Will Young Voters Defeat Trump In 2020

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There’s really no question Democrats are going to win younger voters in 2020. But what matters for them is the size of their margin of victory. 
Republicans haven’t carried 18-to-29-year-olds in an election cycle since 1994, when exit polling showed them besting Democrats in this age group, 51 percent to 49 percent. They broke even with Democrats among younger voters in the 1998 midterms, but it’s been at least 30 years since Republicans carried 18-to-29-year-olds in a presidential cycle.
Younger voters’ share of the electorate has been fairly stable in recent cycles. They comprised 13 percent of all voters in the 2014 and 2018 midterm elections and 19 percent in the 2012 and 2016 presidential elections.

Of course, losing younger voters hasn’t prevented Republicans from winning races. Donald Trump lost 18-to-29-year-olds by 19 points, 55 percent to 36 percent, on his way to becoming president in 2016. Republicans lost younger voters by 16 points, 58 percent to 42 percent, in the 2010 midterms, when they took back the House, winning a net of 63 seats. And the GOP lost younger voters by 9 points, 54 percent to 43 percent, in 2014 when they picked up 9 Senate seats and recaptured the chamber.

But when the margin creeps higher, Democrats win big. Barack Obama won younger voters by 30 points in 2008 and 23 points in 2012 as part of his two presidential victories. Democrats won 18-to-29-year-olds by 22 points (61 percent to 39 percent) in 2006 when they gained 30 House seats and the majority. And Democrats won younger voters by a whopping 35 points in 2018, as they netted 40 seats on their way to taking back the House.

Losing younger voters by 20 points or less isn’t a precise threshold for Republicans, but even if it’s closer, Trump and the GOP will have to make a dramatic recovery among 18-to-29-year olds in just two years to avoid more losses.

Wayne Messam announced that he’s running for president

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Mayor Wayne Messam announced that he’s running for president Thursday by releasing what may be the most meta campaign video of the young 2020 presidential cycle. Messam, the 44-year-old mayor of Miramar, dropped a two-minute biographical video intended to introduce the former Florida State Seminole wide receiver to the country. It begins with a wide-angle shot of Messam — an avid runner who grew up the son of a contract sugar cane cutter in a rural Lake Okeechobee town — running on a road along a cane field.

Why Does Florida Hate The Poor In Our State

About 14 percent of Floridians live in poverty. Many of those 2.9 million residents rely on government programs to help them meet daily needs like visiting a doctor, paying rent or buying gas.
But Florida has never been overly generous in helping the poor. In fact, critics call the state stingy when it comes to programs like Medicaid, which provides health care for the state’s poor and disabled residents.
Non-disabled adults without dependent children, no matter how poor, can’t qualify for Medicaid. Only five states make it harder than Florida for working parents to qualify, according to the Florida Policy Institute. If a family of three makes more than $7,038 a year, the parents won’t receive Medicaid support.
Despite the hardship that the neediest face, Florida is among just 14 states that have refused to expand Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act. If the state did expand Medicaid, more than 700,000 poor Floridians could gain needed health coverage.
The Republican-led Florida Legislature resists expanding Medicaid to cover more needy residents year after year. And this year, state lawmakers are advancing proposals to make it even harder for Floridians to qualify for programs like Medicaid and a temporary cash-assistance program for the poor that only provides about $300 a month for a family of three. In hearing the proposals, one Democratic lawmaker asked: “How can a family with nothing be forced to meet these stringent requirements?”
–One proposed measure in the Legislature would impose a first-ever requirement that adults who receive Medicaid coverage work. It could impact more than 500,000 residents on that program, according to legislative analysts. A federal judge this week blocked similar programs in Kentucky and Arkansas.
–Another proposal would drastically increase the penalty for low-income Floridians who use a government program that provides temporary cash assistance that’s meant to help the needy through emergencies.  If they can’t prove, among other things, that they are working, they’d get punished by losing the several hundred dollars in government aid. First-time violators would lose their financial help for at least a month, up from the current 10-day penalty. The punishment for three-time violators would be six months without temporary cash assistance.
“I wish we would finally refocus on really assisting people instead of punishing them, while saying ‘Yeah we’re going to help you here, but we’re going to beat you up in the process,’” said Karen Woodall, head of the Florida Center for Fiscal and Economic Policy, a nonprofit group that advocates on behalf of low- and moderate-income Floridians.
Woodall is opposed to both the Medicaid work requirement and increasing the penalties for the state’s temporary cash-assistance program.
“It doesn’t work. And it doesn’t lift people out of poverty. And it doesn’t improve the economy. We have the wherewithal to do it. But we have to get our hearts and minds in the right place,” she said.
The measure to impose a  requirement (HB 955) that non-disabled Medicaid recipients work has cleared two House subcommittees. If passed, it would allow Florida to ask the federal Department of Health and Human Services for permission to impose a new work requirement.
The federal government has already approved similar Medicaid work requirement plans for eight states. But the move has sparked an ongoing federal court challenge.
If imposed in Florida, the work requirement would likely reduce the number of adults who are able to qualify for Medicaid.
The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that 1.4 million to 4 million Medicaid recipients would lose their coverage if the work requirement were approved nationwide.
In Arkansas, which requires Medicaid recipients to work at least 80 hours a month or engage in other qualifying activities, like school or training, more than 18,000 residents lost their coverage last year, according to a Kaiser report.
Rep. Daniel Perez, the Miami Republican sponsoring the legislation, noted that only non-disabled adults –  who make up about 20 percent of the state’s Medicaid recipients –  would have to meet the work requirement.
“It really targets those able-bodied working adults,” he said.
Woodall and other critics say the problem with a Medicaid work requirement is that since Florida’s eligibility requirements are so strict for adults, it would jeopardize the coverage for many recipients.
“Maintaining eligibility is a high-wire act. Just a little overtime or a promotion with a slightly higher salary could make them ineligible, even when an employer doesn’t offer health insurance coverage,” said a recent Florida Policy Institute report on the state’s Medicaid program.
The bill (HB 959) that would increase penalties for Floridians who receive temporary cash assistance has been approved by one House subcommittee.
Compared to the overall Medicaid program, which provides coverage to nearly 4 million Floridians, the cash assistance program helped 9,732 low-income adults and 55,333 children in January, according to legislative analysts.
The cash payments are modest. The maximum monthly benefit for a family of three is just $303 a month.
While the proposed legislation increases penalties for people who need temporary cash payments, Rep. Ardian Zika, the Pasco County Republican sponsoring the bill, emphasized that the legislation would provide greater protections for children to receive government aid if their parents ended up being disqualified. He said the legislation also increases state support for needy adults by helping them find jobs or develop skills.
Zika insists his bill is “a step in the right” direction in guiding Floridians from welfare support to a more prosperous life. He noted that he started his life in limited circumstances as an immigrant from Yugoslavia.
“I know what it means to be at the bottom. I also know what it means to climb the mountain,” said Zika, who is now a successful businessman.
But Democrats on the House Children, Families and Seniors Subcommittee who opposed the bill questioned how cutting off financial assistance for months at a time for low-income parents would not impact children under their care.
Rep. Wengay Newton, a St. Petersburg Democrat, said he grew up as one of eight children with a single, divorced mother who relied on government help to survive.
“Food stamps. Welfare. Government cheese. Free lunch. Reduced lunch. Summer jobs. After-school jobs. You’re looking at it…. We had nothing next to nothing,” he said. “How can a family with nothing be forced to meet these stringent requirements?”
Zika’s bill has two more committee stops before it can reach the House floor. A Senate bill (SB 1634), sponsored by Sen. Dennis Baxley, a Marion County Republican, has yet to be heard.

Source Florida Phonix 

The local news conundrum

The local news conundrum

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FIRST, an excellent new Pew Research Center survey about how Americans consume local news and what they want from their news sources.

This is one of the key findings: "Even amid declining revenues and staffing, about seven-in-ten Americans think their local news outlets are doing very or somewhat well financially (71%). When it comes to their own financial support of the industry, just 14% of American adults say they have paid for local news in the past year, either through subscription, donation or membership."

So: Most people don't know about the sorry state of local news biz models, and most people say they are not subscribing. One caveat: Most Americans DO pay for local TV news, without realizing it, by paying for cable.

Sara Fischer's scoop about a new venture by Google. Several of the tech giants are trying to get on the right side of news history... battling the widespread belief that their products have seriously hurt the news biz... by bankrolling all sorts of new services and initiatives. This "Local Experiments Project" by the Google News Initiative is a big move.

Google is stepping up to fund "dozens of new local news websites around the country and eventually around the world," Fischer wrote.Richard Gingras told her that Google "will be spending many millions of dollars on this overall."

Is this what the future looks like in smaller media markets?


About the Google experiment...

McClatchy is Google's first partner. The company's CEO Craig Forman said the "experiment" will provide news coverage "to three small to mid-sized U.S. communities that don't have access to significant local sources of news and information."

It's a three-year bet... "Our objective at McClatchy is to explore new models for independent local news and information," Forman said in this blog post. "Google's objective is to test the business models and operational aspects necessary to succeed in local news."

 --> Columbia J-school prof Bill Grueskin tweeted: "Google is *directly funding* new local-news sites, using a newspaper chain (McClatchy) as its publishing partner and promising total editorial independence. A very different model from what we've seen in the past..."

 --> His colleague Emily Bell tweeted: "This where we have been heading for a while. Would US news organizations be comfortable with the govt directly owning local news? If the answer is ‘no' then this should concern them too..."

Source CNN.com

Jussie Smollett charges dropped, I suspected there was more to the story

This author, neither blogged or put any stories about Smollett out in my Magazine, because something seemed off about his arrest - Ron Mills

Some remained skeptical of the findings presented by the Chicago Police Department, which already had a fragile relationship with the black community in the city. As recent as 2017, federal investigators concluded that police had routinely violated the constitutional rights of Chicago’s residents, particularly those of color.
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Prosecutors said they reached the surprise decision “after reviewing all of the facts and circumstances of the case,” the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
“We believe this outcome is a just disposition and appropriate resolution to this case,” the Cook County state attorney’s office said.
Prosecutors also cited Smollett’s volunteer community service that he already did and the $10,000 bond he posted in their decision.
All records regarding the Smollett case will be sealed, initial reports on the decision revealed.

Earlier in March, Smollett was charged with 16 accounts of lying to police and orchestrating a false hate crime after news broke that he was assaulted by two men in Chicago in January.

“Today, all criminal charges against Jussie Smollett were dropped and his record has been wiped clean of the filing of this tragic complaint against him,” a statement from the actor’s attorneys, Tina Glandian and Patricia Brown Holmes, read. “Jussie was attacked by two people he was unable to identify on January 29th. He was a victim who was vilified and made to appear as a perpetrator as a result of false and inappropriate remarks made to the public causing an inappropriate rush to judgement.”
“Jussie and many others were hurt by these unfair and unwarranted actions,” the attorneys added. “This entire situation is a reminder that there should never be an attempt to prove a case in the court of public opinion. That is wrong. It is a reminder that a victim, in this case Jussie, deserves dignity and respect. Dismissal of charges against the victim in this case was the only just result.”
Prosecutors said they reached the surprise decision “after reviewing all of the facts and circumstances of the case,” the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
“We believe this outcome is a just disposition and appropriate resolution to this case,” the Cook County state attorney’s office said.
Prosecutors also cited Smollett’s volunteer community service that he already did and the $10,000 bond he posted in their decision.
All records regarding the Smollett case will be sealed, initial reports on the decision revealed.

It's Mueller Time

March 22nd, 2019

Mark This Date In History
  • After 22 months, 34 indictments, and weeks of breathless anticipation by reporters around the world, special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign and Russia is concluded. He has submitted a report to Attorney General Bill Barr. [Vox / Andrew Prokop]
  • But the big question remains: What does the report say? WHAT DOES THE REPORT SAY?!? Barr says he might be ready to tell Congress as soon as this weekend. [Read Barr’s letter]
  • The report could be a dry law enforcement document or an authoritative narrative of everything we know about the case. Either way, it has two big questions to answer: Did the Trump campaign collude with Russia, and did Trump obstruct justice to try to block the inquiry? [Vox / Andrew Prokop]
  • Barr can make parts of the report public, or all of it. He’s said his goal is to be as transparent as possible — something the House of Representatives (and the 2020 Democratic candidates, and many other people) want too. [BuzzFeed / Zoe Tillman]
  • Just because we haven’t seen the report, though, doesn’t mean that we have no idea what the investigation has found. The arrests and indictments, and reporting on the investigation itself, have revealed details of Russian social media manipulation, contacts between the Trump campaign and foreign nationals, and much more. [NYT / Larry Buchanan and Karen Yourish]
  • Here’s what we know so far. [Vox / Andrew Prokop]

Deutch Statement on Robert Mueller Delivering Report to AG Barr

(Washington) Following reports that special counsel Robert Mueller delivered his report to U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr, Congressman Ted Deutch (FL-22), a senior member on the House Judiciary Committee, issued this statement:

"Special counsel Mueller and his team have worked tirelessly to investigate how Russia interfered in our 2016 presidential election, and I applaud his team for their hard work to expose the truth and hold people accountable.

"Make no mistake, this is only the first step. The Attorney General should make the report public and let the American people learn the facts Mueller uncovered. The American public deserves to know the truth, and only full transparency and accountability will ensure that the President is not above the law.

"Our mission to get to the truth is not over. Congress must take appropriate measures to make this report and underlying facts public. Congress has the constitutional responsibility to ensure the rule of law is respected by the President and his Administration. 
Democrats on the Judiciary Committee will continue to investigate any attempts to interfere in the special counsel’s investigation, to obstruct justice to protect themselves or others, or in any way to violate the rule of law."

Is Jeanine Pirro one of Fox News Biggest racists Finished at Fox

Fox News Pulls Jeanine Pirro Show after her Islamophobic Remarks

Jeanine Pirro, the Fox News host who made Islamophobic comments about a Muslim Congress member, has been unexpectedly yanked off the air. And now one of her most powerful defenders — the president of the United States — is railing against the network.
Justice With Judge Jeanine was missing from its usual Saturday time slot at 9 pm on Fox News, coming just one week after Pirro questioned whether Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) was loyal to the United States because she wears a hijab.
In response, Fox News took the rare move of publicly condemning one of its own anchors. But Pirro has refused to apologize, saying that she never explicitly called Omar “un-American.”
And now President Donald Trump is injecting himself into the controversy in defense of Pirro. “Fox … must stay strong and fight back with vigor. Stop working soooo hard on being politically correct, which will only bring you down, and continue to fight for our Country,” he tweeted on Sunday.
The apparent suspension of Jeanine Pirro is squeezing Fox News Channel in two directions.

A prominent Muslim-American civil rights organization is calling for advertisers to boycott Fox News, while another group is petitioning to have the weekend host reinstated.
Pirro wasn’t on the air Saturday, a week after Fox publicly condemned her for comments questioning U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar’s loyalty because she wears a Muslim head covering. Fox hasn’t explained the former New York-area district attorney’s absence, declining to comment on “internal scheduling matters.”
The network’s schedule for the upcoming weekend lists another program in Pirro’s time slot.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights organization, this week said that advertisers should boycott Fox News until Pirro and prime-time host Tucker Carlson were fired. Carlson has been fighting back since being criticized last week for comments made on a radio show a decade ago and unearthed last week.

Deutch, Bonamici, Crist Introduce Bill to Strengthen Safeguards for LGBT Older Adults

Deutch, Bonamici, Crist Introduce Bill to Strengthen Safeguards for LGBT Older Adults
(Washington) Today, Congressman Ted Deutch (D-FL), Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), and Congressman Charlie Crist (D-FL) introduced legislation to provide needed support for LGBT older adults and increase their access to health care and culturally competent services.

The Ruthie and Connie LGBT Elder Americans Act updates the Older Americans Act to better serve LGBT elders, who face disproportionate barriers to accessing support programs and are at a higher risk of experiencing isolation and poverty. The bill would improve services by establishing a National Resource Center on LGBT Aging and determining the needs of LGBT older adults through data collection and research.

The legislation is named after Ruthie Berman and Connie Kurtz, long-time advocates for LGBT equality. Connie fought for the rights of LGBT older adults until her death in 2018. Ruthie, her widow, continues to serve as a champion for the cause.

“No one should have to worry about whether they will receive needed elder care support and services because of their identity or who they love,” said Congresswoman Bonamici. “Unfortunately, too many seniors in the LGBT community face isolation and significant barriers to accessing programs and resources. I’m honored to continue Connie’s work to fight for the rights of LGBT seniors by introducing the Ruthie and Connie LGBT Elder Americans Act.”

“I’m deeply honored to reintroduce this bill in Connie’s memory and in honor of her and her wife Ruthie’s lifelong activism in the LGBT community," said Congressman Deutch. "LGBT seniors face unique challenges and are at greater risk of facing bigotry and discrimination in their twilight years. No one should have to hide who they are or go back into the closet as they age to access needed care or services. With this legislation, Congress can ensure LGBT seniors have the resources, support, and care to address their unique needs and retire in dignity.”

“The Older Americans Act provides critical support and services for millions of Americans, yet fails to address the specific needs of our LGBT seniors,” said Congressman Crist. “LGBT seniors disproportionally face isolation, poverty, and poor health outcomes as they age. Paying homage to Floridians Ruthie Berman and the late, great Connie Kurtz – trailblazers in moving equality forward – this legislation takes into account the needs of LGBT seniors, so they can live out their golden years with greater security and peace of mind.”

The legislation is endorsed by SAGE USA, National Center for Transgender Equality, and National LGBTQ Task Force Action Fund.

“While we’ve made progress in our fight for LGBT equality, we still have work to do,” said 84-year-old Ruthie Berman, a lesbian activist and namesake of the bill. “My beloved Connie Kurtz passed away on May 27. I know Connie’s spirit is here, and that she would be proud to see the incredible advances that the LGBT community is achieving. However, LGBT people, especially older people, across the country still face challenges in accessing aging services and supports. That’s why this legislation is so important, and why it must be passed.”

“Yesterday was a historic day for our LGBT elder pioneers as dozens of LGBT elders and those living with HIV descended on Washington, D.C., to advocate for their rights,” said Michael Adams, CEO of SAGE USA. “Today we are thrilled to see the introduction of the Ruthie & Connie LGBT Elder Americans Act and commend Representatives Suzanne Bonamici, Ted Deutch, and Charlie Crist, for taking a stand to ensure that older LGBT people and those living with HIV from across the country have access to aging services and supports.”

You can read the text of the Ruthie and Connie LGBT Elder Americans Act here and a summary of the legislation here.

Tucker Carlson Victim V. Bully

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Tucker Carlson has made a career out of firing insults and excrement from his pie hole, and it certainly pays well. Enough people tune in to watch Tucker Carlson Tonight on Fox News that he earns a reported $4 million salary.
He wants the image of a tough guy who stands up to the godless liberals out to destroy America, and a lot of people are content to buy that. Not me. He’s nothing more than a well-compensated bully who figured a way to stand out in the crowd of TV screamers.
He gets more viewers by using his national platform to mock and humiliate people who think differently. He calls it candor, and here’s one of many examples. Fourteen advertisers pulled their spots from his show in December after Carlson said immigration makes the U.S. “poorer, dirtier, and more divided.”
But it really hit the fan after Media Matters released transcripts and tapes of radio segments dating from 2006-2011. They detailed banter between Carlson and Tampa shock jock Bubba The Love Sponge and surely you know the story by now.
I mean, sheesh. Bubba was involved, so there was a pretty good chance it would be raunchy, and it was.
Carlson called some women “extremely primitive” and others “whores” or “pigs.” He also defended the actions of convicted child sex offender Warren Jeffs, which prompted a rebuke from Bubba.
Think about that for a second. When Bubba says dude, you went too far there, wow.
Twitter melted down, which was predictable, and I'm sure Carlson loved every bit of that. And he loved even more that it gave him a chance to double down on the loathed left that doesn’t find his type of candor acceptable.
Since the day we went on the air, they've been working hard to kill this show. We haven't said much about it in public; it seemed too self- referential. The point of this show has never been us,” he said after the controversy broke.
“But now, it's obvious to everybody. There is no pretending that it is not happening. It is happening, and so, going forward, we'll be covering their efforts to make us be quiet.“Catch the smokescreen there?
Nowhere in his self-righteous, snow-flakey anger is there a hint that he doesn’t feel the same now as he did during those Bubba sessions. Didn’t that possibility ever cross the minds of those who rushed to defend Carlson?
That group, by the way, includes Donald Trump Jr.
"This is how to handle the outrage mob," he tweeted. "Remember, even the most sincere apology means nothing to them. They want to break and ruin you. That’s their end goal.”
Other Carlson defenders called the original story a “hit piece” and a coordinated attack by the “outrage machine” that demands conformity of thought. They've said everything except that his remarks were reprehensible.
All the arguments making Carlson out to be the victim are crap.
Decrying thought control is fine when talking about taxes, the national debt, gun control, and even building a border wall.
But that's not what is happening here.
Carlson painted himself as the victim and built a false narrative that anything he says, no matter how personally insulting or crude, is in-bounds. Those offended are the real losers because, like Jack Nicholson once said in the movies, they can't handle the truth.
Neither can Tucker Carlson, and it’s not that complicated.
He hasn't said his comments to Bubba were inappropriate at best, so I have to assume he thinks the same way now as he did then. And if that’s his attitude, why would anyone support him?

Source FloridaPolitics.com

by Joe Henderson