Team Jeb claims Dubya ‘inherited’ 9/11 and recession


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The Republicans' Magic Calendar.

Stung by Donald Trump’s self-evident truth that history did not begin on September 12, 2001 and end at noon on January 20, 2009, Jeb Bush asked, “Does anybody actually blame my brother for 9/11?” As it turns out, this is hardly the first time the former Florida governor complained about the unkindness the calendar has shown his brother. In August 2012, Jeb declared it was “unbecoming” for Barack Obama to continue to “blame others” for the economic calamity he inherited from George W., and went so far as to suggest the president should be “spanked” for pointing the finger at his brother. And in April 2009—just weeks after Obama entered the Oval Office in the midst of the greatest American economic calamity since the Great Depression—Jeb protested:

“If I had one humble criticism of President Obama, it would be to stop this notion of somehow framing

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Cheney: Congress should have no say in president’s Iran policy


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On Sept. 8, Dick Cheney will deliver an address at the American Enterprise Institute in the hopes of torpedoing the Iranian nuclear agreement. As his Wall Street Journal op-ed this week suggests, Cheney will argue that “the U.S. Congress should reject this deal and reimpose the sanctions that brought Iran to the table in the first place” because “the Obama agreement will lead to a nuclear-armed Iran, a nuclear-arms race in the Middle East and, more than likely, the first use of a nuclear weapon since Hiroshima and Nagasaki.”

As turns out, Cheney’s sabotage mission is more than a little ironic. After all, Vice President Dick Cheney was completely and catastrophically wrong about Iraq when he declared, “Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. There is no doubt he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies,

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The Fix: It may be a bit early for Republicans to celebrate the George W. Bush popularity boom


This post is by Philip Bump from Post Politics: Breaking Politics News, Political Analysis & More - The Washington Post


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One best case scenario for Jeb Bush’s candidacy looks like this: George W. Bush’s legacy softens substantially from the record-low ratings he “enjoyed” once he left office. Voters decide that Jeb’s relationship with his brother is not a big deal and maybe even a positive.Read full article >>




Hillary Clinton: To the left, to the left …


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Reporters yell questions at U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton after a roundtable campaign event with small businesses in Cedar Falls, Iowa, United States, May 19, 2015.    REUTERS/Jim Young   - RTX1DNXO

The Washington media isn’t finished marveling at the fact that Bill Clinton staked his career on centrism and now Hillary Clinton has moved to the left of him. He also took office over two decades ago and a few things have changed. But Washington is always the last to spot these trends, even after it’s been left it in the dust. From Politico:

To succeed today, Hillary Clinton—like any national Democrat—must win over that wing. But doing so will encourage Republicans to paint her as too beholden to the party’s liberal, urban, heavily minority base…
She is being dragged left by younger voters and minority groups, who make up essential elements of today’s Democratic coalition and tend to favor federal solutions more readily, according to polls, than older, whiter voters. The party’s votes now overwhelmingly come from big cities, territory in which Democratic mayors such as Bill De Blasio

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Poll: Iowa caucus-goers support the idea of George W. and Bill Clinton advising a future president


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George W. Bush and Jeb Bush, 2006.

The Hawkeye State isn’t afraid of either George W. Bush or Bill Clinton taking a significant role in advising Jeb or Hillary, apparently. From a new Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register poll:

Fifty-seven percent of likely Republican caucus-goers in a new Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register Iowa Poll said that it would be “mostly good” for Jeb Bush’s presidency if he were to tap his older brother, George, as a close adviser. Thirty-three percent said such an arrangement would be “mostly bad” for Jeb Bush’s presidency.
As for Hillary Clinton, a whopping 83 percent of likely Democratic caucus-goers approved of the idea of her using her husband, Bill, as a close adviser, while just 9 percent said doing so was a “mostly bad” suggestion for her presidency. 

Um, yeah, the 83 percent isn’t entirely surprising—Bill Clinton wasn’t perfect but the country mostly thrived under his leadership even if some of his policies (particularly the economic

Continue reading “Poll: Iowa caucus-goers support the idea of George W. and Bill Clinton advising a future president”

Poll: Iowa caucus-goers support the idea of George W. and Bill Clinton advising a future president


This post is by Jed Lewison from Daily Kos


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




George W. Bush and Jeb Bush, 2006.

The Hawkeye State isn’t afraid of either George W. Bush or Bill Clinton taking a significant role in advising Jeb or Hillary, apparently. From a new Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register poll:

Fifty-seven percent of likely Republican caucus-goers in a new Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register Iowa Poll said that it would be “mostly good” for Jeb Bush’s presidency if he were to tap his older brother, George, as a close adviser. Thirty-three percent said such an arrangement would be “mostly bad” for Jeb Bush’s presidency.
As for Hillary Clinton, a whopping 83 percent of likely Democratic caucus-goers approved of the idea of her using her husband, Bill, as a close adviser, while just 9 percent said doing so was a “mostly bad” suggestion for her presidency. 

Um, yeah, the 83 percent isn’t entirely surprising—Bill Clinton wasn’t perfect but the country mostly thrived under his leadership even if some of his policies (particularly the economic

Continue reading “Poll: Iowa caucus-goers support the idea of George W. and Bill Clinton advising a future president”

Republicans hoping to get more than six percent of the black vote in 2016


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Young women at a table with voter registration signs.

With President Obama not on the ballot in 2016, Republicans are hoping that their candidate will be able to draw a little more of the African-American vote, maybe even enough to swing a swing state:

Obama limited Romney to 6 percent of the black vote in 2012, and his performance in 2008 had been even more dominant. That year’s Republican nominee, Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), won only 4 percent black support, according to exit polls.
Republican nominees in other recent elections did better. President George W. Bush won 11 percent of the votes cast by blacks in 2004, and in 1996 Sen. Bob Dole won 12 percent even while going down against the incumbent, President Clinton.

The same pattern is seen in key states. In Florida, Obama won twice — with 95 percent of the black vote in 2012 and 96 percent in 2008. In 2004, then-Sen. John

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The Fix: The Clintons made $700,000 from speeches the day after Hillary’s ‘dead broke’ comments


This post is by Philip Bump from Post Politics: Breaking Politics News, Political Analysis & More - The Washington Post


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On January 6, 2014, Hillary Clinton gave a speech on behalf of GE at an event in Boca Raton, Fla. For her time, she received $220,500 — meaning that, six days into the year, the Clintons’ household income was already four times the median American household income for 2014.Read full article >>




It’s a start: Anti-Clinton book gets ‘7-8 factual corrections’


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U.S. presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listens as she sits with workers and management of Whitney Brothers children's toy and furniture factory during a round table while campaigning for the 2016 Democratic presidential

Peter Schweizer’s long history of retractions and corrections just got a little longer. Everyone who bought his Clinton Cash book on Kindle got an email from Amazon on Tuesday:

“An updated version of your past Kindle purchase … is now available,” reads the email. “The updated version contains the following changes: Significant revisions have been made.”

What changes? Significant ones. Seven or eight factual corrections, according to Schweizer’s publisher, which apparently did not bother keeping track of the number of corrections being made to its aggressively marketed anti-Clinton book.
According to Politico, the changes include removing the citation to a hoax press release to back up Keystone XL accusations and the claim that Bill Clinton was paid for a series of speeches in a quid pro quo with an Irish company when in reality he was not paid for the speeches. Little stuff like that, you know. Totally routine,

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The Fix: Comparing the Clintons: Bill seen as a stronger leader, Hillary as more honest


This post is by Philip Bump from Post Politics: Breaking Politics News, Political Analysis & More - The Washington Post


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There’s an interesting bit of data buried in the Bloomberg/St. Anselm University’s poll of voters in New Hampshire. The pollsters asked state residents for their opinions of the Clintons — both Clintons — on topics including empathy and trustworthiness.Read full article >>




GOP presidential candidates blow their ‘Sister Souljah’ moment to denounce right-wing extremism


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Some states are red, others are blue. The GOP candidates are too yellow-bellied to say what they ought to.

George W. Bush had one in 1999 when he criticized the fundamentalist right, as personified by Robert Bork. Bill Clinton’s in 1992 gave rise to the term itself, after he denounced the activist and hip-hop artist Sister Souljah’s outrageous remarks about white people. Now we’re gearing up for 2016, and the time has come for someone to step out of the clown car that is the Republican presidential field and have his or her own such moment by condemning the off-the-charts extremism represented by those pushing the Jade Helm 15 conspiracy theory.
As anyone who’s read Hunter’s blistering take knows, there are some people down in Texas who are very concerned about a set of military exercises called Jade Helm 15. The purpose of the exercises is to maintain troop readiness,

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Bill Clinton admits he’s partly responsible for explosion of American prison population


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Former U.S. president Bill Clinton waits to be introduced during an early voting rally in Baton Rouge, Louisiana October 20, 2014. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS) - RTR4AWCL

In American politics, few people admit mistakes. They are made—and made in excess—but hearing a politician admit a political mistake just doesn’t happen very often, particularly if the mistake has ruined lives.
On Wednesday, Bill Clinton openly admitted that the so-called prison reform legislation he signed into law as president has been greatly responsible for the explosion of the American prison population.

On Wednesday, Clinton acknowledged that policy’s role in over-incarceration in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour.
“The problem is the way it was written and implemented is we cast too wide a net and we had too many people in prison,” Clinton said Wednesday. “And we wound up…putting so many people in prison that there wasn’t enough money left to educate them, train them for new jobs and increase the chances when they came out so they could live productive lives.”

Indeed, if you study the

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Media’s Hillary obsession doesn’t extend to what the Clinton Foundation actually does


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Former U.S. president Bill Clinton waits to be introduced during an early voting rally in Baton Rouge, Louisiana October 20, 2014. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS) - RTR4AWCL

Former President Bill Clinton is pushing back against the attacks on the Clinton Foundation’s fundraising, pointing to the side of the story the media is less interested in telling: what the foundation does, including:

… good works like the “Wings to Fly” program that has helped 10,000 poor kids in Kenya attend high school.
The program has been a whopping success, with 94 percent of the kids graduating and 98 percent of them going on to college. […]

While in Tanzania, he and 20 of the foundation’s big donors also visited the Anchor Farm Project which is expected to produce huge yields of maize and soy and to help locals learn new agricultural techniques. They connected with a group called “Solar Sisters” that empowers women by selling environmentally friendly products such as solar lights and cook stoves.

They are headed Monday to Liberia — where they helped the government

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Where are the New York Times and Washington Post reports on ‘Clinton Cash’ errors?


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U.S. presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton listens as she sits with workers and management of Whitney Brothers children's toy and furniture factory during a round table while campaigning for the 2016 Democratic presidential

What do you know. The New York Times and Washington Post, having entered into an agreement to base their reporting on a Republican operative’s allegations against Hillary Clinton, haven’t been eager to report on problems with those allegations. Continuing Media Matters’ stellar coverage of Peter Schweizer and Clinton Cash, Eric Boehlert points out that:

Defending its alliance, the Post‘s Chris Cillizza wrote, “We are information-gatherers at heart. Our job as reporters and editors and, more broadly as an organization, is to vet all of the information that comes at us to see what should be reported, what shouldn’t and what needs to be followed-up on.”
But isn’t there an assumption that if the Post found Clinton Cash to be filled with errors the Post would report that fact? Isn’t that part of Cillizza’s job as an information gatherer?

Instead, just three days ago, the Post’s The Fix

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No surprise here: Errors surfacing in Clinton hit piece


This post is by Jed Lewison from Daily Kos


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Former U.S. President Bill Clinton addresses delegates during the second session of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina September 5, 2012.  REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES  - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

The allegations in Peter Schweizer’s hit piece, Clinton Cash, basically go like this: Company or country gives donation to the Clinton Foundation or hires former President Bill Clinton to give a speech, then gets preferential treatment from Hillary Clinton’s State Department. Schweizer never has any proof of linkages, and in a lot of cases he doesn’t have proof of preferential treatment at all, as in the uranium mining deal in which the State Department was one of many agencies to sign off and Hillary Clinton was never involved in the decision. Now Buzzfeed is flagging an instance where Schweizer didn’t just exaggerate wildly, but got the facts wrong.
Schweizer claims that an Irish company got $2 million in telecommunications contracts in the Haitian earthquake recovery effort after having paid Bill Clinton $600,000 for speeches, and that these contracts were the first time the company had gotten USAID contracts.

But

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No surprise here: Errors surfacing in Clinton hit piece


This post is by Jed Lewison from Daily Kos


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Former U.S. President Bill Clinton addresses delegates during the second session of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina September 5, 2012.  REUTERS/Jim Young (UNITED STATES  - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

The allegations in Peter Schweizer’s hit piece, Clinton Cash, basically go like this: Company or country gives donation to the Clinton Foundation or hires former President Bill Clinton to give a speech, then gets preferential treatment from Hillary Clinton’s State Department. Schweizer never has any proof of linkages, and in a lot of cases he doesn’t have proof of preferential treatment at all, as in the uranium mining deal in which the State Department was one of many agencies to sign off and Hillary Clinton was never involved in the decision. Now Buzzfeed is flagging an instance where Schweizer didn’t just exaggerate wildly, but got the facts wrong.
Schweizer claims that an Irish company got $2 million in telecommunications contracts in the Haitian earthquake recovery effort after having paid Bill Clinton $600,000 for speeches, and that these contracts were the first time the company had gotten USAID contracts.

But

Continue reading “No surprise here: Errors surfacing in Clinton hit piece”

The Fix: Hillary Clinton hopes to undo the mass incarceration system Bill Clinton helped build


This post is by Philip Bump from Post Politics: Breaking Politics News, Political Analysis & More - The Washington Post


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On Wednesday morning, Hillary Clinton appeared at New York’s Columbia University to discuss crime and criminal justice in one of the first speeches of her 2016 campaign. She advocated putting cameras on police officers and changing mandatory minimum sentences. And she put a fine point on the number of people in our prisons. “It’s time to end the era of mass incarceration,” she said. “We need a true national debate about how to reduce our prison population while keeping our communities safe.”Read full article >>



New anti-Hillary book relies on hoax to back up Keystone XL accusations


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Former U.S. President Bill Clinton and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton depart the former Governor of New York Mario Cuomo's funeral in Manhattan, New York January 6, 2015. Cuomo, a three-term governor, and a leading voice of the Democratic

Peter Schweizer, the Republican operative who authored the forthcoming hit piece Clinton Cash and became the New York Times and Washington Post‘s new buddy, has a serious record of screw-ups—or things he got wrong on purpose to smear Democrats, figuring the retraction would get less attention than the allegation. That’s why billionaire Republican donors fund people like him. So it’s no big surprise that, before Clinton Cash has even been released to the general public, ThinkProgress has already identified a major mistake.
Schweizer’s book claims that foreign governments, companies, and individuals bought influence with Hillary Clinton in her role as secretary of state through their donations to the Clinton Foundation and through speaking fees to former President Bill Clinton.

[Schweizer] links the timing of the State Department’s generally positive report on the Keystone XL Pipeline with a slew of Clinton speeches paid for by TD Bank, a major

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Clinton campaign: Hillary’s fight against inequality goes way back


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Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton talks with local residents as she campaigns at the Jones Street Java House in LeClaire, Iowa April 14, 2015. Clinton, who announced on Sunday that she is running for the 2016 Democratic presidential nominatio

Hillary Clinton has been hitting populist notes and prioritizing paid leave in the opening days of her presidential campaign, drawing some suggestions that she’s cynically trying to appeal to progressives by echoing popular figures like Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Now, Clinton’s camp is pushing back against the assumption that she represents the centrist-to-conservative economic policies her husband embraced in the 1990s.

“This perception comes because she wasn’t involved in the discussion for so long,” Anita Dunn, a Democratic strategist, said of Mrs. Clinton. Because, she added, in the White House “she had this reputation as being the very left-wing, liberal, Elizabeth Warren type.”

Fair enough. But the discussion changed while Clinton was occupied with foreign policy, and now she has to re-establish herself. Pointing back to stuff like this is good:

“Let’s finally do something about the growing inequality that is tearing our country apart,” Mrs. Clinton said during her campaign, appearing at the Take Back America conference, a gathering of liberal groups, in June 2007. “The top 1 percent of our households hold 22 percent of our nation’s wealth. Enough with corporate welfare. Enough with golden parachutes. And enough with the tax incentives for companies to shift jobs overseas.”

But demonstrating that a new Clinton presidency will fight inequality and crack down on Wall Street won’t be just a matter of producing a few quotes—from now or from then. It’ll be about consistency, about the concrete policies she proposes as the campaign goes on, about making her Wall Street donors nervous as they start to believe she means it, about who she surrounds herself with (where a hire like this is a good sign). Clinton starts with advantages of name recognition, a supporter base, and tons of fundraising potential. Having to define herself for 2016 over all the built-in assumptions about where she stands on the issues may be part of the downside to all that upside, but if she’s serious about fighting inequality and corporate welfare, it won’t be too hard to let us know.

The 20 percent solution


This post is by Jed Lewison from Daily Kos


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On April 15, Congressional Republicans missed their deadline for the fiscal year 2016 budget resolution. Nevertheless, and despite their differences on defense spending and the voucherization of Medicare (absent from the Senate bill), the GOP conferees aim to balance the budget in 10 years by slashing over $5 trillion in social programs and safety net spending, including the repeal of Obamacare. (Their plans are also magically aided by $2 trillion in mythical revenues and mystery savings.) During a recent floor speech, Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-WY) described their objectives this way:

“A balanced budget approved by Congress will help make the government live within its means and set spending limits for our nation. Hard-working families are fed up with [President Obama’s] spend-now, pay-later policies and are closely following our effort [on] a balanced budget.”

Unfortunately, there is little evidence in support of Enzi’s argument. As the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) recently forecast, there is no near-term debt problem. Adjusted for inflation, federal spending is lower now than when Barack Obama first took the oath of office. As the economy has recovered, the yearly deficit has been reduced by almost two-thirds since President Obama first entered the White House. And while the national debt as a percentage of the economy has plateaued, projected yearly deficits through 2025 under President Obama’s proposed budget remain at or below the 50-year historical average of 2.7 percent. That stable picture explains both why Americans’ concern about the budget deficit has eased and why the Fitch rating agency this week reaffirmed the USA’s Triple A credit rating.
But there’s an even bigger problem for Republicans so eager to swing a heavy budget ax. Since 1965, federal spending has exceeded revenue by that 2.7 percent of GDP. Yet polls consistently show that outside of foreign aid, there is no area of government spending a majority of Americans wants to decrease. And with the inescapable requirements to provide 21st century education and infrastructure even as the population grows older, the U.S. will need to invest more money in its people, not less. All of which means that to the degree that the United States even needs to “live within its means” right now, it should do so not by spending less, but by raising more revenue.

Call it the 20 Percent Solution.

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