February 20th Democratic Caucus Guidelines

Observers

The following rules MUST be followed by guest observers at the precinct caucus:

  • Only eligible, registered caucus participants may participate on caucus matters or elections.
  • The Site Coordinator/Temporary Chair will ask that all guest observers be seated in an area other than what is reserved for eligible caucus participants, if there is room. Caucus participants are given first priority for space in the precinct location.
  • Guest observers must remain quiet and not become involved in caucus discussions once the caucus is called to order.
  • Eligible caucus participants are to be considered actively participating in the caucus from the time it is convened until it is adjourned. It is not appropriate for a reporter to interview a caucus participant while the caucus is in session.
  • Campaign staff and campaign volunteers who are observers will not be allowed to communicate, signal, or instruct the eligible caucus participants once the caucus is called to order by the Temporary Chair.
  • All facilities at the caucus have been reserved for caucus attendees and the Nevada State Democratic Party. The Site Coordinator/Temporary Chairs, as officers of the Democratic Party, have first right to these facilities.
  • In the event that there is broadcast equipment at a caucus site, it must be set up and used in a way that will not hinder or obstruct the participation of any caucus attendee.
  • In the event of violations of these rules, the Site Coordinator/Temporary Chairs may ask the disruptive person(s) to leave.

Campaigning and Other Activities at the Caucus

Persons appearing on behalf of candidates or issues not specifically mentioned in the agenda will not be offered an opportunity to speak during the caucus. However, they may speak individually with attendees prior to the 11:30 a.m. start time and pass out literature or collect signatures prior to the caucus being called to order.

  • No food is permitted at caucus locations. Individuals may bring water
  • Campaigns signs are NOT allowed to be posted inside any precinct caucus location or inside any caucus site. Also, campaigns signs are NOT allowed to be attached to any portion of the inside or outside of the location. This includes taping, gluing, nailing, posting, sticking, tacking, writing, etc. onto any bulletin board, wall, door, fence, lawn or other surface on the interior or exterior of caucus sites. Campaigns may not dig holes or drive stakes on the grounds of caucus sites.
  • Campaigns may NOT post signs or hand out stickers, due to possible assessment of damage charges by facilities.
  • Buttons or pins and literature are acceptable.
  • No campaigning activity by presidential campaigns is permitted inside the registration area of the caucus site.
  • Paraphernalia that obstructs views, causes a distraction (noise makers), or interrupts the caucus are prohibited on caucus sites.
  • Eligible caucus participants WILL BE allowed to wear campaign gear in support of their candidate.

Each campaign is responsible for the removal of any campaign materials they bring to the caucus or provide to supporters at the conclusion of the caucus.

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The Swinging Electorate

Despite formidable efforts to disenfranchise African Americans in 2012, a larger percentage of black voters than white voters turned out at the polls to assure Obama’s victory on Election Day.

Marc MorialBy 

It’s official: African Americans are the nation’s most important swing state.

Last summer, I predicted that the African American vote would tip the scales in the 2012 election of Barack Obama. My organization, the National Urban League, foresaw a continuation of a trend that proved to be a decisive factor in Obama’s 2008 campaign.

The Census Bureau has now confirmed our analysis. Not only did the 2012 black vote make the difference in several key swing states, including Florida, Pennsylvania, Virginia and the biggest prize of all, Ohio, but black voters turned out a higher rate than white voters.

Since 1996, black voter turnout rates have risen 13 percentage points, and the number of blacks who voted in 2012 rose by about 1.7 million over 2008. This is even more remarkable given that overall voting among eligible citizens declined last year.

This boost in turnout also demonstrates that, in the face of a widespread voter suppression campaign, a record number of blacks heeded the National Urban League’s call to “Occupy the Vote” — a campaign that reached 10 million people through traditional and social media, phone banking, and grassroots and community outreach. In fact, all Census divisions where voting rates of blacks exceeded those of whites included states that introduced major voter suppression tactics in the year leading up to the election.

While the National Urban League doesn’t endorse individual candidates, we do encourage civic engagement, and our affiliates have always played leading roles in voter registration drives. That’s why we are also pleased that African Americans registered in record numbers last year. The registration rate for blacks rose from 69.7 percent in 2008 to 73.1 percent in 2012 — the highest registration rate ever recorded.

In Ohio, where Obama won 96 percent of the African-American vote, the black registration rate was 74.4 percent. In North Carolina, a state he lost this time around, African-American registration increased from 71 percent in 2008 to 85 percent in 2012 with 80.2 percent of eligible black voters going to the polls, up from 68.1 percent four years ago.

The increase in black voter participation is a turning point for several reasons.

First, it’s clear that Mitt Romney would have eked out a victory in 2012 if voters had turned out at 2004 levels. White turnout was higher and black turnout was lower in that presidential election.

Second, due to an increase in overall minority voting, people of color will be wielding even more electoral clout in the coming years. According to the demographer William Frey, “by 2024, their vote will be essential to victory.”

Third, this demographic shift is prodding both major political parties to increase their outreach and appeal to minority voters and to reassess the impact their policies are having on those communities.

As the Associated Press put it, “The findings represent a tipping point for blacks, who for much of American history were disenfranchised and then effectively barred from voting until the passage of the Voting Rights Act in 1965.”

There’s no doubt that the opportunity to re-elect America’s first black president contributed to record black turnout last year. But, no matter who is on the ballot in 2014 and 2016, we must continue to exercise our voice and Occupy the Vote.


Marc Morial is the president and CEO of the National Urban League and the former mayor of New Orleans. http://www.nul.org
Distributed via OtherWords (OtherWords.org)

The Record — What Obama Has Accomplished!

Every now and again, the other side likes to claim President Obama doesn’t have a record to run on. They’re wrong. Here’s a taste of why:

(Just a couple of) the Obama Administration’s accomplishments:

The first bill President Obama signed was the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, to help women fight back when they don’t get equal pay for equal work.

His Recovery Act supported millions of jobs and helped to stave off a second Great Depression.

He pushed for and won middle-class tax cuts that benefitted every American worker, and saved the typical family $3,600 in taxes over the last four years.

President Obama rescued the auto industry, and now GM and Chrysler are healthier than they’ve ever been. The American auto industry has added nearly a quarter of a million jobs since June 2009 — and they most likely wouldn’t exist right now without President Obama’s leadership.

He doubled funding for Pell Grants, helping to make college more affordable for nearly 10 million families.

His student loan reform ended billions in subsidies to banks serving as middlemen and reinvested those savings directly into students.

The President established the American Opportunity Tax Credit, worth up to $10,000 over four years of college.

His Race to the Top Initiative helped spur nearly every state to raise academic standards.

His tax cuts, social-welfare programs, and economic policies lifted nearly 7 million Americans above the federal poverty line in 2010.

President Obama has signed 18 tax cuts for small businesses since taking office.

We’ve seen 5.2 million new private-sector jobs over the last 31 months.

The unemployment rate is at the lowest level since President Obama took office.

Health care reform — passed after decades of failed attempts by every previous President — provides affordable health coverage to every American and will lower premiums by an average of $2,000 per family by 2019.

Obamacare expanded access to lifesaving preventive care such as cancer screenings and immunizations with no out-of-pocket costs for 54 million Americans.

Obamacare ends insurance discrimination against the 129 million Americans with pre-existing conditions.

Because of Obamacare, over 3 million more young adults have health insurance today than would if the new law hadn’t passed.

The parents of over 17 million children with pre-existing conditions no longer have to worry that their children will be denied coverage.

President Obama has ordered the overhaul of federal government regulations to make them smarter, practical, and more efficient. Just a fraction of these commonsense initiatives will help save businesses $10 billion in the next five years alone.

His historic investments in clean energy have helped more than double the amount of electricity we obtain from wind and solar sources and helped increase biofuel production to its highest level in history.

President Obama is doubling fuel efficiency standards, which will save drivers more than $8,000 at the gas pump, not to mention lessen the impact of automobiles on our environment.

President Obama has taken unprecedented action to address climate change, reaching historic international agreements to curb carbon emissions, and taking action here at home to reduce carbon pollution from our vehicles and promote clean energy production.

He has taken historic action to protect our environment — signing one of the largest expansions of protected wilderness in a generation and putting in place standards to reduce toxic air pollution that will save thousands of lives.

President Obama fought for and won landmark Wall Street reform that reins in the abuses that led to the financial crisis and ends the era of taxpayer bailouts and “too big to fail.”

Wall Street reform created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the nation’s first federal agency focused solely on consumer financial protection — and the Bureau is already protecting families from unfair and abusive financial practices from Wall Street banks and shadowy corners of the financial industry.

As part of President Obama’s commitment to transparency, the White House has posted its visitor records online for the first time ever.

President Obama’s all-of-the-above approach to energy has helped cut the United States’ dependence on foreign oil to its lowest level in 20 years.

President Obama responsibly ended the war in Iraq.

He announced a plan to end the war in Afghanistan and transition security responsibility to the Afghan people.

President Obama sent the largest security assistance package to Israel in history and funded the Iron Dome system, which is protecting Israeli homes and schools from rocket attacks.

President Obama rallied the international community to implement the toughest sanctions on Iran in history.

Through the President’s historic increases in Veterans Affairs funding, he has expanded and improved healthcare and job training access for our returning veterans.

President Obama negotiated the New START Treaty with Russia to reduce the number of nuclear weapons in both countries. At the same time, he also secured commitments from dozens of other countries to lock down nuclear materials.

His administration naturalized 11,146 military service members as U.S. citizens in 2010; more than in any year since 1955.

President Obama set a bold new plan for the future of NASA space exploration, using the skill and ability of the private sector for short trips to the International Space Station, while building a new vehicle for exploration of distant space, and doing everything in his power to support the economy on Florida’s Space Coast.

President Obama recognizes that tourism is one of America’s largest economic engines; he’s worked to encourage international visitors to come here, maintaining our security while keeping millions of Americans in good, paying jobs.

He has affirmed his personal support of marriage equality, directed the Justice Department to stop defending DOMA in federal courts, and took the practical and compassionate step of extending hospital visitation rights to same-sex partners.

He fought for and won the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, allowing gay and lesbian members of the military to serve openly for the first time in history.

When Congress failed to fix our broken immigration system, his administration did everything in its power to improve it, streamlining the legal immigration process and announcing a policy that lifts the shadow of deportation from hard working young immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.

Oh, and he gave the order to send troops in after Osama Bin Laden — and has decimated al-Qaeda’s senior leadership.

But … if you listen to the REPUBLIBAN, President Obama has NO record to run on.  Their argument is nothing more than pure, unadulterated bull puckey

Early and Absentee Voting Dates

Here are some important early and absentee voting deadlines to remember for the General Election:

Absentee ballot excuse needed?  No

Absentee ballot available starting: October 17

Absentee ballot application deadline: October 30

Absentee ballots must be received by November 6

Early Voting Begins: October 20

Early Voting Ends: November 2

2012 General Election in-person voting:  NOVEMBER 6, 2012

Debating a Gish Galloping Etch-a-Sketch Performance Artist

“If you are a salesman and you see life and politics as about the sell, you adjust the sell every time to a different customer-base.” — Andrew Sullivan

Who was that last night at the debate with President Obama?  It kind of looked like it might have been former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. But, the words that came forth from that guy’s mouth didn’t sound anything like what he’s been saying over the last 18 months.  Was the debate stage yet another etch-a-sketch moment for Mr. Romney?  And if it was, what might we expect should he win the opportunity to walk through the doors of the White House to take up residence there?

Governor Romney has been saying, that is, up until last night that is, that he is on the same page as Congressman Ryan.  If that really is his stance, and I suspect that it is, America’s seniors and the middle class should take note of what that means for them.  And if you listened to Andrea Mitchell this morning. as she interviewed former Gov. Sununu, absolutely everything will be on the table for identifying spending cuts with which to balance out Romney’s tax cuts, medicare, medicaid, social security, home mortgage interest deductions, charitable deductions … everything!

Up until last night’s debate, Romney’s budget plan has been strikingly similar to Paul Ryan’s “Path to Poverty” budget which espouses some serious tax cuts for the top and what will most likely be deep cuts for the middle class.  But apparently, since Mr. Romney new he would have his largest audience to-date and figuring that “that” audience would have a large number of people who, up until now, hadn’t chosen to tune in to his rantings, that it was time to employ a “gish gallop” debate strategy … or, if you spent any time in the service, it’s a common technique known as just “baffling them with bullshit.”

The Urban Dictionary defines the Gish Gallop as follows:

Named for the debate tactic created by creationist shill Duane Gish, a Gish Gallop involves spewing so much bullshit in such a short span on that your opponent can’t address let alone counter all of it. To make matters worse a Gish Gallop will often have one or more ‘talking points’ that has a tiny core of truth to it, making the person rebutting it spend even more time debunking it in order to explain that, yes, it’s not totally false but the Galloper is distorting/misusing/misstating the actual situation. A true Gish Gallop generally has two traits.

  1. The factual and logical content of the Gish Gallop is pure bullshit and anybody knowledgeable and informed on the subject would recognize it as such almost instantly. That is, the Gish Gallop is designed to appeal to and deceive precisely those sorts of people who are most in need of honest factual education.
  2. The points are all ones that the Galloper either knows, or damn well should know, are totally bullshit. With the slimier users of the Gish Gallop, like Gish himself, its a near certainty that the points are chosen not just because the Galloper knows that they’re bullshit, but because the Galloper is deliberately trying to shovel as much bullshit into as small a space as possible in order to overwhelm his opponent with sheer volume and bamboozle any audience members with a facade of scholarly acumen and factual knowledge.

Again, up until last night, Mitt Romney touted both in speeches and on his campaign website, permanently extending the 2001-03 tax cuts, further cutting individual income tax rates, broadening the tax base by reducing tax preferences, eliminating taxation of investment income of most individual taxpayers, reducing the corporate income tax, eliminating the estate tax, and repealing the alternative minimum tax (AMT) and the taxes enacted in 2010’s health reform legislation.

If the above outline isn’t what what Romney has been stumping about, why or why would the Tax Policy Center (TPC) take the time to prepare a preliminary analysis of the Romney plan, an analysis based on information posted on Romney’s campaign website and a slew of email exchanges that have gone back and forth between TPC and Romney’s campaign policy advisors? Now, if Romney’s campaign policy advisors don’t speak for Romney, that opens an even bigger can of worms that brings his leadership skills into question.

Romney pushed his plan throughout the primary season and once he was officially named the GOP nominee, he announced his running mate … Paul Ryan, someon we’re all familiar with given his stance on economic issues. Romney has expounded on how much he likes how Ryan thinks, fiscally that is. Their budgets/plans are surprisingly similar. Both the Romney “plan” and Ryan budget would:

  • Turn Medicare into a voucher program,
  • Increase health care costs to seniors by thousands of dollars, and
  • Make arbitrary cuts to programs essential to middle class families, like education and clean, affordable energy.

They plan to all of do that, while at the same time, giving massive tax cuts to the wealthiest and protecting taxpayer subsidies to oil companies and hedge fund managers. But they’re not stopping there. They also plan on repealing health care reform and cutting over $1 trillion from Medicaid. By doing so, Governor Romney and Congressman Ryan would deny coverage to approximately 50 million Americans who currently have it, including low-income children, pregnant women, nursing home patients and people with disabilities.

Up until last night, this is what Romney supposedly espoused as compared to what we know that Rep. Paul Ryan promotes (because Ryan’s “Path to Poverty” is actually in writing and has been introduced in Congress):

I’m now sure who the decoy Romney was who showed up last night to debate President Obama. The policy ideas “decoy” Romney perpetrated on unknowing first time viewers bore no resemblance to what the “real” Romney has been stumping about on the campaign trail for 18 months. Call it yet another Etch-A-Sketch moment, call it a Gish Gallop strategy, call it masterful performance art, or just call it what it was … LIES. It’s all about the same.

At Last Night’s Debate: Romney Told 27 Myths In 38 Minutes

— By Igor Volsky at ThinkProgress

Pundits from both sides of the aisle have lauded Mitt Romney’s strong debate performance, praising his preparedness and ability to challenge President Obama’s policies and accomplishments. But Romney only accomplished this goal by repeatedly misleading viewers. He spoke for 38 minutes of the 90 minute debate and told at least 27 myths:

1) “[G]et us energy independent, North American energy independent. That creates about 4 million jobs”. Romney’s plan for “energy independence” actually relies heavily on a study that assumes the U.S. continues with fuel efficiency standards set by the Obama administration. For instance, he uses Citigroup research based off the assumption that “‘the United States will continue with strict fuel economy standards that will lower its oil demand.” Since he promises to undo the Obama administration’s new fuel efficiency standards, he would cut oil consumption savings of 2 million barrels per day by 2025.

2) “I don’t have a $5 trillion tax cut. I don’t have a tax cut of a scale that you’re talking about.” A Tax Policy Center analysis of Romney’s proposal for a 20 percent across-the-board tax cut in all federal income tax rates, eliminating the Alternative Minimum Tax, eliminating the estate tax and other tax reductions, would reduce federal revenue $480 billion in 2015. This amount to $5 trillion over the decade.

3) “My view is that we ought to provide tax relief to people in the middle class. But I’m not going to reduce the share of taxes paid by high-income people.” If Romney hopes to provide tax relief to the middle class, then his $5 trillion tax cut would add to the deficit. There are not enough deductions in the tax code that primarily benefit rich people to make his math work.

4) “My — my number-one principal is, there will be no tax cut that adds to the deficit. I want to underline that: no tax cut that adds to the deficit.” As the Tax Policy Center concluded, Romney’s plan can’t both exempt middle class families from tax cuts and remain revenue neutral. “He’s promised all these things and he can’t do them all. In order for him to cover the cost of his tax cut without adding to the deficit, he’d have to find a way to raise taxes on middle income people or people making less than $200,000 a year,” the Center found.

5) “I will not under any circumstances raise taxes on middle-income families. I will lower taxes on middle-income families. Now, you cite a study. There are six other studies that looked at the study you describe and say it’s completely wrong.” The studies Romney cites actuallyfurther prove that Romney would, in fact, have to raise taxes on the middle class if he were to keep his promise not to lose revenue with his tax rate reduction.

6) “I saw a study that came out today that said you’re going to raise taxes by $3,000 to $4,000 on middle-income families.” Romney is pointing to this study from the American Enterprise Institute. It actually found that rather than raise taxes to pay down the debt, the Obama administration’s policies — those contained directly in his budget — would reduce the share of taxes that go toward servicing the debt by $1,289.89 per taxpayer in the $100,000 to $200,000 range.

7) “And the reason is because small business pays that individual rate; 54 percent of America’s workers work in businesses that are taxed not at the corporate tax rate, but at the individual tax rate….97 percent of the businesses are not — not taxed at the 35 percent tax rate, they’re taxed at a lower rate. But those businesses that are in the last 3 percent of businesses happen to employ half — half of all the people who work in small business.” Far less than half of the people affected by the expiration of the upper income tax cuts get any of their income at all from a small businesses. And those people could very well be receiving speaking fees or book royalties, which qualify as “small business income” but don’t have a direct impact on job creation. It’s actually hard to find a small business who think that they will be hurt if the marginal tax rate on income earned above $250,000 per year is increased.

8) “Mr. President, all of the increase in natural gas and oil has happened on private land, not on government land. On government land, your administration has cut the number of permits and licenses in half.” Oil production from federal lands is higher, not lower: Production from federal lands is up slightly in 2011 when compared to 2007. And the oil and gas industry is sitting on 7,000 approved permits to drill, that it hasn’t begun exploring or developing.

9) “The president’s put it in place as much public debt — almost as much debt held by the public as all prior presidents combined.” This is not even close to being true. When Obama took office, the national debt stood at $10.626 trillion. Now the national debt is over $16 trillion. That $5.374 trillion increase is nowhere near as much debt as all the other presidents combined.

10) “That’s why the National Federation of Independent Businesses said your plan will kill 700,000 jobs. I don’t want to kill jobs in this environment.” That study, produced by a right-wing advocacy organizationdoesn’t analyze what Obama has actually proposed.

11) “What we do have right now is a setting where I’d like to bring money from overseas back to this country.” Romney’s plan to shift the country to a territorial tax system would allow corporations to do business and make profits overseas without ever being taxed on it in the United States. This encourages American companies to invest abroad and could cost the country up to 800,000 jobs.

12) “I would like to take the Medicaid dollars that go to states and say to a state, you’re going to get what you got last year, plus inflation, plus 1 percent, and then you’re going to manage your care for your poor in the way you think best.” Sending federal Medicaid funding to the states in the form of a block grant woud significantly reduce federal spending for Medicaid because the grant would not keep up with projected health care costs. A CBO estimate of a very similar proposal from Paul Ryan found that federal spending would be “35 percent lower in 2022 and 49 percent lower in 2030 than current projected federal spending” and as a result “states would face significant challenges in achieving sufficient cost savings through efficiencies to mitigate the loss of federal funding.” “To maintain current service levels in the Medicaid program, states would probably need to consider additional changes, such as reducing their spending on other programs or raising additional revenues,” the CBO found.

13) “I want to take that $716 billion you’ve cut and put it back into Medicare…. But the idea of cutting $716 billion from Medicare to be able to balance the additional cost of Obamacare is, in my opinion, a mistake. There’s that number again. Romney is claiming that Obamacare siphons off $716 billion from Medicare, to the detriment of beneficiaries. In actuality, that money is saved primarily through reducing over-payments to insurance companies under Medicare Advantage, not payments to beneficiaries. Paul Ryan’s budget plan keeps those same cuts, but directs them toward tax cuts for the rich and deficit reduction.

14) “What I support is no change for current retirees and near-retirees to Medicare.” Here is how Romney’s Medicare plan will affect current seniors: 1) by repealing Obamacare, the 16 million seniors receiving preventive benefits without deductibles or co-pays and are saving $3.9 billion on prescription drugs will see a cost increase, 2) “premium support” will increase premiums for existing beneficiaries as private insurers lure healthier seniors out of the traditional Medicare program, 3) Romney/Ryan would also lower Medicaid spending significantly beginning next year, shifting federal spending to states and beneficiaries, and increasing costs for the 9 million Medicare recipients who are dependent on Medicaid.

15) “Number two is for people coming along that are young, what I do to make sure that we can keep Medicare in place for them is to allow them either to choose the current Medicare program or a private plan. Their choice. They get to choose — and they’ll have at least two plans that will be entirely at no cost to them.” The Medicare program changes for everyone, even people who choose to remain in the traditional fee-for-service. Rather than relying on a guaranteed benefit, all beneficiaries will receive a premium support credit of $7,500 on average in 2023 to purchase coverage in traditional Medicare or private insurance. But that amount will only grow at a rate of GDP plus 1.5 percentage points and will not keep up with health care costs. So while the federal government will spend less on the program, seniors will pay more in premiums.

16) “And, by the way the idea came not even from Paul Ryan or — or Senator Wyden, who’s the co-author of the bill with — with Paul Ryan in the Senate, but also it came from Bill — Bill Clinton’s chief of staff.” Romney has rejected the Ryan/Wyden approach — which does not cap the growth of the “premium support” subsidy. Bill Clinton and his commission also voted down these changes to the Medicare program.

17) “Well, I would repeal and replace it. We’re not going to get rid of all regulation. You have to have regulation. And there are some parts of Dodd-Frank that make all the sense in the world.”Romney has previously called for full repeal of Dodd-Frank, a law whose specific purpose is to regulate banks. MF Global’s use of customer funds to pay for its own trading losses is just one bit of proof that the financial industry isn’t responsible enough to protect consumers without regulation.

18) “But I wouldn’t designate five banks as too big to fail and give them a blank check. That’s one of the unintended consequences of Dodd-Frank… We need to get rid of that provision because it’s killing regional and small banks. They’re getting hurt.” The law merely says that the biggest, systemically risky banks need to abide by more stringent regulations. If those banks fail, they will be unwound by a new process in the Dodd-Frank law that protects taxpayers from having to pony up for a bailout.

19) “And, unfortunately, when — when — when you look at Obamacare, the Congressional Budget Office has said it will cost $2,500 a year more than traditional insurance. So it’s adding to cost.” Obamacare will actually provide millions of families with tax credits to make health care more affordable.

20) “[I]t puts in place an unelected board that’s going to tell people ultimately what kind of treatments they can have. I don’t like that idea.” The Board, or IPAB is tasked with making binding recommendations to Congress for lowering health care spending, should Medicare costs exceed a target growth rate. Congress can accept the savings proposal or implement its own ideas through a super majority. The panel’s plan will modify payments to providers but it cannot “include any recommendation to ration health care, raise revenues or Medicare beneficiary premiums…increase Medicare beneficiary cost-sharing (including deductibles, coinsurance, and co- payments), or otherwise restrict benefits or modify eligibility criteria” (Section 3403 of the ACA). Relying on health care experts rather than politicians to control health care costs has previously attracted bipartisan support and even Ryan himself proposed two IPAB-like structures in a 2009 health plan.

21) “Right now, the CBO says up to 20 million people will lose their insurance as Obamacare goes into effect next year. And likewise, a study by McKinsey and Company of American businesses said 30 percent of them are anticipating dropping people from coverage.” The Affordable Care Act would actually expand health care coverage to 30 million Americans, despite Romney fear mongering. According to CBO director Douglas Elmendorf, 3 million or less people would leave employer-sponsored health insurance coverage as a result of the law.

22) “I like the way we did it [health care] in Massachusetts…What were some differences? We didn’t raise taxes.” Romney raised fees, but he can claim that he didn’t increase taxes because the federal government funded almost half of his reforms.

23) “It’s why Republicans said, do not do this, and the Republicans had — had the plan. They put a plan out. They put out a plan, a bipartisan plan. It was swept aside.” The Affordable Care Act incorporates many Republican ideas including the individual mandate, state-based health care exchanges, high-risk insurance pools, and modified provisions that allow insurers to sell policies in multiple states. Republicans never offered a united bipartisan alternative.

24) “Preexisting conditions are covered under my plan.” Only people who are continuously insured would not be discriminated against because they suffer from pre-existing conditions. This protection would not be extended to people who are currently uninsured.

25) “In one year, you provided $90 billion in breaks to the green energy world. Now, I like green energy as well, but that’s about 50 years’ worth of what oil and gas receives.” The $90 billion was given out over several years and included loans, loan guarantees and grants through the American Recovery Act. $23 billion of the $90 billion “went toward “clean coal,” energy-efficiency upgrades, updating the electricity grid and environmental clean-up, largely for old nuclear weapons sites.”

26) “I think about half of [the green firms Obama invested in], of the ones have been invested in have gone out of business. A number of them happened to be owned by people who were contributors to your campaigns.” As of late last year, only “three out of the 26 recipients of 1705 loan guarantees have filed for bankruptcy, with losses estimated at just over $600 million.”

27) “If the president’s reelected you’ll see dramatic cuts to our military.” Romney is referring to the sequester, which his running mate Paul Ryan supported. Obama opposes the military cuts and has asked Congress to formulate a balanced approach that would avoid the trigger.

UPDATE

— Romney has now admitted that number 26 was not true.


This material [article] was created by the Center for American Progress Action Fund. It was created for the Progress Report, the daily e-mail publication of the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Click here to subscribe.

BREAKING: Romney Campaign Caves After Being Called Out For Again Disregarding the Latino Community

For Immediate Release

July 6, 2012

Romney Declined Invitation To Address The Largest Latino Civil Rights And Advocacy Group In The Country; Caves After Being Called Out Over Repeatedly Disrespecting Latinos

Las Vegas, NV – We’ll bet you $10,000 this isn’t a coincidence.  After members of the Latino community held a press conference this morning calling out corporate layoff specialist Mitt Romney for once again disrespecting Latino families by declining an invitation to address the largest Latino civil rights and advocacy group in the nation, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported this afternoon that Romney has caved to pressure and is now sending a surrogate to the conference.  We’re guessing Romney saying he would veto the DREAM Act – he even called it a “handout” – won’t be in the surrogate’s talking points.   

“The fact Mitt Romney caved and agreed to send a surrogate to the conference only after he was called out over again disrespecting the Latino community only further highlights how out-of-touch he is with Latino families,” said Nevada State Democratic Party spokesperson Zach Hudson.  “Caving to pressure will not change Mitt Romney’s record of laying off workers and shipping their jobs overseas, his plans to cut education, or his opposition to the DREAM Act and comprehensive immigration reform.  Nevada’s Latino community has a clear choice in this election between President Obama, who wants to move our country forward by creating jobs, working with Congress to pass immigration reform, and increasing funding for education, and Mitt Romney, who wants to take us back to the same failed pro-Wall Street, anti-middle class policies that have devastated Nevada families.”

Even Republicans Are Dissing Appointed-Senator Heller

NEW YORK TIMES: DEAN HELLER’S PLAN TO END MEDICARE PANNED BY HIS OWN REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES

Republican Candidates From Coast To Coast Agree That
Heller/Ryan Budget Would Devastate Seniors

New TV Ad From MT GOP Senate Candidate Rehberg:
“Rehberg Refused To Support A Republican Budget Plan That Could Harm
The Medicare Programs So Many Of Montana’s Seniors Rely On”
Op-Ed from MA Senator Scott Brown on Heller/Ryan Plan:
“The Elderly Will Be Forced To Pay Ever Higher Deductibles And Co-Pays”

Las Vegas – Today, the Nevada State Democratic Party is criticizing the Dean Heller plan to end Medicare as we know by using unlikely sources – his own Republican colleagues.  A recent New York Times article points out that Republican candidates from coast to coast are rushing to distance themselves from Heller’s plan to end Medicare.

Republican Montana Senate candidate Dennis Rehberg released a television ad, paid for by the National Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee and the Montana Republican Party.  The ad states that “Rehberg refused to support a Republican budget plan that could harm the Medicare programs so many of Montana’s seniors rely on.”  (Yea, Rehberg, the same guy who voted against returning Veterans Benefits) 

Republican Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown wrote an opinion piece for Politico.com to explain why the Heller plan was unacceptable to him.  Brown wrote, “I fear that as health inflation rises, the cost of private plans will outgrow the government premium support — and the elderly will be forced to pay ever higher deductibles and co-pays.  Protecting those who have been counting on the current system their entire adult lives should be the key principle of reform.”

And in 2011, Republican Congressman David McKinley told a reporter that “My home state of West Virginia has the highest percentage of Medicare beneficiaries in the country, and I cannot support a plan that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has determined would nearly double out-of-pocket healthcare costs for future retirees.”

“Democrats and Republicans don’t agree on much these days, but both sides now concur that Senator Dean Heller’s scheme to end Medicare by turning the program over to profit-hungry insurance companies would be devastating for seniors across the country,” said Zach Hudson, Nevada State Democratic Party spokesman.  “Pretty soon, the only allies Senator Heller will have are the Wall Street banks and profit-hungry insurance companies he wants to turn Social Security and Medicare over to.”

New York Times: Republican Budget Plan Comes Under Fire From Unlikely Source: G.O.P. Candidates

JONATHAN WEISMAN
June 22, 2012
http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/22/republican-budget-plan-under-fire-from-unlikely-source-g-o-p-candidates/

Republican leaders in Congress had hoped to lay out big plans for 2013, then run for election in November united around that vision. But the vision itself is coming under attack from an unlikely and possibly potent source: Republican candidates.

Republicans wishing to assert their political independence in tough races have picked up Democratic talking points against the House-passed budget plan written by Representative Paul D. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, especially the budget’s plan for Medicare.

This week, the Montana Republican Party began broadcasting advertisements on behalf of Representative Denny Rehberg, who is running for the Senate, touting his independence: “Rehberg refused to support a Republican budget plan that could harm the Medicare programs so many of Montana’s seniors rely on.”

The National Republican Senatorial Committee transferred $50,000 to the Montana state party in April and May, according to campaign finance documents.

Mr. Rehberg did indeed vote against the Republican budget in March, one of only 10 Republicans to do so. Another no vote belonged to Representative David McKinley, a freshman who justified his vote to his constituents in explicit terms. A glossy mailer explained to West Virginians that “the plan would privatize Medicare for future retirees, raise the retirement age and keep in place the Medicare cuts included in last year’s health care bill. The Congressional Budget Office determined the plan would nearly double out-of-pocket healthcare costs for future retirees.”

That amounts to a double-whammy for other Republicans who voted for the Ryan plan. It picks up Democratic language on privatization, a word Republican leaders reject, and it makes a point that Republicans and their supporters fail to note when they attack Democrats for Medicare spending cuts in the 2010 health care law. The same cuts they are blasting in some of their most potent attack ads are retained in the Ryan plan they voted on, but are used for deficit reduction, not health insurance subsidies.

Mr. Ryan, the chairman of the House Budget Committee, stays away from the word “privatization,” instead calling his Medicare plan “premium support.” Under it, federal spending on Medicare would be capped. Future retirees would be offered a menu of private insurance plans and traditional Medicare, and would be offered an annual subsidy to help pay for the insurance they choose.

Senator Scott P. Brown of Massachusetts, another Republican asserting his political independence as he runs for re-election, wrote an opinion piece for Politico.com to explain why that was unacceptable to him: “I fear that as health inflation rises, the cost of private plans will outgrow the government premium support — and the elderly will be forced to pay ever higher deductibles and co-pays,” he wrote. “Protecting those who have been counting on the current system their entire adult lives should be the key principle of reform.”

Such attacks could complicate Mr. Ryan’s vision of a united Republican Party running on his transformative vision for federal entitlements, claiming a mandate, then carrying out his plan with a Republican in the White House. It also raises questions about the future of the Ryan plan.

Paul Lindsay, a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee, made it clear the party has another issue to run on: health care.

“Democrats should be more concerned with the unanimous opinion of House Republicans and a vast majority of Americans who believe Obamacare is raising health care costs and hurting the ability of small businesses to hire,” he said.

Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, the House majority leader, said in a recent interview that much of the Republican budget plan could be done if the party takes control of the White House and the Senate through “reconciliation,” a parliamentary process that would thwart a Democratic filibuster and give the party the chance to pass its plans with a simple Senate majority.

But that simple majority counts on victories this fall by Mr. Rehberg in Montana and Mr. Brown in Massachusetts.

Background:

Rep. David McKinley: “I Cannot Support A Plan That The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Has Determined Would Nearly Double Out-Of-Pocket Healthcare Costs For Future Retirees.” In an April 2011 statement to Slate regarding his vote against the original Ryan Budget plan, Rep. David McKinley, R-WV, said, “My home state of West Virginia has the highest percentage of Medicare beneficiaries in the country, and I cannot support a plan that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has determined would nearly double out-of-pocket healthcare costs for future retirees. Unfortunately, Medicare is on a path to bankruptcy unless action is taken. However, I am not convinced that such a dramatic overhaul of benefits for future retirees is necessary to save the program.” [Slate, 4/19/11]

Thanks!

I want to thank all of you for your help in getting my name and literature out to all your voters.  I got past the primary by coming in in the top two out the five that ran.  I got 25% of the votes; Dave Cook (currently on the board & only used robocalls for his campaign) got 30%,  and the other three contenders split the rest of the votes.  The other current board member (Fralick) lost her bid to remain, too.  Of the 5 people who ran, Cook has the weakest credentials and history on that board, so, with your help, we’ll beat him in November.

Even though Washoe County had a low turnout, I came in first in Washoe and in Pershing County. The rest of the northern rurals had much higher turnouts than Washoe, and Cook beat me by a few votes in most of them.  Did you guys in Washoe and Pershing do something special to get more of your Dems to turn out to vote in the primary? I’d sure like to know what magic worked in your county.

I will be coming to visit you in July and August to get your help and advice on how we can work together to win in November.  In all 11 counties, I’m contacting the teachers/other school employee unions, retired teachers, law enforcement and other unions, retired state employees, chambers of commerce, school boards, school districts’ leadership in each county to meet the leaders and see what they think about education in their county.  Hopefully some of them will pitch in on the campaign, either with endorsements, feet on the ground or with financial contributions.

I’ll be in touch soon to make some appointments to talk with you and I’ll be attending some Dem meetings and events this summer.  I’d sure appreciate it if you let me know of any important events in your county that I should be involved in—candidate forums, community meetings/events, picnics, parades, etc.  I’ll get them on my calendar and show up.

Thanks again for your support.  I’ll see you soon,

Donna Clontz
Candidate for Nevada State Board of Education
facebook.com/clontz4nvedu
info@donnaclontz.com