THIS WEEK IN POLITICS: JULY 26, 2019

THIS WEEK IN POLITICS: JULY 26, 2019

MONDAY JULY 22, 2019: CONGRESS REACHES BUDGET AGREEMENT

House Speaker- Nancy Pelosi
Treasury Secretary- Steven Mnuchin

A fiscal deal was negotiated on Monday to lift the nation’s debt limit and raise federal spending levels. This agreement was negotiated by Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, and Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin. Pres. Trump endorsed the agreement on Twitter, potentially helping convince Republicans in Congress who are against it. This bipartisan agreement is also expected to eliminate the threat of dual fiscal crises.

TUESDAY JULY 23, 2019: FAST-TRACK DEPORTATIONS EXPAND TO UNDOCUMENTED IMMIGRANTS

The Trump administration “fast-track deportation” ruling does not only effect asylum seekers, but now also undocumented immigrants in the United States. The new ruling started off as restricting asylum at the border and now it will also speed the deportation of undocumented immigrants who cannot prove they have been in the United States for more than two years. This new ruling will allow federal agents to arrest and deport migrants without giving them the chance to have a hearing before a judge. The American Civil Liberties Union (A.C.L.U.) has vowed to block the ruling in court.

WEDNESDAY JULY 24, 2019: PRES. TRUMP VETOES RESOLUTION TO BLOCK SAUDI ARMS SALES

President Donald Trump and the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman.

Last week the House voted to block the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia and three resolutions, including this latest one, were vetoed by Pres. Trump this week. The reasoning behind that veto is believed to be the same as that of State Secretary Mike Pompeo. Pompeo last month said that the “threats from Iran” are a reason for the United States to continue to the $8.1 billion arms sale.

THURSDAY JULY 25, 2019: DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE TO RESUME CAPITAL PUNISHMENT

After a nearly two-decade stop to capital punishment, Attorney General William Barr ruled the Department of Justice to resume federal capital punishment. The federal government will resume the punishments by the use of lethal injections instead of the “three drug protocol” used in the past. A.G. Barr has already ordered for five inmates to be executed, which will take place in December.

FRIDAY JULY 26, 2019: ELECTION OFFICIALS ACCUSED OF DESTROYING EVIDENCE OF TAMPERING

In 2017 election officials in Georgia were sued by voters, alleging that the voting machines used were unsecure and vulnerable to hacking. In a court filing, it showed that Georgia election officials had repeatedly and intentionally destroyed evidence that could show unauthorized access to state election material and potential manipulation of election results. The destroying of evidence began after they were sued in 2017 by Georgia voters.

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THIS WEEK IN POLITICS: JULY 19, 2019

THIS WEEK IN POLITICS: JULY 19, 2019

SATURDAY JULY 13, 2019: ATTACK ON MIGRANT DETENTION CENTER

A man in the early morning on Sunday armed with a rifle, threw bombing devices at a migrant detention center in Tacoma, Washington. The man also caused a vehicle to catch on fire, attempted to ignite a large propane tank and set buildings on fire. The man died a few moments after shots were fired by the police that was at the scene.

SUNDAY JULY 14, 2019: CHILDREN COULD BE SEPARATED FROM PARENTS DURING I.C.E. RAIDS

Acting director of the Citizenship and Immigration Services, Ken Cuccinelli.

The acting director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Ken Cuccinelli, said that he could not say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to whether or not kids would be separated from their parents when I.C.E. raids were to be conducted. The reason why he says is because people “could easily find a loophole through that system”. Cuccinelli did not mention specifics when it came to the operation of these I.C.E. raids.

MONDAY JULY 15, 2019: REGULATION TO PREVENT REFUGEES FROM SEEKING ASYLUM

A new regulation is to go into effect on Tuesday that would prevent refugees from seeking asylum in the U.S. if they pass first through another country and do not apply for protection in that state. This regulation will cut off asylum protections to Central American migrants who travel to the U.S.-Mexico border from their home country. Migrants who enter the U.S. before the effective date, will not be subject to the new standard.

TUESDAY JULY 16, 2019: HOUSES VOTES TO CONDEMN PRES. TRUMP’S RACIST REMARKS

Left-Right: Rep. Rashida Tlaib, Rep. Ilhan Omar, Rep. Ayana Pressley, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution which condmened Pres. Trump’s racist comments regarding four Congresswomen of color. The resolution passed 240-187, with four Republicans voting in favor of the resolution. The resolution ” strongly condemns President Trump’s racist comments that have legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color.” The tweets targeted Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rep. Ayana Pressley, Rep. Ilhan Omar and Rep. Rashida Tlaib.

WEDNESDAY JULY 17, 2019: HOUSE APPROVES TO BLOCK WEAPONS SALE TO SAUDI ARABIA

The U.S. House of Representatives voted to block the Trump administration from selling billions of dollars of weapons to Saudi Arabia. There are 3 resolutions that are on their way to the Oval office, with each one having the support of four Republican Representatives. Pres. Trump has pledged to veto the resolutions, since he has been trying to have closer ties with Saudi Arabia and specifically its capital, Riyadh.

THURSDAY JULY 18, 2019: HOUSE PASSES $15 MINIMUM WAGE BILL

House Leader, Nancy Pelosi, amongst other supporters of the “Raise the Wage Act”.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the “Raise the Wage Act”, which would double the national minimum wage over the next 6 years and would raise the minimum wage for tipped employees to the same level, which will be $2.13 an hour. The bill passed in a 231-199 vote, with three Republicans for it and six Democrats against it. The bill is expected to face opposition in the Republican-controlled Senate.

FRIDAY JULY 19, 2019: SEN. RAND PAUL TO ASSIST WITH IRAN NEGOTIATIONS

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY).

It was confirmed by Pres. Trump that Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) is involved in diplomatic talks with Iran. Paul earlier in the week had asked of Pres. Trump’s blessing to arrange a meeting with the Iranian Foreign Minister, Javad Zarif. Paul has been known for being a strong opponent of U.S. intervention in Iran.

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What Was Our DC Lobby Day?

What Was Our DC Lobby Day?

the hill at night

The College Democrats of Maryland recently held their annual Lobby Day in Washington, D.C. It was a brisk, cold morning when students from chapters across the state met outside the Capitol Visiting Center on November 16th. Members from Salisbury, Towson, and UMBC split up into three groups and met with several different U.S. Congressmembers.

My group, for instance, met with staffers from Rep. Elijah Cummings, Rep. John Sarbanes, and Senator Claire McCaskill’s offices. We discussed legislation dealing with climate change, healthcare, college tuition, and campaign finance reform. My two group members and I stressed how important some of these issues were to us. We also asked the staff we met with how they found themselves working on The Hill and what their day-to-day jobs involved. One group of students ran into Congresswoman-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez!

After my group had lunch in the Rayburn Cafeteria, we met up with the rest of the College Democrats for an hour-long tour of the Capitol Building. Then, we took one last group picture outside and went out for dinner. On the (very long) car ride back to Salisbury, my friends and I swapped stories of our days. While we all had slightly different experiences, we all agreed on one thing: we would definitely be back again next year.

– Carissa Antonis, CDMD Secretary

George H. W. Bush

George H. W. Bush

George HW Bush and al of the Presidents'

We send our well wishes to the Bush family today as the country mourns the loss of President George H.W. Bush.

He knew that to be a public servant one had to be willing to fight for America in every aspect from the front lines to the offices in Washington.  He dedicated his young adult years to enlisting in the Navy and continued on to serving in the House, working in the UN, and running the CIA, among other things.  He is one of the most qualified Presidents we have had, and America will miss his wisdom and knowledge in the future.  He stood up for what he believed in while also being cordial and respectful and maintaining the idea that we can disagree while still remaining Americans.

President Bush embodied the respect and professionalism necessary in the White House.  In the end of his term, he sent this letter to incoming President Bill Clinton:

Dear Bill,
When I walked into this office just now I felt the same sense of wonder and respect that I felt four years ago. I know you will feel that, too.
I wish you great happiness here. I never felt the loneliness some Presidents have described.
There will be very tough times, made even more difficult by criticism you may not think is fair. I’m not a very good one to give advice; but just don’t let the critics discourage you or push you off course.
You will be our President when you read this note. I wish you well. I wish your family well.
Your success now is our country’s success. I am rooting hard for you.
Good luck—
George

Source

Despite the fact that his successor was of a different political party, President Bush knew that in the end, we are all trying to do what we think is best for the country.  We may be on opposing sides in a debate, but after the session is called we are all Americans at heart and in intentions.  We will miss his level head and wisdom.  Thank you.

Make Your Voice Heard

Make Your Voice Heard

We are less than a week away from one of the most important elections of our lifetimes where there are more women, first time candidates, and people of color on the ballot and it is time to turn #IWillVote into #IVoted. This election will determine which party controls the House of Representatives, the Senate, the Maryland Governor’s Mansion, Maryland Attorney General and Comptroller, the House of Delegates, the Maryland Senate, and countless local races. Each of these offices will have a direct impact on our lives over the course of the next 2-4 years.

our lifetimes where there are more women, first time candidates, and people of color on the ballot and it is time to turn #IWillVote into #IVoted. This election will determine which party controls the House of Representatives, the Senate, the Maryland Governor’s Mansion, Maryland Attorney General and Comptroller, the House of Delegates, the Maryland Senate, and countless local races. Each of these offices will have a direct impact on our lives over the course of the next 2-4 years.

Control of Congress is up for grabs and it is essential that Democrats take back at least one chamber to provide an adequate check on presidential power which Republicans have failed to do. Retaking the majority is essential to supporting factfinding investigations about the countless Trump Administration scandals that have gone unchecked under Republican leadership. Maryland needs to support the phenomenal Democrats running for Congress to protect Maryland from the next two years of the Trump presidency.

The Governor’s Mansion and General Assembly are incredibly important to ensuring we enact progressive policies that will benefit the lives of every Marylander. I am incredibly proud of the Democratic campaigns running across the state that have led positive campaigns promising positive change in Maryland, rather than the fearmongering we have seen from the Maryland Republican Party. Ben Jealous, Susie Turnbull, Brian Frosh, Ben Cardin and candidates across the state will work tirelessly for Marylanders and their values. This year, they need your support and are counting on you to show up at the polls.

As college students, our demographic tends to be ignored because we are less likely to show up at the polls, especially in a midterm year. If there is anything that I have learned when talking with our chapters across the state it is that students are fired up for this year’s election. There are countless issues that will affect each and every one of us. The Republicans in Congress have shown us how they really feel about the #MeToo movement and supporting women when they chose to confirm Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court. Governor Hogan showed us how he really felt about public schools when he called teachers “thugs” and has proposed countless cuts to public school funding.

This year college students and millennials as a whole have the power to shift this year’s election by supporting candidates who share our values. College students will change the political dynamic by exercising their right to vote and taking control of their future. The policies and decisions of today have the power to affect our future for not just the next four years, but for decades to come. The stakes are too high in this election to simply sit on the sideline.

To ensure you are able to cast your ballot, here are some helpful tips for Election Day.

  • Check your polling place at IWillVote.com
  • Check your schedule and figure out the best time for you to go, whether that is before class, after work, or on your way home.
  • Make sure you have a ride and if don’t there are a number of free or discounted rides that can help get you to the polls
  • Bring friends! Be sure to remind your friends, classmates, and family members to vote too by texting, calling and bringing them to the polls!
  • Last chance to volunteer! Sign up here to help remind others to cast their ballot too!

The only way to ensure your voice gets heard is to elect candidates who share your values and will put Maryland on the right path. There are countless Democrats across the state who are excited to fight for you, but they need your support on November 6th!

By: Ryan Kirby

President, College Democrats of Maryland

Women’s Caucus

Women’s Caucus

The leadership of the College Democrats of Maryland’s first established caucus, the Women’s Caucus, is thrilled to be beginning their work for the new school year! As it embarks on its first year as an assembled caucus, one of the primary objectives of the Women’s Caucus is to promote local and national political candidates who uphold women’s rights; the leadership and membership of the caucus intends to highlight and support candidates who make women’s economic, personal, and social liberation a central focus of their campaigns. As the midterm elections come to a close and the Democratic Party looks ahead to 2020, the Women’s Caucus will focus on electing Democratic female candidates to all levels of political office.

The Women’s Caucus is currently recruiting members for its general body. The general body membership and caucus leadership will work together to advocate for women at campuses throughout the state of Maryland. Some of the objectives of the Women’s Caucus for the 2018-2019 academic year include organizing events and information tables at universities throughout Maryland, participating in canvas days, and collaborating with local organizations that champion women’s rights. If you are interested in becoming a general body member, please fill out the general membership form on the College Democrats of Maryland Women’s Caucus information page. If you have any questions about the caucus or its objectives, please contact womenscaucus@mdcollegedems.org. It will be an exciting year promoting the advancement and empowerment of women!

Rebecca Vincent, Caucus Chair

On Brett Kavanaugh

On Brett Kavanaugh

We stand with Dr. Christine Blasey Ford and all survivors of sexual assault. We respect Dr. Ford while she continues to persevere through insults and attacks on her character, from the general public, Senators, and our President, as she speaks her truth. As our country changes how we talk about sexual assault, it is important to cultivate an environment that welcomes reporting and does not discourage it.  Scrutiny from our highest offices sets an example on the national stage, but we must not let that shape the way we treat survivors and other human beings. Soon empathy will defy party lines and find its way back into politics again.

We condemn the behavior of all lawmakers who approached confirming Judge Kavanaugh with a purely partisan lens, as that is not the role of the Senate in this process. The American people trust Senators to consider every single aspect of a nominee’s qualifications and demonstrated behavior, especially when that nominee will serve a life sentence in our highest court.

We have to push for more respectful dialogue from both sides.  We have to demand respectful treatment of sexual assault survivors in the future. Remember the behavior of our lawmakers during the Senate confirmation hearings when we go to the polls in November.