congress

Meet Ro Khanna: The ‘Rising Star’ of the Democratic Party

Sunita Sohrabji

Ro Khanna, formerly a high-ranking trade official in the Obama administration, announced this week his bid for California’s 17th District congressional seat, which is currently being held by the venerable Mike Honda. Khanna and Honda are both Democrats likely to be pitted against each other in 2014, due to new state mandates which allow two opponents from the same party to run against each other in the general election.  

As Obama Is Sworn In for a Second Term, African-Americans Question His Agenda

Hazel Trice Edney

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s actual birthday was celebrated on January 15 and will be observed on the national holiday on Monday, January 21, which is also Inauguration Day. As more than a million people are expected to attend inaugural celebrations in D.C. and millions more will watch around the world, neither the President nor leading Democrats have publicly mentioned his most faithful constituents, whose votes for him surpassed 95 percent in both elections.

Goodbye Fiscal Cliff, Hello Debt Ceiling Crisis

Paul Kleyman

Ah, Washington. The good news is that our national leaders saved our butts (for the moment) from bottoming out off the “fiscal cliff.” The bad news is: Watch your head—it’ll soon come crunching up against another unnecessary “debt ceiling” crisis. The most important Good vs. Bad News about the New Year’s Day cliff dive is that the Ugly—the prospect that Congress’ failure to raise the debt ceiling could actually cause the United States to default on its international debts with genuine economic consequences—is now put off, but only until March.

Democrat v. Republican: What’s the Difference, Really?

David Barwinski

But it’s clear that most members of Congress are not really loyal to their party ideologies the way their constituents who voted them into office are.  They are loyal primarily to political expediency, which for them really means, “How will this vote affect my political career/ability to get re-elected?”   Since 2008, there has been a slight shift in voter registration as 2.5 million people have left the Democratic and Republican parties, while the ranks of the Independents has seen a modest increase. And what about when the POTUS  gets into office?  How many of his campaign promises does he actually keep?

The Bush Tax Cuts: Bad Yesterday, Bad Today, and Bad Tomorrow

Matthew Rudow

While it’s difficult to calculate the overall impact of the Bush tax cuts, the Great Recession might actually have made them less detrimental to America’s finances. Because the economic slowdown drastically reduced government revenues, gross domestic product was well below projections, and the loss of revenue was actually somewhat lower than the Congressional Budget Office initially projected. Nevertheless, the Bush tax cuts left America in a much weaker position to cope with the 2008 crash.

Surveillance, Domestic Spying and Invasion of Privacy in Post-Sept. 11 America

Samantha Laura Kelley

In the past few months, a mounting number of small but substantial protests have taken place within the United States. They have emerged in opposition to various legislative and governmental efforts to obtain ex-post facto permissions to engage in expansive domestic spying and employ unfettered authority of detention, search, and extraordinary rendition against U.S. citizens. In particular, political dissidents, activists, whistleblowers, and otherwise “threatening” entities have been the focus of these initiatives, as well as the loudest voices of protest against these punitive forces. 

Moderate Democrats Play Dangerous Game in Shunning Obama

Earl Ofari Hutchinson

From New America Media: The excuses some Democrats give for their chill toward backing President Obama’s re-election bid would fill up a legal pad. The Blue Dog and moderate Democratic congresspersons and senators representing shaky swing and conservative districts are scared stiff that if they rub shoulders too close with Obama, they will be signing their political obituary for re-election.

 

Reports Show Social Security Cuts Would Hit People of Color, Women

Paul Kleyman

From New America Media: As Congress’ deficit-cutting "super committee" considers whether to recommend reducing Social Security benefits, two reports released recently expose the declining retirement security of aging Americans—especially among women and people of color. 

The Return of Candidate Obama

Maggie Hennefeld

Will the center-leaning and politically roadblocked President Obama have the force to resurrect the charismatic and inspirational Candidate Obama that we all remember from his momentous 2008 campaign? A few years ago, the symbolism that shrouded Barack Obama—the first African-American President in our country’s history running on an optimistic platform of “hope and change” with a commitment to bipartisanship  made him seem more like a deity than a politician to many of his ardent supporters.

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