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Veteran’s Day: Jim DeMint Is The One Percent Who Voted Against Veterans



Republican Senator Jim DeMint, as Rachel Maddow said Thursday evening, “has a frigging problem,” and is the one percent in the United State Senate who voted against a jobs bill for veterans. The Senate Thursday voted on the “Vow to Hire Heroes” bill, which offers a tax credit to businesses, helps vets get jobs, doesn’t add to the deficit, and, as Maddow proclaimed, it’s “the least-controversial bill ever,” that’s even “good for our souls.”

Senator Jim DeMint is the only Senator who voted against it, saying it was “inherently unfair,” not to veterans, but to America.

“We’re pandering to different political groups with programs that have proven to be ineffective,” DeMint said on the Senate floor, the Beaufort Gazette reported. “All Americans deserve the same opportunity to get hired. I cannot support this tax credit because I do not believe the government should privilege one American over another when it comes to work.”

So, exactly when should the government “privilege one American over another,” Senator? I’m finding it hard to think of a group more deserving, and a situation more necessary.

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Transcript via MSNBC:

>>> veterans day is tomorrow. which sort of makes this veterans week. and on this veterans day, veterans week, spare a particular thought for republican senator jim demint of south carolina. not because he’s a veteran. i don’t think that he is. but because rather jim demint apparently has a frigging problem. today on capitol hill there was a vote on a hiring bill for our nation’s veterans. right now our national unemployment rate’s about 9% for iraq and afghanistan veterans. it is 12.1%. which is both miserable and sort of astonishing because iraq and afghanistan veterans are a ferociously competent group of americans. they have spent the last decade doing incredibly difficult, complex, exhausting, tireless, underappreciated work. i’m not being romantic about this. i mean it in practical terms. this is an impressive, professional class of americans with a lot to offer. they really did do more before 9:00 a.m. than most of us did all day. and they did it all decade long, and they are still doing it. for us as a country our iraq and afghanistan vets are a huge asset. if you are hiring people at your company, you should be looking for them for hiring. that said, they have trouble in the job 345rk9 in part because while the people they’re competing against for jobs have been working here veterans have been working and great experience but they have been doing it out of sight and out of mind in, say, landlocked central asia. so they are this very impressive group. they are underperforming in the job market. and we know why. and oh, by the way, we do kind of owe them as a country. and so today the world’s least controversial bill came before the senate, the vow to hire heroes act of 2011. a tax credit for businesses to hire new veterans. congress is debating all sorts of different tax credits to hire people. this one is to hire veterans. and it does not even add to the deficit. they moved money around from other veterans programs to pay for this one. this is in the running for least cop troshl thing in washington. it is good for the economy. it is good for our souls quite frankly. it is practically helpful to people who need practical help in a way that also helps all the rest of us too because it is a jobs program. the vote on this thing today was 94-1. the bill passed 94-1. the 1 was senator jim demint. why is senator jim demint against this? is it some cockamamie jim demint tea party fetishistic states’ rights idea about gold bullion or something? no, not in this case. it wasn’t anything like this. jim demint’s reasoning for voting against this was that veterans don’t deserve it.

>> i cannot support this tax credit because i do not believe the government should privilege one american over another when it comes to work.

>> yeah, those greedy veterans, wanting all this special treatment. greedy veterans expecting everything to be handed to them. yeah, happy veterans day, senator demint. i would salute you, but the way i want you is not something that’s allowed on television. it almost makes me want to sit on my hands. the veterans bill, aside from the blistering astonishment that is jim demint, is an example of things sort of secretly actually getting done in d.c. right now. here’s another example. yesterday the fcc announced that the nation’s biggest cable companies will start offering high-speed internet service to low-income families for the reduced price of $9.95 a month. any family that has a kid who qualifies for the free school lunch program will be eligible to get broadband internet service that they otherwise probably would not be able to afford. this is a real concrete step. it is connecting the poorest americans to the 21st century economic backbone of our country. so this week alone, veterans jobs bill, check. minus jim demint. broadband internet for low-income families, check. here’s one more. putting people back to work building roads and bridges. check. maybe? yeah. one of the other secret things that took a giant step forward toward getting done this week was a long-term infrastructure bill to fund highway projects across the country. yesterday the senate environment and public works committee advanced the highway bill by a unanimous vote of 18-0. every single democrat and every single republican voted for this infrastructure bill. i feel like i’m jinxing it by even reporting on it. listen in the hearing room. this is a quick clip. listen to what it sounded like right after they took the vote in that committee yesterday. here’s what happened right afterwards until they turned the mikes off.

>> the bill as amended is reported favorably to the united states senate. my thanks to everyone. we stand adjourned.

>> okay.

>> oh, my.

>> we did it.

>> okay, we did it. oh, my. i think what we just heard democratic senator barbara boxer saying there before the mike was cut out was “oh, my god, we did it.” oh, my god, is this really happening? joining us is chris hayes, host of msnbc’s excellent new weekend show called “up with chris hayes.” chris, it’s great to see you.

>> it’s great to see you, rachel.

>> do i have the soft bigotry of low expectations? am i applauding things that —

>> you need to come in and rain on the parade. no, i thought the senate– i thought there was a sort of vestigial senatorial functionality that we saw in those two bills you mentioned. the fact that mcconnell put out a good press release on it. this is the kind of thing that as you said is non-controversial, it’s almost sxrunt pramt routine and pramtic. it’s the kind of thing that the senate and the house should be able to come together and do. and we have been in such a horribly dysfunctional knot since the 2010 mid-terms they ha haven’t been able to do it. i think there’s something about that and the bill getting out of the senate. the other part of the story, the highway bill, is the house has its own version of the highway bill which does not reconcile very well with the senate version of the highway bill and spends a lot less money and the house is really where the kind of stopping gap is right now. there are things you can get in the senate with the democratic majority and with the sort of vestigial kind of collegiality. it’s the house i think that’s the really worrisome roadblock right now.

>> that said, when we had just an infrastructure bill put forward by senator amy cloeb shar, who is not known for her partisan legislating at all, put forward with joe manchin, who is maybe one of the most conservative democrats, definitely one of the most conservative democrats in the senate last week, ben nelson and joe lieberman voted against it and republicans were able to successfully filibuster it. but now we’re able to see some more roads and bridges stuff move forward in another way. so why do we get to move forward on the highway bill and we don’t get to move forward on the one that’s attached to president obama’s jobs bill?

>> well, i think implied in your question is the fact that it is clearly the case that — it’s a little like groundhog day reporting on it, right? because every day the republicans come in and every day they want to block what the president is doing. in fact, the veterans bill had to be so non-controversial that it could pass 94-1. and that’s the threshold? you know? things can either pass 94-1, you’re naming a post office, you’re giving tax save togz veterans, or they can get blocked. it’s those two options. there’s nothing in the middle. there’s nothing in this current political terrain that can pass by a five vote margin or vix-vote margin or two-vote margin in the senate. because the habitual use of the filibuster and the political commitment on the part of the minority caucus to politically destroy the president in the run-up to the election is so strong it means going after everything the president has his name attached to.

>> even in that environment do you have a veterans day wish for senator demint?

>> veterans day wish for senator demint. i will say is this to senator demint. it was — he displayed a genuine fidelity to his cockamamie principles.

>> what principles? if he’d come one some crazy tenth amendment like gold standard, like we shouldn’t legally elect senators thing, fine. but veterans don’t deserve it? really, jim? really?

>> but here’s the thing. look, the argument that that part of the republican caucus is making and that is clearly taking over the republican caucus is that everything is distorti distortion. and so when you come to view every single thing the government does as distortion, as some sort of pure and natural state of the market, then it’s very easy to view a tax credit to hire veterans as a distortion, as something unnatural, as opposed to the thing that is unnatural, being the 12% unemployment rate of veterans themselves. and that exactly is the kind of through the looking glass perspective that i think we see broadly from the base of the republican party and the most ideological members, is that the crisis we are in right now, the crisis of joblessness, the crisis of unemployment and foreclosures and personal bankruptcies is the natural state and the interventions to change them and fix them is unnatural.

>> is unnatural and — is unnatural and should not even be evaluated on its merits because —

>> because it is ideologically offensive.

>> well, i will just say, jim, if anybody runs into jim demint at a veterans day parade, please tell him hi for me. chris hayes, host of “up with chris hayes,” which you really are doing great work. i knew you would, but you are doing great work. the show is so good.

>> it means so much to me.

>> thanks, chris, appreciate it. spinal tap still ahead. and rick perry’s amazing brain freeze. and what’s important about it. and what to do with that pesky 30-foot crack in your nuclear reactor, ohio. that’s all

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Pete Buttigieg Nails Trump for His Ugly Comments About Wounded Vets



During his Sunday morning appearance on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg called out Donald Trump over reports he told military leaders he didn’t want wounded vets to be seen by the public while he was president.

In a recent Atlantic profile of General Mark Milley, the retiring military office recounted the former president telling him “no one wants to see” wounded soldiers, with Milley adding he found Trump’s attitude to those serving their country “superficial, callous, and, at the deepest human level, repugnant.”

Buttigieg, who served in Afghanistan during his 8 years while in the Naval Reserve, was asked by CNN host Dana Bash about the former president’s apparent distaste for service members.

“I want to ask you about a new Atlantic profile that says that then President Trump complained to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley after an Army veteran who lost a leg in combat sang at an event at the Pentagon,” Bash prompted her guest. “Trump reportedly told Milley, ‘Why do you bring people like that here, no one wants to see that, the wounded.'”

“After that article came out, Trump attacked Milley on social media, kind of a rambling post, but suggested that milley deserved the death penalty. You’re a veteran– what’s your response?” she asked.

“It’s just the latest in a pattern of outrageous attacks on the people who keep the country safe,” the Biden administration official replied.

POLL: Should Trump be allowed to run for office?

After pointing to fellow vets who suffered horrific injuries, he added, “These are the kind of people that deserve respect and a hell of a lot more than that from every American, and definitely from every American president.”

“And the idea that an American president, the person to whom service members look at as a commander in chief, and the person who sets the tone for this entire country could think that way or act that way or talk that way about anyone in uniform, and certainly about those who put their bodies on the line and sacrificed in ways that most Americans will never understand, and I guess wounded veterans make president Trump feel uncomfortable.”

Watch below or at the link.



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‘Scared to Death’: Trump’s Prison Panic Admission Means He Knows He’s Doomed Says Legal Expert



Reacting to a report that Donald Trump has been quizzing his attorneys about what type of prison he likely will be sent to, former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner stated that is not only an indication that he knows he’s going to be convicted but also an admission of guilt.

Speaking with MSNBC host Jonathan Capehart, the attorney was asked about a recent Rolling Stone report about Trump’s prison panic.

As Rolling Stone reported, Trump asked if he’s “be sent to a ‘club fed’ style prison — a place that’s relatively comfortable, as far these things go — or a ‘bad’ prison? Would he serve out a sentence in a plush home confinement? Would government officials try to strip him of his lifetime Secret Service protections? What would they make him wear, if his enemies actually did ever get him in a cell — an unprecedented set of consequences for a former leader of the free world.”

POLL: Should Trump be allowed to run for office?

According to the attorney, Trump is revealing himself by asking for so many details.

“What does this tell you about Trump’s mindset?” host Capehart asked.

“It tells me he is scared to death” Kirschner quickly answered. “It tells me he has overwhelming consciousness of guilt because he knows what he did wrong and he knows he is about to be held accountable for his crimes. So it is not surprising that he is obsessing.”

“If he was confident that he would be completely exonerated, would he have to obsess about what his future time in prison might look like?” he suggested. “I think the last refuge for Donald Trump can be seen in a recent post where he urged the Republicans to defund essentially the prosecutions against him. which, to this prosecutor, Jonathan, smells a lot like an attempt to obstruct justice.”

Watch below or at the link.


Image via Shutterstock

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‘Vulgar and Lewd’: Trump Judge Cites Extremist Group to Allow Drag Show Ban



A federal judge in Texas known for a ruling that attempted to ban a widely-used abortion drug is citing an extremist anti-LGBTQ group in his ruling allowing a ban on drag shows to stay in place.

U.S. District Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk, a former attorney for an anti-LGBTQ conservative Christian legal organization, and a member of the Federalist Society, in his 26-page ruling dated Thursday cited the “About” page of Gays Against Groomers to claim, “it’s unclear how drag shows unmistakably communicate advocacy for LGBT rights.”

Judge Kacsmaryk, appointed by Donald Trump twice before finally assuming office in 2019, suggests the First Amendment does not provide for freedom of expression for drag shows, calls drag “sexualized conduct,” and says it is “more regulable” because “children are in the audience.”

READ MORE: ‘The Public Deserves to Know’: Abortion Pill Banning Judge Redacted Details About Millions of Dollars in His Stock Portfolio

Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern adds, “Kacsmaryk’s conclusion that drag is probably NOT protected by the First Amendment conflicts with decisions from Texas, Florida, Tennessee, and Montana which held that drag is constitutionally protected expression. It also bristles with undisguised hostility toward LGBTQ people.”

Calling the judge “a proud Christian nationalist who flatly refuses to apply binding Supreme Court precedent when it conflicts with his extremist far-right beliefs,” Stern at Slate writes that Kacsmaryk ruled drag “may be outlawed to protect ‘the sexual exploitation and abuse of children.’ In short, he concluded that drag fails to convey a message, while explaining all the reasons why he’s offended by the message it conveys.”

Stern does not let Kacsmaryk off the hook there.

“From almost any other judge, the ruling in Spectrum WT v. Wendler would be a shocking rejection of basic free speech principles; from Kacsmaryk, it’s par for the course. This is, after all, the judge who sought to ban medication abortion nationwide, restricted minors’ access to birth control, seize control over border policy to exclude asylum-seekers, and flouted recent precedent protecting LGBTQ+ equality,” Stern says.

READ MORE: Far-Right Judge Under Fire for Failing to Disclose Interviews on Civil Rights – but LGBTQ Community Had Warned Senators

“He is also poised to bankrupt Planned Parenthood by compelling them to pay a $1.8 billion penalty on truly ludicrous grounds. And he is not the only Trump-appointed judge substituting his reactionary beliefs for legal analysis. We have reached a point where these lawless decisions are not only predictable but inevitable, and they show no sign of stopping: Their authors are still just settling into a decadeslong service in the federal judiciary.”

West Texas A&M University President Walter V. Wendler penned the letter that sparked the lawsuit.

Titled, “A Harmless Drag Show? No Such Thing,” Wendler wrote: “I believe every human being is created in the image of God and, therefore, a person of dignity. Being created in God’s image is the basis of Natural Law. James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, prisoners of the culture of their time as are we, declared the Creator’s origin as the foundational fiber in the fabric of our nation as they breathed life into it. Does a drag show preserve a single thread of human dignity? I think not.”

Journalist Chris Geidner concludes, “It’s an extremely biased ruling by a judge who has established that he does not care about being overturned — even by the most conservative appeals court in the nation.”

READ MORE: ‘Corruption of the Highest Order’: Experts ‘Sickened’ at ‘Definitely Bought’ Clarence Thomas and His ‘Pay to Play’ Lifestyle



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