A gorgeous win for sanity | How your voices are making a difference

“Exit polls, Election Day polls and actual returns showed significant gains for Democrats in suburbs and among independents…. Democrats have captured the middle.”

If you’ve heard people bemoan that last Tuesday’s elections weren’t a decisive win for Democrats, please smack those voices down—Tuesday was a gorgeous win for sanity from the local level up—and the local level is where our movement builds and really matters.Democrats flipped the House, gained hundreds of legislative seats, secured the majority of state attorneys general, and garnered two-thirds of the seats up for grabs. Of those we didn’t, most were Republican-held seats in deep red areas that were always highly unlikely to flip.

Women and LGBT candidates were elected in record numbers. Not only did Minnesota elect its first openly gay Congresswoman, but she defeated Jason Lewis—remember him? The guy who bemoaned the fact that he couldn’t call women “sluts” anymore.

Want some numbers? For the Senate, the popular vote for Democrats was 40,558,262, or 55.4 percent; for Republicans it was 31,490,026 votes, or just 43.0 percent. (But read this article for an explanation of why we shouldn’t freak out over the inequity.)

Some environmental/conservation wins. In Georgia, up to $20 million of existing sales tax each year will go to land conservation; Florida banned oil and gas off-shore drilling; and in Nevada, electric utilities must now get 50% of their electricity from renewable resources by 2030.

Here in Texas we flipped four influential state appeals courts—in Austin, Houston and Dallas—and Dems picked up 12 seats in the Texas house and broke the supermajority in the senate, meaning that they will now need Democrat support to bring bills to the floor. In Austin, 7 ballot initiatives were passed aimed at affordable housing, libraries and museums, parks, infrastructure, and health care, while we voted down a Koch-brothers-funded proposition to force unnecessary budget “audits.”  Despite heavy intentional redistricting by the GOP in the Dallas metroplex to ensure they would never lose elections in that area, the GOP nonetheless lost 12 of 14 seats there, flipped by the Democrats.

And just for symbolism, first-time candidate Erin Zwiener delivered both a win to the Texas house and a baby during her campaign, thus giving birth to the future while also working to create a better one. J 

Even where we lost, we showed how much progress progress is making in a year of record-breaking voter turnout: In dozens of races lost to Republicans they had to fight tooth and nail to eke out a win by the narrowest of margins. In heavily GOP-gerrymandered Texas, four historically double-digit GOP offices were won by scant single digits, and Beto came within a hairbreadth of defeating Rafael Cruz.

A few more juicy tidbits:

And if you really want a delightful treat, try to picture Mike Pence administering the oath of office to two Muslim women on a copy of the Qur’an, or the look on the face of the Colorado baker who refused a cake for a gay wedding when it sinks in who he now has for a governor. Is the federal government messed up? You betcha. And it’s discouraging that so many people are still supporting so much anti-American, anti-decency behavior. BUT…! Change happens from the ground up, and Tuesday showed that the earth is shaking, babies.

Meanwhile the GOP “family values party” demonstrated quite literally that there are no depths to which they will not sink in abandoning decency for party agenda by electing three indicted felons, a white nationalist, and a dead pimp. No, seriously.

Overall, this election was a win. And it just keeps getting better. As this article states, here is the key takeaway from this election that we must continue to build on [emphasis mine]: “Exit polls, Election Day polls and actual returns showed significant gains for Democrats in suburbs and among independents. In the Washington Post-Schar School Election Day poll of battleground district voters, independents preferred Democrats by double digits, and independent women favored Democrats by more than 20 points. Democrats have captured the middle. The polling also shows that young voters and racial minorities — the future American electorate — turned out in healthy numbers for Democrats.”

This is a marathon and not a sprint, folks. We’re not there yet, but Tuesday’s results should show us how effective our sustained efforts to safeguard democracy have been—and can continue to be if we stay in the battle.

Republicans Against the Law

Social and Civil Rights Advances

After last week’s Google-employee walkout, the company has announced it will no longer require forced arbitration for sexual harassment or assault claims.

Motel 6 will pay $7.6 in damages to Hispanic guests in a class-action lawsuit for illegally alerting ICE to guests they suspected to be undocumented immigrants. The company will also sign a two-year consent decree barring it from sharing guest data with immigration authorities absent warrants, subpoenas, or threats of serious crime or harm.

Republicans Reconsidering

Even FOX News found Donald’s ad too racist—the one about the immigrant who came in during George W. Bush’s administration, and was released by Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and who killed two police officers.

Feel-good Stories of the Week

RBG is back, babies.

I got other ribs, bitches

Don’t get complacent | How your voices are making a difference

11.5.18 “There is no invasion. No one is coming to get you. There’s nothing at all to worry about.”

Considering Texas’s usual abysmal voter-turnout rates, it’s astonishing that our state this past week led the country in first-time voter numbers, with more than 200K new voters voting already. We lead the next-largest new-voter turnout, in California, by more than double (at 90K).

Early turnout for voting in Texas has increased 508% among voters under 30, a stratospheric jump being attributed largely to enthusiasm among younger voters for Beto O’Rourke. Turnout levels across all demographics has been extraordinarily high.

But don’t get complacent.

Now more than ever, every vote counts—here are ten times elections came down to a single vote. Vote like your rights and our democracy depend on it—because they do. Call friends to encourage them to vote; offer rides; post on social media. And no matter how things go on Tuesday, here are some ways to make sure we aren’t contributing to the nation’s divisiveness and anger.

In a hopeful sign for future elections, Maine is instigating ranked-choice voting in the first general election ever, in an effort to avoid nasty and expensive runoff battles.

In other news, this week thousands of Philadephians—as well as the mayor, as well as the former president of the synagogue where the victims were shot, who called Donald “a purveyor of hate speech”—asked Donald not to come to their town until the victims of the right-wing terrorist who shot 11 Jewish people in a synagogue last Saturday had been buried. He went anyway, though congressional leaders declined to go with him. One of the victim’s family, whom Donald offered to meet, declined his visit. The “very stable genius” said the Pittsburgh protest was “small” and he didn’t see it. Here’s the actual protest, a scant mile from where Donald was. Mike Pence showed up with a “rabbi”—who preached Jesus as savior (to JEWISH people) and asked them to pray for Republicans. (I wish this were satire, but it’s true.)

Republicans Against the Law

It was quite a week for legal smackdowns of the GOP.

This week judges ruled that:

And a new lawsuit has been brought to federal court alleging that Donald and three of his children used the Trump name to intentionally mislead vulnerable people to invest in sham corporations.

At least three probes by the inspector general of the Interior department are underway against Ryan Zinke for violations of ethics and rules—one of which has been referred to the Justice department.

Republicans Reconsidering

Former House speaker Joe Straus penned an op-ed calling for unity and civility, and denouncing the current GOP administration for its divisiveness.

Even Matt Drudge of the Drudge Report was appalled by FOX’s reporting of the recent right-wing terrorist attacks.

Even Paul Ryan rejected Donald’s dog-whistle distraction of threatening to end birthright citizenship by executive order.

Even Kanye West is realizing he’s been a political pawn and announced he will be removing himself from politics (to the relief of a grateful nation)—but not without a parting statement, of course, and one that seems to belie everything else he’s spewed in the last months: “My eyes are now wide open and now realize I’ve been used to spread messages I don’t believe in…. I support holding people who misuse their power accountable.

I believe in love and compassion for people seeking asylum and parents who are fighting to protect their children from violence and war.”

The Wall Street Journal—a bastion of conservative thought—reported that the U.S. Treasury expects to issue more than $1 TRILLION of debt in 2018, thanks to the GOP tax break for corporations and the wealthy.

Speaking of the conservative financial sector, for the first time in a decade, more Wall Street political money is going to Democrats than Republicans—not necessarily great news for those who understand the damage big-money interests wreak on our government, but certainly a powerful statement about the current state of our country that the typically Republican-leaning financial sector is distancing itself from GOP corruption.

Michael Cohen can’t stop revealing terrible truths about Donald—most recently that Don John frequently used racist language during the 2016 campaign and before. (Meanwhile Donald’s racist ad stating that Democrats allowed a Mexican man accused of killing two policemen into the country hilariously backfired when it was revealed that the man came into the country under George Bush and was released by racist felon sheriff Joe Arpaio.)

Mitt Romney railed against Donald’s repeated attacks on the media as the “enemy of the people,” saying “Denigrating the media diminishes an institution that is critical to democracy, both here and abroad…it comes with a large cost to the cause of freedom,” and stating the that media are “very much our friend.”

Social and Civil Rights Advances

Thousands of Google employees across the world staged a walkout last Thursday to protest the company’s payouts of departing executives accused of sexual harassment, and Google’s silence about the allegations.

More than 56 corporations, including giants like Apple, Google, and Facebook, confronted the GOP administration over its recent efforts to attack the civil rights of transgender people.

GoDaddy is the latest business to withdraw from Gab, the far-right hate-speech social media site where Pittsburgh shooter Robert Bowers was active, following PayPal, Medium, Stripe, and Joyent.

Undaunted by GOP attacks on free speech and civil protest of shootings of African Americans, an NFL cheerleader for the San Francisco 49’ers knelt for the national anthem.

University of Maryland football coach DJ Durkin, under whose leadership a player died of heatstroke, lost his job a day after his school announced he’d keep it, after an upswelling of student and lawmaker outcry.

Feel-good Stories of the Week

The New York Times is “failing” all the way to the bank and millions of readers—circulation soared past the 4 million mark this past quarter, a previous record, profits jumped 30 percent, and the stock has gained almost 24% in the last month. Attacks on the press seem to instill a new respect and gratitude for it.

Ben and Jerry’s has resistance ice cream! $100K of profits for Pecan Resist will go to progressive causes “to lick injustice and champion those fighting to create a more just and equitable nation for us all.”

I’d love to say “tens of people” showed up for a rally Steve Bannon tried to hold in Kansas, but in reality the number was only 17. Ten-and-two-thirds of people, I guess…. J

Shepard Smith continues to be the sole voice of reason and fact at FOX News with this extraordinary commentary amid Donald’s baseless fearmongering about the asylum seekers from Central America: “There is no invasion. No one is coming to get you. There’s nothing at all to worry about.” There are over 2,000 miles between Mexico’s southern border and the US, Smith pointed out, and a similar previous incident resulted in only 14 arrests: “We’re America. We can handle it.”

Oprah damn Winfrey went to Georgia and literally campaigned door to door for Stacey Abrams, and it. Was. Awesome. She also gave a phenomenal introduction to the gubernatorial candidate at an Abrams rally that smacked of awesomeness.

Here’s a visual representation of how much we can accomplish when we work together: When a beloved bookstore in Southampton, England, had to move to a new location nearby, more than 200 patrons showed up to help, forming a human conveyor belt passing books along one by one until the entire store was relocated.

Keep this idea in mind when you VOTE.

Voting News! | How your voices are making a difference

10/29/18 “Trump’s condoning of political violence is part of a sustained pattern of attack on a free press”

Voting news!

Early voter turnout levels have been gratifying—first-day voter turnout for early voting resulted in long lines all day across Texas—in Travis County it nearly tripled from 2014; in Dallas more than tripled from 2010 and 2014. Here are up-to-the-minute tallies of turnout county by county in Texas.

After Texas State students complained that Hays County was suppressing student voting by offering truncated polling-station hours on campus for early voting, the county agreed to extend it, as well as to open it for Election Day.

The Dallas News endorsed Beto O’Rourke, stating that his “inclusive and hopeful tone, along with O’Rourke’s approach of starting with shared principles and working toward solutions, offset any policy differences we have with him. Leadership is more than policy, and whether we are addressing the very real challenges before us now turns on our ability to find points of agreement.”

A fabulous new law in Oregon provides that all eligible voters in the state are automatically registered to vote unless they opt out. WHICH IS BRILLIANT. Come on, 49 others—step up.

###

Fox and Friends invited four independent voters on, clearly seeking scare reactions regarding the caravan of refugees making its way through Central America, but the stunt backfired hilariously. BTW, if you’d like some excellent rebuttals for ignorant invective against the asylum seekers, you might remind people that seeking asylum is actually legal immigration, not illegal, and that in the last year 70 percent of asylum seekers were found by U.S. judges to have legitimate grounds for fleeing their homeland. Oh, and that in Germany, where Donny likes to tout the entirely fictional apocalyptic effects of refugee resettlement, crime has actually gone down 10 percent. And here’s a fact-checker article debunking Donald’s claims about the caravan.

Meanwhile, in the wake of ten unsuccessful bombing attempts against targets that Donald has expressly incited violence against, more than 200 journalists signed a letter openly accusing Donald of deliberately inciting violence against the press—despite his refusal to accept responsibility even in the face of his own words condoning, praising, and calling for violence against the press and even his attempts to deflect blame onto the media with no rationality or factual backing. “Trump’s condoning of political violence is part of a sustained pattern of attack on a free press – which includes labeling any reportage he doesn’t like as ‘fake news’ and barring reporters and news organizations whom he wishes to punish from press briefings and events.” The letter continues to gather signatures. (And the man apparently behind the bombing is like the poster child for Donald’s base.)

Ever insensitive to anything other than his own interests (and ever reluctant to call terrorism by its name when white people are involved), Donald tweeted that ”this ‘Bomb’ stuff” was hurting Republicans in the midterms because “the news [is] not talking [about] politics.”

Donny may have revoked John Brennan’s security clearance, but he can’t silence the outspoken former head of the CIA. “Stop blaming others. Look in the mirror. Your inflammatory rhetoric, insults, lies, & encouragement of physical violence are disgraceful. Clean up your act. … try to act Presidential. The American people deserve much better. BTW, your critics will not be intimidated into silence,” he wrote on Twitter Weds., as Donald continued to shift blame away from himself for the recent bomb attacks on his political opponents.

A VA official in Donny’s administration hung a picture of the nation’s first KKK grand wizard in his office, despite staff complaints, till they circulated a petition that finally forced him to take it down.

Republicans Reconsidering

This is what happens when you are a transwoman who aligns yourself with the Republican party.

This is what happens when you’re Caitlyn Jenner, a prominent representative for the trans community, and you back Donald and then he tries to invalidate your civil rights not even two years later. “The leader of our nation has shown no regard for an already marginalized and struggling community. He has ignored our humanity. He has insulted our dignity.” Uh, yeah. Did you not see that one coming?

This is what happens when a school in Colorado invites a drag queen to come speak at career day, and some parents freak out—and the school stands by having invited her.

In yet another example of a Republican candidate’s family publicly denouncing his fitness, twelve family members of Nevada GOP gubernatorial candidate Adam Laxalt wrote an op-ed opposing his candidacy on the grounds of his misleading ads, phony claims, and incompetence in a short-lived career as a lawyer, and decrying his positions on immigration, health care, reproductive rights, and other concerns.

Republicans Against the Law

Remember Georgia senator David Perdue snatching a phone from a student’s hand last week when the student asked him a question about voter suppression? The Georgia Tech junior is suing Perdue for battery.

Georgia is having quite a time with its racist Republican self—a federal judge ordered officials in Gwinnett County (my hometown, sadly) to stop tossing absentee ballots on trumped-up charges of signature discrepancies made by non experts.

Yet another White House ethics violation is being cited by a watchdog group—this one against Kellyanne Conway for illegally using political messaging—including MAGA merchandise—in her tweets, and for expressing political views in an official capacity in an interview in her office.

federal court ruled that part of Donald’s order denying federal funding to sanctuary cities is unconstitutional, upholding two lower-court rulings.

Anthony “not trying to suck my own cock” Scaramucci is spewing at the mouth again, this time calling his former boss Donald a liar.

Not for the first time, Donald lied about his supporters, touting the “50,000 people lined up outside whom we love,” seemingly supported by widely circulated picture on social media showing a huge crowd all clad in Republican red—except the picture is actually from Cleveland, not Houston, and isn’t Donald fans but Cleveland Cavaliers fans celebrating the team’s 2016 NBA championship win. In the words of former Donald campaign manager Corey Lewandowsky mocking a young immigrant girl separated from her mother, Womp, womp!

Senator Jeff Flake said on The View that despite not being sure he believed Brett Kavanaugh’s testimony in his Supreme Court nomination hearings, he voted for him anyway.

In response to a NYTimes article revealing that Donald regularly uses unsecured cell phones for communication that are vulnerable to security breaches, Donald stated that he rarely used a cell phone in a fact-free denial of the well-supported article that he tweeted—from his iPhone.

Megyn Kelly’s show was canceled at NBC after she made racially insensitive comments (again).

Your Feel-good Stories of the Week

Along the route of the caravan of asylum seekers coming from Central America, small-town residents throughout Mexico are offering them food, shelter, and kindness. “We know that we are all brothers. What God gives us, we should share,” said one resident. “We do it with a lot of love.”

After the #MeToo movement brought down 201 men credibly accused of sexual abuse and harassment, nearly half their positions have been filled by women.

In the face of the preseident of the United States full-throatedly identifying as a nationalist (like Hitler and Stalin did), you might enjoy this thoughtful TED talk about how nationalism and globalism can coexist.

HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

Early voting goes on through November 2, and the midterm vote is November 6. Find your local polling place here or here. Anyone who needs to get a ride to the polls can call the Travis County Democratic Party at (512) 472-VOTE. (You can sign up for a shift to help drive people to the polls here.) Find out what’s on the ballot here or here. Sign up to help make phone calls to encourage people to the polls here or here or here.

VOTE. VOTE. VOTE.

Democratic candidates for Congress have raised a record $1 billion | How your voices are making a difference

10/22/18 “I guarantee you, if the GOP thinks that black people are voting for them, they will be making sure that your vote counts.”

Let’s start with this stunning news: Democratic candidates for Congress have raised a record $1 billion.

Although our own GOP-led Congress doesn’t seem to have the moral fiber to speak out against Donald’s recent lauding—in the wake of the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi—of Montana congressman Greg Gianforte for body-slamming a reporter, the UK government did, joining a chorus of outrage that throws the GOP’s silence into appalling bas-relief.

Full-throated defense of Robert Mueller’s investigation has come from none other than the Donald-appointed DoJ official charged with overseeing it—Rod Rosenstein calls it “appropriate and independent,” in stark contrast to Donald’s frequent denigration of it as a rigged witch-hunt. “At the end of the day, the public will have confidence that the cases we brought were warranted by the evidence, and that it was an appropriate use of resources.” Take a look at this recap of the last week of the Russia investigation and what it’s unearthing—Mueller is quietly uncovering an enormous web of deceit, illegality, and collusion.

Republicans Reconsidering

Even Donny’s staunch ally, Senator Lindsey Graham, flatly stated that Mohammed bin Salman, the Saudi crown prince, had journalist Jamal Khashoggi murdered.

Even white nationalist treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin backed out of the Davos in the Desert investment conference as a result.

Former Republican congressman Richard Hanna is endorsing Democrat Anthony Brindisi in New York.

Republicans Against the Law

federal judge ordered the immediate enforcement of an Obama-era law designed to protect students cheated by for-profit colleges that had been delayed by Betsy DeVos.

An organization of writers (along with nonprofit organization Protect Democracy and the Yale Law School Media Freedom and Information Clinic) are filing federal suit against Don John for his attacks on the press, alleging that his attempts to stifle the press and his urging of retribution against the media is against the First Amendment and illegal.

ProPublica conducted an extensive investigation into Donald and his family’s business practices and found a pattern of misleading investors and buyers in order to profit from it.

The Southern Poverty Law Center is suing Donald’s White House for its unlawful use of federal funds for arming teachers.

A Georgia journalist and the NAACP are bringing a federal lawsuit against Georgia secretary of state Brian Kemp—also running for governor, perhaps not coincidentally against an African American woman with whom he’s in a dead heat—who recently purged more than a half million (disproportionately African American) voters from the state’s registered rolls, forcing Kemp to release the names of the voters he purged. If the lawsuit is successful, Kemp will have to show detailed information for why he flushed each and every voter.

The ACLU is suing Georgia as well for tossing out absentee ballots after amateur handwriting analysis claimed the signatures looked different from those on the voter registration.

“Draining the Swamp”

In another example of the fine-tuned machine Donald’s cabinet isn’t, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson put out an announcement that one of his top aides would take on the role of acting watchdog at the inspector general’s office in the office of the Interior—only to be embarrassingly repudiated that same day by a spokesperson for the Interior department, stating ““HUD sent out an email that had 100 percent false information in it.” The aide in question, Suzanne Tufts, subsequently resigned.

Interestingly, Tufts would have been overseeing the investigation of Interior Department head Ryan Zinke, who violated the department’s policy on travel in arranging government travel for his wife and an associate.

Meanwhile, apparently chief of staff John Kelly and national security adviser John Bolton got into a screaming match about immigration outside the Oval Office. THE BEST PEOPLE, Donald!

Your Feel-Good Stories of the Week

Yet another Trump property is removing Donald’s name—this one in New York after residents voted to dump the Trump name.

Apparently Piers Morgan didn’t realize how much this revealed about his own fragile masculinity, rather than Daniel Craig’s. Twitter swiftly let him know.

Want to help drive people to the polls from Oct 22 through Nov 6? Sign up here through the Travis County Democratic Party for whatever shift(s) fits your schedule.

“An open and free society” | How your voices are making a difference

10/15/18 “An open and free society”

Leadership of the People

Donald may be unwilling to take action against Saudi Arabia for its killing of journalist Jamal Kashhoggi, but as is becoming the norm, others are stepping up to fill the leadership void: Western corporations with pending deals and discussions with the Saudis are pulling out as a result of the kingdom’s actions.

After a terrifyingly bleak report by 91 climate scientists for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change on the catastrophic progression of global warming (which Donald dismissed), companies are also stepping up to address the absence of leadership in addressing climate change, taking actions to reduce their carbon footprint, develop sustainable businesses, and even pull carbon dioxide from the air and store it.

Nearly a quarter million people showed up to support “an open and free society” and unite in protest of Germany’s far-right groups and the attendant racism, intolerance, and xenophobia creeping out from under its rock.

Republican Rot

New emails reveal that Wilbur Ross, Donald’s secretary of commerce, lied about not speaking to anyone in Donald’s cabinet about adding a potentially illegal census question to the 2020 census, and that his motivations were political.

UN Ambassador Nikki Haley’s abrupt resignation came one day after an ethics watchdog group (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington) requested an investigation into her acceptance of seven free flights worth tens of thousands of dollars aboard private jets from South Carolina businessmen. Haley is the former governor of South Carolina.

Two Arizona Republicans falsely donated money to Democratic congressman Tom O’Halloran’s campaign under the made-up donor name of the Northern Arizona University Communist party in an attempt to link O’Halloran to the far left. An O’Halloran campaign worker drove to the local Republican field office to return the money—and surprised one of the men, who was working there.

government ethics watchdog filed another Hatch Act complaint against someone in Donald’s administration, a law that forbids any executive branch employee from “us[ing] his official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of an election”—this time against Sarah Huckabee Sanders for tweeting a photo of herself with a MAGA-hat wearing (and crazy-talk-spewing) Kanye West.

Rick Gates, one of Donald’s top campaign advisers, requested proposals from a foreign agent (Israel) to create fake online identities, false social media profiles, and gather intel to help defeat Hillary Clinton and Republican rivals in the 2016 campaign. Mueller is already on it. 🙂

Despite head hypocrite Mitch McConnell refusing to commit to not confirming any Supreme Court justices in 2020, after spearheading the blockade against supremely qualified Merrick Garland in President Obama’s final year, Senator Chuck Grassley directly refuted McConnell’s stance, stating that he would oppose any 2020 nominations, with Lindsay Graham suggesting the same. Of course, we’ll see what actually happens in that instance. The hypocrisy is strong with these ones.

This crazy shit happened.

Getting Out the Vote

A new poll reveals that voters are expressing significantly more interest in voting this year than in the last midterms in 2014.

Taylor Swift’s Instagram post last week finally breaking her political silence seems to have landed with a resounding splash—voter registration has soared in the last week, beginning just hours after her post, about 42 percent of them between 18 and 24. Hopefully her impact will be duplicated and amplified by organizations like OMG WTF, a Resistance gathering of Hollywood folks using their influence and outreach to support downballot candidates in the midterms and encourage fans—especially younger ones—to vote.

Beto upped his record for single-quarter fund-raising to a staggering $38.1 million (three times Ted Cruz’s fund-raising amounts in the same period).

The Georgia secretary of state is being sued by civil rights groups for placing 53,000 voter registrations on hold, 70 percent of them African American (in a state that’s 32 percent African American, where an African American woman is running for governor).

Not sure how I feel about this, but for those of the persuasion that Democrats must fight Republican tactics with attacks in kind, this article about an anti-Republican, crowdsourced “oppo” research team—looking into GOP incumbents and candidates to find every bit of dirt in their pasts—suggests there could be some nuclear bombs coming before the midterms.

Meanwhile, Republicans seem to be in a panic, like this Minnesota state rep who literally snatched the mic away from his (female) Democratic opponent during their debate and dropped it in front of her. He claimed “nerves.”

The Week in Good News

Texan woman Lynzy Lab’s genius song parody sending up Donald’s appalling claims that men are at greatest risk from false sexual harassment claims while women are doing just fine has gone ridiculously viral. Speaking of the attempt to delegitimize women’s struggles and paint men as the victims with the non-factually-supported “#HimToo” movement claiming men are at greater risk of false accusations than women are of sexual assault, this mother mortified her son by making him the highly unwilling poster child of the movement. Her son’s public Twitter denial (he joined the social media platform for the first time to refute it) gave a good-natured shout-out to the sarcastic Twitter memes that cascaded down afterward.

After Kavanaugh’s confirmation, a teacher at a Los Angeles elementary school developed a lesson and a classroom policy, along with her students, to teach them what consent means.

Jamaica is embarking on a massive campaign to ban plastic bags, straws, and Styrofoam.

Despite her husband’s attacks on Mexicans, women, Muslims, immigrants…well, pretty much everyone—despite that her husband tore children from their families and put them in cages (still there); that he openly mocked a woman who came forward about her sexual assault; that he recently stopped allowing visas for same-sex partners of diplomats and…well, pretty much all kinds of horrific bullying, wife Melania apparently feels she is the “most bullied person on the world.” If I may…

Don't care jacket

Let this leave a better taste in your mouth: A gecko terrorized a Hawaii marine mammal hospital.

Our job is to make sure voters remember | How your voices are making a difference

10/8/18 “In our view that testimony was partisan, and not judicious, and inconsistent with what we expect from a Justice of the Supreme Court”

Kavanaugh was confirmed.

Congress clearly never intended to consider the FBI investigation results—McConnell promised the nomination hearing before the report was even received, and denied Democrats’ request for a briefing on the investigation from FBI agents.

Yet GOP senators rammed through his confirmation despite that less than 20 percent of Kavanaugh’s records were made available to Democrats for review prior to his nomination hearing, 42,000 of which were released only the day before the hearing.

Despite that the FBI’s investigation was very narrow and rushed, limited in scope by the White House, and neglected to speak to Dr. Blasey Ford herself, Kavanaugh, or the many witnesses and colleagues who stated that they had pertinent information.

Despite that text messages show Kavanaugh lied about not knowing about Deborah Ramirez’s accusations—and that he was trying to silence them before they were made public. Despite two ethics complaints about his behavior as a judge, and more than a dozen judicial misconduct complaints received by the DC circuit court about Kavanaugh in recent weeks. Despite evidence that he was a belligerent drunk from a letter Kavanaugh himself wrote and his documentedinvolvement in bar fights.

Despite the National Council of Churches, the nation’s largest organization of Christian churches representing 38 denominations, 100K churches, and 45 million people across the country, urging the White House to withdraw Kavanaugh’s nomination because of his “extreme partisan bias and disrespect towards certain members of the committee,” his “several misstatements and some outright falsehoods,” and his “troubling” record “with regard to issues of voting rights, racial and gender justice, health care, the rights of people with disabilities, and environmental protections.”

Despite that more than 1,500 law professors signed a letter stating that Kavanaugh is unsuited to preside over any court, let alone the nation’s highest, after his histrionic, biased, partisan testimony and his drinking history.

Despite the American Bar Association, a group of Mormon women, and the dean of Yale Law School (Kavanaugh’s alma mater) all publicly stating that Kavanaugh’s appointment is detrimental to our nation—and the American Bar Association further announcing that they are reevaluating Kavanaugh’s “well qualified” rating.

Despite Kavanaugh’s former college roommate stating that Kavanaugh lied under oath about his drinking and the meaning of his yearbook entries, and that two of Kavanaugh’s former Yale classmates who signed a letter of support for him. “In our view that testimony was partisan, and not judicious, and inconsistent with what we expect from a Justice of the Supreme Court, particularly dealing with a co-equal branch of government,” they wrote.

Despite former Republican Steve Schmidt (veteran of the Bush administration and McCain campaign), in commenting on Donald’s behavior regarding the Kavanaugh trial and toward his accusers, calling the president indecent, contemptible, vulgar, cruel, dishonest, especially after Donald openly mocked Dr. Blasey Ford’s testimony at a rally Tuesday night.

Despite that former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens stated that Kavanaugh had demonstrated with his potential political bias and volatile testimony and temperament that he was not fit to serve on the court.

Despite that senators Flake, Collins, and Murkowski expressed concerns over Kavanaugh’s partisan attacks in his hearing, Dr. Ford’s accusations, and the scope of the background check. (Only Lisa Murkowski had the courage and patriotism tovote against Kavanaugh.)

Despite that more than 750 Harvard Law graduates signed a letter for the dean of the school asking that Brett Kavanaugh’s invitation to lecture be rescinded (Kavanaugh dropped out after the allegations of his sexual misconduct).

I wonder how many of these items would disqualify a Democrat judicial nominee for the GOP? It’s hard to know, since the Senate unethically blocked the nomination of the highly qualified, scandal-free Merrick Garland that Mitch McConnell and the Republican-controlled Congress refused to even hear. Yet none of these appalling facts seemed to make any impression on the GOP.

Republicans ignored all of this disqualifying behavior and information to confirm a self-reported belligerent, out-of-control drinker with numerous credible highly disturbing allegations against him and a clearly demonstrated partisan bias and unstable temperament. This will be their legacy.

Our job is to make sure voters remember which path they chose come November—history will remember it in perpetuity.

More Republican Rot

An internal review on Donald’s ill-conceived and ill-executed separation of children from their families and imprisoning of children uncovered a series of lies and incompetencies. The Inspector General’s report about the Trump administration’s separating children from their families at the border revealed that the administration deliberately instigated this as a policy—despite its lies to the contrary—lied about how long these children were detained; failed to adequately track them; and had inadequate plans for housing them.

Republicans Against the Law

Four reputed members of a militant white-supremacist society were arrested on charges of instigating violence at the Charlottesville Unite the Right rally in 2017, and each faces 10 years in prison if convicted.

A federal judge temporarily blocked Donald’s White House from terminating the legal status of 300,000 refugees, questioning whether there was “a discriminatory factor” in the White House’s attempted action.

A federal judge ruled that 200 Democrats suing Donald for violating the Constitution’s emoluments clause have legal standing to pursue the suit.

Did you get your creepy Presidential Alert on Wednesday, the direct line Donald now has to every cell phone user in America? A lawsuit in New York is challenging the constitutionality of the messaging system as “a violation of First and Fourth Amendment rights to be free from Government-compelled listening, as well as warrantless, non-consensual trespass into and seizure of their cellular devices.”

Power of the Free Press

The New York Times conducted an exhaustive investigation of Donald’s fiscal history and his family’s fortune and found that Donald inherited more than $400 million of his “self-made” money beginning when he was a toddler, which he augmented through dubious tax schemes and fraud, and his family bequeathed this fortune on Donald and his siblings with a tax evasion in the amount of more than $550 million. Much of the information was gleaned from the financial disclosures of Donald’s older sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, upon her confirmation as a federal judge (appointed by Bill Clinton). New York State tax officials are reviewing the fraud evidence to see about recouping the lost tax income from the family.

An in-depth investigation by Esquire magazine discovered that Trump toady Devin Nunes’s long-vaunted family dairy in California actually secretly relocated to Iowa, where it employs a large number of undocumented workers.

Your Feel-good Stories of the Week

(We need some)

Texas Senate candidate Steve Kling‘s mother is personally calling and thanking donors to his campaign.

Taylor Swift joined the Resistance.

Within an hour of Maine senator Susan Collins finishing her speech in which she announced her holdout confirmation vote for Kavanaugh (with Democratic Senator Joe Manchin’s) that tipped him over the confirmation threshold, a group of Maine voters raised (through crowdfunding) $2 million for whatever Democrat runs against her. (That total is now up to $3 million.)

Travis County is on track to achieve 93 percent voter registration—a modern record. Now we just need to work to make sure as many of those as possible actually get out to vote. Check the Indivisible page to find opportunities to phone bank, block walk, and other ways to help get out the vote. And this is important—no later than Tuesday, check your own voter registration; it’s online, quick, and easy. Some people have discovered that they’ve been removed from the rolls, or are told at the polls that they aren’t registered or there’s a problem with their registration.

I feel this is a week where we’re entitled to be a little bit petty, at least privately. Enjoy.

This was a hard week, warriors—as hard as any we’ve had so far. I found a great deal of comfort and inspiration in Dan Rather’s post (as I so often do) the day Collins announced her intended vote for Kavanaugh. I leave you with his closing words in that post, where he reminds us to adopt an attitude of “we can be beaten but never defeated”: “Adopt it, cling to it and live it as a credo. Be relentless. When things are bad, when the going is tough, just keep putting one foot in front of the other and carry forward. Also, maybe take as a goal what an old man once said to me: ‘Keep trying, keep fighting, keep smiling every minute you’re alive; you’re going to be dead a long time.’ And recognize that you are not alone. Far from it. Look to your left and right, before you and behind you, at the millions who will support you on this journey for justice. Fill your lungs with the determined air of action. I find myself humming that old but powerful anthem of the Civil Rights Era. ‘We’ll walk hand in hand!’ ‘We are not afraid!’ ‘We shall overcome!’”

Ugh, Kavanaugh | How Your Voices Are Making a Difference

10/1/18 “This nomination is no longer in the best interests of the country”

Ugh, Kavanaugh.

The American Bar Association, a group of Mormon women, the dean of Yale Law School, and finally—finally—the U.S. Senate determined that serious, multiple, credible allegations of sexual abuse of Brett Kavanaugh must be investigated by the FBI before he can be confirmed. (The American Bar Association also had concerns about Kavanaugh as a judge 12 years ago.) Besides an eleventh-hour Jeff Flake (who nonetheless voted to further Kavanaugh’s nomination), four Republican governors have added their voices to Democrats’ (and much of America’s) in demanding further investigation before any vote is taken.

After Kavanaugh repeatedly touted the Jesuit education he received at Georgetown University, the Jesuit Review rescindinded its endorsement of him and demanded that the White House rescind Kavanaugh’s nomination, stating that “even if the credibility of the allegation has not been established beyond a reasonable doubt and even if further investigation is warranted to determine its validity or clear Judge Kavanaugh’s name, we recognize that this nomination is no longer in the best interests of the country,” and that “Judge Kavanaugh continues to enjoy a legal presumption of innocence, but the standard for a nominee to the Supreme Court is far higher; there is no presumption of confirmability…. If Senate Republicans proceed with his nomination, they will be prioritizing policy aims over a woman’s report of an assault.”

Meanwhile, Matt Damon’s SNL portrayal of Kavanaugh’s belligerent, out-of-control, politicized, and histrionic performance in the hearing is both a palate cleanser, and heartbreaking in the accuracy of its parody, as is this spot-on opinion piece by a WaPo columnist….and also this Pulp Fiction mash-up.

federal judge reversed the decision of Donald’s Fish and Wildlife department last year to rescind protections on grizzly bears in Yellowstone National Park and allow hunting—grizzlies will once again be a protected species

federal judge rejected Donald’s attempts to stop a lawsuit against him by Democrats for violations of the Constitution’s emoluments clause with his maintaining control of his personal businesses and holdings and doing business with foreign governments. The lawsuit will proceed.

Democrats are preparing to force to a floor vote a bill to protect Robert Mueller’s investigation, as Donald and his toadies in Congress begin openly gunning for the investigation, Sessions, Rosenstein, and Mueller himself.

Donny was thrown when his baseless claim at the UN summit that his administration had accomplished more than any other in history was met with laughter from world leaders.

This is a hard week to remember this, but despite the co-opting of our government by what conservative CNN commentator Kevin Madden called “a pathetically mean skirt-chasing man-child” and “authoritarian demagogue,” Donald’s flunkies in Congress, and the mindlessly zealous support of a small portion of his base, most people are decent. The Texas Trib Fest over the weekend featured a lineup of lawmakers, intelligence agents, ethics officials, and commentators who are actively fighting, denouncing, and publishing about the abhorrent behavior of the Republican party and its Dear Leader, and working to motivate moderate voters—even a significant number of Republicans or former Republicans themselves, like former George W. Bush ethics counsel Richard Painter, former House Rep Mickey Edwards, The Weekly’s Charlie Sykes, GOP political strategist Rick Wilson, and others. Week’s like this seem as if the world’s gone mad, but there are more good, decent people fighting for our country and our democracy than those seeking to co-opt or destroy it. Cleave to those people, remind yourself what we’re fighting for, and hang in there.

“This is Sickening” | How your voices are making a difference

9/24/18 “This is sickening.”

Political nonprofits can no longer hide the names of their donors, thanks to a federal court ruling the Supreme Court declined to consider overturning.

The billionaire who created the National Debt Clock is disgusted with Donald and the GOP’s running up of our national debt by more than $1.5 trillion in the last year alone. He spoke out to exhort the GOP to stop creating tax breaks for the wealthy at the expense of the country: “I support higher taxes on people like me,” saying he was more than willing to pay more taxes.

Republicans Reconsidering

Jeff Flake called out Donny Jr. over a tweet mocking Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Brett Kavanaugh’s accuser: “This is sickening.” Former Republican Congressman Joe Walsh was even more pointed: “I think we all can agree that @DonaldJTrumpJr is an uncaring, narrow-minded idiot.” Even Maine Senator Susan Collins is “appalled” by the tweet—Collins has so far not indicated her support for Kavanaugh has wavered, but perhaps this will turn the tide.

Meanwhile an adviser to Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley—who is overseeing the Supreme Court confirmation process for accused sexual abuser Brett Kavanaugh—just resigned after being accused of sexual harassment.

Some Texas Republicans are now endorsing Democrats.

This conservative UK publication wrote a mournful elegy for the Republican party under Donny.

An Arizona House candidate running for reelection just lost the endorsement of SIX of his siblings—to his Democratic opponent. The siblings decried their brother’s far-right rhetoric and racism.

Republican Florida governor Rick Scott was booed out of a restaurant and run out of his own rally by Florida residents fed up with his lack of action to combat the toxic red tide and algae bloom destroying beaches and sea life and causing deleterious health effects in residents.

The Best People

Not long after former security adviser Michael Flynn pleaded guilty for lying to the FBI about his Russian contacts, his assistant, former deputy national security adviser K.T. McFarland reversed her earlier denials that Flynn may have told her he discussed sanctions with Sergey Kislyak, now admitting that perhaps in fact he did.

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao racked up nearly $100K in a bill to taxpayers by flying on Federal Aviation Administration planes instead of commercial flights on seven occasions in 2017, costing taxpayers almost $100,000. One set of flights by Chao and her staff cost an estimated $68,892.

Donny is once again gunning for Attorney General Jeff Sessions, publicly humiliating him—yet again—regarding a wide range of issues, including immigration and Sessions’s recusing himself from the Russia investigation. “I don’t have an Attorney General,” Trump said. “It’s very sad.”

A federal judge has ordered commerce secretary Wilbur Ross to sit for deposition in a lawsuit that challenges Ross’s adding a citizenship question to the 2020 census.

A Minnesota state rep has ended his bid for reelection in the face of accusations from his daughter that he sexually abused her for ten years beginning when she was nine.

Social and Civil Rights Advances

PayPal joined a slew of other sites that have permanently banned Alex Jones and InfoWars from the site.

McDonald’s employees effected a strike to protest workplace harassment.

Your Feel-good Stories of the Week

Incredibly decent human being Michael Jordan donated $2 million of his personal funds to Hurricane Florence relief efforts in his home state of NC.

This revamped music video for Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young’s “Teach Your Children” is a marvelous updating of the anthem for the resistance.

“It’s mind boggling” | How your voices are making a difference

9/17/18 “How can you be so self-centered and try to distort the truth so much? It’s mind boggling.”

Oh, look, another GOP candidate has ties to white nationalist groups—this one the Republican candidate for governor, Ron DeSantis, who made four appearances at conferences organized by a conservative activist who has said that African Americans owe their freedom to white people (which is like saying that wrongly imprisoned convicts owe theirs to the court system and their jailers), and that the country’s “only serious race war” is against whites. You may remember DeSantis for his comments recently about his African-American opponent, telling supporters not to “monkey this up.” DeSantis, who is currently a Florida House rep who has missed more than half the votes since July, subsequently resigned from the House, ostensibly to pursue his governor bid, but which (coincidentally?) put an end to an ethics investigation into him.

Republicans Against the Law/Russia

Manafort flipped as Mueller’s team moves forward with his second trial. Paul Manafort will be pleading guilty to the second set of charges (including conspiracy to defraud the United States and conspiracy to obstruct justice), and forfeiting millions of dollars of assets to the federal government—effectively paying for the investigation whose cost a panicked Donald keeps citing as a reason it should be ended. The deal, analysts point out, is “pardon proof.”

Federal investigators are meanwhile tracing the money trail of those involved in the infamous 2106 Trump Tower “I love it!” meeting attended to get “dirt” on Hillary Clinton for the Trump campaign; suspicious transfers preceded and immediately followed the meeting.

Donald has chosen not to enforce his nondisclosure agreement with Stephanie Clifford (Stormy Daniels), because doing so would require him to be deposed and thus open himself up to perjury charges if he denies events that are subsequently proven.

An EPA watchdog group has opened an audit into whether former department head Scott Pruitt (he of the three-thousand-dollar “tactical pants,” among otheregregious and possibly criminal wastes of taxpayer money) violated laws or government rules with his task force last year intended to fix the EPA’s Superfund project.

Lordy, Bob Woodward has tapes. Boxes of them, and he’s ready to release them if any of his sources request it.

Donald’s head of FEMA is under investigation for improper use of government vehicles.

A federal judge ruled that education secretary Betsy DeVos’s delay in enforcing a student loan borrower protection rule was unlawful.

Elections

Did you see Beto on Colbert? CBS News featured him as well, saying Beto could herald a blue wave in Texas—so mote it be! And the Texas Trib published a fantastic article urging moderate Republicans to vote for Beto as the candidate who most represents Texans’ interests and the tickets to beginning to remove special-interest and corporate money from politics.

Two political action groups in Maine raised $1 million through crowdfunding to contribute to Senator Susan Collins’s 2020 (as yet nonexistent) opponent in the primaries should Collins vote to confirm Brett Kavanaugh.

Meanwhile one of the few remaining undecideds on the Kavanaugh vote, Maine independent senator Angus King, has announced he is a no.

Republican Lies and Their Fallout

The GOP administration is drawing widespread criticism and pushback from former counterterrorism officials, among others, for misleading reports falsely linking immigration to terrorism.

After Donald’s false tweets severely understating the death toll of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico in the face of his administration’s inadequate response, and blaming Democrats, the Hispanic Caucus declined an invitation to the White House to kick off Hispanic Heritage Month.

Republicans Reconsidering

Former New Jersey GOP governor Christine Todd Whitman thinks Donald should resign: “He’s undermining some of the basic tenets of our democracy.” Watch her disturbing and extensive list of reasons why “there’s a time when you put the country ahead of your party” and urges her party to stand up to the mentally deranged dotard.

Even Republicans (at least a handful of them) were appalled at Donald’s insensitive, dismissive lies on Twitter about the casualties in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria being a smear campaign for the Democrats. Rep. Ileana Ros Lehtinen (R-Fla.), says, “What kind of mind twists that statistic into ‘Oh, fake news is trying to hurt my image’? How can you be so self-centered and try to distort the truth so much? It’s mind boggling.”

Senator Ben Sasse (R-NE) has finally had enough and is speaking out against the GOP administration“The White House is a reality-show, soap-opera presidency,” Sasse said on Meet the Press. True enough, Ben—now let’s see you start holding the line against Donald and not voting to enable him and the spineless GOP.

Meanwhile Mitt Romney is calling out his party for their extravagant spending and irresponsible running up of the federal deficit.

There are signs that the GOP’s actions are coming back to roost in North Carolina, where backlash against the commander of cheese and Republicans’ attacks on the LGBTQ community via the ridiculous bathroom bill are drawing millions of dollars in support for Democratic candidates, putting this once-solid conservative stronghold in play in the midterms.

A terrified Don has stepped up the rate of his lies—a record 68 percent in a recent rally, for a total while in office of more than a staggering 5,000 lies. Yet fewer and fewer Americans are swallowing them—the mentally deranged dotard is hemorrhaging support from independents, a key demographic in his electoral college win, and even among Republicans, who are also losing their faith in the liar in chief above the media.

Your Feel-good Stories of the Week

A group of Washington, DC, residents have petitioned the district’s Alcohol Beverage Control Board to revoke the Trump Hotel liquor licenses, since a requirement for one is that the proprietor be “of good character,” and their petition charges multiple ways in which he is not, including swindling, lying, bribery, and being a racist who consorts with criminals.

Stephen Miller’s rabbi is pissed off at the white nationalist’s renouncement of the tenets of his faith, and publicly took Miller to task.

Musical genius Ben Folds wrote a song about Rod Rosenstein.

Willie is Team Beto, and screw anyone who has a problem with that.

Fabulous sign of the times—this school’s homecoming queen is also the varsity football teams’ kicker who made the winning point for her team the same night she was crowned. Who run the world?

 And a little art to leave you with…

Flippers

Barack is back, babies | How your voices are making a difference

9/10/18

Barack is back, babies.

And just in time, too. Bob Woodward’s new book (he who helped expose Nixon’s Watergate scandal) shows that Donald is even more unhinged than we knew, with White House staffers scrambling to adapt to his ignorance, temper, and breaches of democracy. One day later, you may have heard that the NYTimes published a scathing op-ed by an anonymous senior staff member confirming that the mentally deranged dotard is…well, pretty much that. Donald lost his mind over it. This week alone he called for protesting to be illegal, the reform of libel laws to allow him to sue anyone who says anything he doesn’t like, and that NBC should lose its broadcasting license (same reason).

And after Donny’s vociferous denials that he ever used the terms “retarded” and “dumb Southerner,” language reported in Woodward’s book, video surfaced showing him saying the former, and a former deputy editor of the New York Post says Donald referred to his in-laws as “dumb Southerners.”

Among all his other own appointees who allegedly are turning on him, apparently Donny is most recently bent about Christopher Wray, the FBI director he himself named after firing James Comey. Apparently Donald doesn’t realize that appointing these men to do their jobs is likely to wind up revealing how thoroughly he cannot do his.

In other off-the-rails GOP administration news, last year Donny’s administration rejected an intelligence report that showed refugees don’t pose a significant security threat to the U.S., then created its own report this year that misstates the evidence, inflating the threat posed by foreign-born immigrants.

To the shock of no one, a government employee admits he cropped Donald’s inauguration photos to make the crowd look bigger, after fragile Don complained to the National Park Service about the photos.

Elections

A group of political activists supporting Latinx candidates raised money via a Go Fund Me drive to rent a billboard in Texas featuring Donald Trump’s denigration of Ted Cruz during the 2016 elections.

John McCain’s former chief of staff is considering running for Senate—as a Democrat.

Republicans Against the Law

Donny’s former campaign adviser George Papadopoulous was sentenced to 14 days in jail for lying to Mueller’s investigation about Russia-related contacts, a suspiciously light sentence that leads one to wonder what he might have offered for such hospitable leniency… (In other Russia news, Homeland Security head Kirstjen Nelson finally—finally—called out Putin for meddling in our 2016 elections.)

Steve Bannon was summarily uninvited from the New Yorker festival/panel he was inexplicably invited to, with filmmaker Judd Apatow joining others in refusing to appear if Bannon was normalized by being included.

Donald instructed the DoJ to selectively prosecute people for political reasons, an egregious breach of democratic procedure and the separation of the executive and judicial branch.

A group of seven Senate Democrats formally asked the DoJ to investigate Rudy Giuliani’s work for foreign agents while in Donny’s employ.

A group of hospitals has formed a nonprofit generic-drug company, CivicaRx, with the goal of forcing Big Pharma to stop gouging consumers.

Social and Civil Rights Advances

After a five-day trial, a U.S. District judge struck down Texas’s barbaric, unconstitutional “fetal remains” law requiring burial or cremation of tissue from abortions and miscarriages.

India’s supreme court decriminalized consensual same-sex relationships.

Twitter (finally) banned conspiracy theorist and hatemonger Alex Jones and Infowars from the site permanently.

Colin Kaepernick is the new face of Nike. Get out there and buy you some swoosh—conservatives are feverishly destroying their Nike products (rather than, you know, give them to, say, homeless veterans).

Donny’s approval rating fell 5 points in a month from August to Sept—to 36 percent. Even Republican support fell from 83 to 76 percent.

A Miss America contestant called out Donald as “the biggest issue facing our country today,” while another contestant defended citizens’ right to kneel in protest of injustice and pointed out that the NFL players’ taking a knee is in protest of police slaying of black men.

Plaid Shirt Guy broke the Internet.