Category Archives: Legislation

Thank God it’s sine die!

No man’s life, liberty, or property are safe while the legislature is in session.” –Mark Twain

One of the worst legislative sessions in recent years mercifully came to an end on Wednesday evening. Thank God it’s sine die! Now bar the windows and doors of the capitol before they can come back and do any more harm.

The Arizona Republic reports, Arizona Legislature ends session with tax, welfare bills on final day:

State lawmakers ended their 2017 session Wednesday with a tax-break flourish, approving two tax-credit bills worth millions of dollars aimed at spurring business development, and a revision of a controversial cash-aid program for poor families.

The 122-day session ended at 6:58 p.m., a rare daytime close from a Legislature that has extended debate late into the night and into the morning in recent years. Lawmakers applauded the daylight end as a sign of the more genial tone of this year’s Legislature.

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AHCA ‘tattooed to their foreheads’

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., warned Republicans who voted in support of the American Health Care Act:

“What is happening today is a lose-lose situation for the Republicans. It’s a lose-lose for the American people, that’s for sure. But the people who vote for this will have this vote tattooed to their foreheads as they go forward,” Pelosi said. “They have to answer for the vote. They can’t say, ‘President Trump made me do it. The speaker made me do it.’ It’s their vote, their boss. Their bosses are their constituents. Their constituents will be very affected by this.”

Pelosi later reiterated, “[Y]ou have every provision of this bill tattooed on your forehead. You will glow in the dark on this one. You will glow in the dark.”

Well, through the magic of photoshop we can illustrate Pelosi’s salient point. This one’s for you Martha “Let’s make this fucking thing happen!” McSally. You earned this for your moral depravity and callous disregard for your constituents’ lives.

McSally-tatoo-caption

h/t D.S. for the graphic

Follow the (Russian) money into the Trump business empire

Nancy Le Turneau at the Political Animal blog ties together several threads to new reporting over the weekend about Donald Trump’s son Eric Trump. Did Vladimir Putin Buy Himself a U.S. President?

During the 2016 presidential election, we often heard that Donald Trump filed for bankruptcy several times. As the Washington Post reported, he did so a total of six times.

Trump’s Taj Mahal opened in April 1990 in Atlantic City, but six months later, “defaulted on interest payments to bondholders as his finances went into a tailspin,” The Washington Post’s Robert O’Harrow found. In July 1991, Trump’s Taj Mahal filed for bankruptcy. He could not keep up with debts on two other Atlantic City casinos, and those two properties declared bankruptcy in 1992. A fourth property, the Plaza Hotel in New York, declared bankruptcy in 1992 after amassing debt.

PolitiFact uncovered two more bankruptcies filed after 1992, totaling six. Trump Hotels and Casinos Resorts filed for bankruptcy again in 2004, after accruing about $1.8 billion in debt. Trump Entertainment Resorts also declared bankruptcy in 2009, after being hit hard during the 2008 recession.

Following that string of bankruptcies in the 1990’s, U.S. banks pretty much blackballed the Trump organization, but he rebuilt his financial empire with a heavy reliance on capital from Russia. That is pretty much what Donald Trump, Jr. affirmed in 2008.

“Russians make up a pretty disproportionate cross-section of a lot of our assets,” Trump’s son, Donald Jr., told a real estate conference in 2008, according to an account posted on the website of eTurboNews, a trade publication. “We see a lot of money pouring in from Russia.”

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Save Our Schools Arizona referendum to overturn the ‘vouchers for all’ bill

For activists looking to channel their energy into something more productive than attending marches, their dance cards just got filled for the long hot Arizona summer. Time to get yourself a comfortable pair of walking shoes.

Last week former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods and former Phoenix Mayor Paul Johnson formed “Voters of Arizona” (no web site yet) to file referendums against the Chamber of Commerce organizations’ bills to effectively strip Arizonans of their constituional right to enact laws by citizens initiatives in Arizona. Expect to hear more about this in coming weeks.

Now the long anticipated referendum to overturn the “vouchers for all” bill passed by anti-public education Tea-Publcans in the Arizona legislature is ready to launch as well. The Arizona Republic reports, Parent group will seek to overturn Arizona school-voucher expansion:

Public-education advocates are launching a referendum campaign to halt the controversial expansion of Arizona’s school-voucher-style program.

Members of the group “Save Our Schools Arizona” said they will file paperwork this week and begin gathering signatures to refer their proposal to the November 2018 ballot. The group has planned a rally and news conference on Monday at 5 p.m. at the state Capitol.

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Rally to Stop Trumpcare on Tuesday – Tucson (Updated)

Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.) said “if it takes a Democrat” to explain House Republicans’ healthcare bill, he’s willing to do it. House Democrat offers to hold town halls for Republicans:

Maybe a Democrat ought to go into every district where a Republican who supported TrumpCare won’t hold a town hall meeting, and do it for them,” he said during an interview on MSNBC.

“I think every Republican who voted for this thing ought to have to stand in front of their voters and explain it,” Maloney said.

“And if it takes a Democrat to go in and do it for them for a while, I’ll explain what’s in this bill, and if he doesn’t like it, he should stand up and explain it himself.”

Congressman Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) has taken up his challenge and he will hold a town hall in Tucson to explain the vote of Rep. Martha “Let’s get this fucking thing done!” McSally, the “cowardly lion” who is cowering in her chicken bunker too afraid to stand before her constituents to explain her vote to take away your health care. See op-ed by Dr. Matt Heinz, Martha McSally wrong on repeal of health law.

Screen Shot 2017-05-04 at 3.44.15 PM

What: Rally to Stop Trumpcare

When: Tuesday, May 9, 6:30 p.m. (doors open at 6:00 p.m.)

Where: Rincon High School, 421 N. Arcadia Avenue (5th Street and Swan Road), Tucson, AZ

RallytoStopTrumpcare

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Zombie ‘Trumpcare’ is not the health care Trump promised his voters

Here are two good breakdowns on how the Zombie “Trumpcare” bill is not at all the health care that our egomaniacal Twitter-troll-in-chief and pathological liar Donald Trump promised voters during the campaign.

First, Phillip Bump at the Washington Post reports,  This is not the health-care bill that Trump promised (excerpt):

How does the American Health Care Act aka Zombie “Trumpcare” stack up to Trump’s January pledge?

Trump promised insurance for everybody.
The AHCA would probably result in 24 million more uninsured people by 2026, according to the Congressional Budget Office’s analysis of the original GOP bill.

Trump promised lower “numbers” and lower deductibles.
The AHCA would probably have higher deductibles. The CBO anticipates that they will be higher under the AHCA than they would have been if the ACA were kept, thanks to a change in the actuarial values used in determining plan costs.

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