Thursday News: Thank you, sir

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OBAMA ENDORSES SIX NC DEMOCRATS IN LEGISLATIVE RACES: Former President Barack Obama on Wednesday announced endorsements of six Democrats running for the North Carolina legislature. Four of those candidates are running in Wake County. Wiley Nickel of Cary, who used to work for Obama, received an endorsement from his former boss in his run for an open state Senate seat. Nickel faces Republican Paul Smith. Also making Obama’s list: Terence Everitt of Wake Forest, in a rematch against incumbent Republican Chris Malone; Julie Von Haefen of Apex, who is running against incumbent Republican and lead House budget writer Nelson Dollar of Cary; and lawyer Sydney Batch, who is running for an open seat against Republican lawyer John B. Adcock. Obama also endorsed Rachel Hunt, former Gov. Jim Hunt’s daughter, in her race against incumbent Republican Bill Brawley in Mecklenburg County, and Ron Wesson, a Bertie County commissioner running for an open seat in northeastern North Carolina’s District 1 against Republican Ed Goodwin.
https://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/article215908400.html

North Carolinians For A Fair Economy Exposes Harmful Voting Record of Congressman George Holding

North Carolinians for a Fair Economy Advisory Board Members again exposed Congressman George Holding’s harmful voting record on two issues of great importance to his constituents in the 2nd Congressional District:  his 23 votes to repeal or undermine the Affordable Care Act and his support for the #TrumpHoldingTaxCut that benefits big corporations, millionaires, and billionaires at the expense of working families in his own congressional district.

Strained Trump logic: Bad mileage = people driving less = safer roads

The revolution in the evolution of fuel-efficient cars comes to a screeching halt:

The Trump administration says people would drive more and be exposed to increased risk if their cars get better gas mileage, an argument intended to justify freezing Obama-era toughening of fuel standards.

New vehicles would be cheaper — and heavier — if they don’t have to meet more stringent fuel requirements and more people would buy them, the draft says, and that would put more drivers in safer, newer vehicles that pollute less. At the same time, the draft says that people will drive less if their vehicles get fewer miles per gallon, lowering the risk of crashes.

Of course this is the propaganda tail wagging the anti-Obama dog. Or the other way around. Whatever the case, getting rid of the fuel efficiency standards was the main goal, and reasons for doing such seems to be more of an afterthought than a driving force. And it's a poorly-researched afterthought at that:

Wednesday News: Culture of Trumpism

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DURHAM HIGH SCHOOL LACROSSE PLAYER RECORDS RACIST, SEXIST VIDEO: Durham Public Schools and Jordan High School are investigating after a video showed up on social media showing a student-athlete making racist and sexist comments. Two people are shown in the video but only one person speaks during the 10-second recording. Aminah Jenkins, the student body president at Jordan, told HighSchoolOT.com that the student speaking plays football and lacrosse. "I was initially disheartened that a student at Jordan would use a racial slur and degrade women," Jenkins said on Tuesday night. "My concerns are not in any way about his political views, but about his comments about women and the racial slur." The student on video uses the N-word at the end of the video and makes several references to President Donald Trump.
https://www.highschoolot.com/school-investigating-after-video-surfaces-of-jordan-high-student-athlet...

What to say when people ask about the amendments

If I've been asked once, I've been asked a thousand times. What's wrong with the amendments? They seem reasonable and relatively harmless, why vote against them? Here's what I say.

Most of us try to be thoughtful and deliberate about voting. I certainly do. Like you, I want to understand issues and candidates and make informed decisions. Likewise, most of us want to believe that our elected officials are operating in good faith. It's hard for us to imagine they might be devious.

Tuesday News: Counting on poor attendance?

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MOORE SCHEDULES VETO OVERRIDE SESSION FOR SATURDAY: The Republican-controlled General Assembly is planning rare weekend floor sessions to handle two vetoes by Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper. House Speaker Tim Moore said Monday he expected the House and Senate to return for veto-override debates and votes this Saturday. Moore says conflicting summer schedules made Saturday best. Cooper last Friday vetoed bills that alter North Carolina ballot language for constitutional referenda and a state Supreme Court race this fall. One prevents a Supreme Court hopeful who switched parties just before candidate filing from having any party label next to his name on the ballot. House Democratic leader Darren Jackson contends Republicans are meeting Saturday so it's harder for the candidate to sue over the label change with a ballot printing deadlines approaching. Moore says that's not been a consideration.
https://www.wral.com/top-lawmaker-says-saturday-sessions-ahead-for-veto-overrides/17736021/

Tuesday Twitter roundup

Just a friendly reminder:

Less than a hundred days until the Blue Wave crashes...

Confessions of a progressive religiophobe

Some of you may have read Leonard Pitts' column over the weekend, and there are a few good points to keep in mind: "With oozing condescension, they lament that someone otherwise so smart and perceptive – i.e., someone who agrees with them on the issues – can’t let go of faith. For them, faith and progressive politics are incompatible."

Let me state upfront that I don't want to live in a state/country/world dominated by any specific religion, or even a generic hybrid. But at the same time, I also don't want to live in a world where people are afraid to admit they hold religious beliefs. And that's not any sort of "internal conflict," that is what America is supposed to be about. You don't have to be a historical scholar or a time traveler to figure out what the Founding Fathers had in mind on this subject, because it too is self-evident. But when it comes to political discussions, whether it's campaign rhetoric or policy decisions, religious views are simply out of place. Irrelevant, patently undemocratic, and more often than not, a vehicle for abusing the trust of those who are counting on leaders to make the right choices. More on church vs state below:

Taking back the U.S. House somewhere between possible and probable

Little Donnie just might have an aneurysm:

A flurry of Republican retirements has led to 42 open seats, many of them the sort of well-entrenched incumbents in competitive districts whose retirements are the most valuable for Democrats. The Democrats have succeeded in recruiting well-funded and strong candidates in many of the battlegrounds, which has tended to lessen the advantage of incumbency even in the districts where Republicans are running for re-election. A court decision in Pennsylvania has eliminated the party’s gerrymander there.

Democrats appear highly competitive in many conservative districts. Already, there are polls showing Democrats ahead in Kentucky’s Sixth District, West Virginia’s Third, North Carolina’s Ninth, New York’s 22nd and Montana’s at-large district. Mr. Trump won each by at least 10 points.

We should issue the obligatory caution about counting chickens before they hatch and go vote, but things are looking much better than I thought they would, even as recently as a few months ago. And it looks like we're making headway in many rural districts, which is fantastic news:

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