Politics, Religion and a little Gossip thrown in for flavor...welcome to Sunday Morning Coffee! My name is Michael P. Libbie and if you wish to comment on anything here feel free. And/Or we can connect on my personal Twitter Stream @MichaelLibbie or my personal Facebook Page which is right here. So much to cover...here we go!
The RNC vs. NBC & CNN
The party of transparency voted last week to sever relationships regarding the upcoming GOP Primary Debates with both NBC and CNN because of planned programing which will feature Hillary Clinton. What a waste of time and effort. When it comes to uniting Republicans nothing beats their visceral dislike for the former First Lady...unless it is immigrants, middle class families, affordable health care, food stamps, a clean environment, voting...gosh the list can get pretty long. Meanwhile the "debates" will be worth missing anyway. What the GOP needs to do is strike ALL of the networks other than Fox News as they will be speaking to themselves anyway.
I've thought of this often: "Why would the Republican controlled US House of Representatives vote 40 times to undermine the Affordable Care Act?" Tim DeLong of Des Moines has this answer: "Because it would be an object demonstration of the wrong-headedness of right-wing ideology." In other words, the fear of it actually helping the middle class; the fear of it reducing health care costs; the fear of losing the austerity battle is too great. It is better to kill it than allow it to work. Remember that the next time you go vote.
Speaking of Voting
While you were sleeping the enlightened folks in North Carolina who in the Tea-Party Take Over of 2010 elected Pat McCrory (R-NC) may be having a case of buyers remorse. Last week Gov. McCrory, who is holding an approval rating of close to 35%, signed into law the most restrictive voting act in the nation. It goes beyond showing a voter ID. The new law eliminates same day registration and reduces early voting (gosh...sounds like Florida) and the ability to vote a straight party ticket. If you live in Iowa those same issues are championed here by Secretary of State Matt Schultz (R-IA) and Gov. Terry Branstad (R-IA). These are not isolated cases but rather a very stratigic plan by the GOP to supress the vote. Why? Because they can not win moving forward and in case you doubt that see the piece above regarding who they...hate.
But, It Gets Worse
The North Carolina story is bad at its face. However, dig a little deeper and you'll find that on the local level the Republicans have worked tirelessly to block the vote. They have closed polling places, challenged residency status of candidates and done whatever they can to make sure only white folks vote. No? I implore you to spend ten minutes and watch this piece by Rachel Maddow and pay close attention to the final segment regarding Montravious King. Shocking...
Nothing Funny About It
Last week my friend State Senator Jack Hatch (D-Des Moines) and his campaign released this video and I've had the them to Smokey and the Bandit running through my head for...days.
Of course Gov. Branstad doesn't think it's funny and described it as an "attack ad" and brushed it off as being, "...way too early for this...". Well, governor, it's not. You, sir, have not made Iowa proud. You have used your office and your power to hand out millions of dollars to already successful companies while thumbing your nose at the middle-class. You have refused to take responsibility for the lack of health care for thousands, continue to ignore our polluted water issues, turn a deaf ear to the misery of young women at the Iowa Juvenile Home and push your religious views down the throats of Iowans. There is nothing funny about any of that...sir. I'm looking forward to the campaign.
Americans for Prosperity
Our friends David and Charles Koch have brought their bewildering idea to Iowa and will spend millions in an attempt to discredit Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA). A guy by the name of Mark Lucas drives around in a purple SUV telling folks that Bruce is the enemy of the people because he "loves big government". Now, think about this for a minute. Americans for Prosperity spent $3 million in Iowa trying get Iowans to believe that what is best for our state are "big money job-creators" who see the rest of us as pawns and serfs and Bruce, who grew up in Brooklyn, Iowa the son of a teacher is somehow...the problem. Not sure what you guys are smoking Mark...but it stinks.
The annual Indianolia event known as the Harkin Steak Fry is nearly here. Coming by for a chat will be Vice President Joe Biden and we're looking forward to the visit. There is not another political figure in the nation who is more in tune with the public than Joe. He will spend time talking to everybody and anybody and he takes the time to listen...intently. Back in 2008 then Senator Joe Biden was one of many Democrats who made the Harkin Steak Fry. Long after the others were gone Joe stuck around holding court with anybody who wanted to talk (photo). Class guy.
My friend Connie Ryan Terrell is the executive director of the Interfaith Alliance of Iowa and in this morning's Des Moines Sunday Register she writes there is "No room for discrimination by businesses". She is referencing a Grimes facility, The Gortz Haus and owners Dick and Betty Odgaard who are being sued because they denied service to a gay couple planning a wedding at the facility. What is stunning about this story is the lack of knowledge some business people have regarding public accommodation. It is against the law to deny protected class citizens the right of public accommodation...for any reason especially religious. Mind numbing. Here is the national story from our friends at the Huffington Post. As my friend Desmund Adams has said over and over, "Equal is equal there are no shades of equality." Weary...
Today is the final day of the great Iowa State Fair. Tickets are 1/2 off during Extreme Sunday and thousands will take advantage of the savings and the amazing weather. We've been several times and it's always the very best. What a great place to share family and friend face-time. Enjoy.
We had an impromptu party with Mom on Friday afternoon. Used the oven at Edgewater to cook up some pizza and two of her great-granddaughters and a great-grandson spent some time chatting, eating and laughing. We are blessed.
Have a wonderful Sunday! - Michael
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