Will Lindsey Graham ever accept the 2012 election results? Does he need counseling?

“Round two’s coming. And we’re going to have one hell of a contest about the direction and the vision of this country.” — Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.), discussing the upcoming debt ceiling / sequestration negotiations.

Steve Benen explains that Lindsey Graham and much of the rest of the Republican Congress seem confused and, for the good of the country, need to begin accepting the results of the election. After all, Republicans told us repeatedly that,

“Election Day 2012, in other words, was for all the marbles. It was the big one. The whole enchilada was on the line. The results would set the direction of the country for a generation, so it was time to pull out all the stops and fight like there’s no tomorrow — because for the losers, there probably wouldn’t be one And then President Obama won fairly easily, Senate Democrats defied expectations and expanded their majority, and House Democrats gained seats. [...]

Not to put too fine a point on this, Lindsey Graham seems to be missing the point of the democratic process. In this country, we have elections in which candidates present their ideas about the direction and the vision of this country, and the American people express a preference. Then, once that’s over, there’s an expectation that the fight over the direction and the vision of this country would end and governing would begin. [...]

But wait, Republicans say, didn’t the electorate also elect a right-wing House majority? To a certain extent, yes, but in raw vote totals, Americans cast 1.362 million more votes for Democratic House candidates than GOP House candidates, which hardly points to a powerful Republican mandate.”

So the contest about “the direction and vision of this country” occurred on Nov. 6th with pretty solid results:

Barack Obama is the first president in more than five decades to win at least 51 percent of the national popular vote twice, according to a revised vote count in New York eight weeks after the Nov. 6 election. [...] The president nationally won 65.9 million votes — or 51.1 percent — against Republican challenger Mitt Romney, who took 60.9 million votes and 47.2 percent of the total cast, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Obama is the first president to achieve the 51 percent mark in two elections since Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower, who did it in 1952 and 1956, and the first Democrat to do so since Franklin D. Roosevelt, who won four consecutive White House races. Roosevelt received 53.4 percent of the vote — his lowest — in his last race in 1944.”

Lindsey’s petulance won’t reverse reality or change the election results. Maybe a good therapist is the only solution at this point. Or an intervention from the voters:

Washington, D.C.
290 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: 202-224-5972
Fax: 202-224-3808
Twitter: @GrahamBlog
Facebook: USSenatorLindseyGraham

Republicans are about to get a very bitter lesson in Democratic party identification

From a TPM article on unskewing polls to make conservatives happy, this excellent comment:

Mark Tenenbaum • 10 hours ago

Republicans are about to get a very bitter lesson in Democratic party identification. They have convinced themselves, and the corporate media, that the 2010 election was more than a transitory effect of a low turnout election and a bad economy. It wasn’t. 2008 was a wave election, 2010 was a low turnout reaction to high unemployment and GOP obstructionism and lies about the health care law. 55 million people who voted in 2008 did not vote in 2010. Obama won by 9.5 million votes in 2008. This will also be a high turnout election, especially in Ohio.

Only one friend of mine is switching her vote from 2008 from Obama to Romney, a lifelong republican who voted for Obama in 08 because of how he inspired people, and because McCain was so weak, and who is unhappy that Obama focused so much attention on health care. She is inexorably committed to vote R at this point. But everybody else I know who voted for Obama in 2008 is enthusiastically supporting his re-election, and even a few who are disappointed in Obama (more from the left from the right, but some moderates too) are sticking with him . . . . and absolutely all of them are scared shitless that Romney has a chance of being elected. They are highly motivated to make sure that doesn’t happen. And any Republican who thinks they are pulling away is in one of the five Kubler-Ross stages of coping with one’s own terminal illness — i.e., denial, anger, bargaining, sadness and reconciliation. Well, not reconciliation, not yet. But they will be.

This is going to look a lot more like 2008 than the pundits are predicting. It will not be a long, tortuous night.

Combined with this:


I went to the Obama rally in Mentor today. Instead of posting my own pictures, I’m going to post this one I found here. The caption on the website is, “a man weeps as U.S. President Barack Obama greets supporters after addressing a campaign rally in the main gymnasium at Mentor High School November 3, 2012 in Mentor, Ohio.”

I usually find it stirring to see people moved like this, but that’s not why I’m posting this.

I know this man.

We’ve played together in a community college jazz band for a little over a year. He plays piano. He’s clever. He makes hilarious facial expressions when something goes wrong in the music. We’ve never really talked much, but I’ve always known him to be a good guy.

And after seeing this, I’m reminded that every person has a story. I don’t know what made him cry like that. I don’t know his story. But it matters. All of us have stories that matter.

Even if my fellow jazz musician and I have stories that differ and hardly talk, we have common ground in that we choose to believe in the president. It makes me feel connected. Not only to this pianist I barely know, but to everyone who was touched at the rally. And it doesn’t stop in Mentor, Ohio.

It’s good to feel like you’re part of something bigger than yourself and I think that is what this campaign is about.

Be the wave: VOTE!!

The people who cast the votes decide nothing. The people who count the votes decide everything.

via: silas216


Petition for AG Eric Holder: investigate Tagg Romney’s ownership of voting machines

Sign the petition

Related: Mitt Romney’s family bought themselves some voting machines for the election!

Mitt Romney’s family bought themselves some voting machines for the election!

Privatizing our nation’s voting systems could ONLY turn out with this kind of a result — and naturally the wealthiest candidate to ever seek the presidency, the King of Bain, is the first Republican candidate involved.

Romney family buys voting machines through Bain Capital investment:Tagg Romney, the son of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, has purchased electronic voting machines that will be used in the 2012 elections in Ohio, Texas, Oklahoma, Washington and Colorado. “Late last month, Gerry Bello and Bob Fitrakis at FreePress.org broke the story of the Mitt Romney / Bain Capital investment team involved in H.I.G. Capital which, in July of 2011, completed a “strategic investment” to take over a fair share of the Austin-based e-voting machine company Hart Intercivic,” according to independent journalist Brad Friedman.”

Truthout: “Through a closely held equity fund called Solamere, Mitt Romney and his wife, son and brother are major investors in an investment firm called H.I.G. Capital. H.I.G. in turn holds a majority share and three out of five board members in Hart Intercivic, a company that owns the notoriously faulty electronic voting machines that will count the ballots in swing state Ohio November 7. Hart machines will also be used elsewhere in the United States. In other words, a candidate for the presidency of the United States, and his brother, wife and son, have a straight-line financial interest in the voting machines that could decide this fall’s election. These machines cannot be monitored by the public. But they will help decide who “owns” the White House.”

The Nation: “The Medicaid reimbursements for the dental management companies offer a revealing look at the underlying business model being pursued by the Romney-supporting private equity firms: big government, when harnessed to industry-friendly regulators, can mean big profits. Many of these private equity–owned companies rely on federal and state contracts, from HIG Capital’s Hart Intercivic, a voting machine company, to EnviroFoam Technologies, a biological and chemical decontamination firm that does business with the US military and is owned by Peterson Partners, a private equity firm listed in the Solamere prospectus. It’s already clear how the Solamere nexus of influence would work to advance such companies under a Romney administration.”

Brad Friedman: “Late last month, Gerry Bello and Bob Fitrakis at FreePress.org broke the story of the Mitt Romney/Bain Capital investment team involved in H.I.G. Capital which, in July of 2011, completed a “strategic investment” to take over a fair share of the Austin-based e-voting machine company Hart Intercivic. [...] Hart’s announcement of the deal describes H.I.G.’s role as as “co-investors”, though the financial services firm which brokered the deal described it in their own announcement as a full-fledged acquisition: “Hart Intercivic was acquired by HIG Capital late last week. The deal caps off a 2+ year relationship with Hart! Congrats to both Hart and the HIG team…its going to be a great partnership!” [...] Despite the Rightwing reports, [George] Soros has no apparent control of the Scytl outfit, but it doesn’t matter. Other private corporate entities — unaccountable to the public — do. Either way, whether it’s Soros or entities tied to Mitt Romney, George W. Bush, Hugo Chavez or anybody else, the fact that we have allowed this complete corporatization of the machinery of our public elections, the very lifeblood of our democracy — the first and most important element of true self-governance — is, in and of itself, a continuing shame for what was once regarded as “the world’s greatest democracy.””

NY Times: “Two years later, despite a challenging fund-raising climate for private equity, Solamere, named after a wealthy enclave in Utah’s Deer Valley where the Romneys have a winter home, finished raising its first fund. The firm blew past its $200 million goal, securing $244 million from 64 investors, including a critical, early $10 million from Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, and hefty commitments from wealthy supporters of the campaign.

Crooks and Liars: “According to this form and this form filed with the SEC, Solamere Group owns a large stake in Solamere Advisors (referred to in the documents as “CAMG Solamere.”) So it is impossible to argue that Solamere Capital—the Romney family’s investment company—does not have direct financial ties with Solamere Advisors, the firm filled with executives who sold CDs as part of the Stanford fraud. The Stanford scandal is second only to the case of Bernie Madoff. The disclosures are made on part of the SEC website enhanced by the new Dodd-Frank law, the Wall Street reform Romney says he wants to repeal.”

Vote counting company Hart Intercivic, whose machines have famously failed in the past, is tied to Mitt Romney and Bain Capital — from The David Parkman Show:

[According] to VerifiedVoting.org’s database, in all or parts of California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Washington, Hart InterCivic voting and tabulation systems are now used.

You’d think the mainstream media would be making more of this alarming news — this potential scandal, wouldn’t you? Acorn, please!

Related: Petition for AG Eric Holder: investigate Tagg Romney’s ownership of voting machines

Rhetorical questions from the AP: Is GOP trying to sabotage economy to hurt Obama?

The only possible answer is ‘duh.’

OWS: Bills introduced by the 112th Republican / Teaparty Congress

via: reagan-was-a-horrible-president

HERE IS WHERE I’LL INSERT A SHOUT-OUT to all those who didn’t vote in 2010. Maybe the numbers above and below might convince you to not sit out the 2012 election. The people with the misspelled signs and Li’l Rascal chairs sure won’t.

112th Congress (2011-2013)

Majority Party: Republican (242 seats)
Minority Party: Democrat (193 seats)
Other Parties: 0
Total Seats: 435

Majority Party: Democrat (51 seats)
Minority Party: Republican (47 seats)
Other Parties: 1 Independent; 1 Independent Democrat
Total Seats: 100

Occupy Wall Street AND Occupy the Voting Booth next year if you’re against more tax cuts for the wealthy and more spending cuts for the rest of us.

Your new definition of “traitor” — someone who makes things better for the USA before the 2012 election

RICK PERRY LABELED BEN BERNANKE A TRAITOR not because Perry has strong beliefs about the Fed and printing money — or any of that. It will come as no surprise that it’s simply because Perry wants to win an election. It’s pure Texas politics:

Rick Perry appears to be saying that a new round of quantitative easing “between now and the election” would improve the economy. That, he holds, would not be a good thing, but a crime. Because it would tilt the political balance in a way that harms Rick Perry’s chances of defeating the incumbent President.

The ‘old’ definitions of traitor and treason:

Trai·tor/ˈtrātər/ Noun: A person who betrays a friend, country, principle, etc.

Trea·son/ˈtrēzən/Noun 1. The crime of betraying one’s country, esp. by attempting to kill the sovereign or overthrow the government.

Just saying: could the old definitions be used for someone who wanted to secede from the Union?


Turkeys voting for Thanksgiving: The Teaparty Republican baseRick Perry, who talked about secession, questions Obama’s patriotism and military service“I dunno what y’all would do to him in Iowa but we would treat him pretty ugly down in Texas.”

Wisconsin: Dems took two seats. Imagine if that would have happened earlier, going into 2011.

Was the Wisconsin recall election a loss? Markos doesn’t think so:

But let me just say, if tonight was a loss, I hope we have many more such “losses” in 2012.

We took the fight into red territory, and took two seats. What was a safe 19-14 GOP advantage is now a narrow 17-16. If we had those numbers going into 2011, the anti-labor bill would never have passed—one GOPer voted with the Democrats (and hey, Sen. Dale Schultz, the water is mighty fine on our side of the aisle!).

The execrable Randy Hopper is gone. He can cry in his 20-something-year-old mistress’s arms tonight. And Kapanke too. It sucks being unemployed in Wisconsin these days. Maybe they can get a non-union job at McDonald’s.

Beyond Wisconsin, if we can enjoy a similar “loss rate” in Republican-held districts (picking up 33 percent of them), Speaker Nancy Pelosi will have a huge majority in 2013. We had a message that resonated with large numbers of working people in overwhelmingly white working-class districts that shifted hard against Democrats in 2010. GOP overreach is winning them back for us. Just think, before today, only 13 state legislators had been recalled in the entire history of this nation.

I highlighted that one sentence above, because just imagine all the trouble, heartache, unemployment, and overall dumbfuckery that could have been avoided if more people who voted in 2008 had bothered to vote in 2010. The people who stayed home handed Wisconsin over to the anti-union, pro-Koch, aggressively stupid teaparty wingnuts — hell, they handed over the entire country to them in the form of John Boehner and Congress and the past seven months worth of freshmen TP-Republicans attempting to destroy our country by doing nothing good on purpose.

What did you “accomplish” by staying home again?

Another debt ceiling fight from the Teaparty Republicans in 2013? Probably not.

Jonathan Bernstein doesn’t think we’re going to see this debt ceiling fight again after the next election, whether a Republican wins the White House or President Obama is re-elected. The political rewards for the GOP just wouldn’t be there:

…if we get a Republican president and a Democratic Congress, the issue won’t play nearly as well in reverse (although it’s certainly possible that President Romney or Perry could veto a clean limit increase and demand cuts – but would a brand-new president really want to risk that?). Of course, a unified Democratic government would not only probably pass a clean increase, but it also might well scrap the debt limit entirely, as Jonathan Chait suggests they demand in the future.

What if we have the status quo in January 2013? Hard to say. But it’s going to be a whole lot easier for Republicans to vote for a clean debt-limit increase at that point (perhaps loaded with some symbolic stuff). One of the key problems for Republicans this year is that they were just elected on a lot of extravagant promises about immediate, absolute change. My guess is that those who are reelected in 2012 won’t repeat those promises, at least not quite as loudly. They will have voted to raise the debt limit. They will have voted for appropriations bills that spend gazillions of dollars. They will have voted for budgets that don’t immediately balance. They may not own up to those things, and some of them will certainly keep up the rhetoric, but the bulk of them? We’ll see.

Moreover, should we have a status quo election in 2012, the incentive of defeating Barack Obama will, of course, be gone in 2013. Instead, members of Congress will be worrying about their own reelections, and triggering an economic crisis just after the president is inaugurated may not work well for that goal.

Deficits don’t matter! Sometimes!

Gadsden Flag 2011


Bill Maher on Palin: “She should not be on vacation. She should be in summer school.”

On the 2012 GOP candidates: “I think anyone could be president in this dumb, fucking country.” ~ Bill Maher

Watch video clip | Real Time, June 3, 2011: