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View Diary: Abbreviated Pundit Round-Up (149 comments)

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  •  Question really is (8+ / 0-)

    how come good lawyers haven't yet been able to challenge these extremely gerrymandered districts in court?  I've seen district maps thrown out by courts, more than once in my lifetime.  Why hasn't the DNC taken this up in a systematic way?

    When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

    by litho on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:01:20 AM PST

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    •  Because someone from very high up (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      a2nite, Laconic Lib

      probably doesn't want to be seen as too partisan, preferring to make nice speeches than actually doing something about the things that are destroying this country, lest he make Sally Quinn haz a sad.

      When I see the fighter we've been promised in Version 2.0, is when I'll take such comments back. Until then, talk is cheap. Very, very cheap.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:06:16 AM PST

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      •  Dunno. The guy who took Boehner to the mat (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NancyWH, wintergreen8694, a2nite

        on the middle class tax cut and the fiscal cliff, who has put the GOP in a bind on immigration reform, who is squeezing finally on gun control... he looks like a fighter to me.

        I don't see the GOP getting any easy lay-ups over the next two years.  But I also don't know why those House districts haven't been challenged systematically.

        For all I know, it may actually be too late already to do anything about it.

        When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

        by litho on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:11:38 AM PST

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        •  He's been dipping his feet into the water (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Laconic Lib

          more lately, I'll allow, but I still don't see him fully embrace this new "fighting progressive" persona as articulated so brilliantly and forcefully at Osawatomie and the inaugural. He can't have it both ways. I'm not saying that he launch a bitter street fight with the GOP, but there are certain fundamental things that need to be done so that progressive change is possible.

          Among them are challenging the GOP's dirty political strategy, in the courts if need be, but certainly in the statehouses, as well as going after the banksters who still run much of the country, all these shady Citizens United SuperPACs that are undermining democracy, and voter suppression efforts. He & Reid already gave up on meaningful filibuster reform, a very bad sign IMO.

          Personally, I see him as still committed to doing the most possible that doesn't require going up against the GOP or powerful special interests such as Wall St. Meaning, incremental change that can be overturned once the GOP takes over again, that doesn't challenge the unfair structural advantages the GOP has that will make it easier for them to take over.

          That's the transformation I voted for, not this Kumbaya shit.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 07:51:22 AM PST

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      •  Or, it could be that someone who ISN'T (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Minnesota Deb

        the President Of Everyone, needs to take charge of the partisan battles so that POTUS can concentrate on running the country.
        Obama ran against partisanship. If you remember, there was a huge public outcry against the partisanship of the BushCheney years in all the media including the Left and Alt.media (I don't know if it was as loud here, I wasn't around here much at the time).
        But the Media didn't differentiate between the GOP's partisanship and the Dems version. "Everybody does it" was the mantra from Right to Left (even though that was blatantly false to anyone that was paying attention).
        The public demanded bi-partisanship.
        So that's what he promised, to work in a bi-partisan manner and that's what he has tried to deliver.
        The GOP, of course, made no such promise and in fact, on inauguration day 2009, they met to outline their obstruction strategy. And they put that plan into action 100%.
        But Obama continued to try to deliver what the voters had asked for. And for that, he was vilified from the Left while being ambushed from the Right.
        He's modified his posture slightly in the face of continued obstruction, but he will never be the kind of confrontational 4sshole that the GOP regularly vomits up. It violates his campaign promise, it would inflame his enemies further without gaining anything and it goes against his experience and personality. And it could easily get him killed.
        As a perennial outsider wherever he went, he built relationships across major chasms. He was never the Majority Leader, not even a large minority leader. Even in the black community, he was not descended from African American slaves, rather the product of an Irish American mother and an African, from Africa, father. As a community organizer, he had no choice in who he had to deal with, the people of the community were who they were and to work with them he had to find common ground.
        And he is very good at it, unless he's faced with an organized opposition of the sort that the GOP has formed (and which no one has faced before like this, the GOP obstruction campaign is unprecedented).
        For decades now, we have been glorifying the "Competitor" and downplaying, even vilifying the "Cooperator". Obama is, by nature, a Cooperator.
        Doing the dirtywork of sharp-elbows politics should not be up to him, it's the job of the DNC, the DSCC, the DLCC and state Democratic parties.
        And they are the ones who need a fire lit under them.

        If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

        by CwV on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 07:21:22 AM PST

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        •  False equivalence (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Laconic Lib

          LW partisanship <> RW partisanship. That's a RW meme that's been picked up and reinforced by the RW-fearing media. There is absolutely zero equivalence, none, on a moral or ethical level, between rigging the system, and unrigging the system, between trying to destroy the New Deal, and trying to preserve it, between making government serve rich and powerful special interests, and making it serve the public interest (its one and only core job btw)--unless you believe that fighting for one cause is as valid or invalid as fighting for another.

          In which case, we might as well not even have a legal system because both sides are equally contentious are acting badly.

          So I reject the nonsense "the public is tired of partisan fighting" because that's a RW meme intended to keep us from fighting for what we believe is right.

          As for whether this is Obama's job, well, to the extent that this might be illegal or even unconstitutional, then yes, it is his job--or his AG's job--obviously, to do something about it. And as head of his party, it's part of his job to protect his party from such things. I don't buy this silly "I'm the president of all the country, not the Democratic party" nonsense. Unless and until the other side feels the same way, I don't see the point in unilateral disarmament. Only a fool does that. Things aren't going to get better until we crush them. Only a fool believes otherwise. We are NOT "post-partisan", never have been, likely never will be. Politics is war by other means. It's not how I wish things were, just how they actually are. There is no middle path to a better future.

          "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

          by kovie on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 07:41:50 AM PST

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          •  I agree with most of this, (0+ / 0-)

            that the Corporate Media and the RightWing have created this false equivalence, but it is out there and is a major obstacle. Too many people buy it on both the Right and the Left (I am not one of them but I can see the trendlines). And Obama addressed that concern in his campaign (in 2008).
            I agree that the GOP's goals are foul and that our side has the moral high ground, but that doesn't overcome the fact that we're outgunned. And with the sniping from our Left, it only gets tougher.
            It's more likely that this would be a matter for Civil Law as opposed to Criminal Law, so it would not be the duty of the AG or the Pres, it would be the Party leadership, the DNC chair et cetera and the Party Rank&File that would have to take this up. Which I would strongly support doing, can we raise some Orange Funds?
            And no we are no more post-partisan than we are post-racial. It's an ongoing fight. I just don't think that Obama is the person or in the correct position to lead this particular battle.

            If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

            by CwV on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 09:05:06 AM PST

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            •  I would think that violations of the equal (0+ / 0-)

              protection clause could be shown to be criminal, if intent and awareness could be demonstrated, making it a DoJ matter. Also FEC, but it has no teeth and isn't likely to any time soon, especially with the DC court ruling on recess appointments. Notice how comprehensive the GOP strategy is? This has been decades in design and implementation. Why can't we be that strategic?

              "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

              by kovie on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 09:41:53 AM PST

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              •  Because we have scruples? (0+ / 0-)

                If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

                by CwV on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 09:59:16 AM PST

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                •  I don't see the connection, unless this is snark (0+ / 0-)

                  Having a comprehensive and effective strategy doesn't in and of itself make one unscrupulous. It makes one smart (which evil people can be, alas). The ends towards which one proceeds and the means by which one does so are what determine whether one is scrupulous or not.

                  "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

                  by kovie on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 10:05:15 AM PST

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                  •  And to get to where the Right is (0+ / 0-)

                    takes a willingness to do ANYthing, right or wrong. Legal or questionable, to achieve their goals. They have no compunction about lying, about hurting people that oppose them, about ruining them politically, economically, et cetera.
                    If they had any scruples at all, much of their agenda would not have been implemented.
                    Just one example: The GOP-appointed Supremes. Roberts, Scalia, Alito, even Thomas, dodged, twisted and even flat out lied in their confirmation hearings. Had they been honest, and had their sponsors been honorable, none of those creeps would have been impaneled.

                    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

                    by CwV on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 10:48:08 AM PST

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    •  Supremes have spoken (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Leo Flinnwood, a2nite, samddobermann

      In 2006, they approved the Texas 2003 gerrymander, with one district needing to be changed a bit.

      We can safely abandon the doctrine of the eighties, namely that the rich were not working because they had too little money, the poor because they had too much. JK Galbraith, 1991

      by Urban Owl on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:14:30 AM PST

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      •  I thought the question at issue in that case (0+ / 0-)

        was the mid-term nature of the gerrymander, not the district boundaries.

        I haven't read it, so I could be wrong, but my recollection of the reporting at the time certainly made it look that way.

        When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

        by litho on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:20:52 AM PST

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        •  Both (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          oxfdblue

          Supremes said mid-decade is okay, and then said all the districts but one were acceptable.

          So now there's a precedent that Democrats can use IF we concentrate on state races in 2014.

          We can safely abandon the doctrine of the eighties, namely that the rich were not working because they had too little money, the poor because they had too much. JK Galbraith, 1991

          by Urban Owl on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 07:00:56 AM PST

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    •  There hasn't been any legal challenges (0+ / 0-)

      to the Republicans' gerrymandering of districts, probably, for the same reason there was no true filibuster reform in the Senate - because Democrats want the option of doing the same thing when they finally have majorities in state legislatures.  Of course there have been lawsuits against those states whose redistricting is under scrutiny by the DOJ through the Voting Rights Act.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 06:59:55 AM PST

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    •  There's actually a very good reason for that. (0+ / 0-)

      Namely, that courts hate to take these cases ... and filters down to lawyers now wanting to take them either.

      As for why courts hate to take them, one has to understand the court must do more than just say 'this map is illegal'. It must also map out a remedy. And that is hard, because courts can't just up and draw maps.

      "What could BPossibly go wrong??" -RLMiller "God is just pretend." - eru

      by nosleep4u on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 10:58:03 AM PST

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    •  Have you noticed the Supreme Court? (0+ / 0-)

      And many of the Appellate Courts?

      The biggest damage the Rs are doing is blocking Court appointments. It hurts now and for many years to come.

      I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

      by samddobermann on Sun Feb 03, 2013 at 03:47:11 PM PST

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