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Daily Archives: June 27th, 2020


CONGRESS NBC News

Senate Democrats block GOP policing bill, calling it ‘irrevocably flawed’ and ‘partisan’

Democrats want the bill to include bans on chokeholds and “no-knock” search warrants and to address qualified immunity, which shields police officers from lawsuits. 

 

Booker, Harris on Republican police reform plan: It would ‘lead us into a dead end’

JUNE 24, 202002:53

June 24, 2020, 11:51 AM CDT / Updated June 24, 2020, 3:28 PM CDT

By Rebecca Shabad

WASHINGTON — Senate Democrats on Wednesday blocked Republicans from taking up a bill to overhaul policing, calling the legislation flawed and a nonstarter.

A motion to open debate on the measure, which needed 60 votes, failed 55-45.

Ahead of the vote, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., blasted Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Republicans for what he called a “partisan” and “irrevocably flawed” approach to fixing the problem of police brutality, which has come into sharp focus in the weeks after the deaths of George Floyd and other Black Americans at the hands of law enforcement officers.

“I want to ask the American people, I want to ask Republican senators, who is a better guardian of the civil rights of African Americans when it comes to police reform, the NAACP or Mitch McConnell?” Schumer said. “So don’t get on your sanctimonious horse, leader McConnell. You have none of the civil rights community behind you.”

Schumer predicted the bill would “likely fail” and said McConnell should allow bipartisan negotiations when it does.

Trump: Democrats ‘want to weaken our police’ after blocking Republican reform plan

JUNE 24, 202001:35

Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., and other Senate Republicans unveiled their policing legislation last week after weeks of nationwide protests over the treatment of Black Americans by law enforcement.

After the vote, Scott, the Senate’s only Black GOP member, accused Democrats of taking Black voters for granted and biding time until after the November election, when they could be in the majority and could try to push through their version of reforms.

“I don’t know what it’s going to take to wake up our entire nation about the importance of a duopoly and not a monopoly,” Scott said. “Because look at your results. Look at the results we are getting.”

Alyssa Farah, the White House director of strategic communications, tweeted that it was “a shame” that Democrats were “playing politics” with the legislation.

At a news conference later Wednesday, President Donald Trump said Republicans have “total cooperation with many different communities, including the police community,” on the legislation.

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CONGRESSFinger-pointing begins over stalemate on police reform legislation

CONGRESSSenate Democrats will oppose GOP police reform bill, setting up stalemate in Congress

The president accused Democrats of blocking the Republican bill because “they want to take away a lot of the strength from our police and from law enforcement generally,” including police “immunity,” and said his administration would not do anything to hurt police. Trump again pointed to what he said were high crime levels in cities run by Democrats to back his point and referred specifically to the recent unrest in Seattle.

Democrats in the House and Senate have introduced their own legislation to address police brutality. Unlike the measures recently introduced by House and Senate Democrats, the Republican bill would not include outright bans on chokeholds or “no-knock” search warrants and does not touch on qualified immunity, which shields police officers from lawsuits.

The GOP bill would try to incentivize police departments to largely do away with chokeholds by conditioning Justice Department money on restricting the practice. In addition, the legislation would collect data on the use of no-knock warrants, which allow police to enter a property without first knocking and announcing their presence.

While the Democratic bill would create a national registry for complaints and disciplinary records of officers and also require reporting on use-of-force incidents, the GOP measure would collect data only when police officers use force that results in serious injury or death.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said Tuesday that Republicans “have some suggestions that are worthy of consideration. But so far, they were trying to get away with murder, actually — the murder of George Floyd” — prompting Senate Republicans to demand an apology.

The House plans to vote Thursday on the Democratic proposal, which is expected to pass the chamber.

CORRECTION (June 24, 2020, 6:24 p.m. ET): A previous version of this article misstated Tim Scott’s distinction in the Senate. He is the only Black Republican senator, not the only Black senator.

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The Senate and the House have both put forth bills on Policing and aside from some sticking points, the bills are almost the same. The sticking points are below:

The GOP bill would try to incentivize police departments to largely do away with chokeholds by conditioning Justice Department money on restricting the practice. In addition, the legislation would collect data on the use of no-knock warrants, which allow police to enter a property without first knocking and announcing their presence.

While the Democratic bill would create a national registry for complaints and disciplinary records of officers and also require reporting on use-of-force incidents, the GOP measure would collect data only when police officers use force that results in serious injury or death.

It is not surprising since “Bitch”McConnell  has had a  tight rein on the Senate and advancing “his “agenda. His agenda is to line his pockets and those of his upper income donors and pals. If the Congress were to be true to the “American People” they so often cite then why  is TOTUS issuing executive orders at random that have no reason to exist and go unchallenged by the people we (the American People) have elected to protect us against “frivolous laws  and actions” that go against our (the American People) interests. It is clear that as voters we need to abandon our reliance on political parties and vote for people then be willing to oust them when needed. We the “American People” are the “term Limits” on who serves. We have now an opportunity in November to make major changes in government. Learn and vote intelligently and we stand a chance.

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Oh, rich, white men.  You unfathomable idiots.  You could have had it all!

There you were back in 2008, freshly bailed out after almost totaling the economy with your criminal greed, with not a single one of you headed to prison for it.   While working class incomes stagnated, health costs soared, and the young staggered under the weight of student loans, you and your fellow plutocrats sat smugly atop a mountain of accumulated wealth, courtesy of an economy structured for your benefit by legislators beholden to your largesse.

Yes, you were sitting pretty.   And all you had to do to keep it that way was to not wage a racist, scorched-earth war against the first Black President of the United States.  That’s all!  That is the only thing you dumb, stupid idiots had to do:  swallow your pride, smile, shake hands, and play nice with one of the most charismatic, inspiring, intelligent and genuinely moral politicians in American history.

Barack Obama didn’t want to ruin you, you dumbasses!  He wasn’t out to confiscate your estates, kill your grandmas, and force you into re-education camps!   All he wanted was a more humane, less cruel, less racist version of the system that made you rich.  You should have wanted that too!  Not because you care about other people — for your own good!   But you were too stupid.

What would it have cost you?  A moderate tax hike?  More oversight from nosy bureaucrats?  Some limits on your environmental depredations and exploitation of workers?  Maybe a few more women and people of color showing up at the Executive Retreat?   And in return, millions of your fellow citizens would have health coverage, a living wage, affordable education and child care, clean air and water, some disposable income and free time – in short, a stake in the system.

You should have seen how providing these things served your interests, you imbeciles!  How a more economically secure working and middle class would be less likely to question the legitimacy of the system!  How living in a society where people are happier because they aren’t beset on all sides by financial and physical insecurity would be more pleasant for you, too!   But most of all, how unbelievably, brain-meltingly stupid it would be to actually burn down a system constructed by rich white guys for rich white guys – just because you can’t stand being told what’s good for you by a confident, competent, superior Black man.

But you couldn’t see that, because you were too greedy, too racist, and – most of all – too stupid.  So instead, you declared open war.  You obstructed.  You “investigated.” You lied – about his policies, about your intentions, about his religion and national origin.  You vilified the man who came to save you from yourselves, thwarted his reasonable agenda, blocked his qualified judicial picks, mocked and slandered him for actualizing the very promise of America: that anyone can rise to the top based on talent, initiative, and the content of their character.  Then, just to drive the point home, you replaced him with the most grotesque caricature of rich white entitled male supremacy imaginable, a man you knew to be an idiot, an incompetent, a degenerate, a xenophobe, a racist, a con man and a criminal.  That’s who you made Barack Obama shake hands with as he departed the White House — and he still managed to do it with dignity.

You elevated this grotesquery to the Presidency, cynically stoking the racist, sexist, xenophobic resentments of the white working as you proceeded to loot the treasury, stack the courts, disenfranchise voters and eviscerate the civil service.  Nothing was off limits to your idiotic greed.  You even looted the pandemic relief fund!    Money that was supposed to go to struggling people and small businesses!   You dolts!   You seriously didn’t think people were ever gonna get sick of your bullshit?  Denying systemic racism!   Denying economic inequality!  Denying police brutality!   Denying climate change, for fuck’s sake?!  You know your mansions, your companies, your real estate holdings are located on planet Earth, right?   You dumb fucking morons!

And now, the people are in the streets demanding fundamental, systemic change.   And, like a bunch of mental defectives, instead of being terrified, you are indignant!   You’re shocked at their behavior.   Castigating hard-working police officers!  Pulling down perfectly good statues!  Demanding the resignation of New York Times editors for the “crime” of publishing the words of a sitting U.S. Senator!   Where can fascism get a fair hearing, if not the pages of the Newspaper of Record?!   You idiots still have absolutely no idea what’s going on – do you?

You should be grateful they’re only coming for the statues.   Maybe you should have thought a little more about how the system protected you before you started hacking away the foundations:  denying the possibility of an impartial judiciary, a fair press, an unrigged election, a well-intentioned law, an unbiased civil servant, a non-partisan scientist, an honest meteorologist, for God’s sake!   Maybe, just maybe, before you noodleheads decided on all-out, us-versus-them, Game of Thrones style partisan warfare, you should have considered that there are more of “them” than there are of you.   A lot more!   And that you liked it that way!

But you were just too stupid.

So here you are.   Your last, dumb stand.  Your castle gates defended by a rabble of red-hatted brownshirts, maskless mouth-breathers, and their Dear Leader, Ramp Boy.  And across the moat, hundreds of millions of angry Americans with torches and pitchforks demanding justice, civil rights, economic fairness, environmental sanity.  If you weren’t so colossally ignorant, you’d see that this is the end of the line for your dumb dream of perpetual white supremacy and dynastic wealth.

Because this movement will not be stopped – not by Donald Trump, not by MAGA nation, not even by Joe Biden should he fail to rise to the occasion, until it returns America to the people who truly make it great.   You should hope to God that will happen peacefully, through the miraculously durable and adaptable/amendable structures of American democracy that our Founding Fathers put in place all those years ago to protect the rights and privileges of white guys like you — and that you’ve done so much to undermine.

If it happens like that, you might even come out OK.  Not as rich, and not in charge, but OK.  And if not – well, good luck to you, dumbasses.  You had a good run, and you probably could have kept it going – but you were too impossibly, unbelievably, unfathomably stupid.

 

This content was created by a Daily Kos Community member.

One of the primary underlying and under reported parts of the ACA repeal is the 2017Tax bill which eliminated the individual mandate, all of this to seemingly hide the financial boon to Corporations and the higher income individuals. see highlighted section below. MA

Tomorrow, the Trump administration and 18 Republican governors and attorneys general will file their opening briefs with the Supreme Court in California v. Texas—the health care repeal lawsuit. The lawsuit, criticized across the political spectrum as a “badly flawed” case, threatens to upend the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and strip 23.3 million Americans of their health coverage, according to new CAP analysis—about 3 million (15 percent) more than was forecast before the coronavirus pandemic. The anti-ACA agitators who initiated the health care repeal lawsuit, backed by the Trump administration, continue their attempts to dismantle the ACA, including its coverage expansions and consumer protections, amid the pandemic, during which comprehensive health coverage has never been more important. Millions of Americans who have lost their jobs and job-based insurance due to the current economic crisis are relying on the insurance options made possible by the ACA to keep themselves and their families covered.

Background on the health care repeal lawsuit

From the beginning, the Trump administration and allied leaders in Congress and state governments have been committed to dismantling the ACA and the consumer protections it confers by any means possible. The Trump administration has repeatedly sabotaged key provisions of the landmark law by executive actions and other more covert tactics, including removing essential consumer information from federal websites and defunding outreach and enrollment programs intended to expand coverage. After several failed attempts by President Donald Trump’s legislative allies to “repeal and replace” the ACA, Congress passed a tax bill in late 2017 that zeroed out the individual mandate penalty.

After the tax bill became law, Texas and other states filed a federal lawsuit, claiming that because the mandate had no financial penalty, it made the rest of the law unconstitutional. U.S. District Court Judge Reed O’Connor accepted this reasoning and held that the entire law must be struck down in what one legal expert called a “partisan, activist ruling.” On appeal, a 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel also ruled in December that, following the tax bill’s change to the law, the individual mandate is unconstitutional. The panel then remanded the case back to Judge O’Connor to determine which parts of the ACA, if any, can remain given their decision. Since that ruling, the Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case during its upcoming term, and, for now, the ACA remains the law of the land.

ACA repeal would have disastrous consequences for the American people. In addition to the roughly 23 million people who would lose coverage, repeal would eliminate essential consumer protections, including those for people with preexisting conditions; requirements for insurers to spend premium dollars on patient care; and mandates that insurers cover prescription drugs, mental health care, and other essential health benefits.

Impact of the coronavirus pandemic on coverage

As the Trump administration and 18 Republican state leaders double down on their push to strip millions of their health coverage and encourage predatory insurance practices, a pandemic that has killed nearly 120,000 Americans and infected over 2.2 million continues to sweep the nation.

Since the impact of the coronavirus pandemic began to unfold in mid-March, more than 44 million joblessness claims have been filed as of June 11. Millions of people have lost their employer-sponsored insurance (ESI)—millions of whom will be unable to replace it and will become uninsured. Thanks to the ACA, many of these newly unemployed Americans who previously were covered by employer-sponsored insurance are able to get health coverage, either through the ACA marketplaces, possibly with financial assistance to make their coverage more affordable, or via Medicaid expansion. The Urban Institute and the Kaiser Family Foundation have estimated that tens of millions of people could lose job-based coverage due to the economic crisis sparked by the pandemic and indicate that millions of people in this situation are eligible for the ACA coverage that is threatened by the health care repeal lawsuit.

National and state level coverage losses

Because the economic crisis stemming from the pandemic is driving millions of people onto coverage programs supported by the ACA, CAP estimates that approximately 3 million more people stand to lose coverage from the health care repeal lawsuit than the 20 million previously estimated. According to a March 2019 analysis by the Urban Institute, full repeal of the ACA would cause enrollment in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to fall by 22.4 percent and enrollment in individual market coverage, including for the ACA marketplaces and other insurance people purchase on their own, to drop by 35.4 percent.

The economic stress of the pandemic has pushed the United States into a recession. The Congressional Budget Office projects that the unemployment rate in the second and third quarters of this year will average 15 percent — higher than it was during the Great Recession. At an unemployment rate of 15 percent, 17.7 million people would lose employment-based health insurance coverage, according to a recent report by the Urban Institute. With access to ACA coverage options, most of these people would find new forms of insurance. Urban estimates that 8.2 million would end up with Medicaid/CHIP coverage, and 4.3million would gain coverage through the ACA marketplaces or other private coverage. About 5.1 million would remain uninsured.

If the ACA is repealed, however, many more people who lose job-based coverage will be without insurance. CAP estimates that because of the pandemic, about 3.4 million additional people are at risk of losing coverage because of the lawsuit. Combining two previous projections by the Urban Institute, CAP’s estimate assumes that 35.4 percent of the 4.3 million people who gain individual market insurance and 22.4 percent of the 8.2 million people who gain Medicaid/CHIP coverage would become uninsured under repeal.

In total, 23.3 million people stand to lose coverage and become uninsured if the ACA is repealed during the pandemic. In Texas alone, the number of people without health coverage would rise by about 2 million. (see Table 1)

Table 1

If the ACA is repealed, the actual number will depend on the extent of job loss during the recession as well as the geographic and demographic distribution of those who lose job-based coverage. CAP’s estimate assumes that the proportion of those newly enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP and nongroup insurance who lose coverage is similar across states, and it is based on a scenario in which the unemployment rate rises above what it is today. It also assumes that the degree of coverage loss among those who newly enroll in Medicaid/CHIP and the individual market during the pandemic is similar to that of those who were previously enrolled in those types of insurance.

Conclusion

The Trump administration and its allied state leaders are attempting to undermine health care in the midst of one of the worst public health disasters in U.S. history. The ACA is crucial to helping families regain coverage and maintain some financial security against health care costs. A Supreme Court ruling against the ACA would take away health coverage from millions of Americans whose lives are already being disrupted by the economic distress and concerns about their health and well-being.

Nicole Rapfogel is a research assistant for Health Policy at the Center for American Progress. Emily Gee is the health economist of Health Policy at the Center.

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