Archive for the ‘budget’ Category

The TeaParty Giveth and Taketh Away

Friday, September 25th, 2015

Speaker John A. Boehner, who rode a conservative wave to one of the highest positions in government, said today that he would resign from Congress at the end of October, undone by the very Republicans Teabaggers who swept him into power.

His rise and fall are noted in the following timeline:

Feb 2012 – He was swept into power on the Tea Party wave of 2010, the new speaker is immediately confronted by his powerful right flank with H.R. 1, the first bill of the new Republican House, which tries and fails to defund Planned Parenthood.

Jul 2012 – Pressed by conservatives, John Boehner dug in against raising the government’s statutory borrowing limit, risking a potentially catastrophic default on the federal debt. The White House blinked and signed the Budget Control Act establishing a “super committee” to slash the federal deficit, with strict spending caps set by law if the committee failed. The committee did fail and the Sequester was born. This is the only real victory can claim against President Obama but time has proven the Sequester is no victory for the country.

Dec 2012 – With all of President George W. Bush’s tax cuts set to expire on Jan. 1, John Boehner faced a major predicament. Most Republicans were elected on a pledge not to raise any taxes. President Obama had vowed to raise taxes on the rich. If they all did nothing, taxes would go up for virtually everyone. Mr. Boehner lost to President Obama and taxes went up on incomes over $400,000.

Oct 2013 – With the federal government set to run out of money, conservatives demanded on defunding the Affordable Care Act. He knew a shutdown would hurt the GOP politically but he could not avoid it. The government shut down on Oct. 1 for 16 days, until Republicans caved in to pressure and negative PR. Once again, President Obama won.

Feb 2015 – Conservatives once again forced the Speaker to stand their ground on continued funding for the Department of Homeland Security, demanding that any funds be tied to stopping Mr. Obama’s executive actions on immigration. Again, Mr. Boehner faced a threat on his speakership. Again, President Obama prevailed.

Sep 2015 – With the end of the fiscal year approaching, conservatives are again demanding that Planned Parenthood be defunded and the Teabaggers are prepared to shut down the government. John Boehner knew that a bill to fund the government beyond Sept. 30 would pass with Democratic votes, but conservatives said such a vote would end his speakership.

Sep 25, 2015 – One day after Pope Francis addressed a joint session of congress, an invitation from the speaker, John Boehner announced his resignation. He said he wanted to resign last year but when Eric Cantor was defeated by the Teabaggers, he said he decided to stay on for one more year.

Minority Speaker, Nancy Pelosi called Boehner’s resignation “a stark indication of the disarray of the House Republicans.”

Teabaggers claimed credit and victory for the Boehner’s resignation.Dont Laugh at ME

How do Liberals Escape from Wing-Nut Hell

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

gop-vs-americaThere is broad disappointment among [Liberals] progressives at the outcome of several recent antics of the radical right teabagger extreme. From the debt ceiling deal to the near collapse of the government. How do you deal with zealots that are hell bent on blowing up the entire economy if they don’t get their way? So how do [Liberals] progressives escape from this wing-nut hell?

The last several years, European politicians struggled to avoid default that would lead their economies to collapse. Those who tried austerity as a solution, suffered damaging blows to their economies and encountered wrath from it people. Yet, in the United States, radical right extremists Republicans manufactured the same kind of economic crisis and threatened to blow the entire economy to hell if they didn’t get their way. They have sinse engaged in an orgy of austerity that has damaged our economic growth and killed new job creation.

Did their tactics work? Idiots who are reckless have a huge advantage when dealing with rational foes that act responsibly.

President Obama and Democratic leadership did a valiant job avoiding the worst features of the deal, but in the end the negotiation was only about the size of the ransom paid and the damage of its costs to our economy.

Other historical situations involving both Republican and Democratic Presidents ended more rationally when faced with difficult economic solutions. The deficit reduction deal between Ronald Regan and Democrat House Speaker Tip O’Neal in 1984 was 82% new revenue and 18% cuts in expenditures. Clinton’s deals that lead to large surpluses in the 1990’s was 62% new taxes – mainly on the wealthy – and 38% cuts. This deal was 100% cuts. But today’s teabagger extremists don’t deal in rational behavior or use logic.

The general consensus among economists is that the impact of the cuts of the ongoing Sequester is damaging the already-weak economic recovery. The deal included no short-term stimulus and extreme cuts in R&D that is allowing China to gain on the US in areas of new energy technology advantages that will lead to future economic world dominance.

It is interesting to note that Congressional cuts in Embassy protection lead to weak embassy security that allowed extremists attacks on the Embassy resulting in four deaths at Benghazi. A situation that was clearly created by the radical teabagger congress that Republicans hypocrisy attempts to use as political weapon against Hillary Clinton.

There were some bright spots in the outcome of the war of economic attrition but traditional logic does not apply to the teabagger faithful. Clear danger lies ahead for progressives.

Progressives must maintain a determined, relentless campaign to prevent the teabagger controlled Congress from making cuts in Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.

The Paul Ryan budget shows us exactly where the Republicans want to go. The Republican budget would eliminate Medicare and replace it with a failed system of vouchers for private insurance that raises the out of pocket health care expenses of senior citizens by $6,000 per year. They would raise the retirement age for Social Security, and turn Medicaid into block grants that would eliminate the guarantee of health care for the poor, and nursing home care for seniors and the disabled. And they would do it all to prevent the rich from having to contribute to deficit reduction.

We must continue to refocus the political conversation directly to the issue that the vast majority of Americans really care about: jobs and fair living wages.

Progressives must get out the vote because Elections matter. If given the opportunity, the extremists will destroy Obamacare, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the EPA. They will increase the war against women’s rights; continue the assault on science, and legitimate hate and intolerance.

The recent battles to close the government and threats to implode the economy must serve as a warning — a wake up call. The [wing-nut] Republicans must be stopped. They will outsource what remains of our manufacturing jobs, repeal Obamacare, eliminate all regulations on Wall Street’s greed, destroy unions and allow the wealthy to plunder what is left of America’s middle class.

If one doubts this, one need look no future back than 2007 when they tried the same failed economic recipe for disaster that cast the nation into near economic ruin and the worse economic downturn since the Great Depression.

A Greed Driven Budget or April Fool’s Joke?

Tuesday, April 1st, 2014

WASHINGTON — Todays unveiling of Paul Ryan’s newest Republican budget exposed what Republicans will do if they gain complete control of Congress. His greed driven budget will allow the rick to harvest a windfall of tax cuts while the poor and middle class would be burdened with the painful costs. This budget will also allow Democrats to broaden the political difference between the two parties beyond health care, minimum wage and unemployment benefits.

Ryan laid out a budget plan that slashes $5 trillion in spending over the next decade on the backs of the poor and middle class. He falsely claims he would bring federal spending and taxes into balance by 2024, through drastic cuts to Medicaid and food stamps, and the total repeal of the Affordable Care Act just as millions are reaping the benefits of the law.

Domestic programs would be reduced to the lowest levels since modern government accounting while defense spending would increase. Medicare would be converted into a “premium support” system, where people 65 and older could purchase private insurance with small federal subsidies instead of government-paid health care. Subsidies in truth could not pay for health care of these people.

“We need to be a proposition party, not just an opposition party,” said Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin. “We believe we owe it to the [rich] country to offer an alternative to the status quo. It’s just that simple.”

Even with those tough political choices, the budget would balance in 2024 only because Ryan is assuming his cuts would prompt a burst of economic growth to raise tax revenues above what independent economists forecast. Back to trickle-down economics. He also does not adjust the government’s revenue ledger to reflect the cost of repealing the health care law’s tax increases and Medicare cuts, which could add an additional $2 trillion.

The Ryan budget will be formally drafted on Wednesday in the Budget Committee and brought to a House vote on Friday — if Republican leaders can find 217 votes to pass it over the concerns of moderates who say it goes too far and conservatives who say it does not go far enough.

Regardless of the vote, the budget will be front and center in the coming campaigns.

Paul Ryan’s budget is close to the heart of core Republican values and beliefs: Deliver Wealth to the wealthy, Power to the powerful, and suffering to everyone else…

In all, Ryan said, spending would be cut by $5.1 trillion over the next decade. More than $2 trillion of that would come from repealing Mr. Obama’s health care initiative, the Affordable Care Act, a political move that may be much more difficult now that more than 10 million Americans have gotten health insurance through the law, either through private policies purchased on insurance exchanges, through expanded Medicaid or private policies purchased through brokers but subsidized by the law.

Such an [Ann Rand] approach “empowers recipients to get off the aid rolls and back on the payrolls,” Mr. Ryan wrote. More importantly, it stuffs money in the pockets of the rich and powerful.

The toughest cuts would come from domestic programs that have already been reduced steadily to rubble, since 2011, when Republicans took control of the House. Nor did Ryan shy away from hot-button issues.

Education funding would be cut by $145 billion over 10 years. Pell grants for college students would lose $90 billion. University students would start being charged interest on their loans while still in school, reaping $40 billion.

Under the greed driven world of Republicans, Federal subsidies for the National Endowments for the Arts and Humanities, as well as the Corporation for Public Broadcasting “can no longer be justified,” Ryan said.

Not even big bird and Sesame Street will be spared the pain of Ryan’s cuts. The arts, in addition to public television, will be wiped off the face of the earth.

Pelosi Provides Votes to End Republican Teabaggers Government Shutdown

Wednesday, October 16th, 2013

130910_nancy_pelosi_ap_605WASHINGTON — Today, Senate Democratic and Republican leaders reached a final agreement on a deal to reopen the government and extend its borrowing authority into February, with final passage looking increasingly possible by Wednesday evening.

In the House, Nancy Pelosi provided the votes needed to allow the bill to pass; 185-144. The Senate passed the bill 81-18. It is no surprise that Teabaggers voted against the bill.

Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader announced the completion of the agreement shortly after noon, and the Senate Republicans who had led the push to shut down the government unless President Obama’s health care law was gutted conceded defeat and promised not to delay a final vote.

Under the agreement, the government would be funded through Jan. 15, and the debt ceiling would be raised until Feb. 7.

One can only hope that this will be a learning experience for lawmakers in the House and Senate who shut down the government in hopes of gutting “Obamacare” the Affordable Care Act.

In the midst of government collapse, the credit rating agency Fitch put the United States on a “negative ratings watch,” warning that Congressional intransigence had put the full faith and credit of the government at serious risk.
As the United States nears default, investors have demanded more compensation for lending to the government, with yields on short-term debt spiking to their highest levels in years.

Fitch warned that Congress has not “raised the federal debt ceiling in a timely manner.” It said that it “continues to believe that the debt ceiling will be raised soon,” but that “political brinkmanship and reduced financing flexibility could increase the risk of a U.S. default.”

The Teabagger Shutdown: Its Effects on America

Thursday, October 10th, 2013

1234866_570391279663222_1579568118_nThe government shutdown continues because wing-nut members of Congress refuse to reach an agreement on legislation to authorize funding for a new fiscal year. Republicans appear to be moving away from their original demands to defund Obamacare as the reason for the shutdown. Republicans scramble to find a way out as the effects of the shutdown slowly take hold and move across the nation as the suffering grows.

As the pain index grows, as a result of the Government shutdown, many in the Republican Party take cover and begin to back pedal on the ideal of the shutdown being a good idea as Republican poll numbers plummet nationally. The furry of the American people grows as the ill effects of the shutdown take hold. Every day more and more people are affected by results of the shutdown.

Here are but a few effects of the shutdown:

National Parks

Across the nation, national parks have closed because of the government shutdown. As fall color explodes, it will do so unseen as many national parks closed last week at the height of tourism season across the nation.

Welfare

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funding is cut off by the shutdown, but many states have funding available for carryover into the new fiscal year.

Unfortunately, the WIC (Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children) program is out of funds. In North Carolina, the WIC program closed two days ago leaving over 269,000 people (mostly children) without food.

Veteran’s benefits

ap_transfer_remains_ceremony_ll_120914_wmainAnger swept across the nation, as death benefits were not available for the families of five young Americans killed in Afghanistan this past Sunday. Today, the US Government took emergency action to immediately implement benefits to the families of these fallen Americans.

As with most federal agencies, some services will be temporarily shut down or slowed down: The Veterans Affairs website will be updated only “intermittently,” the VA says, and vocational and educational counseling for vets will be limited.

Veterans cannot receive federal tuition assistance.

States where the military presence is heavy are being hit hard by the impact of the Government shutdown. South Carolina has been hit especially hard.

In Tennessee

Y12 and Oak Ridge National Labs announced that 4,800 workers would be laid off because of the Government shutdown. The affects will be devastating to Tennessee. The furloughs will begin October 17th.

Senior’s benefits

Meals on wheels, a program that gives good assistance to seniors closed last week due to the shutdown. Hundreds of thousands of seniors stopped receiving this daily food assistance.

Small Business Assistance

Loans to small business have stopped because of the Government shutdown affecting their ability to expand and create new jobs.

National Guard Furloughs

Several states have laid-off National Guard members. Kentucky has been hit especially hard.

Government Workers

Across the nation, government workers have been laid off because of the Government shutdown. Virginia has been hit especially hard with hundreds of thousands of workers laid off.

Companies performing work related to Government contracts are also laying off employees as a result of the Government shutdown. Boeing furloughed over 3,000 workers.

FEMA and other Government Agencies have also furloughed workers.

House Republicans’ Sequester Would Cut 40,000 Jobs in Tennessee

Friday, February 22nd, 2013

SEQUESTER FACTS: House Republicans’ Sequester Will Eliminate Millions of Jobs, Including Nearly 40,000 Jobs in Tennessee

Tea Party House Republicans left the capital last week without any attempt to negotiate a deal on the sequester — a series of deep and indiscriminate cuts that experts estimate will eliminate millions of jobs and could throw the economy back into a recession. Rather than put a stop to the sequester by closing tax breaks for millionaire and corporate special interests, House Republicans — like Rep. Scott DesJarlais, Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, Rep. Diane Black and Rep. Marsha Blackburn — are allowing it to take place.

The cuts will affect areas across the government from defense to domestic spending, including medical research, Army Corps of Engineers projects, federal law enforcement officers, Head Start and services to pregnant women. Republicans have refused to bring up a compromise plan that achieves the deficit reduction by ending special tax breaks for millionaires and corporations.

In Tennessee, Sequester Will Eliminate Nearly 40,000 Jobs
Here is the plan that House Republicans are green lighting:

Study: Sequester Would Cut 39,120 Jobs in Tennessee. According to a 2012 study by George Mason Professor Stephen Fuller, the automatic spending cuts affecting Department of Defense and non-Department of Defense discretionary spending would lead to significant job losses in every state.

• Sequester Would Cost Tennessee $2 Billion in Total Lost Income.[The Economic Impact of the Budget Control Act of 2011 on DOD & non-DOD Agencies, Professor Stephen Fuller, 7/17/12]
Study: Sequester Would Slash Critical Maternal and Child Health Services. The American Academy of Pediatrics studied the impacts that sequestration will have on Tennessee and projected that:

• 13,200 mothers and young children would lose access to food assistance and critical health care.
• 4,100 fewer children would receive vaccinations.
• 75,100 fewer women, children and families would receive critical preventive health care.
• $53 million would be cut from the NIH’s research projects based in Tennessee.[American Academy of Pediatrics, 10/1/12]

Study: Sequester Eliminates $46 Million in Education Funding, Affecting Thousands of Tennessee Students. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities analyzed how sequestration would impact education in Tennessee and concluded that the state would lose $46,751,000 in federal funding for critical education programs. These cuts include:

• $12 million would be cut from special education funding, affecting 5,660 students.
• $1.2 million would be cut from grants for career and technical education.
• $642,000 would be cut from need-based grants that would help 24,990 low-income Tennessee students pay for college.
[NEA, February 2013]

Nationally, Sequester Will Be Devastating
CBO: Sequester Expected to Eliminate 1.4 Million Jobs Nationally. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office concluded that 1.4 million jobs are at stake if sequestration were to go into effect. “According to CBO’s projections, if all of that fiscal tightening occurs, real (inflation-adjusted) gross domestic product (GDP) will drop by 0.5 percent in 2013 (as measured by the change from the fourth quarter of 2012 to the fourth quarter of 2013)—reflecting a decline in the first half of the year and renewed growth at a modest pace later in the year. That contraction of the economy will cause employment to decline and the unemployment rate to rise to 9.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013.” [Congressional Budget Office, 11/8/12]

CBO: Sequester Expected to Cut Economic Growth in Half. The sequester is also expected to lead to a recession in 2013 by slashing economic growth in half.

According to the Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch, “Fiscal tightening including the automatic budget cuts known as the sequester would cut U.S. growth in half in 2013 if allowed to go into effect, the Congressional Budget Office said Tuesday in a new budget and economic outlook. … CBO said Tuesday that growth would be about 1.5 percentage points faster in 2013 if not for fiscal tightening including the sequester.” [MarketWatch, 2/5/13]

By The Numbers: Sequestration Will Target Women, Child, Veterans, and the Most Vulnerable
According to an analysis by U.S. Senate’s Appropriations Committee on the impacts of sequestration, as reported by the New York Times:

• 4,000 workers would be furloughed every day at the F.A.A., causing flight backups.
• 70,000 children would lose Head Start.
• 14,000 teachers and other school employees could lose their jobs.
• 125,000 families would be put at sudden risk of homelessness because their rental assistance would end.
• 373,000 seriously mentally ill adults and severely emotionally disturbed children would most likely lose their treatments.
• 600,000 women and children would lose nutrition aid from the Women, Infants and Children program.
• 251,000 civilians employed by the Army could be furloughed for up to 22 days.
• $3 billion would be the potential shortfall in the military’s health insurance program; some services could be denied for retirees and dependents of active-duty personnel.
• 7,750 Customs and Border Protections agents could be laid off.

Renaissance of Liberalism?

Sunday, December 23rd, 2012

Poetic, in this greed filled age of conservatism; liberal issues dominated the 2012 election. With stunning results, in an election where pot is legal and gays are free to marry. Who would believe that a African American who campaigned to raise taxes on the rich would win his second election in America by a majority? This feat has not been accomplished by a Democrat since Franklin Roosevelt’s second election in 1936.

In many ways, the recent economic situation in America mirrored the events of the Great Depression. And in this election, only 25 percent of voters identified themselves as “liberal” in national exit polls. 35 percent proclaimed to be conservative while 41 percent called themselves moderates. There was a three percent point increase in those voters who called themselves liberal.

Demography and democracy advanced the progressive political ideas by a majority of voters. Before the election of Barack Obama, liberalism has been silent in America for several decades.

Abraham Lincoln’s push to erase the original southern sin of slavery from the land was a liberal achievement. Teddy Roosevelt’s embrace of the income tax was a liberal moment. Other liberal causes include the Women’s movement in 1920, Social Security entitlements in 1935, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Other events such as the creation of national parks, and laws against child labor, poisoning the environment, and the more recent move to give most Americans access to health care are liberal causes.

This brings us to the fascinating self-portrait of America at the genesis of the beginning of second term of the Obama era. A war is ongoing where the center-left majority wants to restore some equality to the growing imbalance between the very rich and the rest of us. If President Obama can successfully lead this coalition, he will be remembered among the greats.

For this to be successful, this will involve raising taxes on the top 2% and reforming entitlements enough to ensure their continued success and sustainability. Obama will have to make the Affordable Care Act “Obamacare” work, address climate change or immigration reform and in the process, he can restore liberalism to greatness.

For at least a generation’s time, liberals in this country have been afraid to call themselves liberal, calling themselves progressives. One can argue why the left was cast into exile but the demonization of liberals by the conservatives’ relentless vile smear campaigns seems to be the most obvious reason.

Liberalism, in the purest form, is about expanding opportunity and human rights, while embracing science and logic. Liberalism created the entitlement programs, after the Great Depression, to protect the poor, old and the majority of Americans from failed Republican policies. Liberalism created the American middle class.

Liberals of the 20th century have had some amazing successes — regulation of monopolistic greed driven trusts, modernization of strong public schools, and ensuring a safe food supply.

The New Deal’s lasting legacy, Social Security, and its counterpart of the 1960s, Medicare, have allowed millions of American to live out their lives in dignity. These programs are now under attack by modern day conservatives driven by a vile agenda of greed, but now these programs are considered sacred by Americans of all political affiliations. Even the mislead teabaggers will fight you over their social security while they chant and rant against socialism.

Conservatism, in its desire to destroy social programs and entitlements have now lost its way. They abandoned fiscal responsibility in exchange for the Bush doctrine. Recently they have resorted to attacking women, rejecting science, demonizing immigration reform, restricting personal freedom, and adopting voter suppression laws in order to steal elections and/or remain relevant.

If you believe in science, technology, climate change, finding a path to citizenship for millions of hard-working immigrants, support strong public education and the right to marry the person you love, there is no place for you in todays Republican Party. Moderate Republicans are not welcome!

The neo-con wing of the Republican Party started a pair of disastrous unfunded wars that all but bankrupted the country in the wild west Bush era. And for leaders, the party put forth crackpots and wing nuts in 2012. The Republican Party is on its way of assuring its place as a regional party unless it adopts reasonable change. Talk of civil war in the Republican Party is discussed by TV political analyst and fills the dreams of modern day progressives and Democrats everywhere.

This election has created some strong possibilities for restoring liberalism in America. Obama has the unique opportunity to shore up a weakened middle class, address climate change and make the promise of health care expansion work. For now, the majority of Americans have Obama’s back. And should he succeed, the Democrats could enjoy a growing majority in the future.

TNDP: Strengthen Our Fiscal House By Putting Tennesseans Back to Work

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

NASHVILLE — State Democratic Party Chairman Chip Forrester urged Tennessee’s top Republicans to consider a jobs plan to keep the state’s fiscal house in order.

“The surest way to strengthen our state’s fiscal house is to put 300,000 Tennesseans back to work. If Ron Ramsey and Governor Bill Haslam put half the effort they expend wooing big corporate donations into a common sense jobs plan, Tennessee would get there a lot faster.”

Forrester pressed Gov. Bill Haslam and Senate Speaker Ron Ramsey for action on the state’s job crisis in statement Wednesday following the Republicans’ meeting with Wall Street bond rating agencies.

“This bond rating dog and pony show for Wall Street executives looks obnoxious to the 300,000 Tennesseans who are struggling to find work and provide for their families,” Forrester said. “They’d like to see a day where the numbers we brag about are Tennessee’s low unemployment rate and high economic output.

“There’s no doubt Wall Street was impressed with Governor Haslam’s contingency plan to fire 5,000 workers and eliminate crucial services that keep families healthy, children educated and the disabled properly cared for. However, Tennesseans who’ve seen this extreme plan are not so enthusiastic,” Chip Forrester said. “Haslam’s slash-and-burn budget would send our state into an even more severe economic tailspin and prompt a societal crisis that would diminish the quality of life for every Tennessean.”

This summer Gov. Haslam instructed state department heads to plan for 30 percent budget cuts to be enacted if Tennessee receives less federal funding.

—30—

GOP Overreach

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

It’s crystal clear that Tennesseans have soundly rejected the extremist GOP agenda rammed through the state legislature this year.

A new, statewide Vanderbilt University poll found that support for the Republican-led state legislature has “plummeted 20 percentage points since January.

The GOP honeymoon is over and Tennesseans are riled up like never before over lawmakers stripping teachers of their right to collectively bargain for smaller class sizes, school supplies, and text books while cutting millions from public and higher education budgets.

Attacking teachers and our public schools is outrageous!  Please contribute $5 or more to help us fight back.  A generous Democrat will match your gifit dollar-for-dollar making your donation go twice as far.

Teachers and public education weren’t the only targets of the GOP.

Since January we have seen a systematic assault on Tennessee values:

  • IGNORED JOBS CRISIS. In 2010, Republicans campaigned on a platform of jobs, jobs, jobs. Less than one year later, the majority party buried its head in the sand and ignored the crisis facing 300,000 Tennesseans looking for work. And since the GOP took charge, Tennessee’s unemployment rate has climbed to nearly 10 percent.
  • LAVISH RAISES. Gov. Bill Haslam made cuts to important health programs while handing out more than $250,000 worth of raises to his top cronies, all of whom already made six-figure salaries. One commissioner even got a 32% raise — in his first week on the job!
  • PROTECTED PREJUDICE. The GOP gave into the radical right-wing of its party, bowing to demands to overturn Metro-Nashville Council’s CANDO ordinance that required businesses with city contracts to employ non-discrimination hiring policies.

Click here for a more complete look at damage done by Republicans this year.

In short Republicans junked their promise to strengthen the state economy and create jobs in favor of ideological pet projects that harm our families and the least among us.

This poll shows that Tennesseans regret giving Republicans a chance behind the wheel and have quickly become sick of their reckless driving.

Tennesseans are not interested in political retaliation against teachers, they want good schools for their children.

Tennesseans are not interested in the anti-woman demands of the far right, they want to make sure their mothers, sisters and babies are healthy and well cared for.

Tennesseans are not interested in protecting reckless corporations from the damage they do, they want to protect victims and hold corporations responsible for their actions.

Republicans have given us no reason to think they will come to their senses in 2012. Last month Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey bragged on Facebook:

“This year was just an appetizer. Next year, and in the years to come, you will see the main course.”

Whatever Ramsey has in mind, you can rest assured it won’t be good for Tennessee.

If you want to stop the GOP’s radical agenda and put Tennessee on a  path to a thriving economy where prosperity is shared by all, a path where a good education is available to every student, regardless of their circumstance, a path where government serves the people and is not beholden to moneyed special interest then stand with us.

Your gift of $5 or more will be matched dollar-for-dollar, doubling your effort to take back our state for working and middle class Tennesseans.

We can win this fight, but we can’t do it without your support.

 

‘If China Calls, Let it Go to Voicemail’

Monday, June 6th, 2011

“Congress has rejected raising the debt ceiling, so if China calls, let it go to voicemail.” - Stephen Colbert

“odd political theater”

“just for show”

 

U.S. Reps. Phil Roe, Jimmy Duncan, Chuck Fleischmann, Scott Desjarlias, Diane Black, Marsha Blackburn and Stephen Fincher all voted for a budget that raises America’s debt 60% but voted against raising the debt limit.

FACT: Republican Votes Against Raising Debt Ceiling “JUST FOR SHOW.” Tenn. Republicans are happily playing politics with the full faith and credit of the United States. Republicans urged the defeat of their own measure, while Democrats — who not long ago were seeking just such a vote to raise the debt ceiling without attaching spending cuts — assailed Republicans for bringing it up, saying its certain defeat might unnerve the financial markets. Just in case, Republican leaders scheduled the vote for after the stock market’s close, and in the preceding days called Wall Street executives to assure them that the vote was just for show, to show Mr. Obama that he would have to make concessions in budget negotiations if a debt-limit increase is to pass Congress. [New York Times,
6/1/11]


FACT: PAUL RYAN BUDGET WOULD INCREASE U.S. DEBT 60% (& DESTROY MEDICARE). The Paul Ryan Budget that U.S. Reps. Phil Roe, Jimmy Duncan, Chuck Fleischmann, Scott Desjarlias, Diane Black, Marsha Blackburn and Stephen Fincher voted for, would raise the debt limit over 60%. Republicans are holding the debt ceiling hostage by claiming that “Washington must begin living within its means.” However, the Paul Ryan budget, supported by every Tennessee Republican U.S. Representative, would increase the national debt (61.5%) from $14.3 trillion today to more than $23.1 trillion by 2021. [Los Angeles Times, 4/15/11]

 

NOT RAISING THE DEBT LIMIT WOULD BE ‘CATASTROPHIC’

JP Morgan Chase CEO: Raising The Debt Ceiling “It’s A Moral Obligation.” “The U.S. Treasury will officially hit its credit limit around May 16 for the 10th time in 10 years. If House Republicans prolong the fight over raising the debt ceiling past that date, government officials and Wall Street investors agree that it would cause financial chaos. ‘This chatter about not meeting our obligations, I just don’t understand it,’ JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said late last month during an event at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.  Dimon is one of the few business leaders who have been outspoken on the issue. ‘It’s a moral obligation to ourselves and anyone who owns U.S. debt,’ he said. ‘They should know the United States is good for its money, period.’” [NPR, 4/13/11]

Chief Economist For The U.S. Chamber Of Commerce Said If Congress Didn’t Raise The Debt Limit The Result Would Be Higher Interest Rates , Financial Uncertainty And Damage To The Nation’s Fragile Economy. “Martin Regalia, chief economist for the [U.S. Chamber of Commerce], agrees that there’s no other option but to raise the debt limit. The chamber is lobbying Congress and educating lawmakers about what it could mean if that doesn’t happen: higher interest rates, financial uncertainty and damage to the nation’s fragile economy. Regalia says the ramifications of a default — or even a close call — can be an eye-opener for lawmakers. ‘It’s no reflection on them that they don’t fully understand the nuances of a budget process that I don’t think anyone fully understands.’” [NPR,4/13/11]

“The Debt Problem Won’t Be Resolved – And May Even Be Made Worse – By Not Raising The [Debt Ceiling.” “A number of lawmakers -- some of whom will speak at a Tea Party rally on Thursday -- have said they will not vote to increase the debt limit because it would be fiscally irresponsible. But their rhetoric is misleading because it conflates two different things. There's raising the debt ceiling, which is a technical necessity. Then there is the country's actual debt problem, which is a political and policy matter. Indeed, the debt problem won't be resolved -- and may even be made worse -- by not raising the ceiling.”  [CNN Money, 4/1/11]

House Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling “It Would Be Catastrophic To Have The Nation Default Upon Its Debt.” “Both House Republican Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling (Texas) and Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that not raising the debt ceiling is not an option – although they disagree on how future budgets should address closing the budget gap.  ‘What I do think is, yes, it would be catastrophic to have the nation default upon its debt,’ Hensarling said.” [Hill, 4/10/11]

House Speaker Boehner Said Defaulting On The Debt By Not Raising The Ceiling “Would Be A Financial Disaster, Not Only For Us, But For The Worldwide Economy.” “The possibility of the U.S. defaulting on its debt due to congressional inaction isn’t on the table, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Sunday. Boehner said it would mean ‘financial disaster’ for the global economy if Congress were unable to come to a deal to raise the debt ceiling this spring. ‘That would be a financial disaster, not only for us, but for the worldwide economy,’ Boehner said on ‘Fox News Sunday’ of the risk of default. ‘I don’t think it’s a question that’s even on the table.’” [Hill, 1/30/11]