JanF

Fighting Back: “Children are dying in our schools … all this Congress has to say is, let’s have a moment of silence.”

House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi held her weekly press conference and the topic was the mass shooting in Florida and the weak Republican Party response to it. She was joined by Representative Mike Thompson (D-CA) who is the chair of the House Democrats Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.

Nancy Pelosi:

Once again, we come together very sadly. Our hearts have been broken by the tragedy of gun violence, this time Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School – Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. Seventeen pronounced dead, more wounded. Innocent children sending terrified texts and goodbyes to their parents. We thank God for the heroism of the teachers, the school leaders, and our first responders running into harm’s way to save lives. […]

Children are dying in our schools, in our communities, on our streets. All this Congress has to say is, let’s have a moment of silence.

Mike Thompson:

If I was a Republican Member, I would be embarrassed that my Leadership wouldn’t address this issue. […] We were elected to deal with tough issues. And this is no different than any other tough issue. Somebody has to screw up the courage to be able to look at this issue and figure out what can Congress do. […]

And the idea that all of these shootings are mental health issues? I am sure that mental health factors in, but you can’t deflect by saying, ‘Oh, it is a mental health issue,’ and then turn around and work overtime trying to repeal the mental health programs that we have in place or put out a budget that cuts the mental health budget that we so desperately need across our United States of America.

The full transcript is below.

Fighting Back: Infrastructure Weak! “Trump’s plan is embarrassingly small”

The weekly Fighting Back post is also an Open News Thread.

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon.

(Rep. Peter DeFazio knows infrastructure is a critical piece of any effort to create quality, good-paying jobs. That’s why he fighting for #ABetterDeal to Rebuild America.)

The administration must offer an infrastructure plan that strengthens the commitment to the national transportation network by providing stable funding for more than a year. Trump’s plan is embarrassingly small. Democrats have announced a better deal to rebuild America. This infrastructure plan is five times bigger than his proposal. One trillion dollars to rebuild crumbling roads, schools, extend high-speed internet to every family in America. […] We must strengthen the federal commitment to the national transportation network of providing stable, long-term funding. If the president and congress are serious about prioritizing infrastructure, they have a unique opportunity to make badly needed investments. But they have been avoiding this for decades. Democrats are ready to get to work and deliver to the American people a better deal, jobs, wages and future.

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

(Link to Nancy Pelosi Newsroom here)

Fighting Back: Shutdown Redux “Republicans have once again revealed their utter incompetence in governing.”

 

The government is being funded with a Continuing Resolution that will expire on February 8th, next Thursday. No progress has been made on the issues that need to be resolved to come up with a plan to keep the government open.

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Senator Tina Smith of Minnesota.

(Senator Tina Smith (D-MN) delivers Weekly Democratic Party Address)

“Earlier this week, President Trump delivered his first official State of the Union address. It was my first State of the Union as well—I’ve only been a member of the Senate for a little over a month, so I was eager to hear the President’s ideas for how best to move our country forward,” said Senator Tina Smith (D-MN). “When it comes to bipartisanship, President Trump must match his deeds with his words. The challenges we face can only be met if we meet them together, not just as Democrats or Republicans. Mr. President, Democrats stand ready to work with you. But if you are unwilling to work with us in good faith, know that we won’t back down from the fight.”

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

(Link to Nancy Pelosi Newsroom here)

Spring is in the air!

At the beginning of February, when the earth appears frozen and lifeless, there are stirrings below the surface and above us in the sky. The light is returning; today there is nearly an hour more daylight than there was on the Winter Solstice.

Mid-January through mid-February is when the Great Horned Owls begin breeding and nesting. While the rest of us look out at the wintry landscape here in North Central Blogistan – and wait for spring, the owls are already beginning their nesting year.

(Don’t forget to hover* …)

Fighting Back: Rep. Joe Kennedy III – “This is not right, this is not who we are”

Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-MA) speaking from Fall River, Massachusetts gives the Democratic Party response to the State of the Union Address:

Many have spent the past year anxious, angry, afraid. We all feel the fault lines of a fractured country. We hear the voices of Americans who feel forgotten and forsaken.

And [we have that] nagging, sinking feeling, no matter your political beliefs: this is not right. This is not who we are.[…]

This administration isn’t just targeting the laws that protect us – they are targeting the very idea that we are all worthy of protection.

For them, dignity isn’t something you’re born with but something you measure.

By your net worth, your celebrity, your headlines, your crowd size.

Not to mention, the gender of your spouse. The country of your birth. The color of your skin. The God of your prayers.

Their record is a rebuke of our highest American ideal: the belief that we are all worthy, we are all equal and we all count. In the eyes of our law and our leaders, our God and our government.

That is the American promise. […]

Bullies may land a punch. They might leave a mark. But they have never, not once, in the history of our United States, managed to match the strength and spirit of a people united in defense of their future.

Politicians can be cheered for the promises they make. Our country will be judged by the promises we keep.

THAT is the measure of our character. That’s who we are.

Out of many. One.

Ladies and gentlemen, have faith: The state of our union is hopeful, resilient, enduring.

Full text of speech is below

Fighting Back: “Republicans who control the House, the Senate and the White House are refusing to govern”

 

The Weekly Democratic Party Address was delivered by Representative Adam Smith of Washington state.

(Congressman Adam Smith of Washington, Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, delivered the Weekly Democratic Address. In this week’s address, Smith condemns the Republican Congress’ refusal to govern and inability to pass a budget that meets the needs and values of our country.)

Rep. Smith:

I know a lot of people paid close attention to the government shutdown that happened last week and are wondering what it was all about. Why did it happen? And there’s really a very simple explanation. The Republicans who control the House, the Senate and the White House are refusing to govern on the critical issues that face our country. And what they were trying to do last week – and ultimately did do – was pass yet another short-term, stop-gap spending bill. That is not funding the government. […]

We need to pass a budget to fix health care, to deal with disaster relief to deal with all of these issues if we’re going to actually take care of the middle class and the working people of this country – and that is what the Republicans have refused to do. […]

The problem we have in this country right now is the Republicans who control the House, the Senate and the White House, flat out refuse to govern. They refuse to fix our health care system, they refuse to pass a budget, they refuse to take care of disaster relief. It is time we hold them accountable.

(CSPAN link to Weekly Democratic Address: here)

(Link to Nancy Pelosi Newsroom here)