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Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt Decision a Victory, Challenge PDF Print E-mail
News - Articles for Nation & World
Written by Russ for Wisconsin   
Tuesday, 28 June 2016 10:15

scotus-women-rightsMonday's victory is important, but we have a long way to go says Russ Feingold.

MIDDLETON, WI - Russ Feingold, candidate for U.S. Senate, issued the following statement in response to today's Supreme Court decision in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt:

russ-feingold“Today’s decision by the court is a victory for women and their families. It affirms that women's reproductive rights are just that -- rights. But it’s also a reminder of the immense work we still have to do so that all women have the ability to receive the quality health care they deserve.

“As I travel to each of Wisconsin’s 72 counties, and listen to the priorities and concerns of people across our state, nobody is telling me that Washington politicians should be making medical decisions for Wisconsin women. But my opponent backed a ‘personhood’ amendment and referred to his efforts to defund Planned Parenthood as a ‘fun vote.’ That’s wrong beyond measure, and I firmly believe that we need to stand up for women’s reproductive rights and unfettered access to quality, affordable health care.

“So today's victory is important, but we have a long way to go. We must stand up to Washington politicians who are standing in the way of Wisconsin’s women and families — that means not only protecting women’s reproductive rights, but fighting for pay equity legislation, guaranteed paid family leave, and an increase in the federal minimum wage.”

U.S. Economy Would Be ‘Diminished’ Under Trump’s Economic Plan PDF Print E-mail
News - Articles for Nation & World
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Tuesday, 21 June 2016 14:17

donald-trumpNew Economic Analysis Says Donald Trump's senseless policies could cause a loss of 3.5 million jobs, disproportionately affecting a state like Wisconsin that has lagged behind the national average in job growth for five years under Gov. Scott Walker.

MADISON - A recent report highlighted that if we followed Donald Trump's senseless policies we could see a loss of 3.5 million jobs, disproportionately affecting the working and middle class. In a state like Wisconsin that has suffered and lagged behind the national average in job growth for five years under Scott Walker and Republican leadership, we cannot afford the dangerous policies of Donald Trump.

See excerpts from the piece below:

U.S. Economy Would Be ‘Diminished’ Under Trump’s Economic Plan, New Analysis Says
Wall Street Journal - Nick Timiroaos
June 20, 2016

A new analysis concludes Donald Trump’s economic proposals, taken at face value, could produce a prolonged recession and heavy job losses that would fall hardest on low- and middle-income workers.

The Moody’s Analytics report, which a person close to the Trump campaign strongly disputed, is the first that attempts to quantify the cumulative economic benefits and costs of Mr. Trump’s proposals on taxes, trade, immigration and spending. It determines that full adoption of those policies would sharply reduce economic output during his first term and reduce employment by 3.5 million jobs.

Under almost any scenario, the report says, “the U.S. economy will be more isolated and diminished.”


Mr. Trump, for his part, has said voters don’t care about his lack of policy specifics. He has mocked the Clinton campaign for its policy zeal while sticking to broad generalities in speeches and interviews.


The Moody’s analysis says Mr. Trump’s spending and tax-cut commitments, which include increases in veterans’ and border security funding but no changes in entitlement programs, would require massive spending cuts elsewhere in the federal budget to avoid $1 trillion deficits.

“There is a gulf between what he says he wants on taxes and spending and what it will take to make the budget arithmetic work,” said Mr. Zandi.


Mr. Trump’s tax plan would lower tax rates across the board and limit some deductions. The Tax Policy Center, a project of the Urban Institute andBrookings Institution, said the plan would cut federal revenues by $9.5 trillion, while the Tax Foundation, a think tank that favors lower taxes, said the plan would cost $10 trillion over a decade, even after assuming higher economic growth.

The report singles out trade and immigration policies as the most detrimental to the economy in the short run because they could sharply boost labor and goods prices at a time when there’s less slack in the labor market. “It is a massive supply shock to the economy that’s very pernicious, and the Fed doesn’t know how to respond to that,” said Mr. Zandi.

Moody’s concludes that those price pressures would force the central bank to raise interest rates at a faster-than-desired pace, contributing to a recession in 2018 that could produce a 25% drop in the S&P 500.

The adviser close to the Trump campaign said any analysis oversold the costs of Mr. Trump’s trade and immigration policies by failing to account for how substandard enforcement of trade rules and border controls have depressed wages for U.S. workers.

On trade, Mr. Trump has said he would use the threat of a 45% tariff on goods from China and 35% on non-oil imports from Mexico as a negotiating tool in seeking better trade and currency terms. Moody’s calculates that tariffs on imports from Mexico and China could increase goods import prices by 15%, raising overall consumer prices by 3%—all before factoring in the costs of retaliation against U.S. exporters.

The Moody’s economists warn that those tariffs would raise uncertainty for businesses, reducing American exports while corroding growth. While higher tariffs would quickly lead importers to move production to other countries, this would take time and also raise costs for businesses.

Separate projections made earlier this year by Peter Petri of Brandeis University found that Mr. Trump’s proposed tariffs would widen the U.S. trade deficit for goods by around $275 billion, or an 37% increase above last year’s level.

On immigration, Moody’s estimates that a crackdown on illegal immigration through forced deportations would reduce slack in the labor force but also leave more positions unfilled, particularly in industries such as agriculture where native-born workers have been reluctant to seek work even at modestly higher wages. Labor shortages in those industries could prompt job losses in upstream and downstream industries and also boost inflation as labor costs run higher, the report said.

Read the full piece here.

Chaos in House After GOP Votes Down LGBT Measure PDF Print E-mail
News - Articles for Nation & World
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Thursday, 19 May 2016 15:06

uscapitolMADISON - Today, Republicans once again took major efforts to ensure discrimination continues against members of the LGBT community. When Speaker Paul Ryan was asked if his leadership team pressured members to switch their votes he said "I don't know the answer. I don't even know,” and then continued to tell reporters he supports the legislation that allows discrimination against the LGBT community. Speaker Ryan is either incompetent about what is going on in his party or worse...

Read excerpts from the article below.

Chaos in House after GOP votes down LGBT measure
The Hill // Cristina Marcos and Mike Lillis

May 19, 2016

The House floor devolved into chaos and shouting on Thursday as a measure to ensure protections for members of the LGBT community narrowly failed to pass after Republican leaders urged their members to change their votes.

Initially, it appeared Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney's (D-N.Y.) amendment had enough votes to pass, as "yes" votes piled up to 217 against 206 "no" votes.

But it eventually failed on a 212-213 vote after a number of Republican lawmakers changed their votes from "yes" to "no."

GOP leaders held the vote open as they pressured members to change sides. Infuriating Democrats, they let lawmakers switch their votes without coming to the House floor.

"Shame! Shame! Shame!" Democrats chanted as they watched the vote tally go from passage of Maloney's amendment to narrow failure.

Twenty-nine Republicans voted for Maloney's amendment to a spending bill for the Department of Veterans Affairs and military construction projects, along with all Democrats in the final roll call.

"This is one of the ugliest episodes I've experienced in my three-plus years as a member of this House," Maloney, who is openly gay, said while offering his amendment.

The amendment would have effectively nullified a provision in the defense authorization that the House passed late Wednesday night. The language embedded in the defense bill states that religious corporations, associations and institutions that receive federal contracts can't be discriminated against on the basis of religion.

Democrats warn that such a provision could potentially allow discrimination against the LGBT community in the name of religious freedom. Maloney's amendment specifically would prohibit funds to implement contracts with any company that doesn't comply with President Obama's executive orderbanning federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT workers.

When asked about the vote-switching, Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) denied knowing whether his leadership team pressured Republicans.

"I don't know the answer. I don't even know,” Ryan told reporters.

He defended the provision in the defense bill.


Rep. Mark Takano (D-Calif.), who, like Maloney, is a member of the Congressional LGBT Caucus, said he saw Rep. Robert Dold (R-Ill.) approach Maloney on the floor and lambast his own GOP leadership team for their handling of the vote.


Procedurally, once the clock expires on a vote, the lawmaker holding the gavel usually asks if any members want to change their votes. At that point, the electronic voting machines are switched off, and any vote-changing members are expected to approach the front of the chamber, known as the well, to make their switch in person.

In this case, the Speaker pro tempore never asked that question; GOP leaders simply kept the vote open to allow members to make the switch electronically without revealing themselves.


The decision to leave the clock open marks a sharp break under Ryan, who assumed the Speaker's gavel with vows to return to regular order and an insistence on obeying House rules, including the use of the vote clock. It's a dynamic that was not overlooked by Democrats following Thursday's vote.


Read the full article here.

Young Leaders Call for Fair Consideration of Supreme Court Nominee PDF Print E-mail
News - Articles for Nation & World
Written by People for the American Way   
Thursday, 19 May 2016 12:21

merrick-garland-scotusWASHINGTON, DC – Today, young leaders from across the country will join members of Congress in front of the Supreme Court to release an open letter to the members of the Senate calling for fair consideration for President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee, Merrick Garland.

The letter is signed by national youth-led and youth-serving organizations including Young People For, Generation Progress, NAACP Youth and College Division, Sierra Student Coalition, the Roosevelt Institute, NARAL Pro-Choice America, Energy Action Coalition, American Constitution Society Student Chapters, the Young Elected Officials (YEO) Network, Student Debt Crisis, Advocates for Youth, and the Micah Leadership Council.

At the press conference, speakers will focus on why Senator Chuck Grassley, the chair of the Judiciary Committee, needs to do his job and schedule hearings and a vote for Judge Garland instead of engaging in unprecedented partisan obstruction. They will also discuss what’s at stake for young people in the Supreme Court vacancy fight.

Last Updated on Thursday, 19 May 2016 12:27
Two Months of Stalling on Merrick Garland, Johnson Now Refusing to Do His Job on District and Circuit Court Judges PDF Print E-mail
News - Articles for Nation & World
Written by Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Brandon Weathersby   
Tuesday, 17 May 2016 09:20

merrick-garland-scotusMADISON –  We know that Ron Johnson refuses to do his job and vote on Merrick Garland, but it turns out he also refuses to vote on district court judges as well.

This afternoon, Johnson - like a true Washington Insider - continued to avoid responsibility and missed a vote to confirm Paula Xinis for the District Court of Maryland. He certainly had the time to vote, after all he managed to find time to call into multiple radio shows today.

Johnson is of course infamous for holding up the nomination of a circuit court judge for five years.  Who knows, maybe he had to miss work again for another fundraiser with Wall Street titans in New York.

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