Archive for SCOTUS

Whither Dems Podcast

rightsign2The Trump win Tuesday is the right time to stop these weekly podcasts after 9½ years. Watch this URL for occasional commentary, maybe a little video…later.

Today was my usual half-Vulcan Spock self.

We shall survive as a nation, as we did during and after the George W. Bush time. He ruined the economy even more than the typical Republican. We haven’t climbed all the way out of his debt pit. We’ll never get back the many thousands of lives lost to war and jobs destroyed. I fear more of that from Trump.

I snort as Speaker Ryan and GOP sorts claim mandate. The lost the popular vote, held the House only due to gerrymandering in previous years, and hold a paper-thin Senate majority. Mandate, my bad head!

We don’t yet know what malicious laws Congress will try to enact. We do know that the wave of emotion that brought us President Trump is as irrational and ignorant as he. We need look no farther than comparing the cries of do-nothing Congress and throw the rascal out to right-wing voters keeping nearly all the do-nothings and rascals from the GOP in office. Huge duh.

We’ll surely have at least two years of pettiness and malice. As the economy slides and unemployment climbs, even the loudest Trumpettes will feel shame. Let us look historically to see in the last century that again and again Dems have rescued the nation after the GOP has goofed it up.

It’s going to be a rough, disheartening, anti-American two to four years.

icon for podpress  Whither Dems [18:22m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Divert Political Anger With All-Dem DC

Independents and self-described Conservatives are pissed. Number one is Congress does nothing. That’s hard to argue with but easy to fix.

Let’s consider for a moment the odious Donald Trump’s “What do you have to lose?” That’s jive from the con artist. Yet that question haunts.

If all the angry voters, or even most of them, get real on November 8th, the fix is before them. Elect a Democratic House, a Democratic Senate, and a Democratic Senate. Then watch and wonder. The obstructionism we all despise will vanish. The do-nothing Congress will become a do-it-all legislature.

Four or eight years of a healthier, richer, more righteous America await.

Each and all of us tend to love our memes and clichés, even the most irrational and unsupported ones. Beware those who orate and proclaim of their statements, “It’s only common sense.” Nearly always that means, “I got nothing here. Just don’t question or challenge me.”

I grew up hearing what I still do about U.S. civics. A recurring theme is that you need to divide government to keep it in check. At its worst, as i the past eight years, we have seen check become checkmate. The do-nothing Congress, both GOP-led houses, dragged our economic recovery, stymied expanded health care and on and on.

The “common sense” types pretend that Dems are monolithic and wildly leftists, instead of the wishy-washy moderates nearly all are. The likes of Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are two lighthouses in an unmoving sea of blah.

Electing a Dec-controlled Senate and ideally matching it was a Dem House could mean only what they right wingers and angry voters of all stripe have screamed for — a Congress that accomplishes the necessary, passes legislation and moves America forward.

Liberal/Conservative SCOTUS leanings and votes here.

One of many economists’ papers showing how much better the U.S. economy does with a Democratic POTUS. Reasons are debatable; results are not.

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Finding a new Nino, SCOTUS replacement

That suddenly vacated Supreme Court seat could sit for 11 to 13 months before the next President touches the Bible.

The real subject before us is how to bring the SCOTUS up to its 9 justices. However, let us not fall prey to the urge to overly praise Antonin Scalia. Everyone from President Obama to plain old lawyers have tried to outdo each other calling him brilliant and a towering figure.

In reality, he was petty and puerile. His deeply held and often emotionally based dicta on the law and Constitution were skewed by politics and worse. He strongly and anachronistically voted for states-rights interpretations of law from marriage to equal opportunity in education to women’s rights.

Let us not confuse cleverness with brilliance. He was quick to insult without intellect. Disdaining a group such as homosexuals is no excuse for harming them. He clearly did not believe in the editing adage that if you have fallen in love with a phrase, cut it out of the text.

Dems need only 4 Senate seats to take control again. Here’s betting that if GOP Senators refuse to have hearings or vote on a SCOTUS nominee, that could make the difference in the 24 races the GOP faces in the Senate in November. If they have any wit and sense of self-preservation, they’ll deal on one of the tepid centrists Obama would surely nominate.

icon for podpress  SCOTUS Replacement [22:49m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Dead Scalia still roiling the waters

ghostscotus

Around tomorrow (WED. 2/17) at 2:30 Eastern)? Will your brain be in gear? If so feel free to call in at tell me your truth about filling the suddenly vacated Supreme Court seat in the 11 months before the next President touches the Bible. Call (718) 664-6966 then and make sure your phone number is not blocked — (718) 664-6966. Go here for the live show or to catch it on demand later.

You can be sure I’ll have my opinions and I shall fill the slot without you if that’s hjow you want it.

Consider:

  • President Barack Obama has a Constitutional duty to nominate a replacement for Justice Antonin Scalia.
  • The GOP has a Senate majority and before Scalia’s corpse left Texas their leaders were swearing to block ANY nominee from the Dem Prez.
  • There are huge cases (think voting rights and abortion for two) next session.
  • Right now the left/right wings are evenly split after many years of a 4/5 favoring conservatives.
  • A divided court decision in effect upholds lower federal court rulings, which lean left.
  • The Senate must approve any nominee but is not required to hear or vote on any.
  • 24 Republican Senate seats are up for reelection in November and no one can be sure how voters will treat obstructionist, duty-shirking sitting Senators.

Call in or leave me to go on by myself.

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Joy, Not Despair, 2012

Without gloating, or with only a little, we held forth on yesterday’s elections.

Even the almost invariably optimistic Ryan did not see most Republicans rethinking their obstructionism. Mike predicted a deal on the auto-sequester at year’s end, only because that would be political suicide for Congressional Republicans in both houses if they didn’t show a bit of wit.

We talked about the role new Sen. Elizabeth Warren might play, the likelihood of Sen. John Kerry moving to Secretary of State, and other impacts of left-leaning victories in Congress. Mike started with a joyous recap of the four marriage-equality state-level victories.

Both of us were disappointed but not surprised at the vitriolic and graceless post-elections comments from GOP candidates and winger media types. That likely foreshadows their uncooperative futures, willing to hurt all of us for their political shading.

Listen in as we predict what might happen with the re-upped Obama and maybe even filibuster reform.

icon for podpress  Joy or Despair 2012 [35:08m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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David Kravitz on ACA Podcast

How ’bout that Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. health reform or in the vernacular ObamaCare)? Our particularly savvy guest today was David Kravitz. He is a founder of the BlueMassGroup — as a disclaimer, Ryan, Lynne and Mike have all participated there for many years. Vocationally, he is an accomplished and knowledgeable attorney. Avocationally and coincidentally, he is an opera singer.

We had a few questions, which led David into both background and speculation, in both of which he was comfortable. He walked us through the history and contrasts with the Massachusetts version of health reform. He jumped right into his thoughts first on why the SCOTUS could use Congressional taxing powers to justify the ACA and second why it chose not to (although it could have) used its interstate-commerce authority. Listen in if you had questions about the reasoning.

He dealt with the individual mandate in detail. He spoke to the part of the ACA ruling that muddled the Medicaid expansion…including his thoughts on whether the currently blustering set of conservative governors will really turn down the many federal millions when push comes to shove.

Click below to listen in to his insights on why the SCOTUS rules and what the divisions this term may mean for their collegiality. He also expressed views on what’s next for health care reform and how November’s election will affect that.

icon for podpress  Kravitz on ACA [34:02m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

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Double Week: Kravitz on ACA and Dolan on 3rd Middlesex

Check us twice at 2:30 Eastern this week. We have a lawyerly, operatic analysis on the Affordable Care Act on Monday and Mara Dolan updating her run for 3rd Middlesex District of the MA Senate.

Catch David Kravitz on Monday, July 16th, analyzing the recent SCOTUS ruling on health care. While this founder of the BlueMassGroupDavid Kravitz is a highly trained, professional opera singer, he earns his way as an attorney and is known for his political commentary at BMG.

We’ll try to educe both the constitutionality/commerce/tax angles as well as discuss the future of this nascent health reform. If you can join us live, get the show then here.

The next afternoon at the same 2:30, Mara DolanMara Dolan will discuss how her campaign and the race in general are going. She promises to discuss strategy and the other contenders. This is an exciting race for an open seat. We’ll surely have other candidates on again. Meanwhile check our archives for all five Democratic candidates.

If you can listen live to Mara’s show Tuesday, catch it here.

Of course, both shows will be available after showtime back here, at BlogTalkRadio and on our iTunes channnel.

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