by Jerome Armstrong, Thu Jun 24, 2004 at 06:24:14 AM EDT
We are between Flag Day and July 4th again, that period when Republicans annually attempt to use the nation's flag for political gain, so expect the Flag-buring bill to come up for a vote in the US Senate again. According to Hatch, if passed in the Senate onto the 50 states for ratification, "a wonderful, nationwide discussion would take place
." Just imagine.
OK, so let's imagine that the Republicans finally get their Bill of Rights tamper in this time, and pass on the flag-burning amendment; lets further imagine that they manage to ramrod through the anti-gay marriage amendment. Then, what amendment is next in line for the anti-freedom and anti-equality Republican agenda?
by Chris Bowers, Wed Jun 23, 2004 at 10:21:14 AM EDT
Now that this has been on my brain for almost twenty-four consecutive hours, the huge laundry list of un-democratic tactics Republicans use to seize power could easily be turned into a short, roughly 200-page, polemic. It cold include chapters on:
- The Clinton Impeachment
- Corporate voting machines
- Ex-felon disenfranchisement
- Florida recount and voter roll purges
- Census taking, district maps and prison population
- "Poll Watchers" and The Help America Vote Act
I am certain that other topics would merit entire chapters as well. Combined, I think the book would be an excellent, agitprop compilation of contemporary Republican election tactics and the damage these tactics are causing to the electoral process. It could be written as a collaborative Blogosphere production, ala the dKosopedia
. I bet it would sell pretty well too. In the comments, let me know what you think and go ahead and propose some new chapter ideas.
by Jerome Armstrong, Wed Jun 23, 2004 at 06:12:41 AM EDT
What the hell do we call this? In New York
, Nearly half of New York state's prisons are located in the overwhelmingly white, rural upstate districts represented by four Republican state senators. While the inmates cannot vote, their numbers count as population for redistricting and augment the leverage of the senators in whose districts they are incarcerated.
And it's just the same in Florida
:Because Florida's prisons are disproportionately located in rural Republican areas, the inmate population increases the voting power of Republicans at the expense of Democrats.
Take, for example, Union County, a very rural county in northern Florida. In 2000, as measured by the Census Bureau, Union had a population of 13,442. Of this number, however, almost 4,000 -- a whopping 30 percent -- were inmates. Next door, Bradford County housed another 3,250 inmates.
Because these inmates were counted as residents of the congressional and state legislative districts that include these counties, voters in Union, Bradford and other nearby counties are overrepresented in these legislative bodies.... It is important to note that the issue of counting inmates in rural Republican districts doesn't dilute the votes of the inmates -- after all, they couldn't vote no matter where they were counted. Rather, it dilutes the votes of ordinary residents of the districts from where the inmates come. The criminal-justice system should not be allowed to reshape Florida's political landscape by arbitrarily reallocating representation to rural Republicans.This issue ought to be challenged in the courts, as under the Fourteenth Amendment, which through the ''one-man, one-vote'' legal doctrine protects voters against vote dilution, we could see a court challenge to this sort of vote dilution/over-representation. Because basically, what you have going on, is Republican's imprisoning people from urban areas, taking away their vote and moving them to prisons in rural areas, and giving themselves the power of that taken away vote. It ought to be a crime. Before the great divide of Rural=Republican, Urban=Democratic, this issue might not have hit the radar, but when you start mixing imprisonment with partisan politics, you've crossed a line.
by Chris Bowers, Mon Jun 21, 2004 at 05:26:32 PM EDT
According to the Texas GOP, America is a Christian Nation
Just two weeks after adopting a hard line platform at its convention in San Antonio, the Texas Republican Party is under fire from Jewish groups.
The convention, which was dominated by religious conservatives, approved platform language that calls the United States a 'Christian Nation,' and calls the separation of church and state 'a myth.'
Howeever, according to their hard-line opponents of Christian Exodus, America is now a pagan Democracy
:Calling the approval of same-sex marriage in Massachusetts "the straw that broke the camel's back," a group of Christian activists is in the beginning stages of an effort to have one state secede from the United States to become its own sovereign nation.
"Our Christian republic has declined into a pagan democracy," says Cory Burnell, president of ChristianExodus.org, a non-profit corporation based in Tyler, Texas. "There are some issues people just can't take anymore, and [same-sex marriage] might finally wake up the complacent Christians."
Burnell is leading the charge for a peaceful secession of one state from the union, and after originally considering Alabama, Mississippi and South Carolina due to their relatively small populations, coastal access, and the Christian nature of the electorate, Burnell says South Carolina has been selected as the target location.
With factions like these, I am often baffled that Republicans face fewer splinter movements that Democrats.
by Chris Bowers, Mon Jun 21, 2004 at 07:32:43 AM EDT
I did not follow this story very closely, but for a Governor to resign
due to corruption it is a big deal. The new Governor will be Jodi Rell, and she will serve until January 2007.