Democratic Club of Leisure World
September 4, 2023
“Upcoming Club events” on top;
Celebrate Labor Day and news on bottom
Aruna is coming to our September meeting: The Democratic Club is proud to announce that MD Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller will kick-off the 2023-2024 season of events. She will be at the Clubhouse 2 Auditorium at 7pm on September 12. Also, she will answer questions from the audience. (Note: This date and program is in lieu of our Sept. 7 meeting. Also, the venue is the CH 2 Auditorium, which is a departure from our normal location.
Ms. Miller, who was born in India, lived most of her adult life in Montgomery County and served in the General Assembly. She and Governor Moore have moved Maryland to the forefront of progressive governing in the United States, including innovative programs addressing climate change, hate crimes, income inequality, racial equity and much more.
If you wish to join via zoom, a link will be in the “Donkey Dispatch” by the end of this week.
“Winning Wednesdays” resume on the second Wednesday (September 13th) and continue on the 4th Wednesday (9/27) of every month. Please note this new time and location: From 1-3 pm in the Norbeck Room, Clubhouse 2. Join us as we write postcards, letters, emails and texts to neighboring Virginia, which holds its state legislative races November 7.
We write for voter registration, education and turnout. The program will continue on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays until the end of 2023. There are many voters who need to be reached prior to next year’s presidential election which, as most commentators say, will be the most important election of our lifetime.
News for Labor Day
Many of the benefits we take for granted today were won for us over generations by organized labor. Minimum wage laws, number of hours in a workday, rules against child labor, health care, medical assistance for senior citizens, disability compensation, unemployment benefits, paid holidays, severance pay, and social security have all been won by union representatives who lobbied, legislated, fought, and even died to obtain these rights now guaranteed all Americans by law.
The history of the labor movement is about how working people and their unions achieved these rights which have improved the quality of our lives. (Labor Folklore)
MD Teachers organize: Two new public employee unions had extra cause to celebrate this Labor Day weekend. The full-time faculties at Howard Community College and Frederick Community College are the first to organize in Maryland after the General Assembly passed a collective bargaining bill in 2021, over the veto of former Gov. Larry Hogan (R). On Wednesday, the faculty members were recognized as members of AFT-Maryland.
The American Federation of Teachers Maryland now represents about 18,000 employees across the state. The community colleges are among 54 new units organized this year by the AFT, the nation’s largest higher education union. Its total membership is now at a record high of 1.72 million, union leaders said. (Maryland Matters)
When is too much too much? 70 years ago, the average CEO made about 20 times what the average worker in this country did. Just a few days ago, we put out our annual Executive Paywatch report. Any guesses what it is today? 272 times. A CEO makes 272 times what the average worker does. Let me ask every person in this room: Is that because they work 272 times harder than we do? (AFL-CIO Pres. Schuler)
CEO-to-worker pay ratio in 1965: 20-1 CEO-to-worker pay ratio in 1989: 61-1. Corporations and CEOs refuse to stop consolidating wealth and power. This is why thousands of workers across industries are striking, or planning to strike. (Former Labor Sec. Reich)
Wretched excess (con’t.): Does it make sense to anyone in this room…that Jeff Bezos makes in seven seconds what an Amazon warehouse worker makes in a year? That he has enough money to rocket himself into space…while half this country lives paycheck to paycheck? (Former Labor Secy. Reich)
Bidenomics: The average billionaire in America pays 8% in federal taxes. Teachers and firefighters pay more than that. That’s why I proposed a minimum tax for billionaires. Republicans are against it, but I’m going to keep fighting for it. (Pres. Biden)
Making corporations act responsibly: The National Labor Relations Board issued new rules Friday that will make it easier for workers to form unions—and much more difficult for companies to stop them. If a majority of workers ask a company to recognize their union, the company must now immediately recognize the union or petition for a union election. (AFL-CIO)
Corporate crime: Starbucks fired 150 pro-union baristas and closed a dozen unionized shops. Chipotle shuttered a store in Maine when workers tried to unionize. Amazon spent $14.2 million on anti-union consultants in 2022 to stifle organizing. Common theme: they’re terrified of worker power. (Frm. Sec’y. Reich)
Support a living wage: This year, Maryland raised its statewide minimum wage to $13.25 an hour—but the minimum wage for tipped employees has remained stuck at $3.63 for almost a decade. If passed, a proposed bill would raise it to $4 and then to $8 by July of next year, followed by annual $2 increases through 2028. (Maryland Matters)
More Bidenomics: “Half of US states were experiencing record-low unemployment — or very close to it — in June, underscoring the strength of the nation’s labor market,” Bloomberg reports.
And in Maryland
Maryland man among Georgia defendants: At the end of a historic week at the Fulton County jailhouse, the criminal case against former President Donald Trump and his 18 allies also accused of subverting Georgia’s 2020 presidential election is just beginning. Harrison Floyd, a Maryland man who was director of Black Voices for Trump, was the only defendant who remained in jail when booked (due to prior offenses). (Maryland Matters)
Gov. Moore recently signed into law the Child Victims Act, which would remove the civil statute of limitations for child sexual abuse lawsuits and allow survivors to file lawsuits regardless of when their abuse happened. (The Baltimore Sun)
MD Worker Friendly: Maryland ranks as one of the best states for workers, but there is still room for improvement, according to an annual ranking from Oxfam, a global organization focused on inequality and poverty. Maryland ranked 14th overall in the 2023 Best States to Work Index. California ranked first; North Carolina ranked last.
Oxfam’s index takes into account worker-friendly policies in three areas: wages, worker protections and the right to organize. Maryland has improved its standing in the index in recent years, rising from a 17th place showing in 2020. (Maryland Matters)
Beltway/270 update: The Moore-Miller administration announced its intention to seek federal funding to “address mobility and access challenges along the American Legion Bridge, I-495 and I-270 to improve transit, multimodal access and spur inclusive economic growth. The project would reconstruct the American Legion Bridge, and would include improvements for bikers and pedestrians including a path across the new bridge.” For more info go to the MD DOT website. (MoCo360)
Aug 8, 2023
“Upcoming Club events” on top;
News and humor on the bottom
Club’s Annual Summer Social, August 17, 4-6 pm, Maryland Room of Clubhouse 1: Get set for a professional DJ, karaoke, dancing, refreshments and much more. Bring a friend. Whether they are a member or not, they are welcome to our party.
Aruna is coming to our September meeting: Mark your calendars now for this super start for our 2023-2024 series of programs! The Democratic Club is proud to announce that Lt. Gov. Aruna Miller will kick-off the 2023-2024 season of events. Our club proudly supported the Moore/Miller ticket last November. The slate won by a landslide with 64.5% of the vote. She will be at the Clubhouse 2 Auditorium at 7pm on September 12. Also, she will answer questions from the audience.
“Winning Wednesdays” resume on the second Wednesday (September 13th) and continue on the 4th Wednesday (9/27) of every month. Please note this new time and location: From 1-3 pm in the Norbeck Room, Clubhouse 2. Join us as we write postcards, letters, emails and texts to neighboring Virginia, which holds its state legislative races November 7. We aim at voter registration, education and turnout. The program will continue on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays until the end of 2023. There are many voters who need to be reached prior to next year’s presidential election.
Strength in collective action: Support for unions by the public is at 71%, the highest since the early 1950’s. (CNN)
MD teacher shortage: The teacher shortage remains, though better than last year. Teachers around the state and nation struggled to teach in partially staffed school buildings last school year. To fill the gaps, Maryland school districts offered bonuses, raised salaries, held dozens of job fairs and tried improving work culture to keep the they have and hire new ones. Bigger school systems still found themselves with hundreds of teacher vacancies this summer, but are reporting improvements. (Kristen Griffith/The Baltimore Banner)
Fact: 10,000 Americans turning 65 each day (Alliance for Retired Americans)
Reminder: Behind every “self-made” billionaire is inherited wealth, government subsidies, tax loopholes, and labor exploitation. (Former Labor Secretary)
Helping youth: Amid recent alarm over the post-pandemic youth mental health crisis facing Montgomery County and beyond, one beacon of help is gaining traction with young residents—the 988 helpline’s text function. Since the helpline’s launch last year, experts say Maryland has seen a tenfold increase in text interactions among youth seeking support in dealing with everything from relationship breakups to suicidal ideation. (MoCo 360)
Humor Republicans would like to ban
“I used to call him a pig but at least a pig has bacon.” — Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), speaking about Donald Trump on Twitter/X.
“Paul Singer sets record by catching 200 pound Supreme Court Justice”: ALASKA (The Borowitz Report)—The billionaire Paul Singer set a sport-fishing record by catching a Supreme Court Justice who weighed in at approximately two hundred pounds. The Justice, who was estimated to measure over sixty inches, became Singer’s catch during a luxury fishing trip to Alaska in 2008.
“Clarence Thomas’s RV stranded after engine runs out of caviar”: MADILL, OKLAHOMA (The Borowitz Report)—Clarence and Ginni Thomas became stranded over the weekend after the engine of their quarter-million-dollar recreational vehicle suddenly ran out of caviar. The R.V. was passing through Madill, Oklahoma, when the Thomases made the unfortunate discovery.
After their attempt to buy enough caviar in Marshall County for their beluga-powered motor home proved fruitless, the couple was forced to reach out to their roster of super-donor friends for a new shipment of roe. Ginni Thomas said that the caviar mishap had ruined their summer vacation. “After a grueling year as a Supreme Court Justice, this was the last thing I needed,” she said.
“Half of all GOP voters wish party would nominate some other criminal rather than Trump”: WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Although Donald J. Trump holds a commanding lead over the rest of the Republican Presidential field, approximately half of all G.O.P. voters wish that their party would choose a different criminal, a new poll indicates. “No disrespect to Donald Trump, who has been an amazing perpetrator,”
Carol Foyler, a poll respondent who lives in Tempe, Arizona, said. “But it would be great to see a fresh crook in there.” “When he was President, Trump committed crimes at an incredible rate,” Tracy Klugian, who resides in Columbus, Ohio, said. “But he’s older now, and I worry that he won’t be able to keep up that pace.”
“Don’t get me wrong, Donald Trump deserves major credit for all the laws he’s broken,” Harland Dorrinson, who lives in Springfield, Missouri, said. “But it’s time to pass the torch to a new generation of felons.”
Democratic Club of Leisure World
May 25, 2023
Upcoming Club events above;
Other news below.
Monthly: The Legislative Advocacy Committee meets via zoom. To join contact Barbara Levin at email@example.com.
In other news:
From Jamie: “My doctors declared me cancer-free and ready-to-rock.”
Powerful words from our governor: “Our history is our power. And right now across the country, we are seeing an attempt to hollow out our future by ensuring that anyone who has ever been a part of the American story is wiped away.
“A threat to any history is a threat to all history.”
More Moore: Gov. Moore on Maryland’s new gun control law: “We don’t need guns in elementary schools. We don’t need them in nursing homes.”
Good day sunshine: “A good day today in America. We’re in this together.” (Commentator Joyce Vance on Trump verdict and Rep. Santos charges)
The Washington Post’s bogus polling: “Getting a lot of questions about the ABC News/WaPo poll. Thoughts:
– it’s early, stick to the averages, never base any analysis off one poll, look for trends over time/across polls. This poll had a lot of problems.
– No chance Trump is leading w/youth, Biden w/elderly
– move on” (pollster Simon Rosenberg, who correctly predicted “no red wave” in 2022)
Additional critique about same poll: “Of course Trump can win again (if nominated). Obviously. More likely than not, another close election. But you really shouldn’t be updating your beliefs much in either direction based on a poll 18 months ahead of the election.” (Nate Silver of 538.com)
eBay workers demand a union, but company fights them: In March, workers at eBay-owned TCGplayer organized with Communications Workers of America (CWA) Local 1123. They became the first eBay workers to unionize in the United States. These workers help bring popular games like Magic: the Gathering and Pokémon into homes across the world. Since the union election, management has taken several blatant anti-union actions. It fired the worker who organized the union and has filed multiple appeals to throw out the election results. TCGplayer management also began disciplining workers for minor infractions that were not previously enforced, unilaterally changing working conditions and refusing to respond to the union’s requests. (AFL-CIO)
Florida is such a mess: “NAACP issues travel warning in Florida: the state ‘has become hostile to Black Americans’!” (commentator Maya Wiley)
NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—Capping several quarters of robust profit growth, Ginni Thomas has announced that she will be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
Investors are expected to snap up shares in Thomas, who is believed to be the first spouse of a Supreme Court Justice also to be a major corporation. Harland Dorrinson, an analyst with Morgan Stanley, rated Thomas as a “strong buy,” telling CNBC, “I’m urging institutional investors to get out of the banking sector and into Ginni. Unlike the banks, Ginni doesn’t have to disclose where her revenue comes from.” He said that Mrs. Thomas’s listing on the N.Y.S.E. was a “cause for celebration” for all investors. “Billionaires have been buying and selling Ginni Thomas for years,” he said. “This will make it possible for smaller investors to get in on the action.” (The New Yorker)
An addition to the Kevin McCarthy Hall of Shame: House Majority Leader Steve Scalise, who was shot during a mass shooting at the 2017 Congressional Baseball Game, asked if he cares about what motivates mass shooters: “Not really … This is not a moment for politics. It should be a time for prayer.”
Moms demand action against guns: Wear Orange on Saturday, June 3. Montgomery County Moms Demand Action holds a “Wear Orange 2023” action. They will gather as a local group to honor gun violence survivors and rededicate to the work of preventing gun violence. After the meeting is a clean up of a local park. As part of the event, we’ll be holding a donation drive to support our partner, the Montgomery County Family Justice Center (FJC). FJC is an organization that promotes safety, wellness and healing for victims of intimate partner domestic violence in our county. Please bring donations of toiletries (full size shampoo, conditioner, soap or shower gel, lotion, toothbrushes, and toothpaste) that they will make available to victims’ families. The Montgomery County Wear Orange Picnic is 10 – 1:00 PM at Johnson’s Local Park, 18000 Washington Grove Lane, Gaithersburg.
Democratic Club of Leisure World
May 11, 2023
Thursday, May 11, Legislative Town Hall, 7pm in CH 1, Crystal Ballroom: The Annapolis delegation, chaired by State Senator Ben Kramer, will be our guests in Clubhouse 1. State Senator Kramer will be joined by Delegates Crutchfield, Stewart and Cullison.
If you cannot attend in person, here’s the zoom registration link for the meeting, where you also can posting your questions: bit.ly/dclw-05-11
Bills that passed include a crackdown on spam calls, making prescription drugs affordable, cleaning up the environment, combating hate crimes, and much more. Non-members, as always, are welcome, so bring a friend.
At the 7 pm start of the meeting Club members will elect a new Board for 2023-2024. Only dues-paying members can vote. The doors will open at 6:15 pm so you can register to vote. The slate recommended by the Nominations and Elections Committee, chaired by Karen Brooks, is in the Democratic Club article in the May 5 Leisure World News.
Yes, we will say “hello and goodbye” to our friend, Sen. Ben Cardin, June 8, 7pm, Crystal Ballroom: We are looking forward to his thoughts on his past 50 years of public service, the future of the Senate, the primary for his Democratic replacement, and a lively Q&A session. We also will swear in a new Board.
April 9, 2023
“Upcoming Club events” on top;
“In the news” and “Humor” on bottom.
Thursday, April 13, 7pm in Clubhouse 1, Crystal Ballroom: “Teachers Leaving Profession … Books Banned … Schools Under Assault by Politicians … Arm Teachers With Guns”. Come hear Dr. Lorretta Johnson, American Federation of Teachers Secretary-Treasurer Emeritus, discusses “Right Wing Attacks on Education, Teachers and Unions.” You may also participate and submit questions via Zoom. Register at: bit.ly/dclw-04-13
The club’s Nominations & Elections Committee will reveal its slate for the Board’s May elections for 2023-24.
Every Friday, 11 am, while Annapolis is in session: The Legislative Advocacy Committee meets via zoom. Join our group and become an effective advocate on crucial issues. Contact Barbara Levin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday, May 11, 7pm in CH 1, Crystal Ballroom: “Annual Report from Annapolis” by State Sen. Kramer and Delegates Crutchfield, Stewart and Cullison. Learn what happened in this year’s session and how it affects us. Afterwards, we will hold our Club’s elections for the new Board.
Sen. Ben Cardin, June 8, 7pm, Crystal Ballroom: A Q&A session will follow. Also, we will install new officers for our club.
And in the news …
Social Security benefits well-liked: A new AP-NORC poll finds 79% of Americans say they oppose reducing the size of Social Security benefits and 67% are against raising monthly premiums for Medicare.
How about a retirement age of 70 or higher? “The closely watched effort by a club of Senate moderates to craft a bipartisan Social Security reform plan may be stalling out for the foreseeable future,” Semafor reports.
“Semafor previously reported that the group, which is led by Sens. Angus King of Maine and Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, had eyed establishing a new investment fund to finance future benefits and gradually raising the retirement age to nearly 70, among other options. But King, an independent, is struggling to amass support from his Democratic colleagues, with whom he caucuses. That’s contributing to a holdup in releasing a bipartisan framework.”
Anti-abortion a big loser: “Having made the criminalization of abortion a central axis of their political project for decades, Republicans have no obvious way out of their electoral predicament. A decisive majority of Americans — 64 percent, according to a recent Public Religion Research Institute survey — believe that abortion should be legal in most cases. A decisive majority of Republicans — 63 percent, according to the same survey — believe that it should not.”
“When abortion bans were merely theoretical, anti-abortion passion was often a boon to Republicans, powering the grass-roots organizing of the religious right. Now that the end of Roe has awakened a previously complacent pro-choice majority, anti-abortion passion has become a liability, but the Republican Party can’t jettison it without tearing itself apart.” (Columnist Michelle Goldberg)
The truth behind the unsolicited, online ads: Researchers at Carnegie Mellon and Virginia Tech studied the consumer welfare implications of targeted ads and found that the products pitched to people online were usually lower quality and more expensive than products that appeared in a simple web search. The researchers were so taken aback by the result that they repeated the study. Same result. (NY Times)
Shades of “Suppose they gave a war and nobody came”: “Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) arrived to protest former President Donald Trump’s arrest in front of a New York City court Tuesday — and left within a few minutes after counter-protesters drowned out her comments with whistles and boos,” Semafor reports.
“Greene’s comments could not be heard through her megaphone over the noise, and eyewitness reports and tweets from the scene showed the congresswoman leaving the area with her bodyguards.”
If you imbibe: What do Jack Daniels, Jim Beam, Maker’s Mark and Southern Comfort whiskeys have in common? They’re all made by unionized workers who get a livable wage, safe working conditions and health/retirement benefits.
Wake up: “If I were white, I’d want my kids to learn about Indian boarding schools and the Native American genocide. Not to make them “woke.” But to help them grow into intelligent, compassionate, well informed adults.” (Lakota Man on twitter)
Republican humor just keeps bubbling up …
DeSantis hoisted on his own petard: “Months since it took effect, Gov. Ron DeSantis’ signature law to censor books in Florida schools has found an unintended target: his own book,” the Daily Beast reports.
“In a clever bit of trolling, Florida Democrats are subjecting DeSantis’ new tome—The Courage To Be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for America’s Revival—to the rules that he and GOP lawmakers established to weed out books with allegedly inappropriate content on race, sexuality, and gender from school libraries.”
Or seen in another light: “Trump, allies say, seems set on ‘Ron DeSanctimonious,’ even though others around him don’t think it’s a bullseye. Some of the new ideas the former president’s entertained: ‘Ron DisHonest.’ ‘Ron DeEstablishment.’ Or even, ‘Tiny D.’
“His team has spent weeks trying to dig up dirt on DeSantis’s record as governor; his wife, Casey, a former television journalist; his year teaching at a boarding school in Georgia and his record as a member of Congress, including support for raising the US retirement age and partly privatizing Medicare as part of then-Speaker Paul Ryan’s conservative budget plan…” (Politico)
Democratic Club of Leisure World
March 12, 2023
Information Above; Republican oddities below.
Information and …
Biden budget on social security/Medicare: “The budget tackles two of the most pressing issues for current and future retirees: lowering prescription drug prices and adding 25 years to the solvency of the Medicare Trust Fund; it pays for it by asking those with annual income above $400,000 to pay a little more into Medicare. Building on what he describes as health care cost savings made possible by the Affordable Care Act, fully funding the Medicare trust fund will rely on a tax on earned and unearned income above $400,000.” (Alliance for Retired Americans)
Krugman on Republican priorities: “First of all, if Republicans had absolutely no desire to make major cuts to America’s main social insurance programs, why would they sunset them — and thus create the risk that they wouldn’t be renewed? As Biden might say, c’mon, man.
“And then there’s that historical record. Two things have been true ever since 1980. First, Republicans have tried to make deep cuts to Social Security and Medicare every time they thought there might be a political window of opportunity. Second, on each occasion they’ve done exactly what they’re doing now: claiming that Democrats are engaged in smear tactics when they describe G.O.P. plans using exactly the same words Republicans themselves used.” (NY Times)
If you missed Jamie Raskin in December and want a laugh: Go to:
Stopping right-wing attacks in Olney: “A visible police presence, county officials and more than 100 “Parasol Patrol” supporters rolled out for a drag story time event Sunday in Olney—along with around a dozen protesters who held signs objecting to the event.
“But the interaction was peaceful at the first drag story hour in the county since Feb. 18, when apparent members of the Proud Boys punched and stomped supporters at a Silver Spring event, according to witnesses and video. The Proud Boys did not appear to be present Sunday. (Montgomery County 360)
Did They Really Say/Do that?
Control that border: “A Mexican restaurant is taking over a high-profile location in the town of Rifle, Colorado, where Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-CO) Shooters Grill previously resided,” the Denver Post reports. “Boebert was forced to close Shooters, a gun-themed eatery where the wait staff was encouraged to open carry, last summer after the building changed ownership.” (Politico)
Kelly Conway’s “alternative facts”? Said (Kristina) Karamo: “What prompted me to run for chair of the Michigan Republican Party is the fact that Michigan has become ground zero for the globalist takeover of the United States of America.” She added: “This is not me being emotional and dramatic and trying to just rally the troops — these are facts. These are facts that these people’s actions are consistent with people who have one agenda, and that is to intentionally implode the United States of America.” (Politico) Note: Karamo also has not conceded her loss in the 2022 MI election for Secretary of State. And her fellow Republicans elected her Chair!
Didn’t he bring a snowball to the Senate floor? Former Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) told Tulsa World that his decision to retire was due to the long-term effects of Covid-19, adding that certain symptoms were still affecting him day-to-day. Said Inhofe: “Five or six others have long Covid, but I’m the only one who admits it.” HuffPost notes that Inhofe voted against multiple coronavirus aid packages meant to help Americans at the height of the pandemic. (Also, when a Senator, Inhofe brought a snowball to the Senate floor to “prove” that there was no climate change.)
What goes around …: “For the last five years, Deborah Sullivan has been at the forefront of the QAnon movement, fighting a non-existent Democratic cabal of elites running a child sex trafficking ring. As the self-described QAnon ‘Meme Queen’ she has produced more than 4,500 memes about the conspiracy, many of them focusing on former President Donald Trump, who she believes is secretly working to save the children.
“But earlier this month, when Sullivan’s own son was convicted of repeatedly abusing his stepdaughter in Oklahoma City, her passion for ‘saving the children’ seems to disappear. Instead, she defended her son as ‘innocent,’ blasted the justice system as ‘crooked,’ and attacked the 12-year-old girl at the center of the case as ‘a horrible liar.’” (Politico)
“DeSantis Rounds Up Disney Characters and Puts Them on a Bus to NY”: ORLANDO (The Borowitz Report)—In a major escalation of his war with Disney, Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, has rounded up several of the company’s characters at Walt Disney World and put them on a bus headed for New York City. At least a dozen characters, including Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and Elsa, were swept up in the shocking daytime raid, as children visiting the theme park screamed in horror.
A merciless DeSantis explained the seizure of the characters at a midday press conference, in which he claimed that “all of these characters, especially the mice, are card-carrying members of the wokerati.” The Governor seemed indifferent to the fate of the Disney characters once they arrive in New York. “Let them wander Times Square with Elmo,” he said.
“George Santos Quickly Removes Job at Wuhan Lab from His Resume” WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report) – Rep. George Santos hastily removed an entry from his résumé indicating that he had worked at a biological laboratory in Wuhan, China, the congressman’s office has confirmed. Speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill, Santos said that he had “no idea” how the Wuhan job wound up on his C.V. “I haven’t even spent time in China since 2007, when I invented the iPhone,” he said.
Re: Fox “News”: The words of Lt. Frank Drebin (as played by Leslie Nielsen in the Naked Gun) come to mind when I think of the Fox viewers: “The truth hurts. Oh sure, not as much as jumping onto a bicycle with the seat missing, but it hurts.” (from reader JM)
Democratic Club of Leisure World
February 8, 2022
Thursday, February 16, 7pm, Crystal Ballroom: Our annual “Diversity Night”. Say “no” to racism, anti-semitism, homophobia and rampant discrimination.
Join with County Councilmembers Glass, Mink and Sayles to address these topics.
Also, meet leaders of various clubs in our community which are promoting equality, diversity and awareness. Bring a mask. You do not have to be a member to attend.
New: We will be raising money to alleviate the suffering from earthquakes in Turkey and Syria by raising money at this event for Doctors Without Borders.
New: Or watch on Zoom by registering at bit.ly/dclw-02-16
Thursday, March 9, 5-7 pm, Crystal Ballroom: Social get-together. Members and potential new members are invited. You will be the star attraction as we interact and make friends.
New: We also will be raising money for the Tommy Raskin Fund for People and Animals at this event.
And in the news …
Governor Moore’s first budget requests:
Education: The governor is proposing to make a one-time cash payment of $500 million into the “Blueprint for Maryland’s Future Trust Fund,” the state’s savings account for a decade-long education reform effort. The proposed education budget also includes $15 million for a new teacher recruitment incentive that will be part of the Maryland Educator Shortage Act.
Transportation: The Budget dedicates $500 million to new transportation projects.
Other notable items in the Moore budget:
o $171 million is budgeted for the Family Prosperity Act, which would make permanent an expansion of the Earned Income Tax Credit passed by lawmakers in 2021;
o $218 million in state funds are budgeted for additional payments for community health service providers. The funding is meant to help service providers keep up with the expected acceleration in the effective date of Maryland’s $15 minimum wage;
o Other budgetary items include a record funding of $112 million for the Educational Excellence Awards program, the state’s largest need-based student aid program; a $38 million increase in formula funding for the state’s 15 community colleges; and $5 million for the Maryland Apprenticeship Training Program.
Social Security under attack: Many ultra-conservative House Freedom Caucus members demanded that House Speaker Kevin McCarthy not raise the debt ceiling unless President Biden and Democrats agree to their demands to slash Social Security, Medicare, and other spending. In 2011, a standoff between the GOP and former President Obama over raising the debt ceiling led to a nose-dive in stock prices, spiking mortgage rates and a drop in consumer confidence.
In a speech in January, President Biden mocked Republicans for talking about “big-spendin’ Democrats,” when in fact the deficit dropped by roughly $350 billion in fiscal 2021 and more than $1 trillion in fiscal 2022 under his party’s control.
And the man who no one elected President, Sen. Joe Manchin (WV) added to the drama when he said that he had spoken briefly with Speaker McCarthy about possible “compromise” with the House GOP. He suggested adding a bill he co-sponsored with Sen. Mitt Romney (UT) in the last Congress to create a “rescue committee” to cut the Social Security, Medicare and highway trust funds to legislation to raise the debt ceiling.
Not equal at all: While these removals (Democratic Reps. Omar, Swawell and Schiff) are often portrayed simply as a quest for revenge after Democrats removed Representatives Paul Gosar (R-AZ) and Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) from committees when they were in charge, there is a crucial difference between the cases. The Democrats removed Gosar and Greene—both members of the far-right group—after they threatened violence against their Democratic colleagues. Republicans removed Schiff and Swalwell over make-believe dangers and now have removed Omar allegedly over policy differences…
The Republicans have accepted violence among Congress members. (From Heather Cox Richardson’s “Letter from an American”)
New gun control legislation proposed in Annapolis: The Gun Industry Accountability Act of 2023 prohibits certain firearm industry members from knowingly or recklessly creating, maintaining, or contributing to harm to the public through the sale, manufacture, importation, or marketing of a firearm-related product (SB113, Sen. Walkstreicher). You can follow all Annapolis legislation via the Legislative Advocacy Committee (see “Every Friday” above).
Don’t Do As I Do” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) “reintroduced a bill last week to limit senators from serving more than two six-year terms, even as he stands by plans to run for his third,” the Texas Tribune reports. “He declined to answer questions about why he would seek a third term in office, given his view about the need to limit how long members should serve.”
(From the Borowitz Report in The Atlantic Monthly)
“Kari Lake Furious that No One Has Searched Her Home for Stolen Documents”: PHOENIX —Kari Lake said that she is “absolutely furious and outraged” that no one has performed a search of her home for stolen documents. “The F.B.I. has been raiding the house of every Tom, Dick, and Harry, but somehow doesn’t think mine is worthy of their attention,” she said. “This doesn’t pass the smell test.”
The former anchorwoman claimed that she has been calling for the F.B.I. to raid her home for weeks, but to no avail.
Democratic Club of Leisure World
January 8, 2022
Democratic Club’s upcoming meetings (top)
Things to laugh about with the Republican show (bottom)
For your calendar:
This Thursday, January 12, 7pm, Crystal Ballroom: “An Evening with Will Jawando” – Councilmember, author and activist. His life story is truly remarkable. His insights into the County Council are very important. Questions are welcome. Also, we will vote on Henry Osborne as a new Board member. (Bring a mask.)
Thursday, February 16, 7pm, Crystal Ballroom: Our annual “Diversity Night”. There have been some hateful incidents in Montgomery County recently. They need to be addressed. Councilmembers Evan Glass and Kristin Mink, will be here. Also, two members of our community, Paul Eisenhaur, head of the diversity council, and Jane Carona (Braille Revival League and Am. Council of the Blind) will discuss Leisure World’s diverse community. (Note: Normally we would meet the previous week. However, our schedule was changed to accommodate speakers.)
What you may have missed with the Republican fiasco:
Raskin on twitter: “We never had to deal with this much chaos when Geo Santos was Speaker.” Also,
“This is a body where James Madison, Abraham Lincoln, and Thaddeus Stevens once served. I don’t buy the GOP’s whole attack on science, but this week definitely casts doubt on the theory of evolution.”
And speaking of Santos: Incoming Rep. George Santos (R-NY) appeared to flash a widely known white supremacist hand sign on the floor of the U.S. House, Newsday reports.
Santos life-support watch: “The Federal Election Commission has flagged issues with contributions made to embattled Rep.-elect George Santos’ campaign,” CNN reports. “The commission has requested clarification and more information on certain donors and about apparent excessive contributions to Santos’ winning 2022 campaign for his Long Island seat.”
Santos loses weight running from reporters: “George Santos has spent his first week at the Capitol being chased by the press corps in between speaker voters, and it might be doing him some good. The still-not-a-Congressman (on Tuesday) from New York told Semafor he’s lost six pounds from walking since arriving in Washington.”
Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN) on alcohol: Burchett, who was in between Gaetz and Rogers during their confrontation on the House floor, told CNN that Rogers was making threats about ending careers. Said Burchett: “People shouldn’t be drinking, especially when you’re a redneck, on the House floor.”
He added: “I would drop him like a bag of dirt. Nobody’s gonna put their hands on me. Nobody’s gonna threaten me.”
Aaron Blake: “Well, Crazytown (will) have significant say on the hugely important House Rules Committee. They reportedly will be able to demand budget cuts in order to raise the debt ceiling (which heightens the odds of a debt default). And just one member can move to oust McCarthy if they don’t like what he’s doing — what’s known as a ‘motion to vacate the chair.’ That’s a situation which former speaker Paul D. Ryan’s team compared to a ‘weapon pointed at [the speaker] all the time.’”
Is he speaking about himself? “Let’s be honest. Most of what Congress does is bad. Most of what we do to the country while claiming to do it for the country is bad. These last couple of days are probably the most productive couple of days I’ve spent in my first two years in Congress.”— Rep. Bob Good (R-VA), quoted by NBC News.
Duh? “I’m confident we will reach a solution otherwise we won’t be successful.” — Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), talking to reporters after a meeting on House rule changes.
Whoops. Knowing apples and oranges would help: Rep. Ralph Norman (R-SC), who has repeatedly voted against Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) for speaker, told Roll Call that he wants McCarthy to devise a debt-limit deal suitable to fiscal conservatives.
Said Norman: “Is he willing to shut the government down rather than raise the debt ceiling? That’s a non-negotiable item.” (Note: It’s worth noting that the debt ceiling and government shutdowns have nothing to do with each other.)
If only: Rep. Matt Gaetz: “If Democrats join up to elect a moderate Republican, I will resign from the House of Representatives.”
And from multiple observers: “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Albert Einstein
A smart woman: Men appear to be too emotional and high strung to be in politics. (Former Sen. Claire McCaskill)
(Items taken from twitter or Political Wire)