Working the Refs

Part of this effectiveness comes through false equivalence: news organizations, afraid of being attacked for bias, give evenhanded treatment to lies and truth. Way back in 2000 I suggested that if a Republican candidate said that the earth was flat, headlines would read, “Views differ on shape of planet.” That still happens.

Read the full New York Times op-ed article here.

Let’s Hear From a Deplorable

My sister, Peggy, knew she wasn’t voting for Hillary, despite the fact that they both started as Goldwater girls. But could my favorite member of the "basket of deplorables," as I like to call her, vote for Trump?

She has been going back and forth on it for a year, vertiginous with the vicissitudes of trying to be a Republican in the Year of Trump.

She jumped off the Trump train whenever he said offensive things and when he retweeted an unflattering picture of Heidi Cruz, but tentatively came back when he apologized for that picture, after I told Trump that he had lost her vote.

Read the full opinion The New Your Times article here.

160 Republican Leaders Don’t Support Donald Trump. Here’s When They Reached Their Breaking Point.

This list includes leaders who have said they will not vote for Donald J. Trump, have withdrawn endorsements of him or have called for him to step down as the nominee. People shaded in blue have said they will vote for Hillary Clinton.

Read the full New York Times article here.

Can Republicans be rational?

. . . our political preferences are not the product of careful analytic reasoning. Instead, they spring from a combination of moral intuition (instinct) and a tribal affiliation with people who we believe share these instincts. We use reason, facts and analysis to affirm our gut decisions.

Read the full Washington Post opinion article here.

Donald Trump is America’s Silvio Berlusconi

Like Berlusconi in Italy, Trump has built a political campaign employing unvarnished language and jaundiced humor, which has succeeded in the United States, a country that — embarrassingly — ranks second among wealthy industrialized nations, only behind Italy, in terms of being uninformed on key issues of the world.

Read the full Washington Post article here.

This celebrity-packed political ad eviscerates Donald Trump

The three-minute ad, released Wednesday by director Joss Whedon's super PAC, Save the Day PAC, starts out with a familiar plea from celebrities: Register to vote, and cast a ballot on Election Day. It was the cornerstone of the "Rock the Vote" campaign that was most visible in the 1990s. P. Diddy made the same appeal in his "Vote or Die" campaign in 2004, and was subsequently mocked on Comedy Central's "South Park" for it.

View the full Save The Day political ad here.

Read the full Washington Post article here.

For Every 10 U.S. Adults, Six Vote and Four Don’t. What Separates Them?

But what distinguishes voters from nonvoters can be only partly explained by demographics. Experts say individuals tend to be motivated by a combination of their priorities, their group culture, how competitive their state is, and how easy or hard it is to vote. At the individual level, education and income are still two of the strongest predictors of whether someone will turn out at the polls.

Read the full New York Times article here.

Lynch v. Morales-Santana - A SCOTUS Case That Expats Should Follow

Issue: (1) Whether Congress’s decision to impose a different physical-presence requirement on unwed citizen mothers of foreign-born children than on other citizen parents of foreign-born children through 8 U.S.C. 1401 and 1409 (1958) violates the Fifth Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection; and (2) whether the court of appeals erred in conferring U.S. citizenship on respondent, in the absence of any express statutory authority to do so.

Follow the case through the SCOTUS blog here.

Block The Vote: A Journalist Discusses Voting Rights And Restrictions

I'm very concerned about it because the 2016 presidential election's going to be the first presidential election in 50 years without the full protections of the Voting Rights Act. I think, in many ways, we've come to take the VRA and what it did for granted. But the fact that states can pass new voting restrictions - those states with the worst histories of voting discrimination no longer have to clear their election changes with the federal government - means that, number one, those states can pass new restrictions very close to the election that are very hard to challenge.

And it also means, number two, that other states are going to feel emboldened to try to pass these efforts. So we're already facing a situation where, in key swing states like North Carolina, Wisconsin, Ohio, Virginia, new voting restrictions are in effect and could have a very big impact on the outcome of the 2016 election if they're not blocked in court.

Listen to the full Fresh Air (NPR) interview here.

What the Democratic Party Could Learn From Its Overseas Footsoldiers

A great article written by our own Democrats Abroad France members:

Party politics is messy and often inefficient. And in today’s political climate, one filled with distrust and apathy, ensuring representation and active participation is more important than ever. Democrats Abroad serves as a very successful model for how other state parties can reinvigorate faith in the party.

Adopting same-day registration for primary elections, using “remote” ballots to guarantee more participation, and intriguingly, limiting the superdelegates’ votes to just one-half of a pledged delegates’ vote are all concrete reforms that the party could adopt to restore trust with the grass roots.

Read the full Bill Moyers article here.