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delcecchi last won the day on July 31 2016

delcecchi had the most liked content!

About delcecchi

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    Rochester, MN/Wakemup Village
  1. I hear she has a new campaign video out. Mayor of New York? President? Gotta keep the money coming in.
  2. Poor programming? Overloaded server? Inadequate connectivity? Doesn't get me all worked up. I've seen worse. You whippersnappers are spoiled.
  3. One candidate still has to get a majority of the votes. Having more than two running makes it likely no one gets a majority.
  4. I see now that Dave was mocking you for your mistake, Never mind.
  5. Yeah, the Arizona thing was Swampy. Sorry, Dave. I was trying to come up with what had been supposedly posted as "the end of the war on drugs". So, it is decriminalizing possession and use? But dealing and possession of more than some amount is still a crime? That's it?
  6. I was talking about fireworks. Yeah, drift.
  7. It was just a bunch of hard Libertarian drivel with no relation to reality.
  8. You posted a link about Portugal. That, or something about Arizona legalizing weed and "education about opioids". That's ending the war on drugs? Or did I miss something real?
  9. The feds are busy trying to figure out how to slow or reduce the problems due to prescription painkillers. However there is also a significant lobby by folks with actual chronic pain. What's the solution you favor? Limit each doctor to a quota of pills per month for his patients? I can't really think of one that would work, given that there are legitimate uses for these drugs. Sure, there is a double standard. Heroin is illegal. Oxycodone is not.
  10. And for all the anti-party folks good news. maybe. It's sort of long, read as much as you can handle. Energized by their disdain for the new president and how he won office, Democrats are gathering in Atlanta this weekend to pick a new leader for the Trump era. The two leading candidates to head the Democratic National Committee are former Labor Secretary Tom Perez and Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota—the former more friendly to the party establishment, the latter less so. Both have declared their intention to take the good fight to Donald Trump and the newly empowered Republicans. But the real challenge facing the Democrats—and the GOP, for that matter—has little to do with who presides at party headquarters. The far bigger problem for leaders of both parties is that bottom-up, grass-roots activism out in the hinterlands is rapidly overtaking the traditional political machinery. The party hierarchy in Washington is no longer in control. This doesn’t exactly signal the dawn of a post-party era in American politics. But it does mean that the parties are experiencing a genuine identity crisis. The years ahead may well find the party establishment pushed to the margins, ceding the initiative to all sorts of new, unconventional and independent political actors. Democrats are increasingly waking up to the glum realization that their party was sustained in recent years by the popularity of Barack Obama and the easy assumption that Hillary Clinton would succeed him. Now that both Mr. Obama and that assumption are gone, they find themselves confronting the party’s stark decline at the local and state level around the country in the past eight years. Suddenly, the momentum in the Democratic Party lies with its dissatisfied and far-flung activists, many with ties to the upstart presidential-election crusade of Sen. Bernie Sanders—who, at least technically, isn’t a Democrat at all but a political independent. The Vermont senator’s backers have grown more emboldened in pushing their critique of the Obama record, which they deride for being insufficiently ambitious and ideologically impure. Mr. Sanders’s admirers are now actively organizing an insurgency, what some wags have dubbed “the herbal tea party.” They say that the Democratic establishment has grown too enamored of corporate America and a globalized economy, rather than focusing on working America and the main-street economy—and they blame those misplaced priorities for the party’s devastating 2016 loss. The Democratic Party “has been captive of the White House for eight years,” says Larry Cohen, chair of Our Revolution, a progressive movement inspired by the Sanders campaign. “That obviously was a failure.” He is seeking what he calls a strong populist message for the party, one that emphasizes such pocketbook issues as covering college costs and providing broad health-care coverage. Many Obama administration veterans and centrist Democrats are troubled by this rising insurgency, worrying that a lurch to the left may hurt the party precisely in those red states where Democrats need to start regaining ground lost to Mr. Trump. Meanwhile, the Republican Party is led by a new president who spent as much time in the past two decades registered as a Democrat or an independent than as a Republican. Mr. Trump won by defying his own party’s traditional leadership, staking out different ideological terrain and, to some extent, creating his own alternate party of foot-soldiers based in Rust Belt locales far from the Acela corridor. In a speech before conservatives in Washington on Friday, Mr. Trump declared that from now on, the GOP will be “the party of the American worker.” Like the president’s top White House strategist, former Breitbart chief Steve Bannon, these new activists have little or no affinity for the party’s national leaders and the traditional conservative ideology that they espouse. The Trump Army, which is now the GOP Army, feels far more allegiance to Trumpism than to Republicanism. The powerful political currents of the moment have made these strains on the national parties more acute, but they have been building for decades. “Over the last 20 years, the parties have become less and less relevant,” said Scott Reed, a longtime Republican Party operative who managed Bob Dole’s losing 1996 presidential campaign and now oversees political activity for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Some of the forces reducing the relevance of the two parties have nothing to do with ideology. “Technology and new campaign-finance rules take away a lot of the traditional functions of a party,” says Michael Needham, the chief executive officer of Heritage Action for America, a group that raises funds to support conservative causes. Jesse Unruh, the late speaker of the California assembly, famously said that money “is the mother’s milk of politics,” but changes in campaign-finance laws and court rulings, particularly the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling in the case of Citizens United, have reduced the parties’ maternal roles. Those shifts also expanded the role of independent groups, including the so-called super PACs, which are now the fastest-growing source of political funding. In the 2016 cycle, spending by such outside groups on federal races reached $1.1 billion, almost matching the $1.3 billion spent by the two parties and their campaign committees. “Twenty years ago, when you wanted to run for Congress, you had to head to Washington” to meet national party leaders and seek their help, says Mr. Reed. “Today, you go to the Chamber [of Commerce], to the Koch brothers, to the NRA, to the Senate Leadership Fund”—the latter being a conservative super PAC that spent $114 million in the latest campaign cycle to help Republicans win Senate seats. At the same time, technology has made it possible for grass-roots activists, outside groups and candidates themselves to tackle some of the nuts-and-bolts political work formerly done by the party machinery. Digitized contact lists of voters are widely available. Little party infrastructure is needed to spread a message or generate a crowd when social media can do the job on the cheap. Last year, Mr. Trump discovered that wall-to-wall cable-television coverage could be more valuable in the primary season than institutional party support. At a postelection conference sponsored by the Harvard Institute of Politics, other Republican campaign managers angrily vented at representatives of CNN, arguing that the network’s blanket coverage of Mr. Trump’s rallies gave him an unfair advantage. In a testy exchange, CNN President Jeff Zucker responded, “We constantly asked the other candidates to come on and do interviews. And almost to a person, they declined.” A still broader force is also at work in undermining the parties, and it isn’t a problem unique to them. “The electorate writ large has totally lost confidence in the institutions in this country,” says former Republican Party chairman Frank Fahrenkopf. “All of this has just created this atmosphere out there among the electorate that it ain’t working.” For Republicans, one of the most stunning symbols of that discontent arrived in mid-2014, when Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, the second-most-powerful leader in the House and a fixture in the party hierarchy, lost a primary election to a little-known and essentially unfinanced Republican challenger, an economics professor at Randolph-Macon College named David Brat. His victory was the surest sign that the national party hadn’t co-opted the tea party movement but was being yanked by it in new directions. The next year, The Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll asked voters whether they were satisfied with the top GOP leaders in Washington. A stunning two-thirds of Republican voters said that they weren’t. Then in 2016, Mr. Trump and Mr. Sanders stormed onto the stage with populist messages that tore the parties away from their traditional free-trade positions and their comfortable relationships with globalization and big business. Mr. Trump captured the same kind of energy that the tea party had used against the GOP establishment and turned it to his benefit. He largely eschewed the usual signs of support from the party establishment—endorsements by sitting officeholders, funding from traditional donors, advice from the most experienced policy thinkers—that candidates such as Jeb Bush chased. Mr. Trump wore his lack of party credentials as a badge of honor. Mr. Trump did avail himself of the party’s machinery to help turn out voters in the general election, and he made former Republican national chairman Reince Priebus his White House chief of staff. But the party’s energy suddenly lies with blue-collar Trump supporters in places such as Toledo, Ohio, and Flint, Mich. To replace Mr. Priebus atop the Republican National Committee, the Trump forces chose not a Washington operative but Ronna Romney McDaniel, whose previous position was party chair of the GOP in Michigan. She is a niece of the party’s 2012 nominee, Mitt Romney, but upon taking the top RNC job, she declared herself simply “a mom from Michigan.” The difficulty for the national GOP now will be figuring out what it stands for. What does a party that has long backed unfettered trade and open markets do when it is taken over by a protectionist president who insists that free-trade agreements are a job-killing sham, backed by an army of supporters who see the financial markets as rigged against them? For their part, Democrats surveying the state of their party see a dreary picture. They hold majorities in just 31 of 99 legislative chambers nationwide, having lost 958 seats since Mr. Obama took office in 2009. Just 43% of elected lawmakers in state legislatures are Democrats. Leftist activists, angered by this visible atrophy and freed from the policy impulses that might have prevailed if Mrs. Clinton had won, are trying to reverse what they consider the lamentable Clintonite tendency to move to the center and compromise. The activists are pressuring Democratic lawmakers to confront Mr. Trump at every turn. On Capitol Hill, Democrats are feeling the heat, and they have responded in part by opposing most of Mr. Trump’s cabinet nominees with near unanimity. A telling moment arrived at the end of January, when Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, after voting for three early Trump nominees, announced that he would be opposing eight more coming up for consideration. The pressure from the left isn’t subtle. In response to reports of contacts between Trump campaign aides and Russian figures, the filmmaker Michael Moore recently declared to his four million Twitter followers, “We demand that the weak & spineless Democrats bring Congress 2 a halt until investigative hearings are held & impeachment charges are filed.” Much of the new activism on the left is also focused on winning party and elected offices at the local level. This shift reflects a widespread feeling among Democrats that reviving the party has to come from the ground up. The Democrats need “to stand up state parties and to become much more active in supporting candidates not just for president of the United States but for state representative, for local offices and for down-ballot races,” says David Axelrod, Mr. Obama’s longtime political counselor. Mr. Cohen, of the Sanders-inspired Our Revolution, argues that the Democratic Party still needs a national message—but from outside the corridors of Washington. “The Democratic Party must be a populist party, or it has no future,” he says. The Democrats face a looming test in 2018, when many hope to slam the brakes on the Trump agenda by taking back the Senate. But Democrats, like Republicans, will struggle to find the type of unified national message that Mr. Cohen wants: The new activists are moving left at the same time that party leaders are increasingly worried about saving the jobs of 10 senators up for re-election in red states that Mr. Trump won. (To retake the Senate next year, the Democrats would need to pick up three seats—in addition to successfully defending 25.) Where will this period of weak central structures lead? Perhaps to more candidates emboldened to break away from the crumbling old parties and run as independents. The changes in technology and campaign financing certainly make independent candidacies more feasible. One remaining obstacle, says Heritage Action’s Mr. Needham, is the widespread reality that “if you run as a third-party candidate or an independent, you’re seen as fringe.” But that perception could change after a few successes. Matthew Dowd, a former top political adviser to President George W. Bush, is considering running for the Senate from Texas as an independent, for example. A win in such a Republican stronghold could inspire others to follow his lead. An even less conventional approach could also shake up the system. What if a group of lawmakers already in Congress decided to break away and form a third party built not by political wannabes but by officeholders already in place? They could be Republicans unhappy with Mr. Trump’s many populist departures from conservative positions or a group of Democrats from moderate districts unhappy with the push to the left from their own grass-roots forces. If they found financial backing from wealthy backers and managed to win re-election, the core of a new party would be created overnight. Is this likely? Probably not. But the fact that such scenarios seem plausible is a pretty good indicator that the country’s political energies are shifting away from the operatives who oversee the parties from their headquarters in the nation’s capital. Longtime Washington insider Rahm Emanuel—a former Democratic congressman, head of the national party’s congressional recruiting committee and chief of staff to President Obama—is watching these developments from a distance as the mayor of Chicago. It is clear to him which way the energy in American politics is flowing. “It’s moved out of Washington,” he says. “And that is both a good thing and a challenge.”
  11. I could find no news of this. It got by the first committee in the house. (according to mpr, 4 days ago)
  12. You do know that Obama was having off the record meetings with selected columnists, right? "To explain his thinking"
  13. And the fact that his wife and partner was twice expected to be the next president, and was a senator then secretary of state had nothing to do with his speaking fees from foreign organizations? One hand washes the other. PS he got way more than 100k.