Why Did the Democratic and Republican Parties Switch Platforms? LiveScience

During the 1860s, Republicans, who dominated northern states, orchestrated an ambitious expansion of federal power, helping to fund the transcontinental railroad, the state university system and the settlement of the West by homesteaders, and instating a national currency and protective tariff. Democrats, who dominated the South, opposed these measures. After the Civil War, Republicans passed laws that granted protections for African Americans and advanced social justice; again, Democrats largely opposed these expansions of power.

Sound like an alternate universe? Fast forward to 1936. Democratic president Franklin Roosevelt won reelection that year on the strength of the New Deal, a set of Depression-remedying reforms including regulation of financial institutions, founding of welfare and pension programs, infrastructure development and more. Roosevelt won in a landslide against Republican Alf Landon, who opposed these exercises of federal power. (Read more)

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Koch group condemns ‘divisiveness’ and ‘lack of leadership’ in Washington – Washington Post

The Gate Keeper: It is getting gooder, gooder and damn gooder!

COLORADO SPRINGS — Top officials with the donor network affiliated with billionaire industrialist Charles Koch this weekend sought to distance the network from the Republican Party and President Trump, citing tariff and immigration policies and “divisive” rhetoric out of Washington.

At a gathering of hundreds of donors at the Broadmoor resort here, officials reiterated their plans to spend as much as $400 million on policy issues and political campaigns during the 2018 cycle. Earlier this year, they announced heavy spending on helping Republicans hold the Senate. But in a warning shot to Trump and the GOP, network co-chair Brian Hooks lamented “tremendous lack of leadership” in Trump’s Washington and the “deterioration of the core institutions of society.”

He called out the White House and Trump-allied GOP lawmakers, particularly over trade policy and increased federal spending, and added that “the divisiveness of this White House is causing long-term damage.” (Read More)

Republicanism

Fellow-citizens, I will not enlarge further on your national inconsistencies. The existence of slavery in this country brands your republicanism as a sham, your humanity as a base pretense, and your Christianity as a lie. It destroys your moral power abroad: it corrupts your politicians at home. It saps the foundation of religion; it makes your name a hissing and a bye-word to a mocking earth. It is the antagonistic force in your government, the only thing that seriously disturbs and endangers your Union. it fetters your progress; it is the enemy of improvement; the deadly foe of education; it fosters pride; it breeds insolence; it promotes vice; it shelters crime; it is a curse to the earth that supports it; and yet you cling to it as if it were the sheet anchor of all your hopes. Frederick Douglass, July 5, 1852 And we’re still living it.

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Damn This Is Gooood! Women

Montress Greene

Women: “Can I have birth control?”
Republicans: “No.”
Women: “I couldn’t get birth control so I got pregnant. Can I have an abortion?”
Republicans: “No.”
Women: “I had the baby, but I’m out of work. Can I have WIC and food stamps until I get back on my feet?”
Republicans: “No.”
Women: “I found a job, but it doesn’t offer me insurance. Can I have government guaranteed insurance?”
Republicans: “No.”
Women: “My kid got sick and I got fired because I missed time caring for him. Can I get unemployment?”
Republicans: “No.”
Women: “I’m having a hard time getting my kid from school consistently. Can we fund after-school programs?”
Republicans: “No.”
Women: “I’m prepared to work to support my family. Can you make sure that a full-time job’s minimum wage is enough to do that?”
Republicans: “No. But what’s the matter with you and your family, that working two jobs can’t lift you out of poverty? And can’t you keep your kids off the street? Oh, and make sure they’re doing well in school.”

Frank Bruni: Democrats are the new Republicans – Rocky Mount Telegram

Family values. How long have we been subjected to that subjective phrase, championed by Republicans who equated it with heterosexuality, fecundity and Christian piety – and who appointed themselves the custodians of those?

Well, they lost any remaining claim to that mantle by embracing Donald Trump and then Roy Moore. Neither won the support of all Republicans, but both won the backing or complicity of enough of them to confirm just how hollow and hypocritical the party’s attachment to conservative morality always was. Quote the Bible. Denounce abortion. Congratulations: You’re upholding family values! No questions asked about the number of your marriages, the extent of your infidelities or the scope of your sexual predation. (Rocky Mount Telegram)

Republican Judge Resigns to Protest North Carolina GOP’s Attack on Courts – The Slatest

The battle between North Carolina’s Republican-dominated General Assembly and its Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper has centered, in large part, around the judiciary. The GOP knows that many of its efforts to consolidate power are unlawful, and the courts have not hesitated to block legislative overreach. In response, North Carolina Republicans are attempting to simultaneously hobble the courts and pack them with partisans. Legislative Republicans are close to passing two bills that would strip Cooper of the authority to appoint many judges, delegating that task to the General Assembly instead. And they have already passed a bill shrinking the state Court of Appeals from 15 judges to 12—a brazen effort to prevent Cooper from filling the vacancies left by three Republican judges set to step down during his term. Cooper vetoed the bill, but the legislature will soon enact the measure through veto override. (Read more)

NC State House And Senate Gave Final Approval To Senate Bill 68 Elections/Ethics/Lobbying Merger Bill

The Watch Dog response: This is just a damn shame how the Republicans continue to change the rules to get things accomplished since they got the majority seats.

The state House and Senate Tuesday afternoon gave final approval to Senate Bill 68, the Elections/Ethics/Lobbying merger bill. It was sent to Gov. Cooper, who has indicated that he would veto it. He has 10 days to do so. Overriding a veto requires three-fifths majorities of members present in the House and Senate.

Read the final bill here. The final version keeps four-member county boards, with a Democratic chairman in odd-numbered years and a Republican chairman in even-numbered years.

Changes made to SB 68 in the final conference report (compared to previous version) include:

SBE Majority: SBE votes require a simple majority of five.  These five votes are required, regardless of the number of those present (thus if a bare quorum of five is present, the vote must be unanimous).

Previously, ethics, campaign finance, and new elections matters required six votes.

SBE Chairs: SBE chairs alternate between Republican and Democratic members every term (two years), with a Democrat chairing during midterm elections and a Republican chairing during presidential elections. SBE vice-chairs are of the opposite party.

Previously, there was no party requirement for the chair.

SBE Removal: Governor may remove SBE member who fails to attend a meeting and, thereby, blocks quorum for at least three days. However, the party chair still has 30 days to submit two names for each vacancy.

A variation on this scenario was raised in the House debate on the bill.

SBE Subpoenas: SBE subpoenas for elections, campaign finance, and lobbying (all non-ethics) matters requires action a simple majority.

Previously, the majority had to include at least two members of each political party.

Transition Officers: In 2017, Governor Cooper appoints the vice-chair and secretary. Thereafter the State Board selects these positions.

Previously the governor just appointed the chair.