Category Archives: Elections

Biden Admin Still Pushing Trump-Era Legal Positions After Two Years in White House

“As the previous administration violated legal and ethical norms at every turn, Attorney General Merrick Garland’s choice of continuity with the Trump DOJ’s positions erodes the integrity of the very institution he is determined to protect,” said one researcher.

By Kenny Stancil.  Published 1-20-2023 by Common Dreams

Merrick Garland and Chuck Schumer in 2016 Photo: Senate Democrats/flickr/CC

Two years after President Joe Biden was inaugurated, his administration continues to advance Trump-era legal positions in dozens of court cases, a progressive watchdog group revealed Friday.

Former President Donald Trump’s Department of Justice (DOJ) “consistently made a mockery of the law throughout his four years in power,” the Revolving Door Project (RDP) noted in the latest release of its long-running litigation tracker. Continue reading

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How the distortion of Martin Luther King Jr.‘s words enables more, not less, racial division within American society

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. addresses a cheering crowd in Cleveland, Ohio, on July 27, 1965.
Bettmann/Getty Images

 

Hajar Yazdiha, USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences

U.S. Rep. Chip Roy of Texas is just the latest conservative lawmaker to misuse the words of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. to judge a person on character and not race.

In the protracted battle to elect Rep. Kevin McCarthy as speaker of the House, Roy, a Republican, nominated a Black man, Byron Donalds, a two-term representative from Florida who had little chance of winning the seat. Considered a rising star in the GOP, Donalds has opposed the very things that King fought for and ultimately was assassinated for – nonviolent demonstrations and voting rights protections. Continue reading

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Peruvian Forces Accused of ‘Massacre’ of 17 Protesters Opposed to Government Takeover

The governor of Puno province has declared three days of mourning for the victims of the killing in Juliaca, who include a 17-year-old girl.

By Brett Wilkins.  Published 1-10-2023 by Common Dreams

Protest in Lima, Peru on 12-13-2022 Photo: Mayimbú/Wikimedia Commons/CC

At least 17 people were killed by state security forces in southern Peru Monday while protesting the government of unelected President Dina Boluarte and the ouster and imprisonment of former leftist leader Pedro Castillo.

The Peruvian Health Ministry published the names and ages of 17 victims of what’s being called the Juliaca massacre, which took place in the Indigenous Aymara city of Juliaca, the capital of San Román province in the Puno region of southeastern Peru near Lake Titicaca and the Bolivian border. The youngest of the slain protesters is a 17-year-old girl, Nataly Aroquipa, who was reportedly shot in the abdomen. Continue reading

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Federal Court Orders South Carolina to Redraw Racially Gerrymandered Congressional Maps

“It’s time for the South Carolina Legislature to adopt a map that allows us ALL to fairly participate in our democracy,” the ACLU asserted.

By Brett Wilkins.  Published 1-6-2023 by Common Dreams

Photo: Pix4Free.org

A portion of South Carolina’s Republican-drawn congressional map discriminates against Black voters and must be redrawn, federal judges ruled Friday to applause from civil rights groups.

A three-judge panel of the U.S. District Court for South Carolina in Columbia found that “race was the predominant motivating factor in the General Assembly’s design of Congressional District No. 1 and that traditional districting principles were subordinated to race.” Continue reading

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Concerns Over Disinformation Grow After Musk Relaxes Twitter Ban on Political Ads

Critics expressed concern about the social media giant serving as “a major new forum for massive amounts of money to be spent to influence politics.”

By Jessica Corbett.  Published 1-4-2023 by Common Dreams

As advertisers depart Twitter in the wake of Elon Musk’s recent takeover, the billionaire owner continues to shake up the social media platform, which on Tuesday relaxed a ban on political and issue-based advertising put in place for over three years.

When then-CEO Jack Dorsey announced the ban in October 2019, he explained that “this isn’t about free expression. This is about paying for reach. And paying to increase the reach of political speech has significant ramifications that today’s democratic infrastructure may not be prepared to handle.” Continue reading

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Progressive Democrats Announce Nationwide Democracy Rallies for Jan. 6 Anniversary

“We cannot be complacent; we are calling for an end to the ongoing violent and criminal attacks on our freedoms.”

By Julia Conley  Published 1-2-2023 by Common Dreams

March on Washington for voting rights on August 28, 2021 Photo: Elvert Barnes/Wikimedia Commons/CC

Progressive Democrats of America on Monday announced plans to hold rallies across the nation on Friday, the second anniversary of the January 6, 2021 insurrection, to call on lawmakers to do everything in their power to protect the U.S. from attacks on democracy, including the gutting of voting rights protections and threats to election officials.

The rallies are set to be held two weeks after the U.S. House select committee on the January 6 attack at the U.S. Capitol released its final report on an 18-month investigation into the insurrection and former President Donald Trump’s role in planning and orchestrating the attempt to stop lawmakers from certifying the 2020 presidential election. Continue reading

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Nobody loved you, 2022

From devastating floods in Pakistan to Italy’s far-right PM to overturning Roe v Wade, this was a year of extremes

By Adam Ramsay  Published 12-30-2022 by openDemocracy

A flooded village in Matiari, in the Sindh province of Pakistan. Photo: Asad Zaidi/UNICEF

How do you turn 365 days experienced by eight billion people – and billions more other beings – into some kind of story?

Maybe you start with some events?

In which case, 2022 was the year that Covid vaccines kicked in. Daily global deaths hit 77,000 on 7 February, and have declined fairly steadily ever since. It was the year Russia invaded Ukraine, the first war between major European powers since 1945. Continue reading

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‘I Did Not Believe It For One Second,’ Hannity Says of Trump’s Big Lie While Under Oath

One public policy expert called sworn depositions from Sean Hannity and other Fox personnel the “strongest evidence yet to emerge publicly that some Fox employees knew that what they were broadcasting was false.”

By Brett Wilkins  Published 12-23-2022 by Common Dreams

Sean Hannity speaking at the 2016 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland. Photo: Gage Skidmore/flickr/CC

Sean Hannity, the Fox News opinion host and erstwhile purveyor of Donald Trump’s “Big Lie,” did not believe the disgraced former president’s 2020 election fraud claims “for one second,” details from a sworn deposition revealed Wednesday.

Hannity, who was deposed as part of Dominion Voting Systems’ $1.6 billion lawsuit against Fox News, was asked under oath if he believed claims by conspiracy theorist Sidney Powell, amplified on his show, that the Colorado-based company was part of a plot to rig its voting machines to switch large numbers of votes from Trump to President Joe Biden. Continue reading

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Amid coup, countercoup claims – what really went down in Peru and why?

Clashes on the streets of Peru.
Ernesto Benavides/AFP via Getty Images)

 

Eduardo Gamarra, Florida International University

Peru has a new president following the ouster of former leader Pedro Castillo at the hands of the country’s Congress.

His removal followed an attempt by Castillo to cling to power by dissolving a Congress intent on impeaching him. Castillo’s opponents accused him of attempting a coup – a charge his supporters similarly levied in regards to his removal from office. The day ended with the former president in detention.

The Conversation asked Eduardo Gamarra, an expert on Latin American politics at Florida International University, to explain the wider context of Peru’s political crisis – and what could happen next. Continue reading

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A brief history of Georgia’s runoff voting – and how this year’s contest between two Black men is a sign of progress

Former President Barack Obama raises hands with Stacey Abrams and U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock at a Oct. 28, 2022, campaign event in Georgia.
Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

 

Joshua Holzer, Westminster College

In the U.S., all elections are administered by the states. But not all states use the same rules.

Georgia uses a version of runoff voting, which entails two rounds of voting. Typically, if a candidate wins more than 50% of the votes in the first round, that candidate is declared the winner. If not, the two candidates with the most first-round votes face off in a second round of voting.

There’s historically been concern that such a runoff system disadvantages Black candidates. Former Assistant U.S. Attorney General John R. Dunne once argued that Georgia’s runoff voting system has had “a demonstrably chilling effect on the ability of Blacks to become candidates for public office.” Continue reading

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