Nel's New Day

July 30, 2022

Udates, News on July 30, 2022

News from the past week have led to extensive updates:

Ukraine: The 12 HIMARS sent from the U.S. are stopping Russia from gaining air superiority in its invasion, according to the Pentagon, and British defense officials said Ukraine has successfully repelled small-scale Russian attacks in the Donbas region. Ukraine announced that its fighting in the Kherson area destroyed over 100 Russian soldiers and seven tanks as well as stopping rail traffic across the Dnipro River, cutting off Russian forces west of the river from supplies out of Crimea and further east.

Missing January 6 texts: Department of Homeland Security Inspector General James Cuffari, appointed by Dictator Donald Trump (DDT), refused to collect agency phones in an attempt to recover deleted Secret Service texts. After a senior forensics analyst in Cuffari’s office collected the phones, Cuffari’s told investigators to not take the phones and not seek any data from them. Sen. Richard Durbin (D-IL), Judiciary Committee chair, asked the DOJ to intervene in the investigation of the missing texts.

Sen. Richard J. Durbin (D-Ill.), chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, issued a statement Friday calling the missing messages “an extremely serious matter” and said he would ask the Justice Department to intervene. Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-MS), chair of the House January 6 investigative committee, and Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) have asked that Cuffari be replaced in the investigation. Text messages from former acting homeland security secretary Chad Wolf and acting deputy secretary Ken Cuccinelli, both appointed by DDT, are missing for a key period leading up to the Jan. 6 attack, but both of them said their phones had the texts when they gave their phones to DHS. Secret Service Director James Murray, another DDT-appointed official in the missing text scandal, will need to delay his retirement at the end of July for a job at Instagram because of the investigations.

The PACT Act: GOP senators scuttled a bill they had already approved expanding VA healthcare for seriously ill military veterans who were exposed to toxic burn pits of waste. Immediately before Republicans voted against support for veterans, they tweeted their admiration for the veterans. After their negative votes, Ted Cruz (TX), Steve Daines (MT), and others gloated with joyful fist bumps and handshakes on the chamber floor in a video that has gone viral. Republicans complained the bill’s change in the House would allow Democrats a “slush fund,” but it kept other agencies from siphoning off the healthcare funds. Democrats threaten delaying the August recess with 15 Republicans needing to campaign for the 2022 election. Bill advocate Jon Stewart’s response to the happy GOP senators.

Kentucky’s flooding:  Kentucky’s death toll from flooding has gone to at least 25 with “still a lot of people unaccounted for,” according to Gov. Andy Beshear. Since the beginning of heavy rainfall last Wednesday, almost 300 people have been saved, but more rain is forecast for Sunday. The historic flooding follows the deadliest tornadoes in its history killing over 70 in December 2021.

More Florida regulations: Gov. Ron DeSantis has attacked a Miami restaurant hosting drag shows in the presence of children by threatening to pull its liquor license. DeSantis consistently approves of parental decisions—if they do what he wants. Parents criticize the accusation that the drag show violates the state statute opposing anything “injurious to people’s morals and manners.” DeSantis says that drag shows will “sexually abuse” young people. A state representative pointed out that DeSantis doesn’t mind children going to Hooters restaurants, that he thinks “it’s only sexually explicit if it’s LGBTQ+.” DeSantis doesn’t mind hurting trans children. He told schools to ignore federal guidelines protecting transgender youth, threatening repercussions if they follow Title IX guidelines.

Gaetz donations for abortion access:  Misogynistic rants by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) about how anti-abortionists are too ugly to “impregnante” raised over $1 million for abortion access within 72 hours after he personally attacked Olivia Julianna, a member of Gen Z for Change. By late Saturday, July 30, the fund had about $2 million to provide access for this “critical reproductive health care.” Gen Z is defined as people born between 1997 and 2012. Representing one-tenth of the electorate thus far, the racially-diverse Gen Z grew up with technological expertise and are more pragmatic and financially-minded after watching their parents take huge hits in this area. Although similar to Millennials, born between 1981 and 1996, Gen Z is more progressive on social issues and believe the government should take a bigger role in solving problems, including climate change which they attribute to human activities.  

And a bit of more news:

High oil prices are causing inflation and tremendous ire from people in the U.S., but major gasoline companies are raking in huge profits.  The three largest Western oil companies—Chevron, Exxon, and Shell—made a record $46 billion in total profits last quarter, with $17.9 billion going to just Exxon. It’s profit of $2,245.62 comes to more than four times as much as the same time period in 2021. The Wall Street Journal wrote:

“Exxon’s oil and gas production was up about 4% from the same period last year. Chevron’s oil-and-gas production declined globally about 7.4% compared with the same period a year ago, largely due to the end of projects in Thailand and Indonesia, though its production rose in the U.S. by about 3.2%.”

One word for that practice is “profiteering.” Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), said, “The oil companies are ripping Americans off.”

Following DDT’s goal of keeping immigrants out of the U.S., he required fingerprinting and extensive background check for every household member, instead of only the sponsor, where an unaccompanied child would live. Before DDT’s order, this practice was followed only because a safety concern. Children spent weeks and sometimes even months longer in custody. DDT’s office said the practice was unworkable but continued it without any further information that children were at risk. Thanks to a lawsuit, the U.S. will now establish fingerprinting deadlines for parents and sponsors trying to get unaccompanied immigrant children out of government custody, seven days for appointments and ten days for completion of processing with tracking reports.

n Austin (TX), podcaster Alex Jones is facing his first Sandy Hook defamation trial and not doing well in defending his accusation that the mass shooting of 22 children and six educators was a hoax. His attorney, Andino Reynal, flipped off opposing counsel Mark Bankston inside the courtroom. Producer Daria Karpova, defense-selected representative for Jones’ network Infowars, characterized his 2017 interview with Megyn Kelly, then on NBC, as about the Sandy Hook shooting, allowing the plaintiffs to play the 17-minute segment in open court. In the video, Jones said that the images of children fleeing Sandy Hook “looked like a drill” and admitted his “research” came from internet articles. He had refused to apologize for any of his statements. Karpova then talked about the stress of representing Jones because people told horrific lies about him when testifying about the man who called the Sandy Hook massacre a hoax involving actors and trying to increase gun control.

Perhaps seeing the writing on the wall, Jones’ media company Free Speech Systems filed for bankruptcy on Friday. Plaintiffs are asking for $150 million to the family of one child killed in the 2012 mass shooting. Last April, Jones’ company Infowars and two more of his business entities filed for bankruptcy, which delayed the trial until now. His lawyers said the current bankruptcy filing won’t delay the current trial, expected to conclude this coming week. Courts in Texas and Connecticut already found Jones liable for defamation in default judgments against Jones without trials because he failed to respond to court orders and turn over documents. In court records, Jones claimed he was $20 million in debt, but he made over $165 million between 2015 and 2018 in sales of nutritional supplements and survival gear. He also asked his Infowars listeners for donations.

A federal judge dismissed a $195 million lawsuit from a Catholic school student against six national media outlets for defamation after reporting on Nicholas Sandmann’s actions while he was in Washington, D.C. for an anti-abortion rally in 2019. A combined $1.25 billion came from the inclusion of lawsuits against seven other media organizations in the suit. Reports of Sandmann’s interaction with Native American rights activist Nathan Phillips at the Lincoln Memorial included videos, indicating racial motivation. The judge said the reporting of Phillips’ statement that Sandmann “blocked him and wouldn’t allow him to retreat” was the activist’s opinion for which the media couldn’t be sued. The quote couldn’t be proved true or false. Three other media outlets had previously settled with Sandmann. Depicting himself as a 16-year-old victim, Sandmann plans to appeal in a case which the majority of Supreme Court justices could use to overturn the constitutional freedom of the press.

DDT is in trouble with voters for supporting Saudi Arabia by hosting the LIV golf tournament, the Saudi’s attempt to eliminate the historic PGA tour, at his resort. He may also be breaking federal law by using the presidential seal on items such as towels and golf carts at the Bedminster (NJ) golf course.

People who get more spam in your email can blame the Republicans. GOP fundraising dropped off so Republicans attacked Google for putting fundraising emails into spam despite no evidence. Google may be forced into exempting campaign emails from spam detection.

September 21, 2021

Republicans Refuse to Pay Their Debt, DDT’s Election Fraud Goes Public

Just nine days before government funding expires on September 30, the House of Representatives voted to stop a shutdown of federal services by a party-line vote of 220-211. If the Senate passes the same measure, funding would continue until December 3, and the U.S. borrowing limit (aka debt ceiling) would be good until December 16, 2022. It also provides $28.6 billion in disaster relief and $6.3 billion to help Afghanistan evacuees.

GOP senators won’t make it easy. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) loves to make up irrational rules. For example, in 2016, he said that that a president could not appoint a Supreme Court justice within 11 months of the end of his term. That president was Democrat President Obama so McConnell’s rule didn’t last: in 2020, he put a new justice on the high court within 11 days of an election.

Now McConnell has invented a new rule about the debt ceiling. Last week, he said:

“Let me make it perfectly clear. The country must never default. The debt ceiling will need to be raised. But who does that depends on who the American people elect.”

He added:  

“They have the House, the Senate, and the presidency. It’s their obligation to govern. And, you know, the essence of governing is to raise the debt ceiling to cover the debt.”

McConnell invented a rule that no Republican would vote to increase the debt ceiling. That has already held true in the House vote. The Senate, however, has only 50 Democrats, and a GOP filibuster requires ten Republican senators to move the bill to a vote, something McConnell promised they would not do. McConnell wants all his Republicans to campaign against the “tax-and-spend liberals” despite the current debt increase came from the “tax-and-spend” Republicans for four years when the GOP greatly lowered taxes and spent money that they didn’t have. If all the Republicans stayed out of the way, Democrats could govern.

The rule from McConnell doesn’t apply when he needs Democrats; i.e., in 2019 when he wanted bipartisan support to increase the debt ceiling. He knows what Treasury Department Secretary Janet Yellen, formerly chair of the Federal Reserve, knows—“default … would precipitate a historic crisis.” McConnell wants all his Republicans to campaign against the “tax-and-spend liberals” despite the increase in the debt that needs to be covered came from the “tax-and-spend” Republicans for four years when the GOP greatly lowered taxes and spent money that they didn’t have. 

The debt ceiling always sounds as if the current Congress wants to spend more money, but this legal cap on how much money the federal government can owe to all its debtors—including other government accounts—happens when former administrations, in this case a Republican one, have approved spending over revenue. At the debt limit, the Treasury can no longer issue new bonds to fund spending over the revenue coming in. A 1917 law during World War I allowed Congress to wait for set debt limit expirations to raise the ceiling. The current debt limit of $28.5 trillion was reimposed on August 1 at the expiration of the two-year suspension signed by Dictator Donald Trump (DDT).

The national debt doesn’t change with the increase in the debt ceiling; lifting the limit simply means the government can pay its previously incurred expenses. The Republicans who want to blame Democrats for the debt are the ones who participated in raising the debt ceiling several times without any debt reduction and using only GOP votes to pass the $1.9 trillion tax cut bill in 2017 under DDT’s term.

In his 2016 campaign, DDT promised to reduce the national debt, but he and his GOP-controlled Congress increased it $7.8 billion, about $23,500 new federal debt for everyone in the U.S. Only George W. Bush and Abraham Lincoln had higher relative debt increases, but they had either two foreign conflicts or a civil war. DDT promised his massive tax cuts and tariffs would eliminate the budget deficit so that the U.S. could pay down its debt. It never happened.

Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) explained how Republicans were responsible for a goodly portion of the debt: 

“We’ve already incurred these debts. In fact, 27% of the debt that has been created has been created by Donald Trump during his administration. Only 3% under the Biden administration. The money that we spend on the rescue plan, where we propped up businesses, we propped up people who were unemployed, that is all spent. Everyone supported it. We had 44 Republicans who supported that. So on the one hand, they want to support it, but then they don’t want to pay for it? I mean it is just irresponsible.”

She added that “there is going to be blood on their hands … You’re going to see Social Security recipients not receiving their checks, and we’ll point to the Republicans and say that this is the reckless behavior of Republicans who are so irresponsible they won’t even pay for something that they have already voted for.“

Interest rates have gone up with the increased national debt. During the 2020 fiscal year, the $523 billion was higher than all spending on education, employment training, research, and social services. Last October, DDT lied about starting to pay off the national debt before the pandemic and claiming that future economic growth would allow it. Two months later, the GOP Senate passed $900 billion of economic stimulus—financed by debt.

McConnell’s refusal to compromise dropped Dow Jones stocks by 600 points yesterday. A default would go beyond the U.S., damaging the global financial system, especially because international transactions frequently use the U.S. dollar and believe their trillions in Treasury bonds are safe assets. McConnell says he wants to see spending cuts to bring down the deficit. Yet Republicans just blocked funding to catch federal tax cheaters from the new infrastructure bill, although the commissioner of the IRS, Charles Rettig, estimates a loss of $1 trillion a year in unpaid taxes.

More GOP election fraud information has gone public. According to newly discovered court documents, the campaign of Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) debunked DDT’s false claims of a “stolen election” before his allies such as Rudy Giuliani promoted the lies. DDT’s campaign let them spread although it knew that Dominion and its leadership had no ties to Venezuela and “left wing ‘antifa’ activists.” Also debunked were lies that Dominion used voting technology from rival voting machine Smartmatic with machines also involved in election fraud claims. A few days later, Giuliani and right-wing lawyer Sidney Powell pushed the fraud claims at a televised press conference during the Republican National Committee. Dominion’s security director filed a defamation lawsuit, and his company filed other defamation suits against Giuliani, Powell, MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, Fox News, Newsmax, One America News Network and former Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne for spreading the election fraud claims about their voting machines.

In more fraud, conservative attorney John Eastman tried to persuade VP Mike Pence to overturn Electoral College votes on January 6 by rejecting electors from seven states—enough for DDT to stay in the White House. Robert Costa and Bob Woodward’s new book, Peril, explained the scheme. Eastman sent his six-step plan to Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), and Giuliani tried to persuade Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) to support DDT’s conspiracy theory of election fraud. The change in seven states would give DDT 232 electoral votes, more than Joe Biden’s 222. Pence could then send the election to the House of Representatives where each state would get one vote, giving DDT the majority with the 26 states where Republicans rule. Both senators refused. 

At a meeting in the Oval Office, DDT urged Pence to listen to Eastman, who DDT called “a respected constitutional scholar.” Eastman said Pence should give no warning for his actions because “the Constitution assigns this power to the Vice President as the ultimate arbiter.” At that point, Pence asked George H.W. Bush’s vice-president, Dan Quayle, and the Senate Parliamentarian for advice. They both told Pence his only authority was to count the votes. Pence refused to intervene, and DDT attacked Pence on Twitter as the January 6 insurrection was being planned. Eastman spoke at DDT’s January 6 rally leading up to the attack on the Capitol and then retired from his job as Chapman University professor a week later after faculty protests.

DDT hasn’t stopped his attempts to overturn Biden’s election: last week, he wrote Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, telling him he should decertify the 2020 election. Criminal investigators in Georgia are still probing DDT’s earlier efforts to overturn the state’s 2020 presidential election results. This includes DDT’s call to Raffensperger in early January demanding he find him exactly enough votes to take the state by changing them. Graham is also being investigated for his call to Raffensperger, which Graham claims was only to understand how signatures on mail-in ballots were verified.

September 8, 2021

Just One Day – September 8, 2021

When Joe Biden was elected president, I expected the news to quiet down just a little. No such luck. Here’s a pot pourri of the last 24 hours.

The debt ceiling raise is due in less than a month, and Republicans are refusing to increase it. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has an answer for them. “”We’re paying the Trump credit card,” she said, referring to the $7 trillion of national debt during his four years.  Of that amount, $2 trillion came from the GOP tax cut for the wealthy and big business. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned Pelosi that the U.S. would run out of money to pay bills in October if the ceiling is not raised.

A crowd cheered as the 12-ton statue of Robert E. Lee was taken down in Richmond (VA). The event has been delayed while the decision was stalled for a year by court debate. Deposed Donald Trump (DDT) decried its removal, claiming about the leader of the Confederate army who lost the U.S. Civil War:

“If only we had Robert E. Lee to command our troops in Afghanistan, that disaster would have ended in a complete and total victory many years ago. What an embarrassment we are suffering because we don’t have the genius of a Robert E. Lee!”

The fence designed to protect the U.S. Capitol and the people within is going back up after its removal just six months after the domestic terrorism there on January 6. Conservative rhetoric for a planned September 18 rally there has grown more violent as those attending the “Justice for J6” rally support the insurrectionists arrested since the attempt to overturn the presidential election. Discussions are centering around retaliation against the Black police officer who shot a white woman, Ashli Babbitt, who broke into the Capitol on January 6.

Eleven DDT appointments made at the end of DDT’s term including such luminaries as Sean Spicer and Kellyanne Conway have been asked to resign before they are dismissed. These 11 are on the advisory boards of the Naval Academy, Air Force Academy, and West Point. The Pentagon has already removed hundreds of appointees from other boards. Russell Vought, Trump’s former director of the Office of Management and Budget, has already refused to resign from the Naval Academy board; others claim they also won’t, including Conway. The resignation requests were for lack of qualifications; for example, Douglas Macgregor on the West Point board disparaged immigrants, refugees, and minorities.

Almost immediately after the Texas’ governor signed its new anti-voting law, the state faced multiple lawsuits—four in federal courts and another in state court. Charges include discrimination against people of color, violation of First and Fourteenth Amendment rights, the Civil Rights Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the U.S. Constitution.

While signing the most restrictive voting bill in the nation, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott explained why pregnancies illegal after six weeks didn’t exempt those from rape and incest in the state’s law that went into effect on September 1. Abbott plans to “eliminate all rapists.” His claims have a few problems. Why did he wait until an unconstitutional anti-choice law to “eliminate” all these rapists? And if they are rapists, that means they may have already impregnated women through rape. Thirteen-years-old when she was raped, the law’s name sake Lavinia Masters said the police asked her if she had let her boyfriend into the house and kept it from her mother.

Texas still has 6,000 unprocessed rape kits. The 15th most dangerous state for rape and sexual assault, Texas has over 16,000 rapes annually, and more may not  be reported. The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network report that 80 percent of the time victims know their attackers. They aren’t out “on the streets,” the way Abbott claims.  

Across the Texas border, Mexico has been forced by its Supreme Court to legalize abortion. Then high court judges declared unconstitutional the law in the northern Coahuila state sentencing women underling illegal abortions or people who help them to three years in prison. The 11th judge was absent. The decision is binding for the entire country. Four other Latin American countries permit abortions under almost all circumstances in early pregnancies.

Businesses are fighting back against the law. Texas-based dating platforms Match and Bumble set up relief funds to help people hurt by the law, and ride-hailing platforms Uber and Lyft said they would cover all legal costs for any of their drivers who get sued for driving a customer to an abortion clinic. Epik, where the Texas March for Life whistleblower went after GoDaddy dropped it, immediately shut down the website. Other corporations are waiting to see how the wind blows in their industry before they make any comments.

A new burden for women seeking to terminate pregnancies probably violates Roe v. Wade, but the governor issuing the executive order is another presidential wannabe. South Dakota’s Kristi Noem’s order mandates abortion medication must be picked up in person at the office of a physician licensed in South Dakota only after an in-person examination. The FDA permits sending abortion-inducing medications through the mail. Noem’s order also demands data on the number of chemical abortions performed and any complications as well as information to indicate if the woman was “coerced or sex trafficked and forced to take the pills.” The state Department of Health must “develop an abortion clinic license specific to the pharmaceutical nature of medical abortion in keeping with South Dakota’s existing surgical abortion clinic licensing requirements.” She claims the purpose is “safety above politics by basing public policy on science and data rather than political talking points.”

Following DDT’s lies about a stolen presidential election, U.S. election workers and officials have made over 100 threats of death or violence, according to Reuters’ documentation. All 102 threats were explicit enough to put a reasonable person in fear of bodily harm or death, the legal threshold for prosecution. Law enforcement has not provided protection for these people: only a handful of arrests have been made despite hundreds of incidents of intimidation and harassment of election workers and officials nationwide. Of 26 election officials interviewed regarding the 102 threats, including eight secretaries of state, only one, Arizona Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, knew of anyone charged for the intimidation. That case was one of only four nationwide documented with an arrest that could be found.

Georgia has made no arrests for threats against the state’s GOP Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger and his family, despite threats of physical harm. The state AG didn’t find them criminal, but the FBI has stepped up its investigation into threats against Georgia election officials after Reuters’ reporting. Georgia prosecutors are also investigating DDT for tampering with the election. They are looking at DDT’s phone calls to state election officials, asking them to “find votes” for him and overturn the state’s selection of Biden. Investigators are also working with federal officials probing the January 6 insurrection to share documents. DDT needed to roll over Georgia’s vote to persuade other states such as Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan to overturn their results. Georgia may indict DDT for his actions.

The high court in Australia has ruled that media companies are liable for defamatory comments left on their social media pages by public members. Several other decisions from lower courts found that news outlets encouraging these defamatory comments are legally their publishers and can be legally responsible for the content. The top court agreed in a 5-2 vote. In the past, Australia has been a tester for online regulation, enacting sweeping changes.

Union numbers have reached their highest level since 2015 with 10.8 percent of all wage and salaried workers members, up 0.5 percent from 2019. Men are more likely to join unions than women, and the age range 45-64 has the highest percentage. Blacks are more likely to be union members than Whites, Asians, or Hispanics. Although the private sector has only 6.3 percent workers in unions, the public sector has 34.8 percent. A problem with building union members is that large corporations such as Amazon and Walmart will do almost anything, not always legal, to keep shops from unionizing.

Next Tuesday, September 14, reveals the fate of California’s Gov. Gavin Newsom, when voters determine whether he should be recalled for not wearing a mask at a party. Down in the polls before publicity about the new anti-choice law in Texas, Newsom is now at 58 percent opposition to the recall, almost 18 percent above those who want him recalled. The same 66 percent of Latinx who voted for him when he became governor still support him. If voters do vote for recall, the governorship choice is among 46 candidates including conservative talk show host Larry Elder and reality television star transgender Caitlyn Jenner.

Republicans seem to be already expecting a loss—they’re declaring the election is rigged if Newsom wins in spite of Democrats outnumbering Republicans by 2 to 1 in California. Newsom won in 2018 by almost 62 percent of the vote. Watch for the fake audits!

August 14, 2021

Diversity of Census, Cult of DDT

No matter how hard Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) tried to keep racial and ethnic minorities from responding to the census, the final result reflects an increasing diversity. The two most important reasons for the census every ten years are voting districts and federal funding of $675 billion to state and local governments. DDT tried to block minorities being counted through questions about undocumented immigrants and delays in the process. Despite the lies DDT’s Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross told during his testimony before Congress, according to the Supreme Court, and the problems created by the pandemic, census takers proceeded to go door to door where people had not submitted their census forms.   

Results about the 2020 census released on Thursday, August 12:

The United States is more diverse and more multiracial than ever before with the percentage of White people shrinking for the first time in census-taking history. People of color represented 43 percent of the U.S. population, up from 34 percent in 2010, with non-Hispanic Whites dropping to 57 percent. The share of Hispanic, Latino, or multiracial grew the most.

The total population grew from about 308.7 million in 2010 to 331.4 million, a 7.35 percent increase. It is the slowest population growth since 1930-1940, dominated by the Great Depression.

The number of adults grew from 237 million in 2010 to 261 million in 2020, an increase in the share of the adult population from 76 percent to 78 percent. With the decrease of those under 18-years-old, Whites now make up only 47 percent of that age group, down from 53 percent in 2010.

In every state, the percentage of Whites dropped, and large cities are becoming majority people of color. Population growth in metro areas during the past decade grew 8.7 percent since 2010. Over half of the nation’s 3,183 counties lost population in the last decade with counties under 50,000 residents most likely to lose.

Washington was the most changed state, its non-Hispanic White population dropping 8.7 percent since 2010, but Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Nevada also had declines over 8 percent. The White states of New Hampshire, Vermont, and West Virginia dropped below 90 percent White; only Maine stayed over 90 percent non-Hispanic White.

Non-Hispanic Whites are now the minority in seven states and territories — California, New Mexico, Nevada, Texas, Maryland, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. In California, that percentage dropped to 34.7 percent, meaning the non-Hispanic White population in the state is almost down to one-third.

The shifting population means 13 states would gain or lost seats in the House of Representatives, thus needing to redraw boundaries. Changes:

  • States gaining seats: Texas (2), North Carolina, Florida, Oregon, Montana, and Colorado.
  • States losing seats: New York, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, California, Michigan, and West Virginia.

Niall Stanage, editor of the conservative Hill, writes about how the census may “fan the flames of nativism” (aka white supremacy) in U.S. politics, “a fire that … has burned brightly since former President Trump began his 2016 campaign with a speech maligning many immigrants.” According to Stanage, the census may support the far-right argument “that white Americans are under siege, their culture under threat from the rising numbers of immigrants and people of color.” Conservatives spread the myth that a majority non-white population will “take revenge on white people.”

The changing racial makeup of the U.S. may contribute to conservatives’ fascination with Hungary’s authoritarian rule under Viktor Orbán. Immigration, however, may not be responsible for the shrinking number of Whites. One demographer attributed the change to the opioid epidemic and the lower birthrates among millennials since George W. Bush’s Great Recession. Other reasons may come from economic hopelessness and affluence.

You can find changing demographics for where you live on this interactive map.

Meanwhile, news about the cult of DDT continues, with a rally on September 16 demanding “justice” for the January 6 insurrectionists facing prison time. Multiple people, including law enforcement, died, and another 140 police officers were wounded. Leader of the debacle is DDT’s campaign data person Matt Braynard who extolls the “American heroes” perpetrating the violent treasonous attempt to overturn the election of President Joe Biden. Braynard had raised over $700,000 in his search for “voter fraud” and was paid for helping Rudy Giuliani spread false claims about the election. 

One definition of a cult is that members cannot police their own. While sexual-assaulter DDT has escaped any charges for his crimes, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned after the report about his sexual attacks. He denied them, but Democrats, his own party, have forced him out. On the other hand, Republicans chose to exonerate DDT during his impeachment trials—twice—despite his obvious guilt. Yet DDT, a possible sex-offender, called on “loser” Cuomo to resign while Republicans ignore claims of sexual impropriety of a number of GOP officials such as Reps. Madison Cawthorn (R-NC) and Matt Gaetz (R-FL) as well as the Republican Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Damon Linker writes:

“The GOP has adopted an ethos of merciless bellicosity. Fighting is what counts and what gets rewarded. Sacrificing for the sake of principle is denigrated and dismissed. To resign is to give up power voluntarily. It’s therefore a choice reserved only for suckers and chumps.

“Add in the cult of personality that has accompanied this shift in moral orientation and we’re left with a party overwhelmingly predisposed to forgive transgressions of the most charismatic and politically potent members of the team. Not even overwhelming evidence of treasonous acts, and certainly not accusations of sexual misconduct and violence, is sufficient to get large numbers of Republican voters to turn on their own.

“That makes the GOP America’s party of political shamelessness. One wonders if Andrew Cuomo sometimes wishes he were a Republican.” 

Judges also continue to reject the GOP myth of a “stolen election.”  A federal judge denied appeals from DDT’s former lawyer Rudy Giuliani, pro-DDT attorney Sidney Powell, and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell to dismiss Dominion Voting Systems defamation lawsuits against them. Lawsuits for $1.3 billion each fight the claims that Dominion rigged the 2020 presidential election for Biden. Dominion is also suing Newsmax, One America News Network (OAN), and former Overstock CEO Patrick Byrne, the first two for airing false reports about Dominion switching votes from DDT to Biden and Byrne for his “stolen” election conspiracy theories. Each lawsuit is for over $1.6 billion.

Part of Dominion’s lawsuit against OAN concerns a segment from “expert mathematician” Ed Solomon who claims he discovered evidence of an algorithm-rigged result within precinct-level reporting. His prediction of this occurrence was “an exponent so large there’s not enough stars in the universe—there’s not enough atoms in the universe to explain the number.” An odd response for a mathematician, but Solomon is a convicted drug dealer serving two years in prison who had a job installing swing sets when he was interviewed. His math expertise comes from a few math classes at Stony Brook University between 2008 and 2015 with no degree. Actual experts found that different precincts can logically have the same vote shares at different times in different parts of the county.

The source of Solomon’s purported information is not known although he said he used “data from the NYT feed from PA on November fourth” and the link to the “original data sets” is dead. After Dominion demanded retractions to Solomon’s statements, OAN removed the video and story at its website but left it on the network’s video platform, Rumble Page, with the title “Smoking Gun.” Solomon has since posted YouTube videos of his election analysis, including one almost 12 hours long about the fraudulent Maricopa County (AZ) ballot count.

Far-right media network Newsmax was on a roll in 2020 when DDT became angry with Fox network’s failure to be sufficiently conservative, but this year its ratings dropped 50 percent. One theory for its failure is that Joe Biden moved into the White House, despite the conspiracy theories spread on Newsmax, and the other that the network is “incredibly dull and incredibly boring,” according to Media Matters expert on Newsmax, Jason Campbell.  

The possible arrest of Texas Democratic lawmakers bounces back and forth among courts. A district judge ruled they won’t be arrested for missing a special session focusing on anti-voting bills, but the state Supreme Court overturned the decision. Texas law enforcement was deputized this week to find missing Democrats and haul then off to the state Capitol. The Texas Senate chamber doors are locked, lawmakers must appear daily, and then must obtain permission slips each day to leave. Gov. Gregg Abbott wants a quorum for the GOP majority to push through punitive laws keeping minorities and low-income people from voting. Arrest merely means being forced to be present for the voting. Democrats plan to request a temporary injunction on August 20, in a quest for protection.

Yesterday’s “Reinstatement Day” came and went without DDT’s “reinstatement” in the Oval Office. But did he get out his Sharpies? In an odd coincidence, yesterday was also National Kool-Aid Day. August 13, which fell on a Friday, is the fourth failed reinstatement day after January 20 when Biden was inaugurated, March 4 when QAnon conspiracies believed was Inauguration Day, and June 23. 

April 3, 2021

DDT’s Future: Defending Himself in Court

As Deposed Donald Trump (DDT) remains ensconced at Mar-a-Lago permitting favored ones into his presence, his advisers grow increasingly concerned about the immense buildup of legal investigations and filings. Yet loyalists must tell him he will probably remain safe from lawsuits emanating from his incitement of violence at the U.S. Capitol on January 6.

Last week, two Capitol Police officers injured on January 6 while engaged in hand-to-hand combat are suing DDT for inciting his supporters who mobbed the Capitol to stop the Electoral College election of President Joe Biden. Officers James Blassingame and Sidney Hemby assert DDT has the direct responsibility for the insurrection because of his call to riot. Blassingame describes how rioters slammed him into a stone column while shouting racial slurs. Hemby, who was also sprayed with a chemical spray, said his hand and knee injuries still require medical care two months later. Both men suffer emotional trauma. DDT has tried to rework stories of January 6 by calling it a peaceful assembly with “zero threat.”

After breaking free of the crowd, Blassingame helped House members evacuate to a committee room and stayed among the maskless people until 7:30 pm. Hemby couldn’t get medical assistance until 9:00 pm. Part of the lawsuit uses speeches by GOP congressional members such as Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) and former Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-CA) who stated DDT could be legally liable for inciting the riot.  

Their suit follows ones by Reps. Bennie Thompson (D-MS) and Eric Swalwell (D-CA). Another political case against DDT filed in late December accuses DDT and the Republican National Committee of conspiring to violate the rights of Black voters. The case asks the judge to not only stop them from any further actions to overturn or undermine the 2020 election but also issue an order forcing them to obtain court approval for demands of recounts or participation in future “post-election activities.” In January 2018, a federal judge in New Jersey lifted the 1982 court-monitored settlement banning the RNC from “ballot security” activities based on the “racial or ethnic composition” of a specific community. In that agreement, the RNC agreed it had tried to intimidate, threaten, and disenfranchise voters through voter roll purges and by paying police officers to patrol polling sites in predominantly Black and Latino areas under the pretense of preventing election fraud.

This lawsuit expands a November case that the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (LDF) filed in federal court in Washington, DC, against DDT and his campaign for deliberately focusing fraud accusations on cities with large Black populations, including Atlanta, Detroit, Milwaukee, and Philadelphia. These claims were brought under the federal Voting Rights Act and the Ku Klux Klan Act.

The Fulton County (GA) DA, Fani Willis, is pursuing an investigation into DDT’s election fraud through his telephone calls begging officials, including Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, to cheat on counting votes from the 2020 general election in DDT’s favor. Willis is putting together an investigative team, and two grand juries are underway, close to making subpoena demands for documents and recordings. She’s searching for three more lawyers and another investigator.

DDT’s Supreme Court justices, who were appointed to return him to the White House, have rejected the last of three cases to challenge his election loss, the one about absentee ballots in Wisconsin. The other two were about Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. Another rejected case asking justices to block the January 5 Senate runoff elections in Georgia was filed by DDT’s loyalist Lin Wood. Democrats won both these elections bringing their total to 50 members.

Wisconsin’s Democratic Gov. Tony Evers is going to court for over $250,000 from DDT that the state paid to defend the popular vote against his attempt to overturn the vote so he could return to the White House. The request for an order states DDT and his attorneys brought their two lawsuits “in bad faith.”

A New York appeals court is permitting a defamation lawsuit by former Apprentice contestant Summer Zervos against DDT because he is no longer in the White House. DDT denied her allegations about sexually assaulting her in 2007, and Zervos wants to depose DDT as part of her lawsuit. She is one of two women suing him for defamation. 

Three cases against DDT are being prosecuted by Roberta Kaplan, well-known for the Supreme Court case U.S. v. Windsor regarding legalized marriage equality. Kaplan is filing civil suits for defamation, fraud, and more fraud against DDT by his niece Mary Trump and writer E. Jean Carroll. DDT had claimed Carroll was lying about his raping her, and Trump’s case is about DDT and two of his siblings depriving her of an inheritance worth millions by lying about the worth of his father’s estate. Kaplan’s third case concerns the relationship of DDT and his three oldest children with a purported pyramid scheme by ACN.

DDT’s biggest problem may come from the New York criminal probe into his business affairs. Prosecutors are examining millions of pages recently acquired in a search for witnesses who can explain these to a jury. The next step is issuing subpoenas regarding the investigation into DDT’s reduction of his tax liabilities by lying about property values. Financial records about DDT’s Chicago skyscraper and his Seven Springs estate in Westchester County (NY) have been subpoenaed. In addition to possible criminal charges filed by Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr., New York Attorney General Letitia James may file civil charges.

A judge has voided DDT’s non-disclosure agreement (NDA) with Jessica Denson, his former Latinx outreach director, ruling it too vague and broad to enforce under New York’s contract law. Although the decision applies only to Denson’s NDA, the same ruling may be possible for all DDT’s NDAs. The judge described the scope of the NDA as “unlimited,” that “campaign employees are not free to speak about anything concerning the Campaign.” The broadness makes the NDA “not reasonable.” Earlier, a campaign arbitrator issued a $50,000 award against Denson for violating the NDA, but it was overturned. Denson believes the NDAs blocked criticism about DDT for the past six years. 

DDT typically required the same secrecy of his companies’ employees and staff before he followed the same practice in his campaign and the White House. First Amendment experts warned him public employees could not constitutionally be forced to swear an oath of secrecy. Last year, DDT’s DOJ used an NDA to file a lawsuit against Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a former volunteer adviser to first lady Melania Trump, over Winston Wolkoff’s tell-all book. The suit was dropped days after Biden’s inauguration.

While in the White House, DDT and his top officials indulged themselves in shady deals now coming into the light. They fought key oversight investigations conducted by government watchdogs in at least nine different cases. A high profile one concluded Elaine Chao, wife of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), abused her position as Transportation Secretary for personal reasons such as helping a family business. In another one, a White House physician, retired Navy rear admiral Ronny Jackson who raved about DDT’s superb health, abused substances while on the job and created a toxic work environment for his staff. 

The revelations can have no consequences because Chao resigned her position after the Electoral College determined Biden as president. Jackson has been elected as a U.S. representative from Texas.

Investigators described almost impossible obstructions: DDT’s attorneys made internal communications off limits because of their confidential nature and demanded to be present at witness interviews. Information was released either extremely slowly or not at all, preventing the ability to assess and correct internal problems in real time. DDT’s ultimate solution to investigations was to fire internal investigators.

Future releases of investigations may be the White House blocking delivery of Puerto Rico’s financial aid after Hurricane Maria and the Commerce Department’s attempt to add a citizenship question to the U.S. census. The Pentagon is also looking into the $400 million border-wall contract DT wanted to award to a subpar North Dakota construction company. The General Services Administration inspector general is conducting a sweeping review of responses to the coronavirus from several different federal agencies. 

Congress will now have the ability to examine records from DDT’s term, blocked from them during the past four years. The Presidential Records Act (PRA) allows former presidents to restrict access to their records for 12 years, but an exception permits release of records to Congress or “any committee or subcommittee thereof if such records contain information that is needed for the conduct of its business and that is not otherwise available.” These can include DDT’s blackmail in Ukraine, Michael Flynn’s lies to the FBI, the January 6 attempted insurrection, White House visitor logs, DDT’s phone logs, and other abuses of power. In the past, Democrats could not get records from the archives, which released them only to the majority party. Democrats now are the majority although they may suffer some delays. DDT can cite privilege, but Biden must uphold his claims. In filing lawsuits, DDT no longer has the support of the Department of Justice and must fund the lawsuits himself with personal lawsuits.

The import of the business lawsuits is beginning to sink into Eric Trump’s perception as shown by his meltdown on the Fox network. He was close to tears when he talked about what his family was facing.

Defending himself from defamation, fraud, and corruption. That is the future of the man who spent the last four years ruling from the White House and now hides in Florida.

March 12, 2021

Tucker Carlson’s Misogyny Hits New High

Ratings have been hard on the Fox network in the past year, especially after Deposed Dictator Trump (DDT) largely disappeared into the bowels of Mar-a-Lago. February was particularly brutal for Tucker Carlson when viewers for Rachel Maddow, who provides news on her MSNBC show, outnumbered those watching Carlson’s evidence-free bigotry and hatred.

Monday was International Women’s Day, part of Women’s History Month, and Carlson tried to build his ratings this week by showing the white man’s superiority over women. He presented his warped perspective on his Tuesday program—pregnant women are “feminizing” the military and giving China the opportunity to become more dominant over the U.S. in its world dominance of national defense. 

He also ranted about new updates to Army and Air Force hair regulations:

“So we’ve got new hairstyles and maternity flight suits. Pregnant women are going to fight our wars. It’s a mockery of the U.S. military.”

Part of Carlson’s rage came from President Biden’s Monday nomination of two highly-qualified four-star female generals to lead a combatant command. The pregnant Air Force Capt. Beatrice Horne, serving with the 964th Airborne Air Control Squadron, was selected to vet the flight suit prototype to accommodate pregnancy.

Current and former members of the military, including senior-ranking military officials and members of Congress, were not pleased with Carlson’s denigration of over half the people in the U.S. population and Carlson’s attempt to control military policy. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) sent a strong tweet about Tucker’s insults:

“F–k Tucker Carlson. While he was practicing his two-step, America’s female warriors were hunting down Al Qaeda and proving the strength of America’s women. Happy belated International Women’s Day to everyone but Tucker, who even I can dance better than.”

A retired Army National Guard lieutenant colonel with two daughters, Duckworth lost both her legs while engaging in combat during the Iraq War. Her reference is to Carlson’s brief 2006 appearance on Dancing with the Stars when he was the first contestant to be eliminated. Duckworth is the first sitting senator to give birth while in office and brought her newborn daughter, Maile, to a 2018 Senate floor vote.

Michael Grinston, the top enlisted leader of the Army, tweeted:

“Women lead our most lethal units with character. They will dominate ANY future battlefield we’re called to fight on.”

General Paul Funk, the commanding officer of the Army Training and Doctrine Command, wrote:

“Thousands of women serve honorably every day around the globe. They are beacons of freedom and they prove Carlson wrong through determination and dedication. We are fortunate they serve with us.”

VoteVets tweeted:

“Tucker Carlson doesn’t think women can serve in the military. Pretty bold words from a frozen food heir who couldn’t be bothered to serve himself.”

Tucker Carlson wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth, but his father stuck one there by marrying Patricia Swanson of the Swanson Frozen Dinner family fortune. He was then able to attend private schools and colleges along with connections to a television career through his father, media executive Dick Carlson who was CEO of The Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The family also gained political clout after the marriage from Sen. J. William Fulbright, part of the Swanson family.

VoteVets is accurate about Carlson never serving in the military, and he failed in an attempt to join the CIA.

Travis Akers wrote:

“As a military officer, I am calling for the ban of Fox News being broadcasted in the workplace on all military bases and installations. The values of Fox News are not aligned with those of the United States military, and undermine good order and discipline among the ranks.”

Work on updates to protect women’s health while serving in the military, a maternity flight suit, permission to wear “ponytails” to stop scalp damage from tight buns, and body armor fitting women for injury prevention were initiated during DDT’s term. A former Secretary of Defense, however, did not recommend the nomination of female generals to lead service members into combat because of the concern DDT would reject women for the position.   

Martina Chesonis, spokeswoman for the Service Women’s Action Network, pointed out that pregnant women, not authorized to fly in combat, will still wear flight suits for daily work including training flights.

“It’s just such a lack of understanding of how wars are fought, how deployments are managed, how women contribute in the military. And what’s unfortunate is that [Tucker Carlson] has that platform.”

Pregnant women are not sent “to fight in our wars.” Women in military aviation often plan pregnancies to occur during regularly scheduled, non-operational jobs for every service member such as being instructors or other non-deployable positions.

Carlson wasn’t satisfied with only smearing women in the military on his Tuesday show: he also ridiculed New York Times reporter Taylor Lorenz for accounts of online harassment by saying she has “one of the best lives in the country.” For International Women’s Day, Lorenz asked her Twitter followers to “please consider supporting women enduring online harassment.” Carlson complained about “powerful people claiming to be powerless” and compared Lorenz to women accused of pretending victimhood, listing Michelle Obama, Hillary Clinton, and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex.

The Times called Carlson’s segment “calculated and cruel,” so he returned to attack Lorenz. She is a “deeply unhappy narcissist,” according to Carlson, and he denied she faces online abuse. One of his guests accused Lorenz of “harassing kids and teenagers.” A defense from a Fox spokesperson stated, “No public figure or journalist is immune to legitimate criticism of their reporting, claims or journalistic tactics.”

The word “legitimate” runs contrary to the network’s defense for Carlson in a defamation lawsuit last summer. Before he called former Playboy model Karen McDougal a “presidential extortionist,” he told 2.8 million viewers, “Remember the facts of the story; these are undisputed.” The network’s attorney excused Carlson from defamation by claiming no reasonable viewer would believe Carlson’s “reporting” was factual. Erin Murphy said:

“It’s a commentary show, It’s a show that markets itself … as opinion and spirited debate. That context matters.”

Carlson’s show aired two days before DDT’s fixer Michael Cohen and prosecutors granted immunity to the National Enguirer’s parent company after the owner, DDT’s friend, admitted it arranged to conceal any stories about women having had affairs with DDT. McDougal had clearly stated she never approached DDT, and the federal court record supports her claim.

The judge, appointed by DDT, dismissed the defamation suit against Carlson with the explanation he doesn’t tell the truth:

“This ‘general tenor’ of the show should then inform a viewer that he is not ‘stating actual facts’ about the topics he discusses and is instead engaging in ‘exaggeration’ and ‘non-literal commentary.’ … Given Mr. Carlson’s reputation, any reasonable viewer ‘arrive[s] with an appropriate amount of skepticism’ …”

Carlson doesn’t attack everyone. A week ago, he called QAnon conspiracy theory believers “gentle people waving American flags.” He was referring to the mob storming the U.S. Capitol on January 6 with the intent of overturning the legal U.S. presidential election in their attempt to retain DDT in the White House. “They like this country,” Carlson said on his show. One of the five people who died at the Capitol because of the mob was Roseanne Boyland, trampled by the mob while carrying a Gadsden flag, the revolutionary era snake and the words “Don’t Tread on Me.” Carlson not only didn’t talk about these victims but also failed to mention the QAnon belief about DDT being the nation’s real leader against the cabal of Satanic Democratic child-killers and pedophiles.

The 800+ mob members running through the Capitol were looking for people to kill and wound after DDT said to “fight like hell”; Carlson ridiculed the fear of people being attacked in the Capitol. Carlson appears to have confused the “American flags” for the Confederate flag, the symbol flown by treasonous people during the Civil War who tried to overturn the United States. Many people in the Capitol were searching for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) with the intent to commit physical violence against her.

Tucker Carlson’s ratings for March will indicate whether larger audiences reward his hatred toward women and call for violence against them. 

September 17, 2018

Court Rulings Mostly Right Wrongs

Election Day is only 50 days away, and the GOP continues its attempts at voter suppression. In an honest move that may cause them to lose the 2018 North Carolina election, progressive groups Common Cause and the League of Women Voters that won the redrawing of gerrymandered districts said that there was not enough time to complete the task in the next two months. The contortions of district lines caused the state to have 10 of 13 seats in the U.S. House with only 53 percent of the vote.

The majority in a panel of three judges from the 9th Circuit, two appointed by George W. Bush, upheld Arizona laws that prevent anyone except a family member, caretaker, or postal worker from turning ballots into elections officials and blocked out-of-precinct voting. The decision is especially onerous for Native Americans who are many miles from both voting precincts and post offices. As usual, the fake reason for the law is to avoid voter fraud, but the rationale comes from white entitlement and lack of understanding about other cultures and living conditions. The decision will be appealed to the full court but stays in effect for the upcoming election.

A Missouri judge made Republicans happy when he removed a redistricting measure for this fall’s ballot.

Yet not all bodes well for Republicans in court decisions.

Federal prosecutors have postponed their demand that North Carolina state and local elections officials give them well over 20 million ballots, poll books, and voter authorization forms going back almost nine years by September 25. Subpoenas also required photo images of voters, and subpoenas to the state DMV required DMV voter registration documents and those completed in a language other than English from both citizens and people not born in the U.S. Almost 2.3 million absentee ballots could be traced back to individual voters which caused privacy concerns. The subpoenas for these records cited ICE and a grand jury in Wilmington as the source for the demand after U.S. Attorney Bobby Higdon announced charges against 19 non-U.S. citizens for illegal voting. A state audit counted 41 non-U.S. citizens acknowledged voting out of 4.8 million ballots. Higdon hopes to get the documents in January 2019.

A court in North Carolina also ruled in favor of expanding Gov. Roy Cooper’s authority to make certain appointments, ruling that the legislators had overstepped their authority and violated the separation of powers’ requirement. When Cooper was elected, the GOP legislature immediately passed several laws to restrict his abilities compared to that of his GOP predecessor.

For the second time in four years, federal judges struck down the GOP Virginia General Assembly boundaries of 11 electoral districts that pack minorities together so that white candidates in adjacent districts can win elections. Little progress has been made before the October 30 deadline. With the GOP failure to more forward, the governor has asked the GOP speaker of the state house to turn the project over to the courts. The districts will be used for state elections in 2019.

A Virginia judge also removed an independent candidate from the ballot in the 2nd District congressional race because of “forgery” and “out and out fraud” on her petition. Staffers working for the GOP candidate had collected many of the signatures to get her onto the ballot to split the progressive vote and ensure a win for their boss. Of the 377 signatures that five of them put on petitions, at least 146 were false, some of them for people who had died.

Florida Republicans thought they could keep Puerto Ricans who had fled their island after Hurricane Maria from voting if they refused them Spanish-language ballots. A district judge disagreed and ruled that 32 counties across the state had violated the Voting Rights Act. He ordered them to provide bilingual voting materials, including ballots and poll worker support, for Spanish-speaking Puerto Rican voters. According to his ruling:

“Puerto Ricans are American citizens. Unique among Americans, they are not educated primarily in English — and do not need to be. But, like all American citizens, they possess the fundamental right to vote.”

The enactment is on an expedited basis to give Florida officials “ample” time to appeal if “they seek to block their fellow citizens, many of whom fled after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, from casting meaningful ballots,” according to the judge. “It is remarkable that it takes a coalition of voting rights organizations and individuals to sue in federal court to seek minimal compliance with the plain language of a venerable 53-year-old law,” he added.

A federal appeals court has ruled that the so-called “charity” Americans for Prosperity (AFP) Foundation, linked to billionaire Charles Koch, must disclose its donors to California officials. The three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court reversed a lower court ruling from last year.

A grand jury will be convened to investigate whether Republican gubernatorial candidate and Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach intentionally failed to register voters in 2016.

The court woes of Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) continue. He tried to get out of going to court over paying hush-money for a nondisclosure agreement with Stormy Daniels so that he and former attorney Michael Cohen don’t have to give dispositions. By not contesting the suit, DDT thinks that he has escaped, but Daniels still has a defamation suit against DDT.

The fate of DDT’s IRS returns is still in court, this time the Washington, D.C. Circuit. EPIC’s Freedom of Information Act case is arguing that IRS must release his returns to correct misstatements of fact about his financial ties to Russia in his tweets. At least two-thirds of people want DDT to release the returns. The 98-page financial disclosure that DDT is forced to make public shows that his biggest windfalls come from his property that he frequently visits. For example, he made $37 million from Mar-a-Lago, up from $15 million in 2015, and $20 from his nearby golf club.

A federal judge refused to stop the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, ruling that Texas and six other conservative states couldn’t prove irreparable harm from the program. He also stated that he believed the program is unconstitutional, but the time has passed to rescind it.

Cities can’t prosecute people for sleeping on the streets if they have nowhere else to go because it amounts to unconstitutional cruel and unusual punishment, according to a 9th Circuit Court ruling in Boise (ID). Six homeless people sued the city in 2009. The judge also wrote:

“A city cannot, via the threat of prosecution, coerce an individual to attend religion-based treatment programs consistently with the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.”

A federal judge in Boston ruled that ICE should not remove undocumented people in the process of applying for green cards even if they have final orders of removal. The ruling may not require a penalty from the government or apply outside the New England area. Five couples are suing DHS, ICE, DDT, and law enforcement because spouses were detained by ICE when they went for marriage interviews with U.S.-citizen spouses, a requirement for the application process to prove they have legitimate marriages. Emails show coordination between ICE and Citizenship and Immigration Services to coordinate interviews and arrests. The suit began with a woman who was brought from Guatemala when she was three years old and married U.S. citizen Luis Gordillo. They have two children.

A Canadian court unanimously overturned Ottawa’s approval of a pipeline project because the government failed to consider concerns of some First Nations and did not consider the impact of increased tanker traffic. The pipeline, almost 700 miles long, would take bitumen from Alberta to the western ports to ship to Asia. The ship traffic has already had a devastating affect on southern resident orcas which are almost extinct.

Parents of a Sandy Hook victim may continue its defamation lawsuit against conspiracy theorist Alex Jones after his repeated lies that the 2012 massacre killing 20 children and six adults at a Connecticut elementary school was a “fraud.” Six other Sandy Hook families also filed a defamation lawsuit against Jones in May. Jones’ Infowars is also facing a lawsuit for misidentifying a person as the shooter at the Parkland (FL) school who killed 17 people and another defamation suit from the person who recorded the vehicular murder of Heather Heyer at the Charlottesville (VA) rally last year. Jones’ law firm is also representing the co-founder of the neo-Nazi, white supremacist website The Stormer.

An arbitrator has denied the NFL request to throw out Colin Kaepernick’s grievance that owners conspired to keep him out of the league because of his protests for social injustice. The ruling shows that Kaepernick has sufficient evidence of collusion for a lawsuit. Eric Reid’s grievance for joining the protests is still pending. The NFL had to put on hold its policy that would require players to stand if they are on the sideline during the national anthem because of problems that it classified protests as conduct detrimental to the team.


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