Tag: Votes

Your Daley Gator CCW News Update For Monday 04/25/16


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Shockwaves Across Europe As Far-Right Party Wins Austrian Election – The Express
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Norbert Hofer, the candidate for Austria’s right-wing Freedom Party (FPÖ), won 36.4 per cent of the vote, and will face an independent candidate in the final vote next month.

It was the Freedom Party’s best result in a national election and comes after a campaign that focused on the impact of the migrant crisis…

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Exclusive Data Analysis: GOP Primary Turnout Up 8.7 Million Votes, More Than 60 Percent In 2016 Versus 2012 – Breitbart

Newly compiled data after the New York Republican primary shows that among the states that have voted so far in 2016, GOP primary and caucus turnout is up well more than 8 million votes and well more than 60 percent over 2012’s process.

Top GOP officials say that the intense interest in the GOP primary throughout the year so far only serves to benefit the Republican nominee in November, whoever it ends up being.

In total, so far, nationwide the GOP has seen an increase of 8,719,041 votes in 2016’s primaries, caucuses and conventions over 2012’s primaries, caucuses and conventions….

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The Increasing Instability of Obamacare – National Review
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United Healthcare’s announcement that it is pulling out of most of the exchanges established by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – a.k.a. Obamacare – is one of many indications of the law’s continuing instability.

United made this decision for obvious reasons: It was losing too much money, with no prospect of a quick turnaround. The company reported that it lost $475 million on plans sold in the ACA’s exchanges in 2015 and expects to lose another $650 million in 2016…

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Rape Trees, Dead Migrants And The Consequences Of An Open Border – Breitbart

Many of the most caring people in the U.S. think they are helping the poor from Latin America by leaving our Southwest border wide open between ports-of-entry, but they are not. Several of the transnational criminal organizations (cartels) operating in Central America and Mexico make an estimated one-third or more of their profits from illegal immigration. Specifically, two groups below Texas, the Gulf and Los Zetas cartels, are largely fueled by the trafficking and smuggling of human beings.

The brutality of these criminal groups, from incinerating innocents in a network of ovens to their near complete control of state and local governments, is largely paid for by funds generated from illegal immigration – a shadowy economic engine that is only possible because we refuse to properly secure our border with Mexico….

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Former Senator Announces Upcoming Marriage To Man 50 Years His Junior Nearly 20 Years After His Wife Died – The Blaze
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Former U.S. Sen. Harris Wofford announced that he will be marrying a man 50 years younger than himself almost 20 years after his wife passed away from leukemia, according to an op-ed that was published in the New York Times Sunday…

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Nebraska Abolishes Civil Forfeiture – Daily Signal

Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts, a Republican, has signed a major state forfeiture bill into law. Like New Mexico before it, the Cornhusker State now requires a criminal conviction before property can be forfeited.

Civil forfeiture is the law enforcement tool, which allows property suspected of being involved in, or derived from, criminal activity to be seized by police, sheriffs, and federal agents. It was ramped up in the 1980’s as a means of combatting the drug trade and organized crime, with the goal of stripping kingpins of their assets and ill-gotten gains.

Thirty years later, though, forfeiture has morphed into a system that is far more often used to seize relatively small amounts of cash, that stacks the deck against property owners fighting to get it back, and that encourages profiteering by law enforcement authorities….

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Obama Infuriates The Brits As He Threatens To Send UK ‘To The Back Of The Queue’ If They Vote To Leave The European Union – Daily Mail
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President Barack Obama told Britain today that it would have to ‘go to the back of the queue’ if it leaves the European Union, then tries to negotiate its own trade deal with the United States.

A US-UK trade agreement is not going to happen ‘any time soon,’ Obama said during a joint news conference with British Prime Minister David Cameron….

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Solar Developer SunEdison In Bankruptcy As Aggressive Growth Plan Unravels – Reuters

SunEdison Inc SUNE.N, once the fastest-growing U.S. renewable energy company, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Thursday after a short-lived but aggressive binge of debt-fueled acquisitions proved unsustainable.

In its bankruptcy filing, the company said it had assets of $20.7 billion and liabilities of $16.1 billion as of Sept. 30.

SunEdison’s two publicly traded subsidiaries, TerraForm Power Inc (TERP.O) and TerraForm Global Inc (GLBL.O), are not part of the bankruptcy. In a statement, the companies, known as yieldcos, said they had sufficient liquidity to operate and that their assets are not available to satisfy the claims of SunEdison creditors…

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Governor Enables 200,000 Felons To Vote In November – WorldNetDaily
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Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe promised Friday to use an executive order to restore voting rights to felons, an announcement that leaves the Republican-dominated legislature – some of whom have opposed an overturn to the Civil War-era prohibition – in the cold…

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Wisconsin Senate Votes To Free Workers From Union Shackles – Leftists Lose Their Minds

Wisconsin Senate Passes ‘Right To Work’ Bill Amid Protests –

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The Wisconsin Senate passed legislation late Wednesday to limit union powers amid a second day of protests as the state capitol again became a battleground over the future of organized labor.

The GOP-controlled Senate passed a “right-to-work” bill with a 17-15 vote that would allow employees in unionized private-sector workplaces to opt out of paying union dues. Republicans also control the state Assembly, making passage likely during the next week, and Gov. Scott Walker – who is considering a run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 – has said he would sign such a measure into law.

Immediately after passage, the spectator gallery erupted in boos and chants of “shame, shame!” as the Senate ended its day.

Debate on the bill began Wednesday afternoon in the Senate as about 2,000 protesters jostled and chanted on the steps of the capitol and in the rotunda.

The measure comes four years after Mr. Walker pushed through legislation limiting the reach of public-sector unions, drawing tens of thousands to protest in the capitol and launching a contentious recall election, which the governor won.

Minutes after debate began, a spectator in the gallery stood up, and started yelling before being escorted from the chamber by a police officer. “This is an attack on Democracy!” he shouted.

A few minutes later, another audience member did much the same, before the gallery calmed down and debate continued. Spectators interrupted the session regularly, with the Senate president punctuating the outbursts by banging her gavel and summoning police to escort offenders from the chamber.

At the end of the night, her gavel fell apart in her hand mid-bang.

Although no arrests were made in the Senate, officers took four people into custody during protests in the rotunda, according to capitol police.

Sen. Scott Fitzgerald, the majority leader, said the bill would create a more competitive state economy and give workers more individual freedom to choose union membership, adding that the bill doesn’t prohibit collective bargaining between unions and employers.

“This legislation will ensure that Wisconsin’s workers have the sole power to determine whether they wish to belong to or support a labor organization,” he said in a statement following the vote.

“Right-to-work: it does impact the economy, except in the wrong direction,” said Democrat Senator Lena Taylor during the debate. “It will have an impact on so many things we aren’t even aware of because we’re rushing it through.”

Since his re-election last year, Mr. Walker has shown little interest in expanding union curbs to the private sector, but in recent days he reiterated his support of a right-to-work bill after state lawmakers took the lead.

The legislation still faces opposition from unions and Democratic lawmakers, who argue it is meant to undermine organized labor and won’t deliver the economic benefits backers promise. They also have accused Republican leaders of fast-tracking the legislation to stifle debate.

“It’s bad for the working men and women of this state, both union and nonunion,” said Sen. Dave Hansen, a Democrat, after the vote. “It’s ridiculous.”

But Myranda Tanck, spokeswoman for Mr. Fitzgerald, dismissed the argument, saying the idea isn’t new and possible legislation has been discussed in the state since the 1990s.

Still, the timing appears to have caught some opponents off guard, with labor leaders so far unable to muster the large crowds seen in 2011.

Senate Democrats presented more than a half-dozen amendments which were all defeated before the final vote Wednesday night. Assembly leaders have said they would take up the legislation next week following Senate action.

Twenty-four states have “right-to-work” laws, yet only three have passed such legislation in the past decade: Oklahoma, Michigan and Indiana. That could change in the coming months as several other states debate such bills.

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Senate Candidate Chris McDaniel Claims He Beat Thad Cochran By 25,000 Votes

Chris McDaniel: I Beat Thad Cochran By 25,000 Votes – Big Government

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Six weeks after the primary runoff election, Mississippi State Sen. Chris McDaniel is launching his formal legal challenge of the election results, saying the evidence is so conclusive that he will be calling for courts to recognize him as the true victor of the race rather than calling for a new election.

“Chris McDaniel clearly, clearly won the Republican vote in the runoff,” McDaniel attorney Mitch Tyner said at a Monday press conference. “I say that very assuredly because that’s what the mathematics show. It’s not what I’m arguing. After the election, we did some post-election polling. We determined that of the Democrats that did cross over, 71 percent of them admitted they will not support the Republican in the general election. When you take those polling numbers and you go in and do the mathematical regressions, you can see that Chris McDaniel clearly won the runoff by 25,000 votes.”

“The short answer is we’re not asking for a new election,” Tyner continued. “We’re simply asking that the Republican Party recognize the person who won the runoff election.”

The campaign of incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS), who was certified by the Mississippi Republican Party as having won the runoff by 7,667 votes on July 7, fired back, saying McDaniel had “made repeated and baseless allegations of fraud and misconduct” since the election.

“We look forward to holding the McDaniel campaign to the burden of proof that the law requires – and, we are dedicated to the defense of the votes of those Mississippians who voted on June 24 for Thad Cochran as their United States Senator, an election which has been as thoroughly reviewed and examined as any in modern Mississippi history,” said Mark Garriga, an attorney for Cochran.

The evidence, presented to the public in the form of affidavits that will be used in McDaniel’s forthcoming official challenge of election results, is hundreds of pages long and encompasses nearly every one of Mississippi’s 82 counties.

At the press conference, McDaniel announced he will be using such evidence to file a formal challenge of the runoff results with the state GOP executive committee. Ten days after he files the challenge with that body – which, given its extensive ties to the GOP establishment in the state, is expected to rule against the Tea Party-backed McDaniel or just simply ignore the challenge – McDaniel can take the challenge into state court.

“It’s been an interesting six weeks since the 24th. We’ve been very, very busy. We’ve covered the state as well as we could with hundreds of volunteers, but justice has no time table, and yet here we stand. They asked us to put up or shut up – well, here we are. Here we are with the evidence,” McDaniel said.

“We know that the conservative movement is passionate about this issue,” McDaniel said. “We know right now that the conservative movement is very angry about what’s occurred. We all witnessed what a segment of our party did leading up to the 24th. We saw despicable acts of race-baiting. We saw despicable allegations from those who are supposed to be leaders in our party. There is no place in the Republican Party for those that would race bait. There is no place in the Republican Party for racism of any kind, and that’s exactly what we saw on those evenings and mornings leading up to the 24th. That has to end. We watched it. We witnessed it. We saw the dirty money coming in from D.C., whether it was from Bloomberg or other Republican United States senators. We saw what they did here in Mississippi.”

McDaniel noted that the actions the GOP establishment took “moved more than 40,000 Democrats into the Republican primary, and in so doing mistakes were made.”

“Some of those weren’t even mistakes – some of it was very intentional,” McDaniel said. “What we’re going to show is a pattern of conduct on the part of a number of people that demonstrates a problem with this election. The evidence is clear.”

McDaniel said activists need to review the evidence dispassionately, looking at just the facts. “We feel that anger, and we feel that frustration, but that’s not what this challenge is about,” McDaniel said. “The reason I hire good lawyers is so I can walk away from it and ask their opinion objectively: What does the evidence show? We have to be dispassionate about the facts. But the facts – they’re on our side. The law is on our side. And these lawyers after several weeks of research will tell you just that.”

McDaniel’s team is specifically pressuring the Republican executive committee in the state to give the evidence a fair shake. “We look forward to our venue in front of the Republican executive committee – they’re colleagues of mine, some of which I’ve known for years,” McDaniel said. “This is an opportunity for our party to take the lead on honest, good and transparent government.”

Tyner, McDaniel’s attorney, said that McDaniel is not seeking a new election, that the evidence is so overwhelming that anyone reviewing it will come to the same conclusion: McDaniel won on June 24.

“Once the state executive committee has had an opportunity to go through the evidence that we have included in this challenge, then they will see that they have no choice but to recognize Chris McDaniel as the nominee of the Republican Party of the state of Mississippi for the United States Senate,” Tyner said, to a loud round of applause from the audience.

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Smarmy, RINO Senator Cochran Working With Democrat Operative To Drum Up Primary Votes

Democrat Political Operative Running Thad Cochran’s GOTV Effort – Riehl World View

I know it’s not fun to pick on people for their age. Unfortunately, Thad Cochran’s refusal to let go of power all too long past his prime mitigates my concern in that regard. Sources on the ground in MS tell me the Cochran campaign is looking increasingly cartoonish in trying to eek out a win in what most are coming to realize is a lost cause. So, no, it doesn’t surprise me that Team Cochran would hire a Democrat named “Scooby Doo” to work for him at this point.

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This is just getting sad…

A Democratic political operative says he is working with Mississippi Conservatives PAC to drum up votes for U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran.

James “Scooby Doo” Warren said he has put together a get-out-the-vote GOTV plan and is “putting it in place across the whole state.” Warren said he is not working with the Cochran campaign itself but for the PAC and Bishop Ronnie Crudup Sr.

Crudup is the pastor at New Horizon Church, which shares an address and chief financial officer with a newly formed super PAC that ran print advertising in the primary supporting Cochran.

More via The Clarion Ledger.

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House Votes To Hold Parasitic Former IRS Official Lois Lerner In Contempt Of Congress (Video)

House Votes To Hold Former IRS Official Lois Lerner In Contempt – National Journal

The House voted to hold former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner in contempt on a 231-187 vote Wednesday, as Republicans work to uncover the depth of Lerner’s involvement in the agency’s targeting of conservative groups from 2010 to May 2013.

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Six Democrats broke with their party to support the contempt vote: Ron Barber of Arizona, John Barrow of Georgia, Collin Peterson of Minnesota, Mike McIntyre of North Carolina, Nick Rahall of West Virginia, and Patrick Murphy of Florida. All are facing Republican challengers in tough districts for Democrats in November.

“Who’s been fired over the targeting of conservative groups by the IRS? No one that I’m aware of. Who’s gone to jail for violating the law? When is the administration going to tell the American people the truth?” House Speaker John Boehner told reporters Wednesday morning. “One would have to guess, if they’re not willing to tell the American people the truth, it must not be very pretty.”

Lerner was found in contempt of Congress after invoking her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination at a House hearing last May. House Republicans argue that, because Lerner gave an opening speech testifying to her innocence in the inquiry before pleading the Fifth, she had waived her right to refuse to testify. Republicans subpoenaed Lerner to testify again in March, when she again asserted her right to remain silent, setting off the contempt proceedings.

The issue is now headed for the courts, where a judge will have to determine whether Republicans’ claim that Lerner waived her rights is correct. The House also voted Wednesday to request that Attorney General Eric Holder appoint a special prosecutor in the case. Twenty-six Democrats, including those who supported the contempt vote, backed this second vote. If convicted, Lerner faces a maximum penalty of a $100,000 fine and up to a year in jail.

This is the second time in as many years that the House has voted to hold a member of the Obama administration in contempt. In 2012, House Republicans and 17 Democrats voted to hold Holder in contempt of Congress over his refusal to turn over documents related to the Fast and Furious scandal. That contempt vote went nowhere, as members of the Justice Department announced they would not pursue criminal charges or a grand jury against the head of their own department. The administration later invoked executive privilege over the documents in question.

But Republicans say they feel more confident that the contempt vote against Lerner will be successful. “Eric Holder, of course, is the highest law-enforcement officer in the country. Lois Lerner is not,” said Rep. John Fleming, R-La. “And so she doesn’t enjoy the same level of protection that he does personally, and also she can’t claim executive privilege, which Eric Holder perhaps can.”

“There’s a fairly substantial difference between asking [Holder] to… prosecute himself and someone else,” a senior House Republican aide said.

But it’s unlikely that the administration’s response to Congress’s holding Lerner in contempt will be any different. Lerner has reportedly already been interviewed by the Justice Department, and anonymous “law-enforcement officials” told The Wall Street Journal in January that no criminal charges would be filed against IRS officials over their targeting of conservative groups. President Obama told Fox News during his Super Bowl interview that he does not believe the IRS displayed “a smidgen of corruption” in the matter.

All the same, Republicans are hopeful that the contempt vote will provide some real pressure for Lerner to testify.

“Ultimately, she’s going to be forced to either come forward and testify, or she’s going to have to apply for immunity and testify,” Fleming says. “And pressure will continue to mount until that happens… And if not, again, I think there’s a lot of mounting evidence against her – criminal evidence – and so we’re going to continue to mount the pressure and this is just a next step in that direction.”

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Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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House Oversight Committee Votes To Hold Lois Lerner In Contempt Of Congress (Videos)

Oversight Committee Votes To Hold Lois Lerner In Contempt Of Congress – Townhall

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After five hours of debate, the House Oversight Committee has voted along party lines 21-12 to hold former IRS Director of Tax Exempt Organizations Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress.The charges come after Lerner failed to answer questions about the IRS targeting of conservative groups and after failure to cooperate with the Committee investigation into the targeting.

Before the vote, Democrats repeatedly defended the rights of Lois Lerner, arguing she did not waive her Fifth Amendment rights even though she made a statement before declaring she would not answer questions last year and again in early 2014. Republicans argued Lerner did in fact waive her Fifth Amendment rights due to making a statement and defended the rights of taxpayers who were targeted by her organization.

The contempt charge will now go to the full House for a vote. A date for when that vote will happen has not been set. If the House votes to hold her in contempt, the charge will then go to the court system. Yesterday the House Ways and Means Committee referred Lerner to the Department of Justice for criminal charges.

“Today, the Oversight Committee upheld its obligation to pursue the truth about the IRS targeting of Americans because of their political beliefs,” Chairman Darrell Issa said. “Our investigation has found that former IRS Exempt Organizations division Director Lois Lerner played a central role in the targeting scandal and then failed to meet her legal obligations to answer questions after she waived her right not to testify. In demanding answers and holding a powerful government official accountable for her failure to meet her legal obligations, this Committee did its job. If the House takes up and passes the resolution, the matter will be referred to the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, which statute requires he take to a grand jury.”

The American Center For Law and Justice, representing 41 tea party and conservative groups that were targeted by the IRS under Lerner’s watch, is calling the contempt vote “justified.”

“The decision to hold Lois Lerner in contempt comes 11 months to the day since she revealed this unlawful scheme with a question she planted at an ABA meeting,” ACLJ Chief Counsel Jay Sekulow said in a statement. “From the very beginning, she has ignored a Congressional subpoena – refused to answer questions on two occasions by pleading the Fifth Amendment. We believe – as many others do – that she waived her constitutional right to remain silent because she invoked it after she publicly proclaimed her innocence. Lerner has misled the American people and Congress from the very start. Contempt is justified and the appropriate sanction in this case.”

Lerner now joins Attorney General Eric Holder, who was held in contempt of Congress in June 2012.

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Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Related video:

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House Oversight And Government Reform Committee Considers Resolution To Hold Former IRS Director Of Exempt Organizations Lois G. Lerner In Contempt Of Congress.

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……………………….Click on image above to watch video.

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Wondering Which Republicans In Congress Just Sold Out Their Constituents? Here Is The List

List: Republican House, Senate Votes On Debt, Shutdown Deal – Breitbart

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Twenty-seven Republican senators voted for Wednesday’s bill passed by the upper chamber to fund the U.S. government in a continuing resolution and extend the nation’s debt limit. Eighteen voted against the measure, and one was not present.

YEA VOTES
Lamar Alexander (TN)
Kelly Ayotte (NH)
John Barrasso (WY)
Roy Blunt (MO)
John Boozman (AR)
Richard Burr (NC)
Saxby Chambliss (GA)
Jeff Chiesa (NJ)
Dan Coats (IN)
Thad Cochran (MS)
Susan Collins (ME)
Bob Corker (TN)
Deb Fischer (NE)
Jeff Flake (AZ)
Lindsey Graham (SC)
Orrin Hatch (UT)
John Hoeven (ND)
Johnny Isakson (GA)
Mike Johanns (NE)
Mark Kirk (IL)
John McCain (AZ)
Mitch McConnell (KY)
Jerry Moran (KS)
Lisa Murkowski (AK)
Rob Portman (OH)
John Thune (SD)
Roger Wicker (MS)

NAY VOTES
Tom Coburn (OK)
John Cornyn (TX)
Mike Crapo (ID)
Ted Cruz (TX)
Mike Enzi (WY)
Chuck Grassley (IA)
Dean Heller (NV)
Ron Johnson (WI)
Mike Lee (UT)
Rand Paul (KY)
James Risch (ID)
Pat Roberts (KS)
Marco Rubio (FL)
Tim Scott (SC)
Jeff Sessions (AL)
Richard Shelby (AL)
Pat Toomey (PA)
David Vitter (LA)

Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), who is recovering in Oklahoma from quadruple bypass heart surgery, did not vote.

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HOUSE ROLL CALL

Eighty-seven Republican Congressmen voted for the bill, and 144 voted against.

YEA VOTES
Bachus
Barletta
Benishek
Bilirakis
Boehner
Boustany
Brooks (IN)
Buchanan
Calvert
Camp
Cantor
Capito
Coble
Coffman
Cole
Cook
Cotton
Cramer
Crawford
Crenshaw
Daines
Davis, Rodney
Dent
Diaz-Balart
Fitzpatrick
Fortenberry
Frelinghuysen
Gardner
Gerlach
Gibson
Griffin (AR)
Grimm
Guthrie
Hanna
Harper
Hastings (WA)
Heck (NV)
Herrera Beutler
Issa
Jenkins
Joyce
Kelly (PA)
King (NY)
Kinzinger (IL)
Kline
Lance
Latham
LoBiondo
McCarthy (CA)
McHenry
McKeon
McKinley
McMorris Rodgers
Meehan
Miller, Gary
Murphy (PA)
Nunes
Paulsen
Pittenger
Reichert
Ribble
Rigell
Rogers (KY)
Rogers (MI)
Ros-Lehtinen
Roskam
Runyan
Schock
Shimkus
Shuster
Simpson
Smith (NE)
Smith (NJ)
Terry
Thompson (PA)
Tiberi
Tipton
Upton
Valadao
Webster (FL)
Whitfield
Wittman
Wolf
Womack
Young (AK)
Young (IN)

NAY VOTES
Aderholt
Amash
Amodei
Bachmann
Barr
Barton
Bentivolio
Bishop (UT)
Black
Blackburn
Brady (TX)
Bridenstine
Brooks (AL)
Broun (GA)
Bucshon
Burgess
Campbell
Carter
Cassidy
Chabot
Chaffetz
Collins (GA)
Collins (NY)
Conaway
Culberson
Denham
DeSantis
DesJarlais
Duffy
Duncan (SC)
Duncan (TN)
Ellmers
Farenthold
Fincher
Fleischmann
Fleming
Flores
Forbes
Foxx
Franks (AZ)
Garrett
Gibbs
Gingrey (GA)
Gohmert
Goodlatte
Gosar
Gowdy
Granger
Graves (GA)
Graves (MO)
Griffith (VA)
Hall
Harris
Hartzler
Hensarling
Holding
Hudson
Huelskamp
Huizenga (MI)
Hultgren
Hunter
Hurt
Johnson (OH)
Johnson, Sam
Jones
Jordan
King (IA)
Kingston
Labrador
LaMalfa
Lamborn
Lankford
Latta
Long
Lucas
Luetkemeyer
Lummis
Marchant
Marino
Massie
McCaul
McClintock
Meadows
Messer
Mica
Miller (FL)
Miller (MI)
Mullin
Mulvaney
Neugebauer
Noem
Nugent
Nunnelee
Olson
Palazzo
Pearce
Perry
Petri
Pitts
Poe (TX)
Pompeo
Posey
Price (GA)
Radel
Reed
Renacci
Rice (SC)
Roby
Roe (TN)
Rogers (AL)
Rohrabacher
Rokita
Rooney
Ross
Rothfus
Royce
Ryan (WI)
Salmon
Sanford
Scalise
Schweikert
Scott, Austin
Sensenbrenner
Sessions
Smith (MO)
Smith (TX)
Southerland
Stewart
Stockman
Stutzman
Thornberry
Turner
Wagner
Walberg
Walden
Walorski
Weber (TX)
Wenstrup
Westmoreland
Williams
Wilson (SC)
Woodall
Yoder
Yoho

NOT VOTING
Young (FL)

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Kentucky Kickback: Senate Budget Deal Includes $3 Billion For Dam Project In McConnell’s Home State – Weasel Zippers

He sold us out for a friggen dam.

Via WFPL:

A proposal to end the government shutdown and avoid default orchestrated by Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Democratic Leader Harry Reid includes a nearly $3 billion earmark for a Kentucky project.

Language in a draft of the McConnell-Reid deal (see page 13, section 123) provided to WFPL News shows a provision that increases funding for the massive Olmsted Dam Lock in Paducah, Ky., from $775 million to nearly $2.9 billion.

The dam is considered an important project for the state and region in regards to water traffic along the Ohio River.

As The Courier-Journal’s James Bruggers reported in 2011, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said they needed about $2.1 billion for the locks due to “stop and go funding.”

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Siskiyou County Board Of Supervisors Votes To Secede From California

Northern California County Board Votes For Secession From State – KCBS

Supervisors in a far Northern California county where residents are fed up with what they see as a lack of representation at the state capitol and overregulation have voted in favor of separating from the state.

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The Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 on Tuesday for a declaration of secession, the Record Searchlight of Redding reported. The vote appears mostly symbolic since secession would require approval from the state Legislature and the U.S. Congress, but supporters say it would restore local control over decision making. They want other rural counties in Northern California and Southern Oregon to join them in the creation of a new state called the State of Jefferson.

“Many proposed laws are unconstitutional and deny us our God-given rights,” Gabe Garrison of Happy Camp said at the meeting. “We need our own state so we can make laws that fit our way of life.”

Garrison was among more than 100 people who attended the meeting, and most were in support of the declaration, according to the Record Searchlight.

The declaration does not launch any type of formal process toward secession, but only reflects the county’s support, said Tom Odom, the county’s administrative officer.

The idea to create the separate state of Jefferson goes back decades. It gained momentum in 1941, when the mayor of a southern Oregon town called on counties in the region and their neighbors in California to form a new state. The goal was to raise attention to the region’s poor roads.

The movement became popular, especially in Siskiyou County, where residents have long felt that their concerns are overshadowed by more populated parts of California. It was shelved after the attack at Pearl Harbor, though its spirit lives on today.

Another proposal that came up two years ago in Riverside County called on more than a dozen mostly conservative counties to break off and form the state of South California.

Residents of the majority-Republican Siskiyou County lobbied the board in August to consider secession, according to the Record Searchlight. In addition to a lack of representation in Sacramento, they cited concerns about water rights and a rural fire prevention fee.

The $150 annual fee was approved by the Legislature in 2011 to offset the costs of providing fire service to people who live far from services. It affects more than 825,000 homeowners who were billed for the first time between August and December of last year.

“I haven’t had one contact in regard to this issue that’s in opposition,” Supervisor Michael Kobseff said about the secession declaration.

The lone vote in opposition was cast by Board Chair Ed Valenzuela. Valenzuela said he took an oath to uphold the state Constitution and was elected to solve problems within the existing system.

Voters in some Colorado counties are also considering secession. The issue is on the ballot in at least three counties.

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Arizona Senate Votes To Approve Guns For Any School Employee

Senate Votes To OK Gun For Any School Employee – Arizona Daily Star

State senators voted Wednesday to allow a teacher, administrator, custodian or even a cafeteria worker at rural and some suburban schools to be armed.

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Sen. Rich Crandall, R-Mesa, said SB 1325 would improve student safety. He said while better mental-health screening and more police officers at schools are important, it is also necessary to provide schools with a “self-defense component.”

Crandall joined with other Republicans to beat back an effort to require that whoever is designated to carry a gun must report to police if the weapon is lost or stolen. That brought derision from Sen. Steve Gallardo, D-Phoenix.

“The only reason that gun owners do not want to report they lost their gun or they misplaced it is because they’re too embarrassed,” Gallardo said. “They don’t want people to know that they’re an irresponsible firearm holder.”

And Gallardo said that notice of an errant gun really should not be limited to police.

“At the very least, I would believe every parent would want to know that their child is going to a school that may have a gun roaming around,” he said.

Crandall’s legislation needs a final roll-call vote before going to the House.

The measure is limited to schools with fewer than 600 students that also are more than 30 minutes and 20 miles from the closest law-enforcement facility. He said the most isolated schools, like those in Crown King and Wikieup, are far too far away from anything to be able to depend on prompt police response.

The Republicans who control the Senate also killed an attempt by Gallardo to scale back the legislation so it would apply only to schools of fewer than 200. Crandall said larger schools need similar self-defense capacity, specifically mentioning the elementary and high schools in Elfrida.

But the Senate action may not be the last word. Rep. David Stevens, R-Sierra Vista, already has said he hopes to expand the scope of the legislation when the measure reaches the House.

Stevens had crafted a proposal to allow an armed teacher at all of the state’s more than 2,000 public schools. But it was introduced too late to get a hearing of its own.

Crandall said his legislation is modeled after laws in Texas that give school districts similar permission to let school employees be armed.

Aside from the school size and location limits, the legislation says weapons either must be carried concealed by the designated employee or secured in a storage locker.

Senate Minority Leader Leah Landrum Taylor, D-Phoenix, questioned the whole premise of allowing a school board to decide whether one of its employees is qualified to be armed and potentially walking around the building with a loaded weapon.

But Senate Majority Leader John McComish, R-Phoenix, dismissed those concerns.

“Who better to decide than the local school board, elected by the local community?” he said. Ultimately, he said it will be up to the community, acting through the school board, that decides whether it wants any employee armed.

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House Votes To Stop Obama’s War On Coal

House Votes To Stop The ‘War On Coal’ – Daily Caller

On Friday, the House of Representatives voted 233 to 175 to stop the Obama administration’s so-called “war on coal,” passing a bill that would limit the EPA’s regulatory authority over greenhouse gases and limit the Interior Department’s ability to issue coal mining rules.

“The Obama administration’s ‘all of the above but nothing from below’ energy policy threatens our electricity independence,” wrote Republicans Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan and Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma in an op-ed Thursday.

The vote was largely split along party lines, with 19 Democrats voting with 214 Republicans. Meanwhile, 13 Republicans broke with their party and voted against the bill along with 162 Democrats.

The Stop the War on Coal Act of 2012 is a bundle of provisions which the House has already passed, including one prohibiting the EPA from regulating greenhouse gas emissions and another which is an alternative to EPA rules for coal ash disposal and management.

The bill also restricts the Interior Department from issuing regulations regarding surface mining operations and limits the EPA’s ability to veto permits issued under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, while also promoting the cooperation between the federal government and the states regarding water pollution controls.

“Since taking office, the Obama Administration has waged a multi-front war on coal – on coal jobs, on the small businesses in the mining supply chain, and on the low-cost energy that millions of Americans rely upon,” said Washington Republican Rep. Doc Hastings on the House floor Thursday.

However, the bill faces an uncertain fate in the Democratic-led Senate, and President Barack Obama has threatened a veto.

Democrats argue the coal industry is on the decline because of competition from other energy sources like cheap natural gas, and not because of regulations.

“Republicans have been so busy manufacturing fake wars on coal and oil that they’ve missed the real American energy revolution in natural gas, wind, solar and other cleaner, cheaper forms of energy,” Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Ed Markey said.

“Republicans do favors for coal and oil, even though their prices are going up and jobs are going away. Then they attack and ignore clean energy and natural gas, even though their prices are going down and the jobs they create are adding up,” Markey added.

It has been a rough year for the coal industry starting off in January with an announcement by FirstEnergy of the early retirement of six plants in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Maryland because of costs and uncertainty over new EPA regulations.

In February, GenOn announced it was shuttering 13 percent of its generating capacity by 2015 due to new environmental regulations.

Over the summer, OhioAmerican Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Murray Energy Corp., announced layoffs in Ohio after five years of operation and that about 50 employees would be affected. PBS Coals Inc. and its affiliate, RoxCoal Inc., laid off 225 workers working in deep and surface mines in July, citing low demand and aggressive regulations.

Patriot Coal recently announced it was going to cut coal production by 85,000 tons per month for 60 days, which will impact 250 jobs across three mine complexes in Southern West Virginia – the latest in a series of cutbacks in recent months.

Earlier this week, coal company Alpha Natural Resources announced it would be laying off 1,200 workers and closing eight coal mines to face two new challenges: cheap natural gas and “a regulatory environment that’s aggressively aimed at constraining the use of coal.”

“These lost jobs aren’t random events – they are the direct result of the policies and actions of the Obama Administration – these are the outcomes of their regulatory war on coal,” Hastings added.

New analysis by the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity found that more than 200 coal-based electric generating units across 25 states are scheduled for shut down in part due EPA regulations, equivalent to shutting down the entire electricity supply of Ohio.

“This is further evidence that EPA is waging a war on coal, and a war on affordable electricity prices and jobs,” said Mike Duncan, president and CEO of ACCCE.

“EPA continues to ignore the damage that its new regulations are causing to the U.S. economy and to states that depend on coal for jobs and affordable electricity,” he added.

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House Votes To Block Obama’s Change To Welfare Requirement

House Votes To Block Obama’s Change To Welfare Requirement – The Hill

The House voted Thursday to block the Obama administration’s decision to let states waive the current work requirement for welfare recipients.

Members approved the Republican resolution of disapproval in a 250-164 vote, after a bitter debate in which Republicans charged President Obama with trying to change the law without consulting Congress, and Democrats said Republicans were raising the issue to help GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney after his widely criticized remarks about people on welfare. Nineteen Democrats voted for the resolution.

While the measure passed the House, the Obama administration’s change to the implementation of the welfare law will remain in effect until the Senate approves the resolution, which is not expected to happen.

Republicans said the rule, from the Department of Health and Human Services, would gut a central element of the 1996 welfare reform law that created the current system under which federal welfare benefits are delivered through block grants to states. That law requires 50 percent of a state’s welfare recipients to be working, or undertake efforts to prepare for work, such as training or looking for a job, which Republicans say is a critical component.

“The requirement that 50 percent of a State’s welfare caseload work or prepare for work was a central part of the bipartisan 1996 welfare reforms signed into law by President Clinton,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) said. “Those reforms were overwhelmingly successful in reducing welfare dependency and poverty while increasing work and earnings.”

Camp also said the change is “unlawful,” as the work requirement is in a part of the law that cannot be waived, and because the change was found to be a rule that was never notified to Congress.

Democrats argued repeatedly that several “fact checkers” in the media have found that GOP claims that the change would gut the welfare reform law are not true. This argument rests on the idea that the waivers could only be granted to states who are looking to put in place a new welfare program that meets the 1996 law’s goal of getting more people to work.

Republicans rejected that by noting the Obama administration made a unilateral decision to create the waiver without any consultation with Congress despite the practical changes made in the implementation of the law. They added that this came after years in which former administrations said they did not believe they had any authority to waive the work requirements.

“I don’t understand why my friends on the other side of the aisle are defensive about this,” said Deputy Majority Whip Peter Roskam (R-Ill.). “This is nothing to defend. This is to say the White House made an error in engaging substantively in downgrading work requirements for welfare, and rather than being defensive about it, say, ‘Look, they messed up.’ ”

Democrats spent most of the debate arguing that Republicans were dodging more pertinent issues such as the farm bill and the uncertainty over taxes, and called up the resolution in order to score political points as the November election nears.

Several Democrats went further by saying the vote was meant to help Mitt Romney’s election chances, particularly after Romney’s much-maligned comment that 47 percent of voting Americans believe they are entitled to welfare and other benefits.

“Just because the candidate for president made another mistake, we’re going to have to now legislate something to show that we think he makes any sense,” Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) said, describing what he presumed to be the motive of Republicans. “It is wrong and it ain’t going nowhere.”

“This is a paid political broadcast brought to you by the majority side of the Ways and Means Committee,” Rep. Richard Neal (D-Mass.) said.

Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said work on the welfare resolution was typical of the GOP-led Congress that has left several key issues until after the election.

“The bill before us today exemplifies the do-nothing Republican Congress,” he said. “Once again, Republicans are choosing to focus on a political message over serious issues like jobs, middle-class tax cuts or a farm bill.”

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