Tag Archives: Dems

GOP rejects cuts to wall funding, Dems threaten filibuster

GOP rejects cuts to wall funding, Dems threaten filibusterA Republican-controlled Senate committee on Thursday rejected Democratic attempts to cut President Donald Trump’s latest border wall request and prevent him from again funding the project without congressional approval. Democrats threatened to filibuster a Pentagon spending bill. The Senate Appropriations Committee lined up behind Trump in party-line votes giving preliminary, tentative approval to Trump’s latest $ 5 billion wall request and blocking a Democratic attempt to prevent Trump from transferring additional Pentagon funds to build the border barrier.



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Gun Sales Jump 15.5 Percent in August as Dems Renew Push for Regulations

Gun Sales Jump 15.5 Percent in August as Dems Renew Push for RegulationsBackground checks for gun sales, concealed-carry permits, and security spiked in August as congressional Democrats renewed their push for expanded gun control in the wake of several mass shootings.The National Instant Criminal Background Check System recorded a 15.5 percent uptick in background checks last month, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation.The jump in gun sales appears to have been spurred by a desire to secure self-protection amid an epidemic of mass shootings in the U.S., before Congress potentially approves stricter gun-control measures such as an assault-weapons ban, universal background checks, or limits on ammunition.The NSSF also pointed out that some states saw a particularly steep jump in background checks last month, with Alabama's NSSF-adjusted number jumping over 100 percent from August of last year, and Minnesota's number increasing 68.9 percent.Gun sales also spiked in August of last year, just before the midterm congressional elections, and even more starkly in August 2016, before the last presidential election.House speaker Nancy Pelosi warned Monday that there will be "hell to pay" if the Republican-controlled Senate fails to pass a universal-background-check bill, which would require checks for private gun sales, including purchases made over the Internet and at gun shows. The bill has already passed the House."We are not taking no for an answer. We are not going away," she said.“It is totally up to them, and it is on their shoulders. They can’t escape that responsibility,” Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer added.Renewed enthusiasm for gun-control measures comes after two back-to-back shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio killed 32 and left the nation shaken last month.



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In New Hampshire, 2020 Dems urge voters to not play it safe

In New Hampshire, 2020 Dems urge voters to not play it safeSeveral Democratic presidential candidates urged voters in New Hampshire on Saturday to not play it safe in the 2020 election, leveling an implicit critique of front-runner Joe Biden. Biden has centered his campaign on his years of experience in Washington and a perceived ability to steal the support of white, working-class voters away from President Donald Trump. Speaking at the New Hampshire Democrats’ state convention, Biden’s rivals told voters to aim for more.



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Iowa Dems Furious With DNC for Killing Virtual Caucus Plan

Iowa Dems Furious With DNC for Killing Virtual Caucus PlanPhoto Illustration by The Daily Beast/GettyFive months before the first caucus meets, the different factions of the Iowa Democratic Party have come together and it’s all thanks to the Democratic National Committee. “All of Iowa is angry today,” Sean Bagniewski, the chair of the Polk County Democrats, told The Daily Beast. “This is one time the entire Iowa Democratic Party has been united on anything. And it’s in anger at the DNC.”An influential Democrat in Des Moines, Bagniewski’s comments come after the DNC rejected proposed delegate selection plans from the Iowa and Nevada Democratic Parties that would allow virtual caucusing, a way to expand participation in the process. Bagniewski and other Iowa Democrats have had conversations for months with 2020 presidential campaigns about their caucusing plans. As soon as talk about virtual caucusing became public, campaigns began building their strategies around how to best use them to get voters to support their candidates, he said. The DNC’s decision now creates an additional hurdle for party activists and leaders who now must go back to the drawing board with just months to prepare for the Feb. 3 event. “I’m really disappointed about it and a lot of Iowans are disappointed about it,” he said. “It was nice to have the national party on board. To raise concerns this far in the game is really unfortunate.”In announcing his decision, DNC Chairman Tom Perez said virtual caucusing does not meet their security requirements. “We concur with the advice of the DNC’s security experts that there is no tele-caucus system available that meets our standard of security and reliability,” Perez wrote. A DNC official added that the process has been transparent from the start. At the end of 2017, the Unity Reform Commission released a list of requirements for caucus states’ delegate selection plans, which included absentee voting, recount provisions, and other mechanisms to create more accessibility and transparency in the process.Dems Are Starting to Freak Out That Their 2020 Field Isn’t ShrinkingThe DNC’s Rules and By-Laws committee approved it in August 2018 and state parties received the guidance in December. State parties had until May 1, 2019 to submit their plans to the DNC for analysis. In June, the Rules and By-Laws committee asked technical experts for guidance on the proposals. Still, multiple Iowa Democrats familiar with the virtual caucusing plans said the DNC did not provide enough time before their Friday decision.“Our frustration is that an opportunity to increase participation has been lost by the DNC’s unwillingness to help,” former Rep. Dave Nagle (D-IA), who pushed for a non-traditional caucus structure, told The Daily Beast.  Nagle, who has been deeply involved in the virtual caucus process since its inception, said he flagged concerns to the DNC in January and that he did not hear until July that officials concluded the system was not secure. “A lot of us here are tearing our hair out,” Nagle said. “It’s a good system, it’s served us well. But their benign neglect may force us to not enhance it.”Mary McAdams, the chair of the Ankeny Democrats, said she applauds the DNC’s efforts to keep elections safe, but what she described as last-minute timing only created further confusion.“Give us a chance to get this right,” she said. McAdams, who is in constant contact with 2020 candidates, said she found out about the DNC’s decision by reading about it in the New York Times.The way the Iowa system is structured, voters are required to lumber to designated locations in the dead of winter to caucus for their preferred candidate, sometimes for hours at a time. Multiple party officials in the state said this can lead to a decrease in turnout, particularly for voters who do not have flexible work schedules.Dems Sound Alarm: Trump Is ‘Carpet-Bombing’ Us in Key Battlegrounds“I think it is fair to do a virtual caucus to allow folks who are working the night shift and folks who don’t have the luxury of a two-parent household to be able to caucus,” McAdams said.In addition to county party officials, some presidential candidates started to express concerns about the decision.“The DNC has disallowed plans to increase participation in the first-in-the-nation caucus state,” former HUD Secretary Julián Castro wrote. “I strongly urge the DNC to embrace our party's values and allow absentee voting, either through a virtual caucus, mail-in, or early voting process.”Two candidates who didn’t qualify for the next Democratic debate in September–mega-donor Tom Steyer and spiritual author Marianne Williamson–also criticized the party’s decision.“I am extremely disappointed in the DNC’s decision to reject plans to hold virtual caucuses,” Steyer said, adding that he’s urging party officials to reconsider their position. Williamson, for her part, said “accessibility to the polls or caucuses are paramount to a free and fair elections,” adding that “we also trust Iowa’s Democratic Party, along with the DNC to do just that to make the Virtual Caucuses meet the high standards of a regular caucus.”In Des Moines, Bagniewski said he expects to hear from other presidential campaigns about the issue, particularly those who have spent a significant amount of focus on Iowa so far. In addressing the decision, Iowa Democratic Party Chairman Troy Price sought to reassure Iowans that the state’s first-in-the-nation status would not be thrown into limbo.“Just know this: On Feb. 3, 2020 caucuses will take place in this state,” Price said at a news conference. “Iowa will be first.”Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



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Senate GOP writes letter to the Supreme Court, pledging not to allow Dems to 'pack the Court'

Senate GOP writes letter to the Supreme Court, pledging not to allow Dems to 'pack the Court'Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and every Republican in the Senate have written a letter to the Supreme Court pledging that they wont let Democrats "pack the Court" as several 2020 Democrats have been open to that idea.



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Fox News Host Jeanine Pirro: Dems Plotting to ‘Replace American Citizens With Illegals’

Fox News Host Jeanine Pirro: Dems Plotting to ‘Replace American Citizens With Illegals’MIKE THEILERNearly a month after an accused shooter reportedly said he deliberately targeted “Mexicans” while killing more than 20 people in El Paso, Fox News personalities are still echoing the same talking points from the gunman’s racist manifesto, in which he complained about a “Hispanic invasion” of America.Appearing on Fox Nation’s The Todd Starnes Show on Thursday, Fox News host Jeanine Pirro was asked by Starnes—who recently likened migrants to a “rampaging horde” of Nazis—if Democrats and liberals hate President Donald Trump and his supporters.Pirro, who is currently promoting a book that Trump has already endorsed, took the opportunity to push a version of the “Great Replacement theory”—the same racist lie that was cited by the El Paso gunman and other recent domestic terrorist attackers.“They hate Donald Trump—he’s the one they want to get rid of,” she said, in a segment first spotted by Media Matters. “Their plot to remake America is to bring in the illegals, change the way the voting occurs in this country, give them licenses. They get to vote—maybe once, maybe twice, maybe three times.”After decrying same-day voter registration and grousing about voter rolls not being purged, Pirro—who was suspended by Fox earlier this year for questioning Ilhan Omar’s loyalty to America—went right back to the far-right well.“Think about it,” Pirro exclaimed. “It is a plot to remake America—to replace American citizens with illegals who will vote for the Democrats.”Pirro’s comments come just days after the National Association of Hispanic Journalists cut ties with Fox News over the network’s use of “invasion” rhetoric to describe immigration, with the NAHJ saying Starnes’ remark about immigrants was the final straw.In the wake of the El Paso slayings, Fox News has been the focus of widespread criticism for the extreme anti-immigrant rhetoric of many of its opinion hosts. Tucker Carlson, for instance, has seen a further erosion of his advertiser base after he called white supremacy a “hoax” just days after the shooting.Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



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AOC Criticizes Former Chief of Staff for ‘Targeting’ Fellow Dems

AOC Criticizes Former Chief of Staff for ‘Targeting’ Fellow DemsRepresentative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D., N.Y.) criticized her former chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, on Wednesday for using “divisive” language to “target” the more moderate members of the Democratic caucus.Ocasio-Cortez denied that Chakrabarti's recent resignation was related to his June 27 tweet comparing moderate Democrats to the southern segregationists of the early 20th century, but acknowledged that the rhetoric was unhelpful.“I think it was divisive,” she told the New York Post. “I believe in criticizing stances, but I don’t believe in specifically targeting members.”Chakrabarti argued in the since-deleted tweet that moderate Democrats acted in a similar manner to segregationists in voting for a $ 4.6 billion emergency border-funding bill despite its lacking certain humanitarian provisions meant to improve conditions for migrant children being detained at the border.“They certainly seem hell bent to do to black and brown people today what the old Southern Democrats did in the 40s,” Chakrabarti wrote.Chakrabarti also become embroiled in a Federal Election Commission investigation into possible campaign-finance violations during his final months in Ocasio-Cortez's office. The investigation was launched in response to a pair of complaints alleging that Chakrabarti illegally funneled more than $ 1 million in campaign contributions to two private companies that he controlled.Ocasio-Cortez dismissed the investigations as “legal trolling” during her interview with the Post and denied that they were related to Chakrabarti's resignation.“All of these things were filed by these fringe, Republican groups. It’s a tactic they use and it’s very common,” she said. “It’s a form of legal trolling.”After abruptly resigning from Ocasio-Cortez's staff last week, Chakrabarti joined New Consensus, a progressive organization that works to advance the congresswoman's Green New Deal plan.



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Executive Director of House Dems’ Campaign Arm Resigns amid Backlash over Lack of Diversity

Executive Director of House Dems’ Campaign Arm Resigns amid Backlash over Lack of DiversityThe executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) resigned Monday after Democratic lawmakers and DCCC staffers lashed out publicly at the organization's leadership over their failure to prioritize racial diversity.Allison Jaslow announced her resignation during an emergency meeting that was held on Monday morning in response to calls from staffers and lawmakers for an “immediate restructuring” of the group's senior leadership, Politico reported.Democratic representatives Vicente Gonzalez and Filemon Vela of Texas specifically called for Jaslow's resignation in a statement provided to Politico on Sunday.“The DCCC is now in complete chaos,” Gonzalez and Vela said in their statement. “The single most immediate action that Cheri Bustos can take to restore confidence in the organization and to promote diversity is to appoint a qualified person of color, of which there are many, as executive director at once. We find the silence of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus on this issue to be deafening.”Politico highlighted a longstanding rift within the DCCC last week, publishing a report that quoted staffers and lawmakers complaining about a lack of racial diversity within the group's leadership, and among the vendors hired by the group.DCCC chairwoman Cheri Bustos was forced to return to Washington on Monday to address lawmakers' and staffers' concerns after an emergency meeting on Friday, which Bustos did not attend, and a conference call on Saturday, proved insufficient.Jaslow reportedly wept while assuming blame for the lack of diversity during the Friday meeting while Bustos responded to the complaints by emphasizing her marriage to a Mexican man and her son's engagement to an African-American woman during the Saturday call. She also agreed to hold mandatory diversity training for Committee staff.



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House Dems back subpoenas for Ivanka, Jared private emails

House Dems back subpoenas for Ivanka, Jared private emailsThe House Oversight Committee voted along party lines Thursday to authorize subpoenas for personal emails and texts used for official business by top White House aides, including Ivanka Trump and her husband Jared Kushner. Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the panel’s chairman, said the committee has obtained “direct evidence” that the president’s daughter, Kushner and other top aides were using personal accounts for official business in violation of federal law and White House policy. “What we do not yet know is why these White House officials were attempting to conceal these communications,” Cummings said, adding that the White House has refused to produce a single piece of paper this year in response to the investigation.



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Trump gloats as Mueller gives Dems little support for impeachment

Trump gloats as Mueller gives Dems little support for impeachmentUS President Donald Trump declared the Russia meddling and obstruction probe a “big hoax” Wednesday as Democrats reaped precious little new ammunition for impeachment in marathon testimony to Congress by investigation leader Robert Mueller. Answering questions on his investigation for the first time, a shaky-voiced, sometimes uncertain Mueller would not go beyond the facts set out in his final investigation report and refused dozens of times to answer questions from both Democrats and Republicans.



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