Senator Bernie Sanders Slams Manchin, Sinema For Intentionally Sabotaging Biden’s Agenda

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Senator Bernie Sanders(I-VT) appeared on ABC’s This Week show(07/17/22) to discuss President Biden’s controversial trip to Saudi Arabia. Unsurprisingly, Senator Sanders, who has been very consistent about his displeasure with Saudi Arabia’s human rights abuses, was opposed to President Biden’s trip to the Kingdom, which he said, was tantamount to rewarding the Saudis.

The interesting part of the interview however came when host Martha Raddatz asked Sen Sanders about Senator Joe Manchin(D-WV) “abruptly” pulling out of negotiations on a climate change proposal that was key to President Biden’s agenda. Sen Sanders swiftly interjected saying, Manchin “didn’t abruptly pull out of anything”, and then proceeded to slam the Senator from West Virginia for intentionally sabotaging President Biden’s agenda. Whoa!!

Host Martha Raddatz(video at 3:20):“Senator Joe Manchin…abruptly pulled the plug on the Democrats’ plan to pass…”

Sen Sanders:“No Martha…he didn’t abruptly do anything…If you check the record, six months ago I made it clear, that you have people like Manchin, Sinema to a lesser degree, who are intentionally sabotaging the President’s agenda, what the American people want, what a majority of us in the Democratic caucus want. Nothing is new about this, and the problem was that we continued to talk to Manchin like he was serious. He was not. This is a guy who is a major recipient of fossil fuel money, a guy who received campaign contributions from 25 Republican billionaires.”

When host Raddatz tried to play devil’s advocate, saying Senator Manchin is concerned about record inflation, and is simply doing what’s best for West Virginians, Sen Manchin retorted:“Same nonsense that Manchin has been talking about for a year. West Virginia is a beautiful state…great people. It is one of the poorest states in this country. You ask the people of West Virginia whether they want to expand Medicare to cover dental, hearing and eye glasses…whether we should demand that the wealthiest people and large corporations start paying their fair share of taxes…whether or not all people should have healthcare as a human right like every other country on earth, that’s what they will say. In my humble opinion, Manchin represents the wealthiest people in this country, not the working families of West Virginia, or America.”

Bottom line folks, what Sen Sanders said on ABC’s This Week show, cannot be restated enough. There was a lot of hope and enthusiasm among Democrats, and a sizable chunk of Independents who voted for the Biden-Harris ticket in 2020, that the Biden-Harris administration would embark on big projects re infrastructure, climate, immigration, etc to set the country up nicely for the future. You even heard famous historians likening Biden to FDR and LBJ–both of whom are remembered for the big projects their administrations embarked, on and delivered.

However, somewhere in some Republican smoke-filled rooms, panic set in over the prospect of a transformational FDR-type Biden-Harris administration, and an elaborate plan was laid out to sabotage Biden’s presidency. Sen Sanders is absolutely right that Senators Manchin and Sinema have been willing participants in the grand GOP scheme to sabotage the Biden presidency, and they must be called out for it!!

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AOC Slams SCOTUS After Roe v Wade Decision Saying The High Court Has A “Crisis Of Legitimacy”

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Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez(D-NY) appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press(06/26/22) to discuss this week’s bombshell Supreme Court decision overturning the landmark 1973 Roe v Wade decision, which made abortion legal in the United States. During her interview, Rep Ocasio-Cortez slammed the recently appointed Supreme Court justices behind the 6-3 decision, essentially accusing them of lying to Senators during their confirmation hearings and thus causing a “crisis of legitimacy” within the high court. She also tied longstanding Justice Clarence Thomas to the “crisis of legitimacy” charge, saying Justice Thomas violated the law by not disclosing his income from political organizations.

Rep Ocasio-Cortez said(video at 2:47): “What I believe that the president and the Democatic Party needs to come to terms with, is that this is not just a crisis of Roe, this is a crisis of our democracy. The Supreme Court has dramatically overreached its authority. We had two conservative senators in the United States Senate–Senator Manchin and Senator Collins–come out with a very explosive allegation that several Supreme Court justices misled them during their confirmation hearings and in the lead up to their confirmation. This is a crisis of legitimacy. We have a Supreme Court justice whose wife participated in January 6th, and who used his seat to vote against providing documents that potentially led to evidence of such to investigators in Congress. This is a crisis of legitimacy, and President Biden must address that.”

Asked whether the House Judiciary Committee should begin an investigation into whether Supreme Court justices lied under oath during their confirmation hearings, Rep Ocasio-Cortez responded: “If we allow Supreme Court nominees to lie under oath and secure lifetime appointments to the highest court of the land, and then issue without basis…rulings that deeply undermine the human and civil rights of the majority of Americans, we must see that through. There must be consequences for such a deeply destabilizing action and hostile takeover of our democratic institutions. To allow that to stand, is to allow it to happen, and what makes it particularly dangerous, is that it sends a blaring signal to all future nominees that they can now lie to duly elected members of the United States Senate in order to secure Supreme Court confirmations…”

Asked whether she believed lying during confirmation hearings is an impeachable offense, she responded: “I believe so. I believe lying under oath is an impeachable offense. I believe that violating federal law in not disclosing income from political organizations, as [Justice] Clarence Thomas did years ago, is also potentially an impeachable offense. I believe that not recusing from cases that one clearly has family members involved in, with very deep violations of conflict of interest, are also impeachable offenses, and I believe that this is something that should be very seriously considered, including by Senators like Joe Manchin and Susan Collins.”

There’s no other way to interpret Rep Ocasio-Cortez’s remarks on Meet The Press(I’ll be happy to stand corrected of course) other than, she’s calling on fellow House Democrats to pursue impeachment proceedings against sitting Supreme Court justices for among other things, lying under oath during their confirmation hearings. It will be interesting to see whether her fellow Democrats will take her up on the impeachment suggestion.

Bottom line folks, public confidence in the Roberts Supreme Court was already waning even before the bombshell decision striking down Roe v Wade. There is no question however, that the global condemnation that has followed the Roe decision, will renew calls for the high court’s restructuring/expansion. Even impeachment calls like the one by Rep Ocasio-Cortez, which would have previously been ignored, or dismissed out of hand, will now be taken seriously. Simply put, there’s a growing perception among the public, that the Roberts Supreme Court, does not resemble previous high courts, which were generally deemed to be above the political fray. Chief Justice Roberts would be best advised to step in, and address these concerns, hopefully via a public address to the nation. Ignoring these problems, will not make them go away.

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Briefing By AOC & Fellow Dems On Banning Stock Trading By Members Of Congress

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Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez(D-NY) joined fellow Democrats for a briefing(04/07/22) on their push to ban stock trading by members of Congress. Others on the briefing were Senator Jeff Merkley(D-OR), Rep Joe Neguse(D-CO), Rep Rashida Tlaib(D-MI), Rep Abigail Spanberger(D-VA), Rep Pramila Jayapal(D-WA), Rep Andy Kim(D-NJ) and Rep Angie Craig(D-MN).

Rep Ocasio-Cortez said banning stock trading by members of Congress will not only address legitimate concerns about conflicts of interest, but that it would also tackle the other urgent problem involving crisis of faith in our institutions. She said: “We are also tackling a crisis of faith in our institutions in the United States, and that exploitation of that crisis of faith is a direct threat to our democracy, as we have seen over the last two to four years. It is our responsibility to ensure that we eliminate that perception of impropriety, because it is these perceptions that can be exploited to undermine our most sacred institutions.”

The final speaker, the epitome of “save the best for last”, was Minnesota’s Rep Angie Craig(remember that name folks, vivacious Angie is going up the Dem ladder). She said: “My background experience in this issue is I actually sat on a corporate executive team for 12 years before I came to Congress, and this is not hypothetical to me, it’s not hypothetical. I helped run the investor relations department of a major fortune 500 company. I know that information moves markets, and it moves stocks. That’s why when I first got here, I wrote something called the Humble Act, which as part of it, would ban members of Congress from owning individual stocks. And it’s also not hypothetical to me because before I was sworn in to Congress, I had stock from the company I had worked for for 12 years. I had stock options from that company as well. Every single one of those shares were sold in the open market before I stepped foot into the U.S. Capitol, every single one. And if we can’t find 535 people in the damn United States of America, who are willing to give up their personal stock portfolio in order to serve their constituents, then shame on us, just shame on us.”

Bottom line folks, as some of the speakers here pointed out, banning stock trading by members of Congress should be a no-brainer, and no Democrat should be opposed to it. Opposing a stock trading ban for members of Congress is bad optics, bad morally, bad politics, and a sure loser at the polls this Fall. It’s really that simple.

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Shontel Brown Credits Endorsements By Hillary Clinton And Whip Clyburn For OH-11 Primary Win

Shontel Brown was on MSNBC’s Politics Nation (08/07/2021), where she credited her recent win in the OH-11 Democratic primary to endorsements from powerful establishment Democrats Hillary Clinton and House Majority Whip James Clyburn. Polls leading up to the 08/03/2021 Democratic primary had Progressive firebrand Nina Turner, backed by Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Bernie Sanders and other leading Progressives, leading Brown in the race. This is why Brown’s primary win was considered by many, an upset.

Shontel Brown told host Al Sharpton:“If all politics is local, I’m as local as it gets…We knew that this was a local race. Having the support of local city council members, school board members, precinct committee folks, that was our path to victory. But I will say, getting the attention and the support of someone like Hillary Clinton certainly reshaped the narrative and got a lot of national support, and after that the ball just started rolling. Whip [James] Clyburn also endorsed my candidacy, the CBC endorsed my candidacy. Right after that, the AFT and the Teamsters came on board…”

Brown then went on to tout her winning political record, even before the high-powered endorsements, telling host Sharpton:“Let the record reflect, we always saw a path to victory, and I say this as calmly and respectfully as I can. I never got into this race with the expectation to do anything other than winning. I have six wins under my belt and Lord willing, on November, this will be my seventh. Anyone who knows me, seven is a number that I strongly believe in as a child of faith. It represents perfection, completion in God. And so I believed from the very beginning that this was my race…”

During the interview, Brown repeatedly avoided delving into the Progressive versus establishment Democrats divide which characterized her primary race, instead reiterating that voters are primarily interested in a candidate who can deliver results, not their political label.

For the record, Yours Truly was already sold on Shontel Brown as a solid Dem candidate, but after hearing her nailing it on the deep spiritual significance of the number seven, she instantly became one of my favorite Democrats, and hopefully in November, one of my favorite House Democrats.

Bottom line folks, as Shontel Brown correctly pointed out, too much is often made of the divide between Progressives and establishment Democrats, when at the end of the day, voters just want capable, even-keeled candidates who can deliver results. After watching Brown’s interview with CNN’s Erin Burnett right after her win, and this one on MSNBC, it is difficult to still consider her win an upset. Yours Truly will leave it at that so as not to ruffle feathers, but I suspect you get the drift.

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AOC Says States Have Only Doled Out $3B Of The $46B Congress Provided For Eviction Relief

Rep Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez(D-NY) appeared on CNN’s State Of The Union(SOTU) show (08/01/2021), where she discussed among other things, the failure by her fellow House Democrats to extend the federal eviction moratorium before leaving Washington for the August recess. Rep Ocasio-Cortez made a startling revelation at the interview, saying that out of the $46 billion Congress allocated to the states for eviction relief, only $3 billion has actually been doled out to assist struggling renters, adding that some Governors, presumably Republican, are “slow-walking” the process. The full CNN interview is available here, but the relevant clip is below.

Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez told host Jake Tapper:“This money was handed over by Congress and federal government to states and local municipalities to dole out. What that means then, is that each individual Governor is responsible for establishing these programs. I think that in some states, Governors and state administrations might be slow-walking this process to get it out, in other states it’s the administrative burden of setting it up, but there are states and municipalities that have been getting it right…but we cannot kick people out of their homes when our end of the bargain has not been fulfilled. Out of the $46 billion that has been allocated, only $3 billion has gone out to help renters and small mom and pop landlords.”

Think about that. As it currently stands, more than 90% of the funds Congress allocated to the states to assist families with their housing needs, are just laying around unused, as the intended recipients remain stressed out over eviction. This is either the height of cruelty, or incompetence by the state governments, or both.

Bottom line folks, there is zero excuse for a Governor, Democrat or Republican, to sit on federal eviction relief funds, knowing full well that we are staring at a potential mass eviction crisis, the likes of which we have never seen before. Even more troubling is the fact that the very same Rep Ocasio-Cortez, was way back in October 2020, sounding the very same mass eviction alarm. Simply put, any Governor needlessly sitting on the much-needed federal eviction dollars while struggling renters suffer, needs to be called out to the fullest.

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