Tag Archives: Dean Heller

Dean’s Back In My Mailbox: Sweet Children Edition

I’m starting to develop a theory concerning politicians, photographs, and pro-family policies.  The theory is congealing along this line:  The more adorable small children are shown in close proximity to the politician in the campaign photographs, the less likely the politician is to be a true advocate for policies which benefit women and children.

Case in point:  Dean Heller’s latest addition to the contents of my mailbox.

This latest contribution is a flyer with nice photos of Senator Heller (R-NV) and lots of nicely clad, well groomed children, all looking familial. Very familial.  So, it’s no surprise that the “content” portion of the campaign piece highlights domestic violence; pregnant workers; veterans; and sexual assault survivors.

Lest I become too excited at the prospect of Heller as a prime champion of these causes, it’s time for a bit of context.

About those domestic violence survivors…  According to Heller, Heller “broke with his party” to pass the Violence Against Women Act.  If we are discussing the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act in 2012, then Senator Heller wasn’t exactly the first to line up:

“Bipartisan legislation to reauthorize the landmark Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) reached a critical point Tuesday, as Nevada Republican Dean Heller became the 60th Senator to cosponsor the legislation.  The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act was introduced in November by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho).

“The Violence Against Women Act has always been, and continues to be, a bipartisan priority,” said Leahy.  “I am grateful that Senator Heller has joined as a cosponsor of this important bill.  Every victim of violence deserves to access the resources available through VAWA.  Congress should act, without delay, to approve this commonsense legislation.” [IndLaw]

Thus, Senator Heller wasn’t among the first co-sponsors of S. 1925 in 2012, he was more like the 60th, and he voted in favor of the bill’s Senate passage along with 15 other Senate Republicans.  Fast forward to 2018 and the VAWA is about to expire in the summer months.  Indeed, it is due to expire in September 2018. There are 12 bills related, one directly others tangentially, to the VAWA in the 115th Congress, all have about a 3% chance of passage.   HR 6545, the reauthorization for 2018 has about a 7% chance of passage  However, Senator Heller is shown in the pictures with lots of nice looking children.

Pregnant workers... I like the title “Pregnant Workers Fairness Act.”  Although are there any other kinds of pregnant workers than women?  Senator Heller says he is working with his colleagues in the Senate on this one, specifically that would be Senator Casey (D-PA) the sponsor of S 1101.   The bill has two co-sponsors (Shaheen and Heller) and a 3% chance of passage.   Not to put too fine a point to it, but I’m not wagering any portion of my piggy bank contents on this one getting past the committee stage. Senator Heller is shown with several well scrubbed kiddies in the flyer.

America’s Veterans...  by Senator Heller’s lights he’s helped over 15k veterans with their issues, however we don’t know, for example, how many of these are directly related to issues with the VA; how many are directly related to health issues? Housing issues? Educational benefits issues? Other issues? Nor do we know when the count started, are we speaking of the last year or for every year Senator Heller has spent in D.C?  He’s also claiming “leadership” in resolving VA backlog issues, but then so is every other member of Congress.  The jury’s out on this one, but the Senator is shown with children in a nice sylvan setting.

Sexual Assault Survivors...  Republicans seem intent on talking about that rape kit testing backlog and I’m all for that. Both paring down that backlog and talking about it.  However, I’d be happier still if more Republicans would start talking about preventing sexual assault in the first place.  I’m not hearing all I’d like about making reporting instances of assault and molestation easier on the victims.  Nor am I hearing as much as I’d prefer about extending the statute of limitations on assault, molestation, and harassment, for the perpetrators of these crimes.  And then…there’s the not-so-small-matter of getting firearms out of the mitts of domestic abusers.  Abused women are five times more likely to be killed by their abuser if the abuser owns a gun.  Not only are spouses and ex-spouses abused, but if the situation escalates then the lethality increases five-fold.  There are lots of children in that sylvan setting with Senator Heller.  What has Senator Heller done to make life safer for the children who aren’t in the photograph?

Then there’s the  unspoken part … Planned Parenthood … which Senator Heller would have us “defund.”

Does he know that if a woman doesn’t have medical insurance she can receive low cost or free pre-natal care at a Planned Parenthood facility?  Does he realize that Planned Parenthood can help women find affordable health insurance so their children can get off to a good start?  Does he understand that Planned Parenthood also supports post partum care?  There are some profoundly good reasons for a woman to have a post partum check up and for the infant to get his or her check ups too.  Perhaps we could have fewer glossy photos and more attention to providing medical services for more women and their children?

And now I’ll search for more data with regard to my developing theory: The more adorable small children are shown in close proximity to the politician in the campaign photographs, the less likely the politician is to be a true advocate for policies which benefit women and children.

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Filed under Gun Issues, Health Care, Heller, Nevada news, Nevada politics, Politics

OMG! Destruction Awaits Me, at least according to Senator Heller’s fundraising letter in my mail box

There is always something in my mail box.  It’s usually (a) a bargain I simply can’t pass up — or easily can; (b) a plea from some worthy cause I can’t ignore — or can; or, at this point in time (c) some missive from the fund-raising arm of somaeone’s political campaign.  Today I received my letter from Senator Dean Heller (R-NV).  Even the envelope exudes a “Scary Voice” message from the dark Beyond.

Where the return address would normally appear there’s a 1.5 x 1.5 inch photo of a scowling Donald Trump. Now, there’s a happy invitation to the contents? Next to the little photograph, a quote, “A vote for her is a vote for increased taxes. Weak borders. It really is a vote for crime.” But wait, there’s more! Underneath the stamps there’s a 1.5 x 2.25 inch unflattering photo of his Democratic Party opponent, Jacky Rosen, with a red arrow pointing to a script font “Let’s vote NO on Jacky!”  All this and I haven’t even opened the envelope yet.

What am I thinking before I even open the envelope?  First is the obvious: Heller is directly associating himself with Donald J. Trump.  That would be the self-same Donald J. Trump who still hasn’t prioritized reuniting some 547 children with their parents — at least that was the last number I recall hearing from my TV set.  That would be the same Donald J. Trump who crowed that Hurricane Maria was dealt with competently, definitely not a killer storm like Katrina (1,833 dead; it’s just that we now know Maria’s death toll was 2,975.  That would be the same Donald J. Trump who tweeted out in the wee hours of the morning that the “Chinese” were responsible for hacking Democratic Party/Hillary Clinton emails, in the face of all evidence from the CIA, the FBI, the entire Intelligence Community, our major allies, and most sentient people, to the contrary, who see the hand of the Russians in the interference and attacks on our election system in 2016.   And THIS is what Senator Heller wants to emphasize instead of the usual return address on the fund raising material envelope?   All this before the letter knife meets the upper right hand corner of the envelope.  I haven’t even gotten to the quotation.

A vote for her is a vote for increased taxes.”  Please, this generality about Democratic Party platform contents is so stale if it were bread it would crumble to 40 year old starchy dust.  However, it does serve to remind me that the top 1% of American income earners got 83% of the benefits of the last tax cut, and Trump wants to do even more more them.  Further, Trump is mulling further unilateral tax cuts,  for the rich of course, and these will add to the deficit.  And, now I am easing the paper knife into the upper right hand corner to get to the real contents…

The letter folds out “From the desk of Senator Dean Heller, (in a nice wedding invitation gothic font) Republican | Nevada. ”   Dear Desk:  You could have saved yourself some effort, after my experience with the envelope I’m probably not going to be amenable to your contents.

I’m really not especially pleased at being addressed as “Dear Patriot.”  I’m as patriotic as the next person.  However, I don’t have a flag pole in my yard.  But, if I did I would have lowered my flag out of respect for the late Senator John McCain and I would have kept it at half staff until the man’s burial.  I don’t put up bunting on the 4th of July, but I will defend the right of anyone in the neighborhood to fly his or her flag as he or she pleases, put as much or as little bunting and July 4th decorations up as desired, and be grateful if they warn me ahead of time they’ll be setting off firecrackers which frighten my dog.  I’ll also not confuse a respectful demonstration of protest against unauthorized and excessive use of force against POC with a lack of patriotism.  By my lights a Patriot is a person who will adhere to the spirit of the quotation mis-attributed to Voltaire: “I Disapprove of What You Say, But I Will Defend to the Death Your Right to Say It.”

Okay, here we go, “Rep. Jacky Rosen is a tax-hike loving liberal Democrat who would be a total disaster for our country in the U.S. Senate!!!”  Can Trump make a declarative sentence without a surfeit of exclamation points?  Then, presumably Senator Heller adds his two cents: “Not only that, she’s an open borders activist to boot.”   Oh, do you mean she’s truly interested in what’s going on at our southern border? Do you mean she’s not all that thrilled with a policy of family separations undertaken by an administration which was surprised that anyone would actually CARE about the children of asylum seeking parents?   Then comes a hodge-podge of word salad with all the appropriate buzzing sounds.

There’s “opposed every common sense measure to secure the border,”  as if the only thing that makes sense is Zero Tolerance, Big Beautiful Walls the Mexicans aren’t about to pay for, and leaving no path to citizenship for some people whose dedication and talents we could certainly use in this country.  She “criticized the Supreme Court decision” on free speech and the rule of law — this is rich, considering the nature of that case in which intolerance was to be tolerated.  And, Oh My Heavens she’s going to “torpedo” Trump’s not all that well vetted nominee to the US Supreme Court, the man about whom the public record is incomplete and won’t be complete if Republicans like Heller have anything to say about it.  Worse still, clutch those pearls now — she has the support of that Republican bete noir Chuck Schumer… who is (heaven forefend) a “national liberal Democrat.”  Oh leave me shaking, as the resonance of the Scary Voice Narrator wafts into my senses.

The next 2 and 1/3rd pages are replete with buzzing… 2nd Amendment, liberal Democrats, liberal special interests, avid hunter, concealed carry permit holders, dyed in the wool Nancy Pelosi liberal, rubber stamp vote for San Francisco liberal Nancy Pelosi, burgeoning left wing, failing health care system, block… US Supreme Court picks, inexperienced far left Democrat, rubber stamp vote for Chuck Schumer, … and so on. This really isn’t going to get me to pull out the check book for a suggested minimum donation of $35.00.  For that matter, it isn’t going to get 35 cents.

It won’t get 3.5 cents for that matter, not even as the Senator tells me he’s a victim of “scorched earth” attacks from Harry Reid… Harry Reid?   However, I can see some trends in the fund raising letter.  Heller is playing guilt by association — tar his opponent with negative images and references rather than take on the issues of the day.  He’ll play the Fear Card — beware those Black, Brown, and Brownish people.  He’ll play the Ultra Whitey Card — “Dear Patriot.”  What he doesn’t seem to want to do in this fund raising letter is tell me what he’s advocating.

I have the message from Rosen.  It’s clear to me she’s in favor of a woman’s right to make her own medical choices, she’s in favor of tax cuts for middle income Americans — not more largess for the top 1%, she’s in favor of funding veterans’ health care, education,  and in favor of freedom of speech in all its forms not just the preservation of white privilege and religious intolerance.  I can spend some coin of the realm supporting these views. Sorry Senator Heller, but I’d rather vote my hopes than my fears.

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Are we having fun yet? Silver State Visit Edition

Getting the news from a continuous fire hose is becoming tiresome.  And, now we find that the Occupant of the Oval Office is headed to the Silver State once more:

President Donald Trump will be returning to Nevada within weeks to campaign in advance of the midterm elections, according to White House officials who spoke to reporters Tuesday afternoon.

A person familiar with the president’s thinking would not name the candidates for whom Trump will stump, but noted that Trump has campaigned for Sen. Dean Heller’s re-election effort, GOP gubernatorial nominee Adam Laxalt and congressional candidate Danny Tarkanian. [LVRJ]

Within weeks?  No definite date?  And, while we’re at it, can we ask Who Is Paying For This?  Who’s paying for the use of Air Force One?  Is the Trump Campaign paying for the travel and security expenses incurred for these campaign appearances?  Who’s the beneficiary?  Is it Senator Dean Heller?

Senator Heller, would you care to discuss funding for women’s health care?  Or will you be satisfied to have the Oval Office Occupant speak in generalities about “best health care ever in the history of all history?”  While the GOP resolves to re-impose costs on those with pre-existing medical conditions? While the GOP decides to discard the basic provisions of the Affordable Care Act and Patients’ Bill of Rights to cover maternity expenses? Mental health care?  Children’s health care? While the Republicans allow insurance companies to offer Junk Insurance to people who can barely afford any medical bills?  Perhaps Senator Heller would like to discuss what’s happened with the Great American Tax Cut, most of which went to the top 1%? Or, would he care to speak to his rather murky pronouncement on minimum wages? Frankly, it all gets rather murky when Senator Heller starts his word salad spinner such that whatever policy position he espoused last week is something rather different this one.

Would Adam Laxalt care to discuss women at all?  He’s at the ready to discuss his role as the “bulwark against the Democratic tide.” [NVIndy]  Evidently I’m supposed to read this as he’s the Trump-Lovin’ Immigrant Bashing Gun Adorin’ candidate for the governorship, even though the outgoing governor doesn’t seem too thrilled with the prospect of having him as his successor.  I could see my way clear to vote for him the day I decide it’s OK to separate children from their asylum seeking parents at the southern border? It’s OK for him to capitalize on his famous-immigrant Nevada heritage in the Sweet Promised Land, while signaling those coming later are rapists, murderers, and members of MS 13.  Or, it’s OK to ignore the majority of Nevada voters who said we wanted background checks for gun sales…  in short, I don’t see “that day” coming any time soon.

And Tarkanian?  Is there some office for which he’s not been a contestant?  I’m not sure if Clark County elects its Animal Control Officers, but should they do so, we can wager Mr. Tarkanian will seek a position?  Meanwhile, he’s still packing around the baggage from his previous election ventures.  The citizens of Nevada’s third Congressional District deserve better, and Susie Lee is that option.  They aren’t likely to debate, so we’ll just have to stay tuned.

I think I’d be better pleased if the Oval Office Occupant (or Triple 000) on my keyboard) would stay in D.C., continue rage tweeting in the small hours of the morning, and continue convincing people he really did know about violations of campaign finance law — he didn’t know, he did know, he knew but it’s not a crime if he knew it, he knew it was a crime but it’s not that big a crime, or a crime isn’t a crime.   I don’t hold out any hope he’ll attend to those 500+ children who’ve been separated from their parents and still haven’t been reunited, or that he’ll think about the possible effects of continuous delays in trade negotiations with China and Mexico on American farmers, ranchers, and orchard operations.  However, it’s a free country and he’s welcome to come to the Silver State and embrace whichever candidates still want to get one of his bear hug handshakes  while he spends his “rally” time talking about himself, barely mentioning the candidates for whom he is supposed to be campaigning.

If the candidates can stand it, I can ignore it.

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Heller Makes The List: Probably Not The List He Wants

Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) has drawn the attention of Giffords.Org, a gun safety advocacy group headed by former Representative Gabby Giffords, herself a victim of gun violence.  Her group has this to say about Nevada’s GOP senator:

Even after the Las Vegas massacre last October, the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, Dean Heller offered condolences, but no solutions, to the families of gun violence victims. This comes as no surprise, given the fact that he received campaign contributions and an A from the NRA. In 2013, Heller also thwarted a bipartisan gun safety bill by voting against an assault weapons ban, a limit on magazine capacity, and an amendment to expand background checks for gun sales. Fortunately, Senator Heller’s silence on these issues betrays his extreme precariousness in this year’s midterm election—he is widely touted as the Senate’s most vulnerable Republican.

The Senator has often demonstrated his capacity to offer Thoughts and Prayers, while accepting donations from the NRA, the  Shooting Sports Foundation, and the canned hunt crowd — Safari International.

Nevada has a better option this November — Rep. Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Nevadans headed to the polls in the upcoming mid-term election have a chance to elect a Senator who will advocate for common sense gun legislation, (along with the preservation of Social Security and Medicare, protection of insurance access for those with pre-existing medical conditions, and support for DACA recipients.)

Remember in November.

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559 Questions for Senator Dean Heller

On June 18, 2018 Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) was pleased to let us all know he had taken a baby step away from the Trumpian child separation policy at the US – Mexico border:

“Senator Heller doesn’t support separating children from their families, and he believes that this issue highlights just how broken our immigration system is and why Congress must act to fix it.” [LVRJ]

As of August 9, 2018 Time reports there are still 559 migrant children (of an original 2,551) who have not yet been reunited with their parents. 386 parents have already been deported.  There are 26 parents for which the government says it has no information at all.  The authorities say they’ve heard from 299 parents in the previous week.  As of August 9, 2018 the Trump mis-administration still had no plan in place to reunite children with their parents.

Then, on August 10th NPR reports:

“More than 360 immigrant children in U.S. custody are still separated from parents who were deported by the U.S. government. About 200 immigrant children are still without their parents for other reasons. This afternoon, the government presented its plan to San Diego federal judge Dana Sabraw about how to reunify deported parents with their children. Part of that plan includes a heavy lift for the ACLU, which brought the case to reunify the families.”

Wait a minute. Why is the “heavy lift” assigned to the American Civil Liberties Union?  Simple, the administration wanted to make the ACLU assume the burden of proof that the parents really wanted their children back.  The ACLU responded:

“…they say that the parents who have been deported were either confused or in some cases coerced, tricked into agreeing to deportation because they believed that meant they’d be reunified with their kids. And the ACLU has consistently pointed to the fact that, you know, in large part, the government has really – they’ve had to have been ordered for most of this to be able to act. The government really hasn’t done much willingly. But the ACLU is also privately acknowledging at this point that they also need to talk to these parents individually. And they recognize that they’re going to be part of this solution to reunify these parents.” [NPR]

Focus: The administration officials haven’t done much. They’ve had to be forced to do what little they have done, and now they want the burden shifted to the attorneys for the plaintiffs… I haven’t been to law school, however, this sounds more than a little like the southbound product of my ever faithful metaphorical northbound bull.

Meanwhile back on July 25, 2018 Senator Heller spoke on the Senate Floor about the separation policy:

Heller said on the Senate floor today that he’d heard concerns from more than 3,500 constituents over the family separations. Thousands of children, some still in diapers, have been separated from their family members as a result of the Trump policy.

“My constituents have spoken to families split apart at the borders and some are being held in Southern Nevada,” he said. “And they are, frankly, asking for help. So being reunified with their children is their top priority.” [LVSun]

It doesn’t seem to have been a top priority for the administration.  August 10th was also the day the federal authorities finally announced they had a “plan,” or at least the outline of a plan. [MJ]  That would be one day after it was reported that ICE withheld phone numbers of deported parents from the ACLU attorneys. [HuffPo]

We have three touch points here, and for the sake of clarity let’s note that on the first touch point, June 18th, Senator Heller is his usual vague self — the policy is bad and Congress should fix it.  Nothing more specific is on offer.  By the second touch point, July 25th, Senator Heller has signed on to some legislation which purports to “solve the problem.”  It doesn’t address the general issue of immigration reform, and frankly does little beyond repeat the protections of the Constitution already in place — children should not be separated from parents during the administrative and/or legal review of their cases.  Finally, the court ordered plan (or at least the outline of the government’s plan, by August 10th obviates the need for Senator Heller’s showcase bit of legislative co-sponsorship.  Courts have ordered what the Senate couldn’t get around to doing, i.e. ordering the administration not to separate children and parents, and not to remove them (especially out of the country) during the adjudication of their cases.

Return with us now to another touch point.  It is June 27, 2013 and the US Senate has just passed a compromise Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill.  The measure included:

The Gang of Eight bill would essentially revamp every corner of U.S. immigration law, establishing a 13-year pathway to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants, with several security benchmarks that have to be met before they can obtain a green card. The measure would not only increases security along the border, but requires a mandatory workplace verification system for employers, trying to ensure no jobs are given to immigrants who are not authorized to work in the United States.  It also includes a new visa program for lesser-skilled workers – the product of negotiations between the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and labor unions. And it shifts the country’s immigration policies away from a family-based system to one that is focused on more on work skills.

Sound familiar?  The 2013 bill had many of the features still under consideration today, and Senator Heller was a “yes” vote on the comprehensive bill on June 27, 2013. Thus it seems fair to ask, if the Senator held a favorable view of the 2013 bill then why has he not encouraged, sponsored, co-sponsored, or promoted an updated version since?  Instead, Heller charges that comprehensive immigration reform isn’t possible because Democrats don’t want immigrants to work. [TP]

In an audio recording of a March 2 speech, obtained by Politico and released Friday, Heller claimed that no progress can be made on immigration reform for the roughly 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. “Republicans want illegal immigrants to work but not vote. Democrats want them not to work, but to vote. Think about that for a minute,” he told the audience. “That’s why we can’t come together on a solution for this.”

This statement is demonstrably false.

Well, we could “think about that for a minute,” and reach the same conclusion.  Senator Heller is playing to the Trumpian audience.  The statement is, in fact, demonstrably false; but useful as part of a dog-whistle/bull horn/fire siren stump speech to the faithful.

Here is where the incumbent Senator gets himself entangled in his own rhetoric.  It’s hard to generate sympathy for his protestations concerning the Zero Tolerance/Maximum Pain policy of separating parents and children at the southern border when it’s noted he’s perfectly willing to play the “immigrants as the ignorant tools of corrupt Democrats” card.

It’s also difficult to find any reason for a round of applause for his co-sponsorship of a fairly narrow, and decidedly right wing 2018 version of immigration policy reform, when doesn’t come all that close to what he was willing to support in 2013.   The hard sad fact is that comprehensive immigration reform bills passed the Senate in 2006 and 2013 and failed to find sufficient support among House Republicans to pass them. [Politifact]

We could come to a solution on this if we ignored (or replaced) Senators such as Dean Heller who wish to beat their drums while continuing to blow on their dog whistles, and elected members of the US Congress who would be willing to take up the issue as it was addressed in 2006 and 2013 — and DO something.

 

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Filed under Immigration, Nevada politics, Politics

Thank You For Your Service, Sort Of…

To all the flag-wavin’, flag-clutchin’, flag-wearin’, flag-supportin’ members of the the GOP,  and this includes senatorial candidate Dean Heller,  here’s some unsolicited advice on how to truly be supportive of our Armed Forces and veterans. Some of these don’t translate well into bumper stickers or shouted slogans, but they just might be more effective.

#1. Let’s start with NOT separating from service members of the military and reservists who happen to be immigrants on a path to citizenship. [USAT]  For crying out loud, these people are VOLUNTEERS.  They have volunteered to place themselves deliberately in harm’s way to protect the safety and security of the rest of us.  Aren’t these exactly the kind of people we want to join us as citizens of these United States?

#2.  Let’s stop creating deportation issues for some 11,800 members of our military families [MilTimes] and let’s stop deporting the spouses of our veterans [NBC].  Where, please, are the voices of our members of the US Senate — yes, Senator Heller, this includes you — and the voices of our Representatives in the House?  And, yes, Rep. Amodei (R-NV2) this means you as well.  Please don’t try to convince me of your love and respect for active duty personnel and veterans while you allow them to worry about the deportation status of their spouses — and the mothers and fathers of their children.

#3.  Let’s start paying members of the military what they are worth rather than beginning the calculation with what we think is the least amount we can pay and still meet budget restrictions. For example, the pay increase for member of the US military for 2017 was 2.1%, and granted that’s above the “austerity years” previously, but the inflation rate for 2017 was also 2.1% so our members of the armed forces didn’t actually get a raise in terms of real purchasing power.  The latest bill includes a 2.6% pay raise. Will this cover inflation rates? [Mil.com] [FedPay] Can I get an “Amen!” from Senator Heller? From Representative Amodei?  I’m not hearing anything…

#4. And, while we are discussing purchasing power… Remember back in April 2018 when the White House floated a proposal to cut SNAP benefits? [Mil.com]  Those cuts would effect members of the US military. [Mil.com]  That argument was still going on as of July 5, 2018. [SanAntonioC] How about we decide not to have this argument at all. How about paying members of the US military enough so SNAP benefits are unnecessary, or if they must be then making sure military families have sufficient resources to put food on their tables? This would seem to be a very supportive thing to advocate? Yes? Senator Heller? Yes? Representative Amodei?

Meanwhile, what’s happening in the current legislation headed to the Oval Office [USNI]  on Basic Housing Allowances? Whenever Senator McConnell says things including the phrase “more opportunity,” I begin to wonder Whose Opportunity to do what.  On Tricare? On dental treatment plans?

In short, let’s stop talking about “thank you for your service,” and “support the troops,” and DO something that allows them to be thankful they joined the US Armed Forces.  If we truly appreciate their service then we ought to be willing to pay for it.

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Filed under Amodei, Heller, Immigration, Military pay, Nevada politics, No Child Left Behind, Politics

Heller on the Slipface?

angle of reposeLet’s assume for the moment that much of the goings-on at the Residence on Pennsylvania Avenue have less to do with governance, and ever so much more to do with a tender ego, thin skin, and a perfectly illogical, nay irrational, sense of reality.  Further, we might also assume that Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) has calculated a return to his seat in the US Senate predicated on keeping the Trumpian Base happy.  After all, Heller was pleased to support Orange Blossom’s Muslim Ban [RGJ] after expressing some initial “concerns.”  The senior Senator is good at this, i.e. expressing initial concerns prior to caving in faster that a pile of  dry sand with a 35° angle of repose.   So, we shouldn’t be surprised to find he’s caved again.

Thus much for all that opposition to turning Nevada into the nation’s nuclear waste basket (Yucca Mountain), Senator Heller is willing to forgive and forget all that to tell us he has NO reservations about supporting the nomination of Mr. Kavanaugh to the US Supreme Court. [RGJ]  How convenient for the Orange Occupant of the Oval Office?  To have a Senator support the candidate most likely to declare the decision in US vs. Nixon a mistake. [WaPo]  Indeed, how very helpful!

Once having aligned himself with the Orange Occupant’s selection, Senator Heller may have to explain to his audiences (should he decide to have any with living people in them) how he is serving ALL the good people in the Silver State.

People who don’t necessarily believe the decision in Roe v. Wade should be overturned?  People who don’t necessarily believe that gun dealers have more rights than gun violence victims?  People who don’t necessarily believe that people with pre-existing medical conditions should be priced out of the health insurance markets?  People who don’t believe that ICE agents should be arresting and detaining victims of domestic abuse? People who don’t necessarily believe that the function of immigration enforcement agencies is to rip young children away from their parents, and then to be so incapable or incompetent as to make reuniting them nearly impossible — subsequently resorting to the ruse of declaring the un-reunited children as “ineligible” for a return to their parents.  What a cold and miserable calculation that categorization must be?

But, please, Senator Heller, do run as if this were still primary season.  Do cling to the increasingly disjointed, illogical, and downright cruel rantings of the Oval Office Occupant.  Do revert to the wedge issues of the 1980s and 1990s.  I’m sure your opponent, Rep. Jacky Rosen will be pleased to talk about —  offering affordable health care for all Nevadans, promoting women’s health and family well-being, advocating for employment opportunities and equal pay for all Nevada families.

“President Trump is trying to pull up the ladder behind him, leaving the middle class stranded while his super-wealthy buddies turn the federal government into a source of enrichment for themselves. Trump ridicules women, people of color, the LGBTQ community, immigrant families, and anyone who challenges him.” [Rosen]

So, while Senator Heller is clutching the banners on Trump’s bandwagon, Rosen would rather we take our own ride.  We can’t guarantee that the media will do much more than it did in 2016 — spend more time interviewing Trump and the Trumpians than discussing issues raised by Democratic candidates. Therefore, it will be up to Democrats to tell friends and neighbors about Rosen’s (and other Democratic candidates’) position on issues.  Rosen’s are here.

We know we’re about Health Care, Government Reform,  a Clean and Safe Environment, Education, a sane and humane Immigration Policy,  advancing the interests of Senior Citizens, attending to the Security of our Nation.   However, we can’t count on much help from a mass media which treats Republican candidates and their voters like the audience for Duck Dynasty — interesting, intriguing, anomalies who attract their attention.   If Democrats can’t be shiny objects for press and punditry, perhaps we can be loud and proud.

We don’t disparage the different and the disabled. We don’t find it necessary to call the cops on kids selling lemonade, hot dogs, and candy.  We don’t find it uncomfortable if someone who has a “natural tan” is in the swimming pool, or lives next door.  We The People buy up the candy the young lad was selling when the broad beamed bigot decided to launch her verbal assault.  We The People know how to make life a misery for the intolerant who call the cops to barbecues and college common rooms.  We The People know how to identify and shame the shameless. And, if some members of Congress don’t share our values of common decency, concern for the well being of others, or improving the lives of as many of our fellow citizens as possible, then We The People can always change the members of Congress.

The Trumpians, for all we care, can slide down the slipface of history.

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