Various and sundry reasons why we can’t have nice things

Feds spend $7 on THE ELDERLY for every $1 on KIDS: Funny how the blame is always on the (nonexistent) welfare moms who keep pumping out kids for more government cheese. (via) »»»»»» SENIORS TAKE NOTE: it’s impossible for the GOP to draft a budget that balances in 10 years without eating into entitlement benefits for people older than 55. »»»»»»  House GOP leaders want Obama to own the automatic cuts — the sequester (the OBAMAQUESTER) — but their budget chief, PAUL RYAN, is expected to count those cuts toward his 10 year plan.   

Kerry: Budget cuts may force reduction in aid to ISRAEL: Some $3 billion goes to Israel annually in US military aid, 74 percent of which must be spent in the US. »»»»»»  Incomes rose more than 11 percent for the TOP 1 PERCENT of earners during the economic recovery and declined by 0.4 percent for everyone else.

After a METEOR struck RUSSIA, the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology announced Friday that it will hold a hearing over asteroids — that committee is chaired by THIS GUY, so maybe they’ll try to pray them away.   »»»»»»  “The REPUBLICAN PARTY was always an uneasy marriage between the Jesus freaks and the plutocrats.”  »»»»»»  Why a $9.00 MINIMUM WAGE would NOT lead employers to shed jobs or increase prices and pass the costs onto consumers. 

The NRA says regular Americans can’t protect themselves without high-capacity magazines.  »»»»»»  We’re at war, but… why did Senator JOHN MCCAIN claim he wouldn’t filibuster CHUCK HAGEL, then go ahead and do so anyway? Because Hagel hurt his feelings over five years ago.  »»»»»» SEAN HANNITY“It’s the first time a filibuster of a cabinet nominee has been used. And needless to say, this marks a major win for the GOP, and pretty embarrassing defeat for the president.”  »»»»»»  FreedomWorks produced a video of a fake GIANT PANDA having sex with a fake HILLARY CLINTON. Seriously.  

Republicans are terrible people

In a speech to the Wyoming GOP, DICK Cheney said that the recent national security choices by President Obama (i.e. Chuck Hagel, John Brennan and John Kerry) were “subpar people.”  This from the guy who was part of an administration that chose, among other things, Heckofajob Brownie for FEMA.

Charles Johnson: Sen. Lindsey Graham has appointed himself the King of Republican Bad Craziness, pandering to the far right’s bizarre fantasies about the Benghazi attack with a relentless zeal that would be impressive if it were directed at something actually useful to the country.

New wingnut conspiracy! In the wake of news that Sen. Lindsey Graham is threatening to block the nominations of Hagel and Brennan, there’s a whole new conspiracy theory bubbling up on the right. From ground zero of Obama era conspiracy theories comes the conspiracy theory to top them all: that CIA nominee John Brennan is himself a Muslim.

via quickhits

John Cole: Thinkprogress makes the mistake of taking John McCain at his word. Look, how many times will people fall for this. The McCain / Lieberman / Graham / Snowe / Collins caucus will always say they are in favor of looking at compromise and policies advanced by the President. But in the end, they always find a reason not to, usually because someone hurt their feelings or they didn’t like the seat they were sitting in at the negotiating table at the White House or because Nancy Pelosi smirked on CNN.

“Well, Tom, the problem with saying this is the president’s idea is that you voted for the Budget Control Act. I voted against it. We wouldn’t have ever been talking about the Budget Control Act but for your party refused to negotiate on the debt ceiling something that has been routinely increased as the country needed it. You used that occasion in 2011 August to basically say we are going to default on the country’s obligations or you’re going to give us dramatic spending cuts. That’s how we got to the Budget Control Act.”Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) to Tom Cole (R-OK) for his claim that President Obama is responsible for the upcoming sequester.

Senators Marco Rubio and Rand Paul have both been tapped to rebut President Obama’s SOTU before they’ve even had a chance to hear him speak: They’re serving up both kinds of Republicans! Country and Western! The Tea Party and The Tea Party. The difference is that Tea Party hero, Sen. Marco Rubio, can say, “Pro-growth” in español. With that Steve Stifler-like smile and charm, Marco Rubio is there for outreach, and to coerce the Latino vote into bed. And just in case the Tea Party gets a little nervous if there isn’t someone there to speak the native language of “white people” to the actual base, Tea Party hero, Sen. Rand Paul, is there to reassure them that they haven’t been overrun by the demographic shift, just yet. But this is typical Republican Party behavior. They get two chances to make their case, and you get one.

via letfreedomlulz

“It’s official: Republicans hate the UN more than they like helping people in wheelchairs.”


gifs: sandandglass

More from Anne Laurie / Balloon Juice:

Lawrence Downes, in the NYTImes, on “A Parting Slap Against Bob Dole & Disabled Americans“:

Former Senator Bob Dole, 89 years old and in a wheelchair, went onto to the floor of the Senate today to urge his former colleagues to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons With Disabilities. Mr. Dole, a disabled veteran, has been one of the leading voices urging ratification of the treaty, which seeks to bring the world closer to the high standard set by the Americans with Disabilities Act, the landmark civil-rights law enacted under President George H.W. Bush.

One by one, according to Roll Call, the senators approached Mr. Dole to pat his shoulder or clasp his hand, making gestures of respect for the man who was for many years the Republican majority leader.

Then he was wheeled away, and all but a handful of the Republicans bailed out on him. The treaty failed. It needed a two-thirds vote to pass, or 67 votes, and fell six short…

In other words, these cowards didn’t have the guts to disagree with a crippled octogenarian to his face. [...] Senator Kerry:

.. Senator John Kerry, the Massachusetts Democrat and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in a statement after the vote: “This is one of the saddest days I’ve seen in almost 28 years in the Senate, and it needs to be a wake-up call about a broken institution that’s letting down the American people.”

He added: “Today the dysfunction hurt veterans and the disabled, and that’s unacceptable. This treaty was supported by every veterans group in America and Bob Dole made an inspiring and courageous personal journey back to the Senate to fight for it. It had bipartisan support, and it had the facts on its side, and yet for one ugly vote, none of that seemed to matter. We won’t give up on this and the Disabilities Treaty will pass because it’s the right thing to do, but today I understand better than ever before why Americans have such disdain for Congress and just how much must happen to fix the Senate so we can act on the real interests of our country.”

Also too:

Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, said the measure would return to the Senate floor in the 113th Congress.

“It is a sad day when we cannot pass a treaty that simply brings the world up to the American standard for protecting people with disabilities because the Republican Party is in thrall to extremists and ideologues,” he said in a statement. 

The popular vote vs. Diebold

Anne Laurie: Getting too much sleep? Let Wonkette’s Rebecca Schoenkopf introduce us all to “our new Diebold“:

Hey, remember when they stole Ohio? Hahaha, yeah, good times. (Here is a quick story explainering the bizarre discrepancies between exit polls, which showed John Kerry winning handily, and the tabulated results, which flipped that. It has the special bonus of world’s greatest pollster Dick Morris musing that since exit polls are like never wrong, and are used in Third World countries to determine if an election’s been thieved, Occam’s Razor insists that the easiest answer is not that the machines were hacked, but that the liberal media fixed … the exit polls. To dissuade Bush voters from coming out. A man of fierce intellect, most certainly.) Right, so! It is time to meet your new Diebold machines, from H.I.G., a company of fine fellows who to the man have donated to Mitt Romney, and a full third of whose board of directors come from Bain? Oh yeah, them….

This is literally a bunch of stuff:

The widespread use of electronic voting machines from ES&S, and of Diebold software maintained by Triad, allowed Blackwell to electronically flip a 4% Kerry lead to a 2% Bush victory in the dead of election night. ES&S, Diebold and Triad were all owned or operated by Republican partisans. The shift of more than 300,000 votes after 12:20 am election night was a virtual statistical impossibility. It was engineered by Michael Connell, an IT specialist long affiliated with the Bush Family. Blackwell gave Connell’s Ohio-based GovTech the contract to count Ohio’s votes, which was done on servers housed in the Old Pioneer Bank Building in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Thus the Ohio vote tally was done on servers that also carried the e-mail for Karl Rove and the national Republican Party. Connell died in a mysterious plane crash in December, 2008, after being subpoenaed in the King-Lincoln-Bronzeville federal lawsuit focused on how the 2004 election was decided (disclosure: we were attorney and plaintiff in that suit). Diebold’s founder, Walden O’Dell, had vowed to deliver Ohio’s electoral votes—and thus the presidency—to his friend George W. Bush. That it was done in part on electronic voting machines and software O’Dell happened to own (Diebold has since changed hands twice) remains a cautionary red flag for those who believe merely winning the popular vote will give Barack Obama a second term. This November, much of the Ohio electorate will cast its ballots on machines again owned by close cronies of the Republican presidential candidate…”

— Will E-Voting Machines Owned by His Buddies Give Mitt Romney the White House?

There has to be enough votes that can’t be easily flipped “in the dead of night.” Don’t let them cheat to win.

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Here’s a great example of the fever swamp of rightwing conspiracy theories: 2004 edition

Support the troops (except when they’re Democrats, or when it’s inconvenient, or when they serve under a Democratic president, or if the Republican a Democrat is running against has less of a military record, or… on and on and on).

Straight from Our Twitchy Lady of Interment Camps:

Do conservative women have the market cornered on crazy eyes?


It’s funny that the Republicans have nominated a guy who is the literal embodiment of everything they were accusing John Kerry of being in 2004.


Palin: “I think he diminished himself by even mentioning my name. How does he even know my name?”

Sarah Palin now in agreement with everyone: ignore her.


“For Romney an overseas trip is what you call it when you trip all over yourself overseas”

John Kerry, ladies and gentlemen. Also,

“Our opponents like to talk about ‘American Exceptionalism,’ but all they do is talk. The only thing exceptional about today’s Republicans is that — almost without exception — they oppose everything that has made America exceptional in the first place.”

“No nominee for president should ever fail in the midst of a war to pay tribute to our troops overseas in his acceptance speech.”

“Despite what you heard in Tampa, an exceptional country does care about the rise of the oceans.”

“Ask Osama bin Laden if he’s better off than he was four years ago.”

“[Romney’ has] even blurted out the preposterous notion that Russia is our number one poltical foe. Folks, Sarah Palin talked about how she could see Russia from Alaska. Mitt Romney talks like he’s only seen Russia in Rocky IV.”


The Republican Party makes my tubes spastic

via: christopherstreet

Pentagon denouncing “swift-boat” style attacks on President Obama by “OPSEC group”

The CSMonitor reports that the Pentagon is denouncing “swift-boat” style attacks on President Obama from the group “Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund Inc.” They are critical of the president over what they call dangerous leaks about the bin Laden raid.

Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, responded to the film, warning that using the uniform for partisan politics erodes the trust that people have in their military. “One of the things that marks us as a profession in a democracy is, it’s most important we remain apolitical,” he said Wednesday. “That’s how we maintain our trust with the American people. The American people don’t want us to become another special-interest group. In fact, I think that confuses them.”

[...] For special operators to take part in political campaigns is “in violation of everything we’ve been taught, and the opposite of what we should be doing, which is being quiet professionals,” Army Special Forces Maj. Fernando Luján told the Associated Press.

[...] President Obama has spoken out against the OPSEC group. “I don’t take these folks too seriously… One of their members is a birther who denies I was born here, despite evidence to the contrary.”

[...] The group criticizes the president in particular for what it says was a politically motivated push to take credit for the bin Laden raid.

Adm. William McRaven, head of Special Operations Command, which planned the raid, took on such criticisms in an interview last month with CNN, noting the great risks involved in the operation. “At the end of the day – make no mistake about it – it was the president of the United States that shouldered the burden for this operation, that made the hard decisions, that was instrumental in the planning process,” he said, “because I pitched every plan to him.”

If you’re wondering which anonymous billionaire is funding the non-profit swift-boaters at OPSEC, jamess at DailyKos has run down who’s affiliated with / running the group (all Republicans!), but not who’s giving them money — that bit of information doesn’t ever have to be disclosed:

The group claims to have raised almost $1 million between June and mid-August 2012.[4][2] Because it claims that its primary purpose is to further the common good, the group doesn’t have to disclose who is funding it to the public.[3]

A very dishonorable use of veterans by the Republican Party, and a dishonorable use of their own military careers by the veterans themselves.

FACT: In 2004, after John Kerry released 20 years of tax returns, a top Romney aide demanded more

His standards have dropped just a little since then.

“Throughout history, presidential candidates have disclosed income tax information prior to Election Day. We believe Americans value disclosure and transparency in campaigns.” — Senior Mitt Romney adviser Ed Gillespie, quoted in a 2004 RNC press release, urging Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) to release more tax information.

(via: think-progress)

This Modern World: Republican Ju-jitsu

Click image for larger:

Via: DailyKos

The Koch-Arends-Rove Swiftboating Ad on the President was aired nationally, for FREE, by ABC’s This Week

Then the round-table discussed it, as if it were anything but a political hit piece in a campaign season. That’s your liberal media, plebs.

What Everyone Should Know About The Secretive Group Trying To Swift Boat Barack Obama

The group’s leader and sole employee, Joel Arends, told Mother Jones, “Yes, it’s the swift boating of the president.”

3. Arends also tried to Swift Boat Obama in 2008. Arends, under the auspices of a similar group called “Vets for Freedom,” ran an ad accusing Obama of refusing to meet with wounded soldiers from Illinois. [NPR,7/5/08] …

4. Arends worked as a consultant for the Koch Brothers’ Americans for Properity. “Though he doesn’t list it on his public resume, around 2006 Arends went to work for Craig Dewey, the state director of Americans for Prosperity, an advocacy outfit that’s Astroturfed everything from the tea party and the Wisconsin union fight to public-school segregation.” The Koch Brothers and their allies have pledged to spend $100 million to defeat Obama. [Mother Jones, 5/4/12; HuffingtonPost, 2/3/12]

7. Arends helped promote a documentary advocating war with Iran. Arends appeared on a panel in South Dakoa promoting the documentary Iranium, which strongly suggests beginning a war with Iran, in March 2011. [Flier; ThinkProgress, 11/3/11]

8. Veterans for A Strong American is fully endorsed by Karl Rove. The man known as “Bush’s Brain” tweeted his support of their first web ad. [Twitter,5/3/12]

Continue reading…

Because, seriously

image: phroyd

Morning Bunker Report: Wednesday 5.2.2012


FOX & FRIENDS has more important things to talk about than Rupert Murdoch – When the news broke [yesterday morning] that Rupert Murdoch had been declared by the UK Parliament unfit to lead an international company, Fox & Friends was in full swing. [...] After several segments critical of the Occupy movement and President Obama, trailers for a story about Karate Kid and a man falling off some scaffolding, Fox ran the big news about Murdoch. See the whole 32 seconds they dedicated to it, as well as the following story – a couple towing their grand-daughter’s toy car behind their SUV. — TPM 

MASSACHUSETTS SENATOR SCOTT BROWN (R) doesn’t see anything wrong with the fact that he has voted to overturn the Affordable Care Act four times, in spite of the fact that it enables him to keep his 23-year-old daughter on his Congressional health plan. Brown told The Boston Globe that his daughter Ayla’s use of the coverage is in no way inconsistent with his criticism of the ACA, which most Republicans call “Obamacare.” — Scott Brown opposes ‘Obamacare’ policy that covers his daughter

LINDSEY GRAHAM helps a nuclear plant get permits, is rewarded with cash — The $13-billion Cayce, SC-based energy company has long wanted a permit to build two new nuclear reactors at its Jenkinsville, SC, facilities. Graham, one of the Senate’s strongest supporters of nuclear power, actively backed their efforts. [...] In February, the U.S. Nuclear Research Commission voted to approve the country’s first nuclear reactor construction permits in more than 30 years. [...] On March 31, much to Graham’s delight, SCANA received its Jenkinsville permits. [...] Two weeks later, when Graham’s “Team Graham” Senate campaign committee filed its quarterly lobbying disclosure form, just one name appeared. SCANA Corporation, the committee revealed, had given the Graham $54,575 in bundled campaign contributions between January 1 and March 31 — raising money for him as he worked to secure their $10 billion project. — Think Progress

ISSUES PEOPLE ‘CARE ABOUT’ — Steve Benen has some followup questions for Romney with regard to his statement yesterday: “Of course, I would have taken out Osama bin Laden, but what’s the right course for the economy? What should we do with taxes? What should we do with regulation? What should we do with trade overseas? What should we do with our energy policy? How about our labor policy? These are important issues people care about.”

  • * When you say you’re focused on “important issues people care about,” why do you exclude counter-terrorism? Do you believe targeting the al Qaeda leader behind 9/11 is an unimportant issue people don’t care about?
  • * When you said four years ago that an Obama victory would be “a surrender to terror,” do you still think that was a sensible argument?
  • * When you say “of course” you would have launched the raid on bin Laden, do you realize that completely contradicts your campaign promises from four years ago? And do you understand the complexities and enormous risks of the decision itself?
  • * When you decided to visit New York firefighters today with Rudy Giuliani, are we to think this wasn’t a political move associated with the one-year anniversary of killing bin Laden?
  • * Republicans politicized the fear of terrorism in several recent election cycles. Why didn’t you complain then? And do you recognize a qualitative difference between politicizing fear and politicizing a victory?

MITT ROMNEY AND RUDY GIULIANI carried pizza a whole two feet for their firehouse photo op, then unloaded the pizza onto an aide — The presumptive GOP presidential nominee and his former critic emerged from a black SUV bearing gifts for some of New York’s bravest: six boxes of fresh pizza, which Romney and Giuliani personally lugged into the firehouse as a gaggle of photographers, cordoned off at a safe distance, snapped away. Moments later, the photo op complete and the press pool (mostly!) out of sight, Romney and Giuliani unloaded all six pizzas into the arms of an aide. — Daily Intel

FYI: MITT ROMNEY has always been a dick – Back in 2004, President Bush ran a smear campaign against challenger Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) which undermined his service in Vietnam and questioned Kerry’s ability and determination to protect the United States — just three years removed from the 9/11 attacks — from another terror strike. “If we make the wrong choice, then the danger is that we’ll get hit again,” then Vice President Dick Cheney said at the time. And while Romney complains about Obama’s alleged “politicization” now, he willfully participated in the Bush-Cheney smear campaign on Kerry in 2004. During an August 9, 2004 (accessed via Lexis/Nexis) interview on Fox News, Romney suggested that Kerry would “twiddle his thumbs” when dealing with terrorism and in September 2004, also on Fox News, Romney said Kerry is too much of a flip-flopper to protect the country. — Think Progress

WHAT DO SANTORUM AND GINGRICH want before they officially endorse Mitt?

PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS————————————————————

MARKING TWO ANNIVERSAIRES yesterday — 2003 and 2011: 

“As we emerge from a decade of conflict abroad and economic crisis at home, it’s time to renew America,” Obama said at 4 a.m. local time, the first time a sitting U.S. president has addressed the nation from inside an active war zone. “This time of war began in Afghanistan, and this is where it will end.” [...] Shortly after arriving unannounced at the military base near Kabul, Obama and Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai signed a Strategic Partnership Agreement that memorializes the relationship between the two nations for the 10-year period following the draw down of combat troops by the end of 2014. At that time, Obama said the U.S. will assume a “support” role and deliver aid to the struggling nation that will become responsible for its own security. “The agreement we signed today sends a clear message to the Afghan people: as you stand up, you will not stand alone,” Obama said. And in a statement after the meeting, Karzai stated, “By signing this document, we close the last 10 years and open a new season of equal relations.” — Obama in Afghanistan: This is Where the War Will End

IT ALL STARTED right after Team Obama debuted their new campaign’s slogan: “Forward—the long-awaited sequel to 2008’s “Hope and Change.” And in those seven letters, members of the conservative commentariat detected a whiff of totalitarianism. On Tuesday, ThinkProgress editor Alex Seitz-Wald threw together a primer on the bizarre, petty, and not entirely unexpected freak-out. For example, Bill Kristol of The Weekly Standard criticized the president for having signed off on a word so closely linked to Chairman Mao’s mass-murder-tastic Great Leap Forward. (“[P]erhaps President Obama might rethink this slightly creepy slogan,” Kristol pondered earnestly.)’s Joel Pollak (this guy) wrote about how the seven-letter slogan is further proof that Obama’s political heritage belongs to a long line of Communist tyrants. Jim Hoft at Gateway Pundit took Forwardgate as his cue to yet again draw the Obama-Hitler connection. — Hitler, Obama Both Fond of Slogans

  • AND PEOPLE WONDER why our public discourse is so stunted — there’s more: National Review‘s The Corner: “I knew that sounded awfully familiar. From Wikipedia: Vorwarts (“Forward”) was the central organ of the Social Democratic Party of Germany published daily in Berlin from 1891 to 1933.” Daily Mail: “Mao, Lenin and a century of Marxist radicals: The controversial origins of Obama’s new campaign slogan ‘Forward'” The Washington Times: “New Obama slogan has long ties to Marxism, socialism” — Moving ‘forward,’ into a red scare
  • WHICH BEGS THE QUESTION — Was Richard M. Nixon a closet Marxist? “Forward Together” 

NOTE: THOUGH THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN voluntarily chooses to disclose all of its fundraising bundlers, the Romney campaign has decided to keep bundlers’ names secret.

Morning Bunker Report: TGIF 4.6.2012


imageDavid Gregory: Romney’s core is essentially Mormon – “This is a significant moment,” he told late night host Jay Leno. “I mean, we have the first Mormon Republican nominee, if everything gets formalized, in the country’s history. That’s a huge moment for religious tolerance.” “But I think it’s an issue,” Gregory continued. “I think a lot of people have questions about the Mormon faith. There’s a lot of ignorance about the Mormon faith, and lets be honest, this is the core of who Mitt Romney is. He was a missionary in France for two years, he has been a bishop in the church — which in the Mormon church is effectively like a priest — philanthropically he has made huge contributions.” “He’s had a big impact on the church and yet he doesn’t talk about it,” he said. “It’s the core of who he is, yet he doesn’t feel like it is safe to talk about it.”

The Plutocrat’s Plutocrat – There is a deeper problem for Romney. He seems a figure from the Great Depression, a combination of Daddy Warbucks and Old Man Potter. He celebrates creative destruction at a time when the destruction has been a bit too creative. He talks a lot about firing people. He just can’t help himself. In Wisconsin, he talked about his father firing people in Michigan. After he won the Wisconsin primary, Romney wandered incomprehensibly into the steel-plant closings on the South Side of Chicago in the 1970s. The President, he said, became a community organizer because “he saw free enterprise as the villain and government as the solution.” The man simply does not understand that most people do not see plant closings as progress. “You’re fired” may work for Donald Trump — and for the long-term strength of a compassionate and well-regulated free-enterprise system — but it’s a lousy way to introduce yourself to the American people. [image: christopherstreet]

Mitt Romney In 2004 Speech, Mitt Romney Attacked John Kerry For Flip Flopping — in a 2004 speech to the National Press Club, Romney attacked Democrat John Kerry: “His conflicted postions have been well documented, as have his tortured explanations of them.” Romney adds Kerry is “too conflicted to be President of the United States.”

Romney was for Harvard before he was against it — Despite spending four years at the school himself, Mitt Romney slammed President Obama today for spending “too much time” at Harvard, where the president went to law school. And while Romney has twice as many degrees as Obama and an extra year at the school under his belt, this is not the first time Romney has attacked the president for attending the elite Massachusetts university. But Romney wasn’t always so down on his alma mater. He used to brag about his tenure there regularly, and so did his wife, Ann. [...] Just this week, he’s accused Obama of being out of touch and a flip flopper, two of the biggest narratives against Romney. But rarely are they so transparently and audaciously hypocritical as the Harvard line.

image: reagan-was-a-horrible-president 

GOP STRATEGIES: Lie, cheat, steal to win! Attorney: Fake Democrats in Wisconsin committing criminal election fraud — “Clearly, a candidate running in a Democratic primary for the purpose of disadvantaging that party and giving electoral advantage to the Republican Party and the Republican incumbent the Democrats seek to recall can do so only by falsifying his or her declaration of candidacy.” The fake candidates are committing felony election fraud, according to Levinson, a crime punishable by up to three and half years in prison. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch (R) and four Wisconsin Republican state senators all face recall elections on May 8 or June 5. But by running the fake candidates, the Republican Party forces primary elections to be held on May 8, ensuring that all of the incumbents will face an election at a later date, June 5. [...] The Republican Party of Wisconsin also ran fake Democratic candidates during last years recall elections.

Maddow mocks ‘war on caterpillars’: GOP needs to own up to its agenda — She mocked the idea that the Democrat’s huge lead among female voters in battleground states was the result of media bias, as RNC chair Reince Priebus had claimed. [...] “In this analogy what he’s missing is the part where the Republican party introduces hundreds of pieces of legislation all over the country attacking the rights of caterpillars, which in his analogy is in fact what the Republican party has been doing.The Republican party in this analogy has to be seen as a radically, what, anti-cocoon party?” Maddow noted that Republicans in state legislatures across the country have pushed for tighter restrictions on abortions, such as requiring ultrasounds before a woman can terminate her pregnancy or mandating a 24-hour waiting period.

—————————————————————–PRESIDENT OBAMA / DEMOCRATS

Is Mitt ALWAYS wrong about the President (or is he always lying)?

Obama team slams Romney over financial records — The report said that the multimillionaire and former Massachusetts governor legally used an obscure exception in ethics laws to provide a limited accounting of his assets, making it hard to trace exactly where his wealth is invested. The paper said the strategy made it tough to determine whether there were any conflicts of interest, or if Romney’s assets were held offshore or invested in controversial companies. Obama’s campaign manager Jim Messina complained that new questions were emerging every week about whether “Romney took unusual steps to avoid paying his fair share in taxes.” “Today’s report suggests that governor Romney is exploiting a loophole in order to shield his assets and investments from public review,” Messina said. “Mitt Romney has put his personal financial assets in a black box and hid the key, attempting to play by a different set of rules than any candidate in recent history.”

The Thank You Starbucks campaign,’s response to the National Organization for Marriage’s Dump Starbucks efforts, has gathered over 640,000 signatures from people grateful that the coffee company supports the freedom to marry. Yesterday, SumOfUs delivered a giant thank-you card on their behalf, which Starbucks vice president of Global Corporate Communications James Olsen gladly accepted… NOM’s Dump Starbucks campaign has only gathered 28,471 pledges, which means the Thank You Starbucks campaign has more than 22 times the amount of support. In fact, since NOM’s boycott began, Starbucks’ stock has only gone up. [ThinkProgress]

image: buzzfeed

Obama to hold forum on women and the economy – US President Barack Obama hosts a forum Friday on women and the economy, as aides warn of a “devastating” impact on the key voting bloc if the Supreme Court overturns his health care law. The White House said the forum would “examine the ways in which the administration has worked to ensure women’s economic security and create jobs for women, through all stages of life.” [...] The law, known as the Affordable Care Act, expands access to health care for millions of Americans and prevents insurance firms refusing care to patients with pre-existing conditions among other provisions. A senior Obama administration official said Thursday that if the law is repealed, women would find it harder to have their specific health needs addressed. “It would be devastating for women,” one official said on condition of anonymity.

Graphic: How Mitt Romney’s income / tax rate stacks up to those of recent candidates for president

tpmmedia: How Mitt Romney’s tax rate stacks up to those of recent candidates for president.