the way Trump mocked his Army uniform and tweeted his rank in quotation marks, as if it was a fake title. Maddow also pointed out how Trump had derided Admiral Bill McRaven, a revered military figure most remembered for leading the attack that killed Osama bin Laden. Trump spoke disparagingly of Admiral McRaven saying he should have captured bin Laden sooner. There’s also the way Trump rudely dealt with Gold star father Khizr Khan who lost his son in combat in Iraq, and his infamous comments towards Senator McCain, suggesting that McCain was not a hero because he was captured. Simply put, even before the bombshell report on The Atlantic, there was already a mountain of evidence pointing towards the fact that Trump has very low regard for service members, especially the ones that end up wounded in combat, or dead.

It also bears pointing out that on a recent segment with Trump’s niece Mary L. Trump about her bestseller new book “Too Much And Never Enough”, Maddow brought up a section of the book which says Trump once threatened to cut his children off their inheritance if they ever enlisted in the military. The two also talked about Trump’s divorce papers with Marla Maples, Tiffany Trump’s mother. Apparently, there was a stipulation in the divorce papers that Trump would stop paying any further child support in the event Tiffany enrolled in the military. This is further damning evidence of Trump’s demonstrated disdain for the military and the people who enlist in the revered American institution as a sacrifice. It should be abundantly clear to everybody at this point that Trump’s only use for military service members, is as photo ops for his political campaign. He otherwise considers them “suckers” and “losers” for their sacrifice.

Bottom line folks, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden summed it all up with this powerful tweet, “Mr. President, if you don’t respect our troops, you can’t lead them.” Folks, if you don’t agree with Joe Biden on anything else, this should be your reason to vote for him on November 3, 2020. Our men and women in uniform deserve a Commander-in-Chief who gives a damn about them. Plain and simple!!.

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Russia Using Top GOP Senators For 2020 Election Meddling

Senator Ron Johnson(R-WI) and Senator Chuck Grassley(R-IA)

A bombshell segment on MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow explored the fact that Russia (read Putin), is planning to meddle in the upcoming November 2020 elections in much the same way as it did in 2016–via a misinformation campaign. The only difference in the Russian misinformation campaign in 2020 however is that this time, instead of relying heavily on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, Putin is using two top GOP Senators namely Ron Johnson (WI) and Chuck Grassley (IA), to facilitate the misinformation campaign.

You’ll remember reports by right wing media outlets which suggested that former vice president Joe Biden’s son used his father’s influence to profit from corrupt deals in Ukraine. President Trump seriously played up this supposed Biden-Ukraine scandal in the hopes of knee-capping Biden’s 2020 presidential run, a scheme that didn’t work. As it became evident that Biden was poised to become the Democratic nominee for president in 2020, Senator Ron Johnson, who heads the Senate Homeland Security Committee, and Senator Chuck Grassley who heads the Senate Finance Committee, launched investigations into the Biden-Ukraine affair, investigations which many suspected were merely extensions of President Trump’s efforts to undermine Biden’s presidential campaign.

This week U.S. intelligence agencies, in addition to warning us of Russia’s attempt to meddle in our 2020 elections, specifically singled out Andriy Derkach, a pro-Russia Ukrainian parliamentarian, as the point man in the misinformation campaign. The shocking part, according to Maddow, is that the same Andriy Derkach, is the one feeding Senators Johnson and Grassley with misinformation about the Bidens for their supposed Senate investigations. In essence, Putin is running his misinformation campaign through two top GOP Senators.

Maddow specifically said, “He [Andriy Derkach] is spreading these claims by providing those claims to…the Republican U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, Ron Johnson, who heads the Senate Homeland Security Committee. The same pro-Russia Ukrainian parliamentarian named in today’s intelligence report also indicates to us that he is spreading these claims by providing them to..the Republican senior U.S. Senator from Iowa, Chuck Grassley, who runs the Finance Committee in the U.S. Senate. This is remarkable, the guy who is named by U.S. intelligence in the specific public warning today about what Russia is doing to interfere in the 2020 elections to try to reelect Trump, the way he’s been doing his work for the Russian government to mess with our election, is by feeding material to a purported investigation of Joe Biden by Senator Ron Johnson on the Homeland Security Committee and Senator Chuck Grassley on the Finance Committee in the Senate.”

Also crucially important per Maddow, is the fact that these two GOP Senators are scheduled to release the findings of their “investigations” into the Bidens, sometime in mid-September, right before the November elections. This leaves absolutely no doubt that Senators Johnson and Grassley are knowingly using their powerful U.S. Senate positions to facilitate a Russian misinformation campaign aimed at affecting the outcome of the 2020 U.S. presidential election. This is conduct quite unbecoming of U.S. Senators, and should result in their immediate resignation.

Bottom line folks, America is still coming to terms with the effects of Russian meddling in the 2016 elections. Congress has expended a lot of time and energy trying to figure out a way of preventing any future foreign meddling in our elections. Where, as here, top U.S. Senators are the ones responsible for facilitating such foreign meddling in our elections, the only solution is for them to resign from the U.S. Senate. Simply put, Americans have a right to free and fair elections, and any U.S. Senator working to deny them of such a right, does not belong in the U.S. Senate.

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Handy List Of Iowa GOP State Senators Mad About Record Voter Participation Due To Mail-In Voting

Iowa witnessed record voter participation in its June 3rd primary elections as a result of a provision that allowed the secretary of state to mail absentee ballots to all registered voters due to the covid-19 pandemic. The noble goal of this provision was to save Iowa voters from going into crowded polling centers which would have increased their chances of contracting the virus. Given the ease and convenience of voting by mail, Iowans voted in record numbers, much to the delight of democracy lovers. Well, it turns out republicans were not happy with the record voter participation. They quickly moved in the Iowa state legislature to prevent universal voting by mail in the November elections–a clear cut effort at voter suppression.

On 6/10/2020 a bill that prohibits Iowa’s secretary of state from mailing absentee ballots to all registered voters for the November general elections passed the Iowa state senate by a vote of 30-19. Needless to say, all the 30 state senators who voted for this voter suppression bill were republicans. Because this is one of the most brazen acts of official voter suppression to date, we have no choice but to name and shame these 30 GOP state senators using our famous “handy list”.

Here’s a handy list of the 30 shameful Iowa GOP state senators who are mad that mail-in voting allowed record voter participation in the June primary elections, and are on a mission to prevent that from happening again this November.

Bottom line folks, there’s no longer any doubt that the unpopular policies of the republican party are increasingly turning it into a marginal/regional party. Republican party leaders have long realized that their only chance of clinging to power is to make sure as few people as possible vote, especially minorities who traditionally vote against them. Where, as here, we witness such a brazen attempt at voter suppression by elected officials, we have no otherwise but to loudly call them out.

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Texas Lt. Gov Dan Patrick Wants To Limit Mail Voting To Voters Over 65 Because Covid-19 Mostly Kills Them

Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick(R)

Texas Lt. Governor Dan Patrick appeared on Fox News’ America’s Newsroom show and parroted the falsehood currently being spread by President Trump that mail-in ballots are prone to massive voter fraud. Lt. Gov Patrick argued that because CDC data has established that it is people over 65 who are mostly losing their lives due to covid-19 , only Texas voters over 65 should be allowed to vote by mail. As shocking as this sounds, Lt Gov Patrick is literally telling Texas voters under 65 not to worry about contracting covid-19 at the polling places because even if they do, it will not kill them–it only kills people over 65. This is sadly, the kind of reasoning you get from a guy who’s second-in-command to the Texas Governorship.

Lt. Gov Patrick said when asked about voters’ valid fears of covid-19, “I want to go back to what the CDC said. 80% of people who have died from the virus [covid-19] are over 65. Anyone over 65 in America can vote safely from home. That’s already the law virtually everywhere–some states have all mail-in ballots on the west coast. So anyone 65 who is really vulnerable can vote from home. This idea that we want to give you a disability claim because ‘I’m afraid to go vote’ if you are under 65 is laughable. You have more chance of being in a serious auto accident if you are under 65 on the way to vote, than you do from catching the virus and dying from it by voting.”

One of the biggest flaws in Lt Gov Patrick’s reasoning (it’s actually totally flawed), is this idea that covid-19 affects one’s life only if it kills you. A leading pulmonologist Dr Andrew Martin, told Heathline, a medical journal that, “Patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), seen often in severe COVID-19 illness, sometimes develop permanent lung damage or fibrosis as well.” So voters of color who are especially vulnerable to covid-19, have a valid reason to fear contracting covid-19 because even if it does not kill them, there’s a good chance it will leave them with long-term medical problems. It is not unreasonable, or “laughable” as Lt Gov Patrick put it, for them to opt for mail-in voting.

Lt Gov Patrick also pointed out in the same Fox News segment that some states in the west coast already conduct all their elections by mail. Notably, he didn’t point to any reports of widespread voter fraud in elections conducted by the said west coast states.

Another eye-catching moment in Lt Gov Patrick’s interview was his unprompted revelation that he knew of ways someone can easily steal votes to swing a close election. This was an eye-catching revelation because Texas voters to this day, have a lot of questions as to how Senator Ted Cruz narrowly defeated his Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke in the 2018 elections.

Lt. Gov Patrick told host Ed Henry, “We [Texas] have so many elections that are so close…….you can swing the balance easily Ed. I can give you ten scenarios but I won’t because I don’t want to give anyone ideas how you can easily steal thousands of votes…” Actually Lt Gov Patrick, Texans would like to find out what you know about easily stealing thousands of votes.

Bottom line folks as we’ve seen numerous times before, Republicans in Texas and elsewhere, will do everything in their power to get as few people as possible to vote. Republicans nationwide have come to terms with the fact they are increasingly becoming a regional party, totally out of step with mainstream American political thought. Lt Gov Patrick’s desperate attempts to stop voting by mail has nothing to do with voter fraud and everything to do with voter suppression–ensuring as few Texans as possible vote in November. It is truly a sad way to “win” an election, but that’s exactly where we are with Trump’s GOP.

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Why Are You Still Running?Bernie Asked

In case you missed it Sen Bernie Sanders appeared on ABC’s popular daytime show The View where one of the co-hosts Whoopi Goldberg confronted him about the rationale for his still active presidential campaign.

Whoopi Goldberg was simply echoing the sentiment by many Democrats that as the race currently stands, Sen Sanders has an extremely narrow path to victory and his campaign at this juncture is only hurting the eventual Dem nominee (presumably Biden) in much the same way it hurt Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Whoopi Goldberg dove right into it :“I have to ask you this question now because I’ve been watching to see what you’re going to do and I’m told that you intend to stay in this race for president because you believe there’s a path to victory. I want to know what that path is because this feels a little bit like it did when you didn’t come out when Hillary Clinton was clearly the person folks were going for.”

Sen Sanders pushed back on Whoopi’s characterization, pointing out that he worked for Hillary Clinton’s campaign in 2016 to which Whoopi interjected, “Bernie just so we’re clear, you worked for Hillary but it took you a very very long time to hop in and your people also, it took a very long time for them to hop in.”

Sen Sanders then addressed the question as to why he’s still in the presidential race saying, “Last I heard, people in a democracy have a right to vote and they have a right to vote for the agenda that they think can work for America especially in this very very difficult moment [coronavirus]. We are assessing our campaign as a matter of fact, whether we want to go forward. But people in a democracy do have a right to vote.”

Sen Sanders then appeared to suggest that questions brought about by the current coronavirus pandemic justified his presidential campaign–that voters needed to decide which candidate provided the best solutions to the current crisis. Whoopi Goldberg correctly shot down this argument saying Sen Sanders can still work on coronavirus solutions in the senate even if he ended his presidential campaign.

It cannot also be left unsaid that Sen Sanders campaign is unnecessarily burdening beloved Democrats Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) and Sen Elizabeth Warren, who have clearly seen the writing on the wall but are reluctant to urge Bernie to step aside. Sen Sanders should do both AOC and Sen Warren a favor by ending his campaign thereby freeing them to throw their weight behind Biden without being villified by progressives.

Bottom line Democrats, we have to be careful not to repeat in 2020 our “sin” in 2016 and that is, engaging in an unnecessarily protracted presidential primary that ultimately helps only one person–Trump. The results of the recent presidential primary elections show very clearly that Dems have settled on Biden and that Bernie has an extremely narrow path to victory. There is absolutely no valid reason why Bernie should still be prolonging the Democratic presidential primary, especially now that the coronavirus pandemic is complicating efforts by the states to conduct primaries.

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Biden Says Bernie Didn’t Think Hillary Was Entitled To Nomination Despite Delegate Lead

Former Vice President and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, riding off his big primary win in South Carolina, was on the Sunday show circuit doing a much-deserved victory lap. On one of his circuit stops–ABC This Week with George Stephanopoulos–Biden made a notable dig against his chief opponent Bernie Sanders when he was asked whether Democrats should hand Sanders the nomination if he is leading in delegate count when the convention comes around.

Host Stephanopoulos :“Senator Sanders is likely to have a large delegate lead and it could open the possibility that he has the most pledged delegates going into the convention but not a majority. Why shouldn’t the candidate with the most pledged delegates going into the convention be the nominee?”

Biden:“For the same reason he[Sanders] didn’t think when Hillary[Clinton] had the most pledged delegates that she should be the nominee. The process is laid out….He wanted to make sure that the one with the most delegates didn’t become the automatic nominee when he was running against Hillary and all of a sudden he’s had an epiphany……”

The inconsistency Biden is pointing out is a very important one but you rarely hear it from the mainstream political punditry class. This is an especially important issue this year because there is a very good chance Democrats are headed for a contested convention. This idea usually put out there by Sanders’ surrogates in the media, that he must get the nomination if he is leading in delegates by the time the convention comes around or else there would be a “revolt”, needs some serious push back and Yours Truly was very happy to hear Joe Biden do exactly that.

Asked what argument he would use to convince super delegates to pick him over Sanders, Biden made yet another powerful argument that you rarely hear from the paid political punditry class and that is, Democrats also need to win down-ballot, and he’s the candidate best suited for delivering that outcome. Specifically, Biden said, “I can win the United States Senate as the candidate on top of the ticket. I can win the House and increase the number in the House. I can go into every state in the nation, I can go into purple states and we can win. I can win in places that I don’t think Bernie can win in a general election. In 2018…I went into 24 states, purple states for over 65 candidates they wanted me in and we won. They were asking me to come in. I don’t know if they asked Bernie, they may have, I doubt it, because they know I can be value added to their campaigns. I can pick up independents, I can pick up liberals, as well as moderate Democrats.”

Bottom line folks, this may sound rude/mean and will probably be interpreted as such by Bernie Sanders’ fans, but it is a fact that during the 2018 midterms, a lot of Democrats in purple states came to Biden and not Sanders for help with their campaigns, as Biden correctly pointed out. Democrats won big as a result. The question the paid political punditry class should be posing to Bernie Sanders’ surrogates is why Dem candidates, needing to win in purple states in 2018, never asked him for campaign help like they did Biden? The bigger question however should be why Bernie Sanders should be handed the nomination simply because he is leading in delegates by convention time, when he was totally opposed to that idea in 2016 when he was trailing Hillary Clinton? These are serious questions that Democrats need to address as the nomination contest heats up.

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Republican Legislators In Oregon Subverting Democracy

A must read piece on Vox shines the light on a very troubling but growing pattern among state GOP lawmakers of crippling state legistature business whenever voters put Democrats in charge. Turns out in Oregon, where voters have recently given Democrats super majorities in both chambers of the state’s legislature, Republican legislators have resorted to sabotage–literally refusing to show up for work thereby crippling the legislature due to lack of quorum. As the Vox piece correctly points out, these tantrums by Republican legislators beg for mainstream media attention not only because they are patently undemocratic, but also because they are a good reflection of Trump’s GOP tactics.

Republican legislators in Oregon are apparently sabotaging the legislature’s business by not showing up for work because they are opposed to climate change bllls currently being pushed by the majority Democrats. According to the Vox piece, this is the fifth time in the last 10 months that Oregon state Republicans have resorted to this undemocratic sabotage tactic, having employed the same tactic when Democrats, exercising their electoral mandate, were pushing bills related to guns, forestry, the state budget and healthcare.

As the article correctly points out, this is not just a state GOP phenomenon, but rather an accurate depiction of the current state of mind of Trump’s GOP, especially when one looks at it in light of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s conduct.

We have witnessed time and time again where McConnell and other Republicans in Washington ram through partisan bills using the argument “elections matter”. They are currently ramming through partisan/unqualified federal judges using the same rationale. It is interesting how elections matter only when voters put Republicans in charge and are seemingly meaningless when Democrats take over.

Democrats nationwide are looking forward to the elections in November hoping that a Democratic House, Senate and White House will automatically lead to enactment of Democratic Party policies. However, going by this Vox piece, Democrats prevailing in the upcoming November polls may not be enough. Democrats should expect sabotage by Republican minorities in both state legislatures and Washington, and should start seriously calling out these undemocratic sabotage tactics.

Bottomline folks,as the Vox piece correctly points out, this troubling GOP trend begs for more maindtream media attention especially now that we are in an election year. Republicans both at the state level and in Washington, must not be allowed to make elections matter only when they have majorities while rendering them totally meaningless when voters give Democrats the majority. Simply put, this troubling, patently undemocratic sabotage tactic currently employed by the GOP must either end or get seriously called out by the mainstream media.

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UPDATE-What is McConnell Hiding In His Military Records?

You’ll remember back in 3/31/2019, Yours Truly wrote a blog piece titled “What is McConnell hiding in his military records” that has elicited and continues to elicit a lot of reaction on Twitter and other social media platforms. There is no question that grassroots Democrats really want to know the real reason behind Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell’s military discharge in 1967.

In the blog piece, Yours Truly promised to dig into the real reason behind McConnell’s military discharge, an important election issue that mysteriously remains a mainstream media no-go-zone. Well, after months of pushing and prodding the Army for McConnell’s info via freedom of Information requests(FOIA), and being subjected to countless baits-and-switches by them, we have finally got some information.

FOIA On Mitch McConnell&#39… by Emolclause on Scribd

According to the FOIA response Yours Truly got from the Army on Jan 8 2020, Mitch McConnell served from March 21, 1967 to August 15, 1967(page 2). Virtually all of the personal information fields are populated by “N/A”, which I suspect is due to the Army’s privacy policy of requiring a signature before releasing such information. Specifically, the FOIA letter stipulates in part, “This record contains sensitive personal information which, if disclosed, would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy to the veteran……..If additional information is needed, the Privacy Act of 1974 requires the written consent (signature) of the individual to whom the record pertains.”(see page 1 of attached document). In essence, one would need McConnell’s written consent before getting details about his salary, source of commission, military education etc, which is pretty understandable especially given the fact that Yours Truly is big on privacy.

The sticky point however is in regards to the “Transcript of Court-Martial Trial” field. As you can see from the FOIA response(page 2), it is not populated by “N/A” like the other fields. The field is instead populated by “Not on File”. This raises a whole host of questions because it does not address the dispositive question Yours Truly set out to address with the FOIA request–whether McConnell’s discharge was due to a Court Martial? Remember, allegations/rumors have been flying around for decades that McConnell’s discharge from the military had something to do with a sexual incident between him and another officer and that this incident was the subject of a court martial. To prove or disprove this rumor one has to ascertain whether McConnell was indeed the subject of a Court Martial. The FOIA response offers no answer whatsoever to this crucial question.

Yours Truly took up this burning question with the FOIA Public Liaison officer listed on page 3 of the document, one Kevin Pratt. Specifically, Yours Truly inquired as to whether the “Not on File” listed on the FOIA response meant a court martial was held but the information has been redacted, or whether there was none with respect to Mitch McConnell?

According to Army’s Kevin Pratt, a FOIA request cannot answer the question as to whether one was court-martialed or not. He instead directed me to file a request in writing to another Army office for such information. I then asked him whether the FOIA Ombudsman’s office listed on the FOIA response (page 3) would have information related to court martials to which he replied that they don’t. It’s not clear whether these complications are McConnell-specific or are the norm when it comes to FOIA requests regarding the military. Reasonable people will agree that it should not be this complicated for the military to either deny or confirm whether Mitch McConnell, one of the most powerful politicians in the country and who’s up for reelection, was ever the subject of a court martial. There can be reasonable disagreements however as to whether the details of such court martial proceedings should be kept private or be made available to the general public.

It cannot be left unsaid that the secrecy surrounding McConnell’s military record is patently unfair to his Democratic challenger Amy McGrath, also a veteran . McGrath’s military record unlike McConnell’s, is an open book which allows McConnell’s campaign to dig for campaign dirt while robbing her campaign of a similar opportunity. This glaring political bias should be enough cause for the Army to forego all the procedural technicalities surrounding information requests for veterans and release McConnell’s full military record in the interest of Kentucky voters.

Bottom line folks, no politician should ever be allowed to serve consecutive terms in the U.S. Congress while hiding crucial information from the public. The circumstances surrounding Mitch McConnell’s military discharge have been a valid campaign ever since he first ran for the U.S. Senate. There is absolutely no excuse why the mainstream media, which readily digs into the backgrounds of Democrats, continues to allow McConnell’s military discharge to be a non-story, even as he runs for his 7th consecutive term in the U.S. Senate.

For those of you very happy with @Emolclause’s activism don’t shy away from the “tip jar” below on your way out.

You may reach the author via email at author@grassrootsdempolitics.com or author@emolumentsclause.com