Here’s a rundown of major “good” results — the good, as in, good for progressives and the LGBT community. I’ll update this throughout the day, but stay tuned also for “the bad” list for progressives and the LGBT community, and the just plain wrong, bad, and ugly.
UPDATES: 3:00 PM
The Victory Fund reminds us that “more openly LGBT candidates won election to public office in the U.S. in 2010 than in any year in Americaâ€™s history. At least 106 of the groupâ€™s record-breaking 164 endorsed candidates were winners as of Wednesday morning, including Providence, R.I., Mayor David Cicilline.”
In a close race, Vermont’s Peter Shumlin is now its Democratic Governor-elect. This is excellent news for the LGBT community, as a state senator, Shumlin has been central to vermont’s support first of civil unions, then, seven years later, of same-sex marriage. It is critical to note that Shumlin was elevate to the Governorship after helping to usher in same-sex marriage.
As a reader notes in the comments below, “One other pro-equality governor: Here in Colorado, we elected John Hickenlooper!” Awesome!
# # #
In important symbolism, Harry Reid kept his Senate seat –Â and Senate Majority Leader Chair — over Tea Party bigot and immigrant-hater Sharron Angle. Angle’s loss, along with Delaware Tea Party “candidate” Christine O’Donnell’s loss, are important wins not only for the LGBT community, but for the integrity of American politics.
Marriage equality advocates are heartened to see pro-equality governors win in New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. New York’s Andrew Cuomo won handily over bigoted, anti-gay, pro-pornography, pro-bestiality, pro-racism, anti-Mosque, etc., Carl Paladino. Former Stamford, Connecticut Mayor and pro-gay rights advocate Dan Malloy squeaked by to a projected gubernatorial win. In Rhode Island, Lincoln D. Chafee will become that state’s first Independent Governor. A former Republican, Chafee actually is one of the few who has supported marriage equality in the past.
More good news coming from Rhode Island. The openly-gay mayor of Providence, R.I., David Cicilline, won his Congressional race. He will join three other openly-gay Representatives in Congress, Democrats Tammy Baldwin, Jared Polis, and Barney Frank.
Massachusetts’ Barney Frank did indeed keep his seat, much to the chagrin of GOProud, who spent a great deal of money, foolishly, attempting to hide their self-contempt.
In honor of GOProud’s efforts, Massachusetts went “all-blue!” Take that, GOProud!
As of this writing, Minnesota Democrat and marriage-equality advocate Mark Dayton is beating Target and Tea Party-supported Republican Tom Emmer in the Minnesota governor’s race. Expect a recount.
California, perhaps, decided to offer equality a payback after Prop 8. They have elected former Governor Jerry Brown back into that office. He roundly beat anti-immigrant and former eBay CEO Meg Whitman. Brown will not challenge the federal court’s Prop 8 ruling. We’re still waiting the results of the Attorney General’s race there, but it looks like the Democrat, Kamala Harris, has a slim lead. Also in an important win for Democrats, Barbara Boxer beat former HP CEO Carly Fiorina.
In other California news, equality-advocate Gavin Newsom appears to have won the lieutenant governor’s race, and California now ties with Maryland as having seven openly-gay state legislators.
Colorado’s Senator, Michael Bennett has defeated the Tea Party’s anti-gay homophobe, Ken Buck. Also in Colorado, voters defeated an anti-abortion “personhood” amendment that would have established constitutional rights “at the beginning of biological development.”
In New Hampshire, pro-marriage equality Governor John Lynch, whom NOM spent millions trying to defeat, kept his seat.
Tea Party homophobe Joe Miller is losing in Alaska to write-in Republican Lisa Murkowski. Murkowski may be a Republican, but I’ll take her over Miller any day of the week.
What did I miss? Add it in the comments below, or email me. I’ll update this later today, and release “The Bad and The Ugly” list shortly.
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‘Significant and Imminent Threat’: Trump Gag Order Largely Upheld by Appeals Court
A Washington, D.C. federal appeals court Friday afternoon largely upheld and reinstated U.S. District Judge Tanya Chutkan’s very narrow and limited gag order on Donald Trump for his trial on charges related to his alleged efforts to subvert the U.S. Constitution and overturn the results of the 2020 election.
“We agree with the district court that some aspects of Mr. Trump’s public statements pose a significant and imminent threat to the fair and orderly adjudication of the ongoing criminal proceeding, warranting a speech-constraining protective order,” reads Judge Patricia Millett unanimous three-judge panel ruling, posted by Lawfare’s Anna Bower. “The district court’s order, however, sweeps in more protected speech than is necessary. For that reason, we affirm the district court’s order in part and vacate it in part.”
The judges upheld the gag order “to the extent it prohibits all parties and their counsel from making or directing others to make public statements about known or reasonably foreseeable witnesses concerning their potential participation in the investigation or in this criminal proceeding.”
They also upheld the gag order “to the extent it prohibits all parties and their counsel from making or directing others to make public statements about (1) counsel in the case other than the Special Counsel, (2) members of the court’s staff and counsel’s staffs, or (3) the family members of any counsel or staff member—if those statements are made with the intent to materially interfere with, or to cause others to materially interfere with, counsel’s or staff’s work in this criminal case, or with the knowledge that such interference is highly likely to result.”
The judges removed from the gag order “speech beyond those specified categories.”
“We do not allow such an order lightly,” the judges added. “But Mr. Trump is also an indicted criminal defendant, and he must stand trial in a courtroom under the same procedures that govern all other criminal defendants.”
Bower explains, “Chutkan’s order would have prohibited statements that refer to special counsel Jack Smith as a ‘thug’ or ‘deranged.’ But the appeals court order does not apply to speech about the special counsel himself.”
CBS News congressional correspondent Scott MacFarlane sums up the ruling: “Much of the gag order in Donald Trump’s 2020 election conspiracy criminal case in DC is *REINSTATED*.”
Peter Doocy Admits No ‘Concrete Evidence Joe Biden Personally Profited’ From Hunter’s Business
In a report focused on House Republicans’ plan to vote on a resolution to open an official impeachment inquiry of President Joe Biden, Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy told viewers there is no evidence of impeachable offenses.
“The House Oversight Committee has been at this for years, and they have so far not been able to provide any concrete evidence that Joe Biden personally profited from his son Hunter’s overseas business but they are going to try again with this impeachment inquiry set to start next week,” Doocy, who often criticizes President Biden in White House press briefings, said Friday on Fox News Business.
Other news outlets this week have also stressed Republicans have come up empty-handed.
The right-leaning news outlet The Hill, reporting on the resolution Thursday, noted Republicans’ current investigation “has struggled to connect President Biden to the activities of his son, and they’ve failed to prove their most salacious allegation — and the one that would be most key for impeachment: that the president accepted a bribe.”
One of the main pillars of Republicans’ allegations against President Biden, the “narrative that President Biden pushed Ukraine to fire its prosecutor to help his son, who served on the board of Ukrainian energy company Burimsa, has largely been refuted,” The Hill also reported.
“Republicans have engaged in wide-ranging inquiry into Mr. Biden for months,” The New York Times reported Tuesday, “hunting for evidence to back up their allegations that he corruptly profited from his family members’ overseas business dealings and accepted bribes. To date, they have failed to deliver compelling evidence to back up their boldest claims.”
Watch Doocy below or at this link.
Peter Doocy: “The House Oversight Committee has been at this for years, and they have so far not been able to provide any concrete evidence that Joe Biden personally profited from his son Hunter’s overseas business.” pic.twitter.com/a5N44hIRrQ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) December 8, 2023
Jobs Report Forces Fox News to Admit Biden Economy ‘A Lot Stronger Than Anybody Understands’
The monthly jobs report released Friday morning is being heralded as “robust,” “upbeat,” and “stronger than expected,” as unemployment again dropped to a near-50-year low (3.7%) while the economy added another 199,000 jobs.
“It’s the little engine that could, and this little locomotive keeps a chugging along…” declared professor of economics and public policy scholar Justin Wolfers.
“So the last three months have seen jobs growth at a very healthy average rate of +204k per month,” he added. “For context: Average monthly job growth from Jan 2000 to Dec 2019 was +87k.”
“If I had asked you a year ago to sketch what you thought a soft landing might look like,” he said, praising America’s post-COVID pandemic economy, “it’s likely you would have pretty much drawn the current economic data.”
On Thursday, Wolfers had discussed the incongruence between what economic data consistently shows about the strength of the U.S. economy, and what Americans are telling pollsters.
“There’s no question people are telling pollsters they’re miserable about the economy. But riddle me this,” he asked, “Why can’t we find evidence of this pessimism in anything other that public opinion polls? Every non-poll based indicator of confidence suggests folks are optimistic.”
Heather Long, The Washington Post economic columnist, offered this view in response to Friday’s jobs report.
“Step back for a minute and look at this US job market,” she wrote.
“4.7 million more jobs than pre-pandemic
Below 4% unemployment for two years
Wages growing faster than inflation
Women (ages 25 to 54) at an all-time high for labor force participation”
Even Fox News was forced to deliver positive comments while reporting on Friday’s monthly numbers.
“Overall you’ve got to look at this report as a big positive,” admitted pro-Trump Fox Business host Maria Bartiromo. “We’ve got more jobs created than expected.”
Speaking to the former chief economist of The White House National Economic Council under President Trump, Bartiromo said, “Joe LaVorgna, you’ve been saying this, the economy is a lot stronger than anybody understands.”
Watch below or at this link.
it’s time for my favorite Friday tradition — Maria Bartiromo having to cope with announcing another strong jobs report pic.twitter.com/bsOIQToEwe
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) December 8, 2023
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