Towards an issues-based 2020 election (61)

===2020 Big Picture===
“They claim to be super-patriots, but they would destroy every liberty guaranteed by the Constitution. They demand free enterprise, but are the spokesmen for monopoly and vested interest.”
– Vice President Henry Wallace in The Dangers of American Fascism (1944)

In 2012 (when Boehner (R-OH) presided over the House, I wore a hoodie on the House Floor to make a statement about the deadly consequences of racial profiling. On Wednesday (while Pelosi (D-CA) presided over the House), @RepMattGaetz wore a gas mask in the chamber, making light of an epidemic that has killed 14 Americans.
Guess which one of us was forcibly removed. (and why)

Matt Gaetz (R-FL01) made light of coronavirus by wearing a gas mask.
Now one of his constituents has died.

Note: Buttigieg, Klobuchar dropped out & endorsed Biden before Super Tuesday. O’Rourke endorsed Biden in Texas. Bloomberg (who endorsed Biden) & Warren dropped out afterwards…

Robert Reich counters establishment claims after South Carolina primary

Tuesday: *Anyone* who questions the idea that there’s a Democratic “establishment”
needs to look at the events of the past 48 hours. It’s a brutally efficient machine
working to preserve itself against a progressive grassroots movement. If only it
fought the GOP the same way.

Folks, they’re not trying to stop @BernieSanders. They’re trying to stop a
multiracial coalition of teachers, waiters, and Walmart and Amazon workers
who are standing up and demanding justice for their families …

Note: Last week I noticed comments out of one of the Carolinas disparaging the word, “liberal.” Here’s JFK’s on the word, “liberal”:

What do our opponents mean when they apply to us the label, “Liberal”? If by “Liberal” they mean, as they want people to believe, someone who is soft in his policies abroad, who is against local government, and who is unconcerned with the taxpayer’s dollar, then the record of this party and its members demonstrate that we are not that kind of “Liberal.” But, if by a “Liberal,” they mean someone who looks ahead and not behind, someone who welcomes new ideas without rigid reactions, someone who cares about the welfare of the people – their health, their housing, their schools, their jobs, their civil rights, and their civil liberties – someone who believes that we can break through the stalemate and suspicions that grip us in our policies abroad, if that is what they mean by a “Liberal,” then I’m proud to say that I’m a “Liberal.” [Applause.]

But first, I would like to say what I understand the word, “Liberal,” to mean and explain in the process why I consider myself to be a “Liberal,” and what it means in the presidential election of 1960. etc.

Election issues…
Democrats had a competitive presidential primary in Houston’s Harris County. Republicans did not. Yet election officials put two-thirds of polling sites in GOP areas, leading to massive waits among Dems & people of color

Hervis Rogers waited 6 hours and 20 minute to vote last night in Houston
High turnout, lack of poll workers, old machines, long ballot contributed
to long lines…

LA County issues (thread)…

The New Poll Tax? Long Lines, Closed Polling Stations
Hurt Black, Latinx & Student Voters in TX, CA

It’s not just intimidators, barriers, hackers and equipment/software failures
that hurt the election process…
Deadly Tennessee tornado stayed on the ground for 50 miles


Public service announcement…
The DNC does *not* manage ballot placement in elections
(which are) administered by local election officials.

A watershed moment in America: 16 states have voted in the Dem primary & been asked in exit/entrance polls about healthcare, and all 16 show majority support for replacing private health insurance with single-payer healthcare. As a former insurance exec my reaction is: wow.

We’re talking conservative southern states like my native Tennessee where Dems
want to replace for-profit insurance with single payer. And northeastern states
like Vermont & Maine where over 7 in 10 Dems are ready to end the current system
bankrupting & killing millions.

It’s time to say it: Medicare for All is now the mainstream, popular, nationwide
consensus position for the Democratic Party in 2020. Voters are sick & tired of
awful deductibles, surprise bills, stifling networks & begging strangers for help
with medical bills on GoFundMe

Sanders wins Vermont…
Thank you Vermont! It is an honor to be your senator. Let’s go forward and transform the country together.

#SuperTuesday calls by networks:
North Carolina for Biden.
Virginia for Biden
Very strong numbers for the former VP, high levels of support from African
Americans and older voters – and from late deciders. This suggests that his
big Monday could be turning into a big Tuesday.

AP: Joe Biden wins Tennessee Democratic primary

Joe Biden wins the Democratic presidential primary in Alabama, securing his third
victory in the South on Super Tuesday.

Joe Biden Wins Oklahoma Democratic Primary, AP Projects

Utah called for Bernie Sanders in state’s first Super Tuesday primary

Joe Biden wins the Democratic presidential primary in Arkansas.

Joe Biden wins the Massachusetts Democratic presidential primary,
upsetting Elizabeth Warren in her home state.

Senator @BernieSanders has won Colorado, a state that counts significantly
toward the #SuperTuesday delegate total. And he is now leading in Texas.
Biden’s running well, and the start of the night looked very good for him.
As the night has advanced, Sanders has gained ground.

Biden wins Texas primary

Joe Biden has won the Minnesota Democratic presidential primary, a day after
Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar dropped out of the race and endorsed him.

Bernie Sanders wins Democratic presidential primary in California,
claiming biggest prize on Super Tuesday.

Young Latino Voters in California.
Sanders 84%
Biden 5%

3 dozen states still to vote.
3 thousand delegates still to be chosen.
Most Ds haven’t been heard from in a race where, early state exit polls say, voters love #Medicare4All.
@BernieSanders will try next strategies post #SuperTuesday. But he should stick w/his signature issue.

When all the votes are counted Bernie and Biden will be (roughly) tied. This is a brand new
primary now. One on one. This is objectively a much stronger position than Bernie
was in in 2016 even though it might not feel like it at the moment. …

…@BernieSanders has now won independent swing voters in 13 out of 16 Democratic primaries/caucuses, according to CNN exit polls

Candidate favored by the wealthy and powerful vs. candidate of the working class
That’s the choice Democratic voters have

Following Super Tuesday…
Big Health Insurance stocks gain in response to Biden’s wins
Stoller captured images that reflect the gains…

When I worked for @BernieSanders 20 yrs ago, he & Wellstone pushed a bill to make
sure drug companies couldn’t profiteer off something like a coronavirus vaccine.
The bill passed the House. @JoeBiden helped the GOP & pharma lobbyists kill it
in the Senate

Biden plays the I’m-rubber-you’re-glue card.  Declares We the People are the establishment
@JoeBiden responds to @berniesanders (who says) the “establishment” is trying to defeat him. Biden: “The establishment are all those hardworking, middle class people, those African Americans…they are the establishment!”

et tu, McCaskill?

No, Joe. The “establishment” are the 60 billionaires who are funding your
campaign and the corporate-funded super PACs that are spending millions on
negative ads attacking me.

June: Biden to rich donors: “Nothing will fundamentally change”

Joe Biden’s Super PAC Is Being Organized by Corporate Lobbyists

Joe Biden has received contributions from more than 60 billionaires.
Does anybody think that we’re going to bring about the change that we need
when you are indebted to 60 billionaires?

Turns out Joe has been railing against We the People for a very long time (emphasis added).

Biden had been complaining about these “interest groups” and “special interests,” typically contrasted with his beloved “middle class,” for about as long as he’d been complaining about the party’s direction.

But who exactly were these shadowy entities? Franklin Roosevelt, too, had attacked “special groups” and “special interests” in the 1930s. But while Roosevelt meant the “unscrupulous money changers” and the anti-New Deal “minority in business and finance” whose minions “swarm through the lobbies of the Congress and the cocktail bars of Washington,” Biden meant something very different.

Minorities and other vested interests are sick and tired of hollow promises,” he had said in 1971 after his very first win. Seven years later, he would bellow at these “interest groups” who refused to do away with government programs that benefited them; he now blamed these groups for the runaway spending he sought to control. Now, as he toured the country preaching his vision, Biden urged Democrats to proclaim that special interest groups came second to the national interest. In Alabama, his denunciation of such interests (“warmly received,” wrote the Wilmington Morning News (1983)) was followed by his insistence that the state had confronted and largely worked out its racist demons.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren on Joe Biden: “No matter how many Washington insiders tell you to support him, nominating their fellow Washington insider will not meet this moment. Nominating a man who says we do not need any fundamental change in this country will not meet this moment.” (video)

There’s a whole lot to mourn with Elizabeth Warren leaving the race. In particular,
Joe Biden has lost one of his fiercest, most incisive critics – her battle against
his ghastly Bankruptcy Bill is and will ever be legend.


Gabbard might qualify for the next debate – if the rules don’t change.

It’s Time to Ask the Candidates: How Will You Use Science to Protect Everyone?

Thread: Michigander to fellow Michiganders

===2020 Issues===
China Challenges U.S. Science Dominance
A recent Congressional hearing and National Science Board report show that U.S. leadership faces growing global competition.

A Trump Insider Embeds Climate Denial in Scientific Research
An Interior Dept official has pressed scientists to include misleading climate language –
including debunked claims…


Germany set to overtake China as Market Leader
for Electric Cars in 2021 with Nearly 2 mn. to be Produced

German PV tender delivers record low solar power price of $0.038/kwh

#Solar industry leaders: We need your companies to join our letter urging the Trump Admin-
istration to #StopSolarTariffs and give us the business certainty to invest billions in the U.S.
economy. Sign on:

Compare / Contrast with natural gas…
How Death and Disaster Followed the Shale Gas Boom in Appalachia
In the past decade, fracking has contributed to the deaths of more than a thousand people
and the emission of more than a thousand tons of carbon dioxide in the Appalachian Basin.

Nuclear War Would Spawn a “Nuclear” El Nino
A jolt to the climate system provided by nuclear war could spur an El Nino like we’ve never seen before.

CBPP: Cash Assistance Should Reach Millions More Families

Block-granted Welfare…
CBPP: Boost TANF to Reduce Deep Poverty Among Children

Right to Repair…
Farmers Fight John Deere Over Who Gets to Fix an $800,000 Tractor

Leaked Plans Suggest Europe Wants to Pass Right to Repair Laws for Electronics

Coming up with a viable dairy policy ain’t easy

CBPP: Trump Administration Inviting Medicaid Block Grants,
Undermining Access to Behavioral Health Care

Medicare-for-all would be a boon to the American labor market, study finds

It’s a dark day for my old pals in the insurance industry because one of their few
arguments for keeping the current system placing profits over care, is gone.
On top of the obvious medical benefits, America’s jobs outlook will improve
under Medicare for All. The data proves it.

3 reasons doctors want Medicare For All, not a public option (Biden’s plan)
– A public option does not lead to universal health care – or savings.
– A public option adds another fragment
to an already ridiculous amount of fragmentation in health care.
– A public option will not stop the greed machines of the insurance industry.

My healthcare provider @Cigna will only pay for the coronavirus test. But if we test positive it’s on us. With a high deductible health care plan, we are out of pocket our full deductible. Thousands of dollars. This will discourage testing.

Don’t you have an HSA to go with your high deductible plan?

Each employee had to independently set one up and fund it without assistance
or contribution from our employer. That is real money. Many employees who live
pay check to pay check cannot afford to set up an HSA

U.S., Canada side with fanatical coup regime in Bolivia
Racist interim (Bolivian) government vows “God has returned to the palace”


The OAS helped undermine, not restore, democracy in Bolivia. It’s clear that
the OAS acted in an unjustified and reckless manner after the election

[I]t is really worth highlighting the fact that the OAS has not made a single
substantive criticism of the reports challenging its claim of election fraud
in Bolivia. It has just spewed a string of ad hominems at their authors

“This year’s Pentagon request includes $636.4 billion for what’s called its “base” budget – for the routine expenses of [DOD],” our @StrausReform explains. But the actual national security budget is essentially 2x the size of the announced Pentagon budget.

Trump’s Iran policy is failing. Miserably. Since the U.S. withdrawal from JCPOA & the reimposition of sanctions, Iran has retaliated by 1) increasing its LEU stockpile 5-fold; 2) increasing its enrichment capacity by some 20%; 3) reopened Fordow for enrichment

See text graphic…
IAEA’s latest report notes Iran has increased its LEU stockpile and enrichment
capacity, but continues to allow the IAEA to monitor its it n-activities under
the JCPOA. However, the Agency says Iran needs to provide further cooperation
regarding questions about three sites. We agree.

Bottom line is that current U.S. policy is pushing Iran in wrong direction.
The only realistic way to correct course is for the U.S. and Iran to return
to compliance with / rejoin the #JCPOA and work with EU, RF, China to pursue
follow-on negotiations to build on the 2015 deal

“This year, the Pentagon budget will soar to $750 Billion. It is “unsustainable,” says Warren. “If more money for the Pentagon could solve our security challenges, we would have solved them by now.” My take on Warren’s ethical reforms that can save us $$$.

“We should follow the 1996 plan of former Eisenhower aide Gen. Andrew Goodpaster, who along with Gen. Lee Butler, said the US and Russia should bring their arsenals down into the hundreds.” Exactly! I helped work on that plan @StimsonCenter

Personnel Is Policy
The vital importance of appointing people who work – and think – in the public interest


Compare / Contrast…
The White House is withdrawing Elaine McCusker’s nomination for a top Pentagon post,
two Senate aides tell Politico, following reports that she questioned the legality of the
Trump administration’s efforts to freeze military aid to Ukraine.

A W.H. questionnaire sent to potential political appointees appears to be
a litmus test of loyalty to Trump. Questions include: “What part of candidate
Trump’s campaign message most appealed to you?” It asks about media appearances
commenting on Trump.

Hartmann review of “The Conservative Nanny State”

Free download:

===2020 Watch List===
Sec of Education Betsy DeVos’s (R) brother…
Erik Prince (R) helped recruit former American and British spies for secretive intelligence-gathering operations that included infiltrating Democratic congressional campaigns, labor organizations and other groups considered hostile to the Trump agenda.

Facebook made “The Daily Caller” an official fact-checking partner. That gives The Daily Caller the ability to label anything posted on Facebook as “false information” and dramatically reduce its distribution.
It’s now using that power to boost Trump.

See graphic…
On Friday, Politico published an article headlined “Trump rallies his base to treat
coronavirus as a ‘hoax.'” The Daily Caller declared this was “false information.”
If you try to post the article to Facebook, this is what you see.

There is zero excuse for Section 230. Facebook needs to be subject
to the same liability rules as any other media outlet

Compare / Contrast…

Thread: In December, Facebook pledged to remove *any* content with misleading information about how to participate in the Census. Now, the Trump campaign is running 1000+ Facebook ads promoting a fake 2020 Census Facebook tells me it will take no action

Facebook removed Trump campaign ads that referred to a census, saying they violated
a company policy aimed at preventing disinformation and other interference with the
nationwide 2020 census, which goes online next week.

Twitter starts testing its own version of Stories, called ‘Fleets,’ which disappear after 24 hours

Note: Messages can’t be retweeted which decreases fact checking and, therefore, accountability.

Our Elections Are Not Immune
Where’s the plan to ensure that the coronavirus doesn’t upend the 2020 elections?

The media is blowing its chance to head off an Election Day debacle.


Phoenix March 5th…
White Supremacist and Anti-Muslim Activist Displays Nazi Flag at Sanders Rally


Sanders’ response (video)…

Every elected official & every media outlet should be condemning the white nationalist
who unfurled a Nazi flag at a @BernieSanders rally last night. This is what white
nationalism & antisemitism look like. This is what happens when it is enabled and
emboldened. Speak up. Now.

See referenced comment…
I am sick of this claim: “She was promising massive wealth taxes.”
We had ultra-high tax rates for decades under GOP & Dems. No one proposed those levels. We must end the massively low taxes on the wealthy crippling our ability to provide for our citizens.

What Bernie Sanders Gets Right About the Media
The senator’s sweeping critique of coverage has more merit than we in the media like to admit.

Referring to a Trump comment:
This is an important Trump lie.
Social Security needs small tax adjustments, starting with restoring Reagan era policy of taxing 90% of wages instead of ~82% now.  There is no chance Trump & @GOP lawmakers will support Reagan’s policy, nor much else that must be done.

23 Headlines Obscure Biden’s Lies About Cutting Social Security

Fact checking a Glenn Kessler fact check…
Wanting to Cut Social Security, Along with Everything Else,
Is Still Wanting to Cut Social Security


Glenn Kessler just misrepresented the facts So…

Links to five videos (different events) in which he talks about cutting Social Security, etc.

See graphic…
To those saying @JoeBiden never pushed Social Security cuts:
Are you saying Biden was lying when his press release touted his vote for a balanced budget
amendment that cut Social Security as proof he was “one of the Senate’s most conservative


Note: Perhaps context is in order. Biden is an ardent deficit hawk. And his go-to move is cutting “entitlements.” See

The deficit hawks’ scare stories

The Wrongest Profession
How economists have botched the promise of widely distributed prosperity –
and why they have no intention of stopping now

The Republican Deficit Hawks Abandon Their Religion
When Trump’s the one spending, Republicans in Congress are happy to sign the check.

It’s the Austerity, Stupid: How We Were Sold an Economy-Killing Lie
Once again, the Beltway fell for cherry-picked data – and you paid the price.

Jacquez tells Applebaum that Sanders’ is already doing what she suggested

Pro-choice advocates talk about the misinformation
behind Louisiana’s anti-abortion law during Supreme Court rally

Right-wing media distort Sen. Schumer’s remarks
to erase the very real threat of anti-abortion violence
Right-wing media dishonestly paint abortion rights advocates as dangerous

“For Justice Roberts to follow the right wing’s deliberate misinterpretation of what
Sen. Schumer said, while remaining silent when President Trump attacked Justices
Sotomayor and Ginsberg last week, shows Justice Roberts does not just call balls
and strikes”

Alyssa, I am from Flint. This is false. Bernie voted against this bill because it had amendments attached that would strip environmental protections in California. *We* were against that. *Please* take this down.

.@BernieSanders is the only candidate for President right now
who spoke up against the water shutoffs in Detroit.


On the other hand…
Michiganders may want to know – billionaires who donated to former Governor Rick Snyder (R)
are now backing @JoeBiden. The #FlintWaterCrisis is heading into year 6 in April.

Do Media Really Care About Money in Politics?

See referenced video…
I am constantly asked if I’d support the Dem nominee. Could you imagine if I said I wouldn’t?
Yet Biden’s camp is on TV threatening to help Trump if they don’t get exactly what they want.
This is profoundly irresponsible on all ends. Our country is not a game. Get it together.

Note: I’ve been holding my nose and voting for “centrists” over Republicans for many years. I’ve watched House progressives vote for “centrist” budgets because they were better than the Republican alternative(s) but to my knowledge “centrists” never voted for the very popular progressive budget …I’ve often wondered whether they prefer Republicans to their fellow Dems. Apparently that’s true for the woman in this video.

===2020 Watch List-Bias===
See referenced Paul Krugman comment…
We are fighting for Medicare for All, tuition free public college, an expansion of Social Security and a $15 minimum wage – an economic justice agenda supported by most Democratic Party voters. And this person is berating the agenda as “grievance progressivism.”

The term “grievance progressivism” is a genuinely grotesque term to slander
a multiracial, working-class movement. Truly, truly hideous on every single level.

Question: The rules are rigged to help the rich become richer presumably because they demanded those changes. But when We the People demand change, it’s just a “grievance” to be ignored?

Something to consider: @BernieSanders has been winning younger demographics. When pundits, Dem politicos & politicians denigrate, insult & vilify our movement, they are effectively telling those young people that they are not welcome in the Democratic Party. That’s not cool.

The sinister tone of this (NYT) piece erases (the fact that) it was Western policy to engage with Gorbachev after Glasnost with both Reagan and Thatcher choosing to visit Moscow in 1987 and 1988 to promote perestroika and closer ties. Readers deserve better.


See text graphic…
The former US ambassador to the USSR explains that the @nytimes story
on Bernie and Yaroslavl is “a distortion of history.”

The Innocuous Story of Bernie Sanders’s Trip to Russia
A Times article tries to make disquiting news out of some very boring documents

Maybe the moment that they found this speech that *they link in the da-n story* should
have been the moment they reconsidered their absolutely corrosive and obviously bad
faith framing of the story?

Bernie also opposed many of Reagan’s terrible foreign policy initiatives in Latin America.
The pattern seems to be disliking right-wing death squads and nuclear war.

The fact that @BernieSanders was willing to champion the sister cities program and
ignore  Republican critics is admirable and a reason to like him. Of course the Soviets
tried to use it for propaganda. Last time I checked that didn’t go so well.
There’s nothing sinister here.

For WaPo, Flourishing Elites Are a Matter of Perception

Media Malfunction as Sanders Notes Positive Aspects of Latin American Socialism

Hilary Rosen…
.@JoeBiden must accept responsibility for his surrogate telling our campaign co-chair Senator @NinaTurner that she doesn’t have standing to invoke the words of Dr. King. That is unacceptable and Joe must apologize to Nina and all the people of color supporting our campaign.

Loud, Wrong and White Democratic Strategist Apologizes to Black Woman
for Whitesplaining MLK to Her and Saying She Has ‘No Standing’

Quick reminder: no matter how many times you say and tweet the word “toxic,” C-Span videos are not toxic.





===2020 Presidential Candidates===
Elizabeth Warren… Feb 9th
The Fight Goes On
Remarks from Elizabeth Warren shared in a call with campaign staff:

A national hero, @ewarren showed throughout her campaign that she had big ideas and
a big heart. She leaves us with a treasure trove of plans for how to restructure
our government and our society so that they work for all the people of this great

Here is just one of @ewarren’s plans. The next president should follow this
blueprint for an integrated national security system that puts the nation’s
interest above private profit.

Lots of reasons to appreciate Warren’s campaign. i’ll put in a plug for the emphasis
she put on child care. It was the first of her big plans. But, more important, it was part
of the bigger story she told about the struggles of working parents — and, especially,
working women.

See picture…
Harvard Law School says #ThankYouElizabeth.
.@ewarren has taken on the most powerful corporate interests because she cares
about those who have been left behind. Without her, the progressive movement
would not be nearly as strong as it is today. I know that she’ll stay in this
fight and we are grateful that she will.

Sen. Warren has run an extraordinary campaign of ideas – demanding that the
wealthy pay their fair share, ending corruption in Washington, guaranteeing
health care for all, addressing climate change, tackling the student debt crisis
and vigorously protecting women’s rights.

Sending love and compassion to our progressive allies, friends, and family
across the movement today. Your fight is all our fight.


Put Elizabeth Warren in Charge of Writing the Demcoratic Platform

Having helped write the last one, I can say this would be a definite upgrade. Do this now!

Just as Jimmy Carter has had the best ex-presidency, Elizabeth Warren is having the best ex-candidacy. (video)
Amy Klobuchar… Feb 10th
Responding to Klobuchar’s comment…
I am tired of extreme wealth inequality, extreme corporate greed and monopolization, extreme risk to the planet from climate change. Status quo politics will not deliver the change we need.
Bernie Sanders… Feb 19th
Right now, the charter industry is working overtime to buy the local school board race in Los Angeles in an attempt to privatize public schools. I stand with @UTLANow in their fight against privatization and for more investment in public schools.

Today, a more personal side of the man who brought Medicare-for-All to the mainstream.
@BernieSanders on Uncovered: Health Care Conversations with the presidential candidates. (video)

“You cannot beat Trump with the same old, same old kind of politics.”
– @BernieSanders contrasting his candidacy with that of @JoeBiden.


See referenced report…
I say Bernie needs to *take hold of our history*… and remind Americans that his social democratic vision is an American vision from Paine to Lincoln to FDR to King…

Pete Buttigieg… April 14th
I want to congratulate @PeteButtigieg for running a strong and historic campaign, and to welcome all of his supporters into our movement. I urge them to join us in the fight for real change in this country.
Joe Biden… April 25th
We are living in the Second Gilded Age. I have yet to hear @JoeBiden declare that he wants to end it.


See referenced comment…
To be fair, Cordray does owe Biden his job. I mean if Biden hadn’t helped predatory lenders and credit card companies cheat so many Americans then we wouldn’t have needed a CFPB.
– See

Joe Biden voted for Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China – a bill that led to the loss of:
– 112,000 jobs in Michigan
– 137,000 jobs in Pennsylvania
– 89,000 jobs in Wisconsin
Bernie Sanders marched with union workers against this job-killing deal

Joe Biden: Voting for NAFTA “wasn’t a mistake” – 2019
Since NAFTA:
– Michigan lost 21% of its manufacturing jobs
– Pennsylvania lost 35% of its manufacturing jobs
Bernie led the effort in Congress in opposition to this disastrous,
job-killing trade deal (video)

As expected, Trump hits Biden on trade at the FOX town hall in Scranton, PA:
“Joe Biden made a deal, NAFTA. He approved it, he was pushing it. It’s the worst
trade deal ever made.” If there’s a Sanders comeback, it involves persuading voters
trade will sink Biden in PA/WI/MI.

Bernie Sanders has been warning of this for months – the best chance to win back
Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania and defeat Trump is with a nominee like
Bernie who opposed NAFTA, not a nominee like Biden who backed NAFTA and to this
day says he doesn’t regret it.

Joe Biden’s Social Security Record Is Cause for Concern


I spent much of my career fighting efforts to cut and/or privatize Social Security.

Democrats like Biden, who were trying to make the big money types and the pundits
happy by offering compromise cuts (e.g. “adjustments,” “corrections,” etc.)
were very harmful to those of us trying to protect the program.

…rather than trying to deny long-stated positions, he should own up to them.

Assuming that he is now committed to protecting Social Security (meaning no cuts
and possibly increases), he should say so clearly and explain why he was wrong
in the past.

If Biden refuses to acknowledge his past positions on Social Security and explain
how he has changed his views then he deserves all the wrath that Sanders and
others can dump on him. It is that simple.


Note: Biden hasn’t renounced his austerity-embracing ways which is the reason why he pushed for cutting Social Security and related programs See:

He’s repeatedly misrepresented M4A, said he can’t make change and Trump has been calling him out

If he wants to be believed, he’s got to own up to his past and renounce his austerity-embracing ways.

Joe Biden to rich donors: “Nothing would fundamentally change” if he’s elected

Let me reiterate what I said in this story: One of the reasons @BernieSanders is the
strongest general election nominee is because Trump cannot impugn Bernie’s record
of consistently fighting to protect and expand Social Security

Oct: Activist Ady Barkan calls out Biden for not talking with him about health care

Only one candidate refused to meet with @AdyBarkan
and have a real conversation about healthcare- that was @JoeBiden.

See Biden’s comment…
Allow me to help you understand: #MedicareForAll builds on top of Obamacare, creating a Healthcare System that covers *everyone* at a lower cost than we pay today. @AHIPCoverage executives will have to find new jobs and that’s ok.

There are two fundamental reasons that a public option cannot work.

A public option cannot save that $500 billion, nor can it reduce healthcare costs. It will only add one more choice of insurance provider to the current complex mix. Most of us neither know nor care which company provides our insurance. The choice we really care about is choice of doctors and hospitals. Most private insurers restrict that choice to maximize profits. They also restrict our access to healthcare by imposing deductibles and co-pays, which many of us can’t afford. Medicare for All offers free choice of doctors and hospitals, with no deductibles and co-pays. What more choice can anyone want?

The other fatal flaw in a public option is that it will likely become the insurer of last resort to the sickest and oldest among us. The insurance playing field will be anything but level. As deficient as they are, for-profit insurers will cleverly market themselves to the young and healthy, leaving those who use more healthcare to the public option. Its costs will balloon, dooming it to fail, to the delight of for-profit companies.

  Will your “Medicare-like” public option leave families on the hook for 20% of costs, with no
out of pocket cap, no dental, no vision, and no long term care benefits?
That’s *underinsurance*. My patients need #MedicareForAll.

Joe Biden’s healthcare plan:
– 10 million uninsured
– Uninsurance kills 15,000 yearly
– Medical bankruptcies are rampant
– Millions frustratedly fight insurers for needed care
– Your pay is siphoned to insurer/pharma/hospital profits

Q.  Who called marijuana a “gateway drug” in November 2019?
A.  Joe Biden

See text graphic…
.@JoeBiden helped George Bush push America into the Iraq War.
Now it appears the favor is being returned by Karl Rove, who is enthusiastically boosting Biden’s candidacy.

Joe Biden’s History of Selling the Iraq Invasion, Expanding Prisons & Pulling Democrats to the Right

See Biden’s comment…
If we’re talking about “unity” let’s remember:
Biden undermined Democratic unity by breaking with Dems to support the GOP’s Iraq War resolution, pass the GOP’s bankruptcy bill, kill Dems’ anti-pharma price gouging bill, pass GOP legislation to let states repeal Roe & pass NAFTA

When Biden says he works with Republicans to get things done, he is talking about:
– Going to War in Iraq
– Increasing drug prices
– Increasing student debt & medical debt
– Decreasing Social Security, Medicare & Medicaid benefits
– Decreasing taxes for the 1% & large corporations
– Shipping jobs to Mexico & China
Michael Bloomberg… Nov 2019
Mike Bloomberg quits 2020 race after spending more than $500m
Billionaire candidate faced controversy over his wealth, stop-and-frisk policy
and past remarks against women and minorities

I was skeptical of the idea that Warren’s grilling of Bloomberg during his first debate ended his campaign but his field organizers repeatedly told me that volunteers quit and canvassing became dramatically harder after the debate:

Donald Trump

Alex Lawson (of Social Security Works) responded to the president…

After Donald Trump revealed on a Fox News town hall that he wanted to cut Social Security and Medicare – -, his campaign is trying to play cleanup. He just tweeted: “I will protect your Social Security and Medicare, just as I have for the past 3 years.”

Here’s the truth about the last 3 years:

– Donald Trump has proposed trillions of dollars in cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid in each of his budget proposals, while cutting taxes even further for the super-rich.

– His administration spent its first year trying to destroy Medicaid and Medicare with Trumpcare.

– He reinstated a Reagan-era rule to deny Social Security benefits to people with disabilities, which was reversed in the 1980s because it was too cruel, but more than 20,000 people died before their benefits could be restored.

– His Social Security Administration has increased regulations and closed offices, making it harder for Americans to access their earned benefits.

Strong Job Growth, Weak Wage Growth in Last Pre-Coronavirus Jobs Report

#jobsday the 53,000 increase in restaurant jobs is not good news. These are generally
low paying jobs, people don’t work in restaurants if they have better options

CBPP: Trump Budget Seeks Deep Non-Defense Appropriations Cuts,
in Break With Bipartisan Agreement

In light of Trump’s comments…
Fact Check: State of Working America Wages 2019
A story of slow, uneven, and unequal wage growth over the last 40 years

Context: Unemployment rate 1948 to 2020
The last upward spike associated with the housing bubble popping (on Bush’s watch)…

Fact Check: Poverty rate in the United States from 1990 to 2018
~Followed the unemployment rate…

Fact Check: Consumer Confidence Index
~Followed the unemployment rate. 3rd graph includes NFIB Small Business Optimism Index

Fact Check: Americans Want Jobs, Not War
Polls indicate voters would like to see a reduced Pentagon budget
and more spending on health care and education at home.


CBPP: ACA Lawsuit Would Cut Taxes for the Most Well-Off While Ending Health Coverage for Millions

I had the opportunity to share my experiences from the emergency dept in the context of the #coronavirus emerging health crisis on @CNN (video). Let me be clear: 7M ppl have already lost their healthcare under Trump, and he’s on a mission to cut more. His cuts will worsen this crisis.

How many Iranians will die of Coronavirus because of Trump’s Economic Blockade on that Country?

Trump wants the benefit of asserting constitutional immunity when he is sued personally even as he files lawsuits against others, undermining his defense in the defamation case brought by E. Jean Carroll, Carroll’s attorneys argued in court.

Trump’s company charged the Secret Service $157,000 more than was previously known – billing taxpayers for rooms at his clubs at rates far higher than his company claimed.
In total, Trump’s biz has charged the Secret Service more than $628,000 since 2017.

“The payments show Trump has an unprecedented – and still partially hidden –
business relationship with his own government. The full scope of that relationship
is still unknown because the publicly available records are largely from 2017 and
2018, leaving huge gaps in the data.”

If he was hiring the best qualified people, there’d be no need to play the race card…

Trump’s 4th chief of staff in just over 3 years!

Trump taps Mark Meadows to replace Mulvaney as chief of staff

Biden had been complaining about these “interest groups” and “special interests,” typically contrasted with his beloved “middle class,” for about as long as he’d been complaining about the party’s direction.

But who exactly were these shadowy entities? Franklin Roosevelt, too, had attacked “special groups” and “special interests” in the 1930s. But while Roosevelt meant the “unscrupulous money changers” and the anti-New Deal “minority in business and finance” whose minions “swarm through the lobbies of the Congress and the cocktail bars of Washington,” Biden meant something very different.

“Minorities and other vested interests are sick and tired of hollow promises,” he had said in 1971 after his very first win. Seven years later, he would bellow at these “interest groups” who refused to do away with government programs that benefited them; he now blamed these groups for the runaway spending he sought to control. Now, as he toured the country preaching his vision, Biden urged Democrats to proclaim that special interest groups came second to the national interest. In Alabama, his denunciation of such interests (“warmly received,” wrote the Wilmington Morning News (1983)) was followed by his insistence that the state had confronted and largely worked out its racist demons.
Branko Marcetic in “Joe Biden Helped Pull the Democrats to the Right”

23 Headlines Obscure Biden’s (comments) About Cutting Social Security:
Wanting to Cut Social Security, Along with Everything Else, Is Still Wanting to Cut Social Security:

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