Sochi Hypocrisy?

WaPo has an interesting story* pointing out that eight U. S. states have so-called “no homo promo” bans in their school curricula that are very much like Russia’s anti-gay laws.  These states — and I’m sure you already guessed some of them — are Alabama, Mississippi, South Carolina, Louisiana, Texas, Arizona, Utah, and Oklahoma.

But I’m still not watching the Olympics because of the dog killing.  You spent $50 billion and you couldn’t build an animal shelter?

* “Eight U. S. states have policies similar to Russia’s ban on gay propaganda,” Niraj Chokski

Waiver? What Waiver? Who Asked for a Waiver?

With Mitt running ads falsely accusing President Obama of gutting the work requirements for welfare (in a racist appeal for more white voters because he needs to get 61% of them), the two GOP governors who were among the five asking for waivers are backpedaling as fast as their little legs will go.*

In fact New Mexico Gov. Sandoval has said that his administration never asked for a waiver!  Someone must have forged his state Health and Human Service director’s signature because the Obama administration has a letter that says, “Nevada is very interested in working with your staff to explore program waivers…”  Shouldn’t Sandoval be investigating this apparent fraud?

Utah Gov. Gary Herbert at least admits that he wanted waivers, but says he wanted them from Congress, not the Obama administration.  That must be why he was working with HHS Secretary Kathleen Sibelius to get the waivers, rather than with any senators or congressmen.

If I were Obama, I would rescind the waivers.  I would tell the states that he was trying to give them more power and flexibility — something the GOP is always yelling and screaming about wanting — and in return he got lies from Mitt’s campaign.  So screw them, they can follow the law as written.

He should tell the governors that he was trying to do a good deed for them and their welfare programs, but this is one good deed that will go unpunished.  No more waivers, no more lying ads.

*  “GOP Governors Attack Obama’s Welfare Waivers After Requesting Flexibility,” Sahil Kapur, Talking Points Memo

But What About the Swiss Account?

Mitt isn’t releasing any more tax returns, but he’s asking us to take his word that he paid at least 13% in each of the last ten years.

First, I’d be more inclined to trust him if he hadn’t flat out lied as to what his tax returns said about his residency when he ran for governor of Massachusetts after paying taxes as a resident of Utah.

Second, I’m not impressed about the 13%.  I’ve paid far more in each of the last ten years on a teeny, tiny fraction of his annual income.

Third, this doesn’t tell us if he took advantage of the IRS amnesty for Americans who had been hiding their Swiss bank accounts and not paying taxes on them.  If he participated in this amnesty, he admitted to being a felon.  Election over.

Quote of the Day

“The recently announced waiver policy was originally requested by the Republican governors of Utah and Nevada to achieve more flexibility in designing programs more likely to work in this challenging environment. The administration has taken important steps to ensure that the work requirement is retained and that waivers will be granted only if a state can demonstrate that more people will be moved into work under its new approach.”  Emphasis added.

Bill Clinton, responding to Mitt and the GOP’s specious charge that President Obama’s giving more power to the states will “gut welfare reform.”

The GOP is sure to hear more about this — none of it kind — during Clinton’s big convention speech nominating Obama.


If You Want to Ruin Your Weekend

Check out Politico‘s top story this morning, “Sarah Palin:  Senate kingmaker.”  From David Catanese’s article:

Riding a four-endorsement winning streak in Republican Senate primaries this year, the former Alaska governor swept into a blueberry patch outside Kansas City this weekend looking to apply her Midas touch to the latest fortunate recipient. This time it’s Sarah Steelman, a former state treasurer running in a fractured Missouri Tuesday primary to decide who gets to take on vulnerable Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in November.

 “With Steelman, Palin is making perhaps her boldest bet yet. Steelman — who, like Palin, likes to hunt, staunchly opposes abortion rights and touts herself as a maverick — has been running third against businessman John Brunner, who’s poured millions of his personal fortune into the race, and six-term Rep. Todd Akin.

“At least that was the case before Palin’s arrival and the ensuing glut of media exposure for Steelman.

“A win would only enhance Palin’s reputation as the most powerful down-ballot force in Republican politics.

“’She’s a rock star right now in Republican Senate primaries. She’s hit a pretty strong streak,‘ said Scott Bensing, a former executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. ‘She gives the impression that she has deeply held beliefs she’s willing to take on water for and doesn’t really care what her critics think. She comes off resolute and principled.’

“Palin’s victory roster this cycle includes Indiana’s Richard Mourdock, Nebraska’s Deb Fischer, Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch and Texas’ Ted Cruz, who shattered expectations Tuesday with a 14-point win in a runoff against Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

No other conservative icon or entity matches her record.”  Emphasis added.

Sarah Palin, bringing the craziest of the crazies to our Senate, earning IOU’s for herself to be collected, oh, I don’t know, maybe in 2016 0r 2020.  Thanks a lot, John McCain, you foolish old goat.


Marco! Rubio! Says Mitt Did Invite Him

I posted yesterday that Mittens is having a big retreat in Park City, Utah this weekend for his major donors and supporters.  I wrote that while a number of potential veeps would be there (Portman, Ryan, Pawlenty), Rubio had not been invited.

Today Rubio says he was invited, but he wants to spend the weekend with his kids.  People who want to spend weekends with their kids don’t go into politics.

Big Love in the White House?

Mitt has appointed former Utah governor and fellow Mormon Mike Leavitt to head his transition.  There is also talk that if Mitt wins, Leavitt will become either White House Chief of Staff or Mitt’s version of senior adviser Valerie Jarrett.

I’m troubled by the fact that when he was governor in 1998, Leavitt told a press conference that polygamy may be protected under the First Amendment (um, the Supreme Court disagrees) and that the people who engage in it are “good people.”  This was 1998, people, not 1898.

This is a hideous, and to me totally unacceptable, view of women as chattel, who belong in a harem, who exist to please men and bear children.

And these are the creepy people who try to portray Obama as The Other.  Give me a break, and give him a second term.

Utah Escalates Its War on Women

Utah has just enacted a 72-hour waiting period for those seeking abortions.  It previously had a 24-hour waiting period.

They seem to believe that women  just show up for abortions on a whim without giving it any thought!  So they want to impose a “time out,” as if women were toddlers.

Gloria Steinem was so right — if men got pregnant, abortion wouldn’t be a right, it would be a sacrament.