More to ignore, Book 23....

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
'In shock': Public servants celebrate as loan forgiveness program finally starts working
Laura Clawson

Teachers, social workers, firefighters, members of the military, and other government and nonprofit workers are seeing their student debt wiped clean thanks to the Biden administration’s overhaul of the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. The program was supposed to make public service work more appealing by offering the promise that, after 10 years of payments, people’s student loans would be forgiven. Instead, virtually no one qualified—just over 16,000 people as of fall 2021. That has changed.

Around 70,000 public servants have now gotten nearly $5 billion in relief, and in the end, up to 550,000 of them could get help.
.......
This change comes because, after years of rejections because people had been paying on loans from the wrong program, or had paid a little late or submitted payments that were off by as little as a few cents—rejections that often came after people had paid for 10 years in good faith, without being told they weren’t qualifying—the Department of Education put into place a temporary fix. It allows people to consolidate all of their loans into eligible ones and submit a form to get their payments to this point—including the ones that would have previously been considered ineligible—to count toward forgiveness.

That’s 70,000 people who, after years of working for the public good and faithfully paying their loans, have gotten relief. The joy is palpable when people post about it on social media—but also the surprise that the system is now working on this front.






And people aren’t just getting debts wiped clear:



These reactions are thrilling to see, but also testimony to the burden people are struggling with. Similarly, what the Biden administration has done so far shows the vastness of the problem: Under Biden, the Department of Education has forgiven around $15 billion in debt for 675,000 borrowers, not just through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program but through forgiveness for people who were scammed by for-profit colleges and people with total and permanent disabilities. $15 billion and 675,000 people are big numbers when you look at them, but tiny ones in the context of the more than 43 million people with more than $1.5 trillion in student debt.

This debt is shaping people’s lives, constraining their choices—like whether to buy a house or even have children—and it shouldn’t be like this. President Joe Biden should be able to see, from the current round of relief for public servants, what a difference loan forgiveness makes.

Biden campaigned on forgiving $10,000 in student debt for everyone, but he hasn’t done that broadly, instead offering forgiveness targeted to specific groups. It’s time to make good on that promise.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
Kamala Harris has done an amazing job in her first year. Why isn't that reported on more often?
Rebekah Sager

Ongoing criticism of Vice President Kamala Harris isn’t something she and other women of color in power haven’t been forced to grapple with before. Despite the fact that simply having the role is historic in and of itself, the 57-year-old also bears the weight of being the successor to the oldest president in U.S. history.

Although her first year in office has been impressive, Harris has been scrutinized in a way that’s unlike so many of her predecessors in the role. Talk around D.C. has ranged from petty, with comments about her being “difficult” to work with, to Republicans and Democrats sparring about her being “too radical” and “not radical enough.”

Her approval ratings equal President Joe Biden’s; a recent CBS News poll found that Americans have given her a 44%.
...........
Harris has been tasked with some hefty high-profile assignments, from immigration and the root causes of migration and border security to voting rights legislation, as well as myriad foreign policy issues such as global health security, the rights of women and children, and strengthening relationships with the nation’s closest allies. All of this is on top of the fact that we’re all facing a pandemic with no immediate end in sight. Harris and the administration are already fielding questions about whether or not Biden will run again in 2024.

But Harris, much like Biden, has tried to ignore the babble on the Hill and simply put her head down and trudged forward getting the work done.

She has faced up to one of the biggest challenges on her docket: the unprecedented number of migrants arriving at the U.S. border from Mexico and Central America. Biden asked Harris to address the underlying causes of the surge. She launched a “Call to Action” initiative and was able to secure a $1.2 billion investment from private companies into Central American countries to create economic opportunities. One senior Mexican foreign ministry official told The Daily Beast, “Her result-oriented focus has made a big difference.”

Harris has also cast 15 tie-breaking votes in 2021, more than former Vice President Mike Pence during his entire four years in office. She has used her vote to push through a slew of key appointments including Rachael Rollins, now the first Black woman to serve as U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, and the appointment of Catherine Lhamon as assistant secretary for civil rights at the Department of Education, a position Lhamon held under former President Barack Obama’s administration.

During Harris’ trip to France, she made significant progress in reassembling our broken relationship with French President Emmanuel Macron after Trump all but pissed in the guy’s bouillabaisse. Then she was able to convince the U.S. to participate in a Libya forum, where she represented our country.

“Through dozens of meetings, calls, and overseas trips, Vice President Harris has taken on some of the most important challenges our country faces—whether that addresses the root causes of migration, reinforcing global health security, or standing up for the rights of women and girls. As we saw in Paris, she is equally adept at deepening our relationships with our closest allies and partners, as she has done in the Indo-Pacific,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken told The Daily Beast.



Harris has also continued to champion technology’s impact on foreign policy, particularly focusing on cyberattacks during her discussions on trips to Europe and Asia.

“She has advocated for a stronger response to cyber-attacks and threats—as in the case of the recent ransomware attack. She is focused on 5G, AI, Quantum and the need to strengthen our cyber defenses, be more aggressive about the attribution of attacks, and to hold attackers accountable,” Ambassador Nancy McEldowney has said.

Harris has pledged not to give up on the issue of affordable child care despite the lack of support in Congress.

"We're not going to give up on affordable child care. We're not going to give up on some of these issues that really get to the heart of what people need and they want. They want solutions, they want things to be fixed," she said.

And as for the failure to pass the voting rights bills in the Senate, Harris said the administration will continue fighting.

"We will keep fighting to get the legislation passed because that is critical. So, we are not giving up on that," Harris said.

When it comes to the two voting rights bills that were not passed, we know now it had less to do with Harris and more to do with Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema as the nation’s two biggest Trojan horses to date.

But what continues to dog this administration is whether or not Biden will be a one-term president and what that will mean for Harris.

When asked by a reporter Wednesday if Biden was satisfied with Harris’ work on voting rights and whether she would be his running mate in 2024, Biden replied unequivocally: “Yes. And yes.”

"She's going to be my running mate, number one. And number two, I did put her in charge. I think she's doing a good job."

According to multiple sources, Harris is intimately involved in decisions with Biden on how to handle the country’s most pressing issues.

“One similarity between the Obama-Biden relationship and the Biden-Harris relationship is that he insists she be in every core decision-making meeting. She weighs in during those meetings, often providing unique perspectives. And when everyone else leaves the room he will often ask that she stays and they talk. While their experiences are different, he values her willingness to ask tough questions,” National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said.

Biden will be 82 at the end of his term, and although it’s not known if he’ll run again or not, Harris must continue to do the job at hand. According to those on the inside, she’s doing a damn good job despite the scrutiny.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1

Among the records that Donald Trump’s lawyers tried to shield from Jan. 6 investigators are a draft executive order that would have directed the defense secretary to seize voting machines and a document titled “Remarks on National Healing.”

POLITICO has reviewed both documents. The text of the draft executive order is published here for the first time.

The executive order — which also would have appointed a special counsel to probe the 2020 election — was never issued, and the remarks were never delivered. Together, the two documents point to the wildly divergent perspectives of White House advisers and allies during Trump’s frenetic final weeks in office.

It’s not clear who wrote either document. But the draft executive order is dated Dec. 16, 2020, and is consistent with proposals that lawyer Sidney Powell made to the then-president. On Dec. 18, 2020, Powell, former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, former Trump administration lawyer Emily Newman, and former Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne met with Trump in the Oval Office.

In that meeting, Powell urged Trump to seize voting machines and to appointher as a special counsel to investigate the election, according to Axios.

A spokesperson for the House’s Jan. 6 select committee confirmed earlier Friday that the panel had received the last of the documents that Trump’s lawyers tried to keep under wraps and later declined to comment for this story on these two documents.

The draft executive order​

The draft executive order shows that the weeks between Election Day and the Capitol attack could have been even more chaotic than they were. It credulously cites conspiracy theories about election fraud in Georgia and Michigan, as well as debunked notions about Dominion voting machines.

The order empowers the defense secretary to “seize, collect, retain and analyze all machines, equipment, electronically stored information, and material records required for retention under” a U.S. law that relates to preservation of election records. It also cites a lawsuit filed in 2017 against Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger.

Additionally, the draft order would have given the defense secretary 60 days to write an assessment of the 2020 election. That suggests it could have been a gambit to keep Trump in power until at least mid-February of 2021.

The full text of the never-issued executive order can be read here.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
DOJ task force on election threats charges 54 year-old Texas man with threatening GA officials
Dartagnan

A 54 year-old Texas man has become the first person arrested and charged by a special task force established by the U.S. Dept. of Justice in order to address violent threats directed towards election officials in connection with the 2020 election.

Chad Stark, of Leander,Texas was arrested Friday morning by the FBI. He now faces a maximum five years in federal prison for allegedly posting this charming soliloquy on Craigslist:
Georgia Patriots it’s time for us to take back our state from these Lawless treasonous traitors. It’s time to invoke our Second Amendment right it’s time to put a bullet in the treasonous Chinese [Official A]. Then we work our way down to [Official B] the local and federal corrupt judges. It’s our duty as American Patriots to put an end to the lives of these traitors and take back our country by force we can no longer wait on the corrupt law enforcement in the corrupt courts. If we want our country back we have to exterminate these people.
One good loyal Patriot deer hunter in camo and a rifle can send a very clear message to these corrupt governors.. milita up Georgia it’s time to spill blood…. we need to pay a visit to [Official C] and her family as well and put a bullet her behind the ears.
Let’s be very clear to our local law enforcement who have stood down and watch BLM antifa destroy our country and kill our citizens yet you’ll step up to stop Patriot supporters you’ll enforce face mask and you’ll close American businesses??? Remember one thing local law enforcement the key word being local….. we will find you oathbreakers and we’re going to pay your family to visit your mom your dad your brothers and sisters your children your wife… we’re going to make examples of traitors to our country… death to you and all you communist friends.

Mr. Stark is charged with violating 18 U.S.C. Sec 875 (c): “ Interstate Communications.” That section provides as follows:

Whoever transmits in interstate or foreign commerce any communication containing any threat to kidnap any person or any threat to injure the person of another, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.

The post was dated Jan. 5, 2021. As noted by Dan Mangan, reporting for CNBC, this was “just days after then-President Donald Trump pressured Georgia’s secretary of state Brad Raffensperger to “find” votes that could reverse his loss to President Joe Biden.” According to Atlanta’s CBS affiliate, a federal official has confirmed that two of the individuals allegedly threatened by Mr. Stark were Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and Sec. Raffensperger.

Mr. Stark’s indictment can be viewed here.

In late June, 2021 the U.S. Justice Dept. established the Election Threats Task Force to address, among other things, the multitude of violent threats directed to state election workers by supporters of Donald J. Trump.

According to the
DOJ press release

[T]he task force is leading the department’s efforts to address threats of violence against election workers, and to ensure that all election workers — whether elected, appointed or volunteer — are able to do their jobs free from threats and intimidation. The task force engages with the election community and state and local law enforcement to assess allegations and reports of threats against election workers, and investigates and prosecutes these matters where appropriate, in partnership with FBI field offices and U.S. Attorneys’ Offices throughout the country as warranted.

Mr. Stark’s arrest is likely the first of many, as it appears the DOJ task force is well-equipped to track down violent, terroristic threats transmitted over the internet.

[T]he Election Threats Task Force is led by the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and includes several other entities within the Department of Justice, including the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section of the Criminal Division, the Civil Rights Division, the National Security Division and the FBI, as well as key interagency partners, such as the Department of Homeland Security.

Of course, posting such a threat on Craigslist — as Mr. Stark is alleged to have done — might have obviated the need for the DOJ to make use of all these additional resources.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
Ever wonder about the 'Blacks for Trump' guy? He's a devout follower of a violent, anti-semitic cult
Rebekah Sager

I can’t speak for all Black Americans, but for myself, one of the most flummoxing things in the world is a Black Republican. Even more flummoxing, is a Black American for Trump. In the same way that many of my friends in the LGBTQ+ community find gay Republicans for Trump equally as loathsome.

So, although it wasn’t a big shocker for me to learn that the Black guy holding ubiquitously holding a “Blacks for Trump” sign behind the twice-impeached former president, Maurice Symonette aka “Michael the Black Man” was a member of a violent cult called “Temple of Love,” it was confirmation that he was a unicorn.

Symonette, 69, who was known as Maurice Woodside until 1992, is always at Trump rallies, and even if you don’t attend, you’ve likely seen him in photos. He’s a conspiracy theorist with a rambling website, that threatens anyone who “votes to hurt Trump,” calls himself the “Angel,” and accuses everyone from Spike Lee to Maxine Waters, Al Sharpton, and former President Barack Obama of being “fake Black people.” He claims that “white gentiles” aren’t killing Black people, but “white Cherokee Indian,” posting the infamous and horrifying video of Derek Chauvin kneeling on George Floyd’s neck before snuffing out his life, as proof.
.......
Symonette is an acolyte of Miami, Florida-based cult leader Yahweh ben Yahweh, who was convicted of conspiracy to commit murder.

Born Hulon Mitchell Jr., Yahweh founded the Nation of Yahweh in 1979. It was built on the “Hebrew Israelite belief system” that characterized Jews and whites as infidels of oppression. He often referred to himself as the messiah. He was accused of ordering his followers to stab, behead, and sever the limbs of people who threatened him. But was convicted after attempting to sacrifice 14 white people for an initiation ritual.

Symonette (Mitchell) joined Yahweh in the 1980s, according to the Miami New Times. Cult members slept on hard beds, ate one meal per day of rice and beans, women “shared” husbands, who were only allowed to have sex in a communal “conjugal room” and only with Yahweh’s permission. He was also charged with two gruesome Yahweh murders in the 1990s but was never convicted.

But, despite Yahweh’s death in 2007 to pancreatic cancer, Symonette remains a dutiful follower. In July, he proclaimed having received divine cure for COVID-19 from Yahweh.

“I Michael can teach & give the World & Pres. Trump the Conquerer of Pharaoh the gift from YAHWEH BEN YAHWEH which is the true cure for Corona,” Symonette wrote. Before turning over this cure, he added, “we must remove the Conquered Pharaoh Magician’s FAUCI.”


In the end, it never ceases to amaze me why anyone would support Trump, but why a person of color would do it, leaves me truly dismayed. Now, we know that at least one Trump groupie isn’t just a little out of his right mind, he’s bigly out of it.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
Republicans are preparing another 'Contract on America' with the aid of ... who else?
Dartagnan

There are few people in modern political history who have done as much damage to our democracy as Newt Gingrich. As the prototypical, ideological Republican “bomb-thrower” who first came of age during the Reagan “revolution,” in the 1990’s Gingrich ushered in and patented an era of hyper-partisan viciousness and crass, unrelenting political rancor that has finally reached its apotheosis in a GOP now firmly under the thumb of Donald Trump. As a co-author of the Republican Party’s infamous 1994 “Contract with America” (a revenue-gutting, deregulatory attack on government programs recast by President Bill Clinton as a Contract On America) Gingrich established the standard legislative template for all future attempts by conservatives at governance (actually “non-governance”), while in the process turning the “government shutdown” and brinksmanship into routine tactics for Republicans whenever a Democrat occupies the Oval Office.

Gingrich was and still is a nasty piece of work. He is notable for creating a smear lexicon that he encouraged Republicans to adopt, in which Democrats were routinely labeled with such pejoratives as “sick,” “radical” and “traitors,” while Republicans were urged to self-describe their proposals with words like “principled, “common sense” and “courage.” He was the primary motivating force behind the churlish, politically-driven impeachment of President Bill Clinton. Facing a broad-based public backlash against both his party’s policies and his own abrasive personality, Gingrich was forced to resign as House Speaker in 1998 and left Congress altogether the following year, spending his time as an erstwhile pundit on the conservative media circuit and regurgitating his ideas in high-priced speeches and insular, right-wing think tanks.

By all standards of human decency that should have been the denouement of all things Gingrich, but because the Republican party as it stands today has few if any purported “thinkers” able to formulate even an excuse for public policy, he remains relevant as their “go-to” man. The benighted cruelty and criminal incompetence of the Trump administration offered Gingrich as an eminence grise a chance to reaffirm his bona fides, and he immediately signed on to parroting Trump’s requisite Big Lie about election fraud. So when the relatively hapless Republican minority leader Kevin McCarthy needed help in preparing his minions for the 2022 elections, Gingrich was a natural choice.

As reported by Jeff Stein and Laura Meckler for the Washington Post,

Newt Gingrich, whose “Contract with America” in 1994 is linked with the GOP takeover of Congress in that midterm cycle, said he has been advising House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.) on a set of policy items for Republicans to take to voters ahead of the November elections. House Minority Whip Steve Scalise (La.) and other members of House Republican leadership are also involved in the project, which is not expected to launch until the spring or summer.

As McCarthy himself told Breitbart last week, his Gingrich-inspired project for the midterms project already has a working title: ““We’ll come out with a Commitment to America. … We’ve been working on policy.”

In today’s Republican-speak, “Working on policy” translates into looting the country for profit, initiating pointless “Benghazi-style” investigations to harass, smear and intimidate Biden administration officials, while exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic by dividing and polarizing Americans as much as possible.

Republicans are expected to focus their new platform on education policies aimed at tapping into parental discontent; countering the rise of China with new economic measures; and “oversight” of the Biden administration. They are also looking at invoking other traditional GOP goals such as cutting taxes, restricting immigration, criticizing Silicon Valley and repealing environmental rules.

Glenn Youngkin’s victory in the Virginia gubernatorial election all but assured that Republicans now intend to present themselves as the party of education, if by “education” you meant the deliberate stoking of racial resentment among white parents and parents otherwise exhausted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The party that featured anti-teacher smears as part of its national convention, consistently and deliberately downplayed teachers’ health and safety during the pandemic and has spearheaded a longstanding effort to privatize and eliminate public education now seeks to portray itself as a defender of our public schools, specifically by way of appealing to parents of school-age children. Except the only “parents” it seems to want to pander to are the types of parents who enter unmasked into school board meetings screaming about their “freedoms,” while complaining loudly about teachers who dare to provide students with historical context for this nation’s unique and long-standing embrace of virulent racism.

As Stein and Meckler point out, however, beyond pandering to disgruntled parents there is little that Republicans can actually do to further degrade our public schools, as much as they might want to:

McCarthy has released a “Parents Bill of Rights” that would not make big changes in education but would send some new mandates to school districts, some of which duplicate actions that are already routine or covered by existing rules and laws.
[*]
The document also asserts that parents have a “right to be heard.” School boards almost uniformly allow for public comment, though some have shut meetings down because of disruptions including screaming and threats of violence.

The curious love-hate relationship between Republicans and what they like to simplify in broad, dumb brush strokes as “Big Tech” is another “policy” area Republicans plan to exploit. But this is largely a matter of insider baseball barely comprehensible to a GOP rank and file thoroughly mesmerized by their smartphones and tablets. The party appears to have no problem with the tech monopolies their own party fostered for decades, as long as they amplify GOP lawmakers; it’s only when tech behemoths attempt to place curbs on the GOP‘s now requisite hate speech that Republicans find these mammoth corporations not to their liking. It’s difficult to take them seriously, and I frankly doubt anyone in Silicon Valley actually does. It’s also hard to take any anti-China stance seriously beyond its obvious pandering to Trump’s racist base, who appear to still believe that the miniscule possibility the COVID-19 virus originated in a lab somehow absolves Donald Trump of all the subsequent malfeasance in response to the pandemic that cratered his re-election in 2020.

One area where Republicans promise to effect big changes is in eliminating barriers to House members actually killing themselves: “[C]hanging congressional rules, such as by repealing mask mandates, removing magnetic scanners from the floor of the House and abolishing voting by proxy” are all in the works, virtually guaranteeing that their anticipated majority after 2022 winnows itself down a bit through natural selection. But beyond this, assuming they achieve a majority in one or even both chambers of Congress, the GOP actual agenda promises to be fairly threadbare, as any effort to cut taxes any further for the wealthiest Americans will inevitably run into President Biden’s veto pen. And until the Supreme Court effectively guts the EPA’s ability to function, Republicans’ ability to increase pollution though deregulation and accelerate global warming will also continue to be stymied.

In sum there’s not a great deal policy-wise for Gingrich or McCarthy to work with beyond criticizing the nation’s withdrawal from the 20-year Afghanistan war (a debacle that was scarcely mentioned during the two years Republicans enjoyed Congressional majorities under Trump) and, of course, everything about Hunter Biden from his “mysterious” connection to Chinese businesses to his art deals with the Georges Berges gallery in SOHO. With Gingrich tending the till of an anticipated House majority, President Biden will doubtlessly be impeached … for something. Because the current leader of the GOP, Donald Trump, will demand it.


Of course all of this will be happening in the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, which Republicans at both the federal and state levels have all but ensured will continue at least through 2023. That’s the real wild card, since any actions the GOP takes to further exacerbate the pandemic will be seen in light of what happens after Omicron. The political fallout from a continued COVID-19 pandemic is unknowable at this point, but Republicans have already amply demonstrated they are completely incapable of formulating any policy response to it. So the focus for Gingrich and McCarthy will not be on policy, but on constant personal attacks and smears on Democrats and demonization of the Biden administration. This has always been Gingrich’s modus operandi, and it is perfectly suited to a modern Republican party that has long since abandoned any pretense of governance or concern for the well-being of Americans.

The first Contract on America sputtered and fizzled out with Gingrich, its author, blithely leaving the field and the wreckage he wrought behind him. Contract on America 2.0 simply promises to pick up where he left off, albeit with a GOP even more morally bankrupt than in the 1990’s. Any American concerned for the future of this country should hope that Gingrich’s second bite at the apple proves equally poisonous to himself and the party that spawned him.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
Starting to occur to Trump that some of his endorsements have proven subpar
Kerry Eleveld

Donald Trump has reportedly caught on to the fact that the cadre of hangers-on around him may not, in fact, be "the best."

Trump has apparently grown suspicious that some of his advisers are giving him bad advice (!) and just might be doing so for their own benefit (!), according to Politico Playbook.

Trump is a tad late to the game with this revelation, but his solution to the problem is even more daft than the languishing pace of his faculties.
...........
Trump's keen insights came to the fore due to endorsements he's been making in a series of races across the country. Trump is both worried that he's "picking the wrong horse" and that his aides might simply be pushing him to endorse candidates with whom they have personal or financials ties (!). I mean, what are the chances that the ultimate con man has surrounded himself with a bunch of snake oil sellers?

“He’s at times suspicious of the recommendations that people give him when he knows they’re being paid,” a former Trump adviser told Playbook. “He’s been asking who is paying who.”

Let's stop for a second and give Trump some credit for at least briefly visiting the universe the rest of us inhabit—the one in which everyone willing to associate with him, including his kids, are users and grifters.

In fact, Trump started getting cold feet after he endorsed alleged wife beater Sean Parnell for the open Pennsylvania Senate seat at the urging of his son, Don Jr. Parnell finally bowed out of the race last November after he lost custody rights over his kids. Trump also has doubts about backing Rep. Ted Budd (pushed by Mark Meadows) for the North Carolina Senate seat and Rep. Mo Brooks (pushed by Stephen Miller) for the Alabama Senate seat.

But back to Trump's simply brilliant idea to hedge his bets by potentially endorsing two candidates in a single GOP primary.

“I get two chances to win," Trump explained to one of his allies.

Genius! So like, if there's a three-way primary with two Trumpers and one relatively sane Republican, then Trump will entirely dilute his influence, confuse his cultists, and an anti-Trumper might actually emerge victorious.

That wouldn't happen in all cases, but it certainly could in some situations. Most people, instead of diluting their endorsements, actually vet candidates before backing their campaigns. But that would be a lot of work.

Playbook cites several high-profile races where Trump aides are gunning for conflicting endorsements.

— In Ohio, tech billionaire PETER THIEL has been lobbying Trump to pick J.D. VANCE for Senate, while [Kellyanne] Conway works for BERNIE MORENO’s campaign. Neither candidate is a clear frontrunner.
— In the Pennsylvania Senate race, former White House aide DINA POWELL is pushing Trump to endorse her husband, hedge fund magnate DAVID MCCORMICK. But SEAN HANNITY is urging him to back celebrity doctor MEHMET OZ.
— In Arizona, Thiel and Trump’s top political aide SUSIE WILES have been pushing BLAKE MASTERS in the GOP Senate primary. Wiles works for Masters’ super PAC. But former Trump ambassador RIC GRENELL has endorsed JIM LAMON.

Trump's other option is to sit out some of these races, but his allies fear that could give McConnell the upper hand on Senate picks.

From a Democratic standpoint, we highly encourage Trump to get involved in as many races as possible. His Senate picks for Georgia (Herschel Walker), Pennsylvania (Sean Parnell), and North Carolina (Ted Budd) have already muddled GOP chances in three of the most important races. Why stop now, Trump?
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
Biden has big week in judicial nominations: 13th appeals court confirmation and 13th slate named
Joan McCarter

President Joe Biden issued his thirteenth round of judicial nominees this week, and again, the eight new nominations are among the most diverse in personal and professional experiences ever elevated to the federal judiciary. That includes “the first Bangladeshi-American, the first Muslim-American woman, and only the second Muslim-American person to serve as a federal judge,” should they be confirmed.

That comes with the Senate’s confirmation Thursday of Holly Thomas to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, the fourth Biden pick to be added to that court. She is only the second Black woman to serve on this court, and the first Black woman from California. She’s worked as a civil rights attorney, a prosecutor, a litigator, a criminal law attorney, a civil law attorney, a state law practitioner, and a federal law practitioner.

That confirmation made history: Biden has now named more appellate court judges his first year in office than any other president. Thirteen, to be exact.



There are more to come, including 11 district and circuit nominees currently being considered in the Senate Judiciary Committee. Three of those have received deadlocked votes from the committee: Dale Ho, director of the American Civil Liberties Union's Voting Rights Project, Charlotte Sweeney for the District of Colorado, and Hernan Vera for the Central District of California. That’s going to take an additional procedural vote to discharge their nominations from the committee to the floor.

In the meantime, nine more nominees made it out of committee this week, including Manhattan-based U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan, a nominee to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. She had a busy month, serving as the judge in the sex trafficking case in which British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell was found guilty.

When the Senate returns on Jan. 31, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has a slate of 10 judicial nominations waiting for them.
 

Ten Thousan Marbles

Well-Known Member
Feb 6, 2014
98,525
18,210
1
Biden nominates first Muslim woman and first Bangladeshi-American to serve as federal judge
Aysha Qamar

ScreenShot2022-01-20at11.37.23AM.png


In some exciting news to start off your weekend, President Joe Biden announced his latest round of judicial nominees on Wednesday. What’s so exciting about this? Well, the eight nominees Biden chose in his 13th round were not only majority women, but included a Muslim American woman who if confirmed would be the first Muslim American woman to serve as a federal judge. In addition to being the first Muslim American woman to serve in the position if confirmed, Nusrat Jahan Choudhury would also be the first Bangladeshi American to serve as a federal judge.

“A nominee who would be the first Bangladeshi-American, the first Muslim-American woman, and only the second Muslim-American person to serve as a federal judge,” the White House said in a statement on Wednesday, referring to Choudhury.
...........
Choudhury currently serves as the legal director of the Illinois chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). According to Al Jazeera, she has worked on numerous civil rights cases, including lawsuits challenging the federal government’s No Fly List and the New York Police Department’s surveillance of the city’s Muslim community.

While the organization does not formally endorse judicial or political nominees, the ACLU of Illinois described Choudhury’s nomination as “historic.”

“During her tenure as legal director in Illinois, [Choudhury] has among other things led our legal team in efforts to improve policing in Chicago, protect medically-vulnerable persons detained on immigration charges during the COVID pandemic in Illinois county jails, and challenged unfair practices that drive Chicago residents into bankruptcy to pay fines and fees,” ACLU of Illinois Executive Director Colleen Connell said in a statement.

Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer formally recommended Choudhury to serve on the federal bench in New York in September 2021, calling her an “expert in civil rights and liberties.” Her nomination was backed by various Muslim advocacy groups in addition to New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.

Muslim Advocates also thanked Biden for “making this historic nomination happen”.

“At a time when inequalities in the justice system are front and center, Choudhury, who dedicated her career to protecting the civil rights of Muslims and other marginalized communities, would bring legitimacy to the judiciary by pushing it towards justice,” Muslim Advocates said in a statement.

“And at a time when hate and division are driving us apart, Choudhury would serve as an inspiration as the first Muslim woman, first Bangladeshi-American and second ever American Muslim to serve as a Senate-confirmed federal judge.”



Choudhury’s nomination follows the Senate’s confirmation of Zaid Quraishi, the first Muslim to be confirmed as a federal judge in U.S. history. Quraishi serves as a U.S. district judge for New Jersey. Confirmed in June 2021, he was nominated by Biden in March 2021 and is Biden’s third confirmed judicial nominee, Daily Kos reported.

Biden has announced 83 federal judiciary nominees since being sworn in as president. According to NPR, in addition to Quraishi, more than 40 new judges have been confirmed by the Senate, including the first openly LGBTQ+ woman to sit on a federal appeals court: Beth Robinson of Vermont.

Biden’s nominees have proven to be some of the most diverse in U.S. history, with 24 identifying as Black, 17 as Hispanic, and 16 as part of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community, USA TODAY reported.

May we continue to see our country’s leadership diversify. Congratulations Choudhury, we look forward to seeing you confirmed!
 

Latest posts