As you know here at DFA we endorse progressive candidates all the way from Senate down to local school board. This fall there are many important elections going on around the country and we will be regularly highlighting our many great progressive candidates.
Politicians in Richmond, VA have created and poured gasoline on many fires -- bad transportation, ignoring the environment, terrible laws that take away retirees benefits, and the list goes on.
We believe in firefighter and paramedic Rob Farinholt, a Virginian with a proven track record of serving the public, and that’s why DFA is proud to support him for Delegate in Virginia’s District 94. Unlike the majority of delegates in office, Rob Farinholt comes from a public safety background with lifelong ties to his community.
As a first responder Rob has a front row seat to happens when priorities are askew in Virginia’s state house. He’s seen what a lack of equipment and funds can do to a fire department. One of the most decorated firemen in his area, Rob earned a Medal of Honor in 2007 and Gold Medal of Valor in 2008 for marine rescues and he’s seen the impact that politician’s poor priorities have on the day-to-day lives our our brave first responders.
A champion of reproductive and LGBTQ rights, Rob is also an advocate for social development measures in Virginia’s 94th district. He is committed to improving industry, and advocates for essential job-creation legislation and increased funding of public services like education and transportation. Rob has seen firsthand the damage that government neglect does to communities and will bring that insight with him to Richmond as a delegate.
In striking contrast, Rob’s opponent, incumbent David Yancey, has aided the passing of a bill that removes purchase limits on handguns and a bill that reduces state employee retirement benefits. His conservatism doesn't stop there -- Delegate Yancey voted for forced vaginial ultrasounds and supported efforts to permit adoption agencies to discriminate against gay and lesbian couples. With 5,927 children in foster care and 14,000 same sex couples in Virginia, Yancey’s support for bigotry both denied children access to loving homes and cost Virginia taxpayers at least $2 million.
The progressive choice is clear. Rob Farinholt may not have wealthy 1% donors like Delegate Yancey, but he is ready to put up a fight with a team of dedicated friends and volunteers fueling his people-powered campaign.
Yesterday's historic Supreme Court decision was a blessing for thousands of gay men and women in the country -- but for folks in Virginia, Ohio, and 35 other states, real change could be a long ways off.
Equal marriage is now back in the hands of the states. And too many of those states are controlled by right-wing nut jobs like Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, who argued that gay marriage inevitably leads to polygamy.
Extremists like Cuccinelli are holding our whole country back. That's why DFA launched our Purple to Blue project -- to start moving us forward again, one state at a time.
It's not just about LGBT rights. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court gutted the heart of the Voting Rights Act, giving Republican governors the freedom to suppress voters and gerrymander districts with abandon. Later that same day, the country was captivated by Texas as one courageous female state senator almost singlehandedly turned back the biggest attack on women's rights yet.
These battles are being fought in all fifty states, and the attacks won't stop until we retake control of state capitols across the country. That's why DFA's commitment to a fifty-state strategy is so important -- and why your support is so critical.
It's no secret that the GOP is still fighting Roe v. Wade 40 years later.
So it should come as no surprise that they decided to blow $2 million tax-payer dollars on a symbolic vote to further restrict a woman's right to choose.
Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz) sponsored the bill, and it resembles the recent string of legislative battles that have taken place in a dozen different states. The bill would ban most abortions after 20 weeks, passed on very clear party lines. What's more, the bill passed out of an all-male committee.
It's a man's world
One of the fights that came out of this bill was a GOP attempt to, once again, redefine rape and would force women to report a rape to the authorities. The bill originally didn't even have a rape or incest exception, and after a debate in which Republicans argued against an amendment, the public outcry resulted in them quietly adding one (and to have a key-sponsor of the bill take his name off of it in outrage - he was one of the 6 Republicans to vote against it, too)
This cannot be real life
You won't believe where the justifications of this are coming from. One Republican believes that, because a fetus was rocking back and forth in the womb, that it was masturbating and feeling pleasure. And, therefore, it can feel pain.
Just. What? Rachel Maddow breaks it down for us...
Okay maybe it is real life. But it doesn't end there. The GOP's longstanding effort to rebrand itself and appeal to kids may actually have played a role in Congressman Burgess' fetal masturbation theory. No one wants this to be true, but it's hard to escape reality.
At the Faith and Freedom Coalition Conference, one panel dedicated time to making the GOP accessible to millenials. No, they weren't going to try and do it by softening their stances, like this College Republicans report suggested. Instead they were going to add humor and sarcasm to the debate.
Essentially, they want to make abortion funny.
So far the push by the GOP to restrict a woman's right to choose has been the most popular policy objective they've had to work with, and their ridiculous attempts to shape the debate have hit a wall. There's no way this legislation will pass congress, and no way that they can push this on the people from Washington.
There's a hashtag on Twitter we like for moments like this: #GoodbyeGOP
But, maybe it was just an isolated incident. Maybe it's just one guy getting caught with his guard down a little...
Wait, what did Texas Governor Rick Perry have to say about religious freedom?
That's your talking point. That's your hook. Everyone has the right to choose a religion, as long as they have a faith? Last I checked, 77% of people in the US were Christian. It really doesn't look like they need a hand from the government to fight some oppression, or in this case, discomfort over saying, "Merry Christmas."
So Christmas in June aside, maybe that's not the worst thing to legislate. I mean, in the grand scale of geopolitical affairs, the governor of Texas giving religious preference to a group in a very religious state, while misguided, isn't exactly like coming out in support of someone like, say, Bashar al-Assad, the malevolent dictator who slaughters his own people and has now been proven to have used chemical weapons against Syrian rebels.
Yeah, not like any GOP politicians are going to stand up for him.
Sen. Paul: Taxpayer dollars funding 'war against Christianity in the Middle East' - The Hill
“These countries are not our true allies and no amount of money will make them so. They are not allies of Israel, and I fear one day our money and military arms that we have paid for will be used against Israel,”
Alright, so Rand Paul just doesn't want to see US support go to rebels who might make problems for Israel, which makes him, essentially, a proponent of the status quo, which also means Bashar al-Assad stays in power?
We all knew the GOP rebrand was shaky but it can't be this bad. They're just running out of stuff to say since Scandalmania doesn't seem to be rocking as much this week. But we have covered Senator Rand Paul's support for the Assad regime. There really isn't anywhere we could go from there, right?
Rick Santorum: Why Mitt Romney didn’t win - Politico
It just doesn't end... I mean, Romney soundly beat Santorum! Is this reality?
The State Senate exploded when debate on a mandatory ultrasound bill abruptly ended, and Senators were screamed down by Senate President Mike Ellis (R).
Senate Bill 206 (text here ) is the latest in a series of ultra-strict anti-abortion bills that would enforce mandatory, unnecessary, and invasive, as well as not even medically sound ultrasounds on women seeking an abortion. What's more is that Governor Scott Walk is most likely going to sign it into law, as it's expected to sail through the GOP-controlled House.
Rachel Maddow's commentary on the issue adds poignancy to it all:
@ 0:20 - Watch what happens when he forces debate to end and he loses his mind
@ 0:32 - Lays waste to Democratic traditions by forcing an end to debate
@ 0:54 - "YOU'RE OUT OF ORDER." "NO YOU'RE OUT OF ORDER." Completely explodes at Senators voicing their dissent
@ 1:41 - Dissent will "not be tolerated"
@ 1:50 - 8th ear-splitting gavel smash... it indicates that the loudest and angriest person in the room dictates policy
@ 1:51 to end - Maddow's take. Will there be a political cost to pay for forcing medically unnecessary procedures on women?
All of this begs the question, "What the hell is going on?"