Wednesday, March 21, 2018
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Patrick Murray Needs a History Lesson on Debt, Deficit

In this video, 8th CD Republican nominee Patrick Murray complains about the debt, which he implies all was built up by President Obama and the current, Democratic Congress.  Obviously, Patrick Murray is not a student of history.  A few points for Murray's edification.

1. The last budget surplus occurred under a Democratic president, Bill Clinton.
2. George W. Bush and a Republican Congress quickly turned that surplus into deficits as far as the eye can see, due to their huge tax cuts - largely for the wealthiest Americans and most powerful corporations - and their war of choice in Iraq.
3. As far as the national debt is concerned, Ronald Reagan built up $1.7 trillion of it, George HW Bush $1.4 billion, and George W. Bush another $4.4 billion. Just in case Patrick Murray is math challenged, those numbers add up to $7.5 trillion.
4. The last Republican to actually reduce the debt during his time in office?  How about...uh, never, at least going back to FDR?
5. The last Republican president to reduce the debt/GDP ratio? Richard Nixon. All the others since then - Reagan, Bush 41, and Bush 43 - have increased the debt/GDP ratio.
6. The last Democratic presidents to reduce the debt/GDP ratios? Bill Clinton...and Jimmy Carter, LBJ, JFK, Harry Truman, FDR. In other words, all of them since 1933.

In sum, if you want a lower debt/GDP ratio or overall debt, the last people you want to turn to are Republicans like Patrick Murphy. Basically, Republicans are the "deficit spend and borrow" party. Why would anyone support that history?

UPDATE: Speaking of deficits, the Washington Post explains why Bob McDonnell's "surplus" needs an asterisk.

Gerry Connolly Stands Up For the Top 1%

I could also have entitled this diary, "Gerry Connolly repeats right-wing Republican talking points on the right-wing Republican propaganda channel." The only problem was, that title was too long for Soapblox. Heh.

Jim Moran Blasts Newt Gingrich’s Fearmongering Demagoguery

Rep. Jim Moran blasts back at Newt Gingrich's fearmongering demagoguery, including his wacked-out assertion that the Obama administration is "willfully blind to the nature of our enemies and the forces which threaten America."

Moran also, correctly, labels the Bush administration as "soft and stupid on terror." He points out, correctly, that America is safer and stronger under President Obama than it was under Bush/Cheney.  He calls Gingrich a "fraud" on pretty much everything and "one of the worst Speakers in American history."  All true; I'd just add the words "insane" and "bigot" to the list of adjectives describing Gingrich.  

By the way, Jim Moran certainly has his flaws, but appearances like this make me proud that he's my congressman.

Arlington “Change of Government” Drive: Failure and Farce

UPDATE 4:39pm by Miles: The Arlington County Registrar has officially completed its review & found the petition drive fell far short, with about a third of the submitted signatures being declared invalid.

Is this ironic, pathetic, slimy, or just a complete farce? You decide.

In 2006, [Cheryl] Simmons was arrested for shoplifting and giving her family unauthorized discounts at the Arlington Hecht's department store, where she worked, according to Arlington Police spokesperson Crystal Nosal. Court records show she plead guilty to felony embezzlement - a more serious charge since it was her third offense - and was sentenced to three years probation.

Late last year, she was in trouble again, for having passed a bad check at a check cashing store on Columbia Pike, police said. She served jail time between January and February for the charge, and in April for the probation violation, according to the Arlington County Sheriff's Office.

Despite the rap sheet, Simmons apparently found the motivation to collect the third-highest number of signatures for the petition effort, with 2,916.

Quite an operation the Change of Government folks were running there, huh? No wonder why their petition failed to even make the ballot, let alone get approved by Arlington voters in November. But one thing's for sure, you can't say these people didn't try - no matter what it took!

Tom Perriello on Rachel Maddow Show

Perriello explains why the last thing we want to do is go back to the same-old, same-old Republican policies. He also talks about the DISCLOSE Act, the economy, and what he's hearing from voters in his district.  Good stuff; go Tom!

Ken Kook-inelli Had a Bad Day

Today was not the greatest for Attorney General Ken Kook-inelli. Two reasons.

First, there's this.

Months after every other Virginia politician who received money from con artist Bobby Thompson did the right thing and donated that money to real veteran's charities, Ken Cuccinelli has finally caved in to mounting pressure to do the right thing

Then, there's this:

A federal judge in Phoenix on Wednesday blocked key provisions of Arizona's controversial immigration law from taking effect as scheduled Thursday, granting in part an injunction requested by the Obama administration.
FYI, Cooch was backing this law.

Hopefully, today marks the start of many, many more bad days to come for the crazy clown we like to call Kook-inelli.

UPDATE (Thursday morning): Cooch reacts to the Arizona ruling -- "I continue to hope that, ultimately, the courts will find Arizona's effort to protect its citizens to be constitutional."

Video: NAACP Demands “Come Home to Jesus” Meeting with Jim Webb

The Executive Director of the Virginia State Conference, King Salim Khalfani, explains why he is angry at the Tea Party movement and at Jim Webb for his op-ed on affirmative action. Among other things, Khalfani says that Webb "lied" on a number of fronts, including the title, the "myth of white privilege." Something tells me, this debate isn't going to end anytime soon.

P.S. For more, see Decision Virginia. Excellent reporting by Ryan Nobles on this one!

Sen. Webb’s National Criminal Justice Commission Act Passes House

Good news.
Julie Stewart, president and founder of Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM) commended the U.S. House of Representatives today for its approval of H.R. 5143, the National Criminal Justice Commission Act of 2010. The vote comes three months after Ms. Stewart joined the bill's sponsors, sentencing reform advocates, and law enforcement officials to announce the bill's introduction.


If enacted, H.R. 5143 will create a bipartisan, blue-ribbon commission to conduct a top-to-bottom review of the entire criminal justice system and offer concrete recommendations for reform within 18 months. The bill was introduced in the House on April 27 by U.S. Reps Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.), Darrel Issa (R-Calif.), Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio), Tom Rooney (R-Fla.), and Robert C. "Bobby" Scott (D-Va.), Chairman of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security.

The bill approved today is the companion to Senator Jim Webb's (Va.) legislation, S. 714, which was introduced in the Senate on March 26, 2009 and approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on January 21, 2010. The Webb bill, like its House counterpart, has received widespread bipartisan support and has 37 cosponsors in the Senate, including Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs, Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Penn.), Ranking Member, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), and Judiciary Committee member, Sen. Orrin G Hatch (R-Utah).

Clearly, i's time we reform the criminal "justice" system in America. This is a start, albeit a small one, in the U.S. House of Representatives.  Good work by Jim Webb in getting it this far.

UPDATE: Video of Webb speaking about this is after the "flip."

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