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Pope Francis arrives to lead his Wednesday general audience in Saint Peter's square at the Vatican May 20, 2015. REUTERS/Tony Gentile
Pope Francis
You might've seen earlier Sen. Marco Rubio's latest nonsense:
“We are at the water’s edge of the argument that mainstream Christian teaching is hate speech because today we’ve reached the point in our society where if you do not support same-sex marriage, you are labeled a homophobe and a hater,” Rubio said. “So what’s the next step after that? After they’re done going after individuals, the next step is to argue that the teachings of mainstream Christianity, the catechism of the Catholic Church, is hate speech. That’s a real and present danger.
Holy crap, are they going to come after the Catholic church? There might be truth to that.

There's the Koch-funded global climate change-deniers at the Heartland Institute:

The Holy Father is being misled by ‘experts’ at the United Nations who have proven unworthy of his trust. Humans are not causing a climate crisis on God’s Green Earth—in fact, they are fulfilling their Biblical duty to protect and use it for the benefit of humanity.
Then there's Rush Limbaugh:
Limbaugh, who is not Catholic, said that parts of the document were "pure Marxism coming out of the mouth of the pope" and suggested that someone else had written the papal document for him. He also accused the pope of going "beyond Catholicism" and being "purely political".
The business community is quite the danger ...
Ken Langone, the billionaire founder of the Home Depot and a major Republican donor, warned Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York that if the pope kept up the drumbeat [on income inequality and the defects of capitalism], some wealthy Catholics might stop giving to church causes.
And look out, Catholics! Rubio and his pals are themselves a clear and present danger!
Sen. Marco Rubio, a Catholic, criticized Pope Francis on Wednesday after the pontiff played a key role in helping the United States and Cuba forge an agreement that resulted in the release of American Alan Gross from Cuba.
Fellow Catholic Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) said he wished Francis would stand up for the Cuban people "rather than their oppressors."
Of course, criticizing the church is not "hate speech" nor a "clear and present danger." It wasn't when we criticized the last Pope, and it isn't today. But you know what IS a clear and present danger to conservatives? This: 94 percent of Republican Catholics view Pope Francis favorably. NINETY-FOUR!

Turns out that fighting global climate change, fighting income inequality, standing up for the poor, and fighting for a more tolerant society—in other words, being liberal—are universally popular things indeed. Even among the Republican faithful.

Discuss
U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks at a roundtable discussion about childcare during a campaign stop in Chicago, Illinois, United States, May 20, 2015.    REUTERS/Jim Young  
Heavens! Is that Hillary with some "everyday Americans"? BLASPHEMY!
The same day I lauded Hillary Clinton for (mostly) ignoring the Beltway Media, we get this tweet, from the supposedly "liberal" New York Times:
In Iowa, Queen Hillary and the Everyday Americans of the Round Table distribute alms to the clamoring press. http://t.co/...
@jasondhorowitz
Way to confirm my thesis, jackass. It's not just the venom directed at Clinton herself, but at the notion that actual regular Americans have any say in the process. In the mind of Horowitz and his beltway pals, those Americans are usurping his god-given right to dictate the terms of the presidential debate. Fuck that shit.

That's why there's zero reason for ANY presidential candidate to speak to these horserace Betlway media assholes. Rather, in this era of extreme polarization, one in which the "persuadable" are few and far between, candidates should focus on talking to their core supporters, energizing them and giving them a reason to turn out and vote.

For Republicans, that means a lot of time on Fox News and Rush Limbaugh. Unlucky for them, that stuff isn't particularly popular with the broader American mainstream, but hey, it works in the off-year elections.

And we, as Americans, get a better idea about where those Republicans actually stand on the issues than anything a horserace reporter could give us. I mean, it was Fox News that got Jeb Bush to admit that he'd be no different than his brother in Iraq! Oops for him, and kudos to Fox for showing that Jeb is so pathetic that he couldn't even handle that softball of a question. Compare that to racist Mark Halperin asking Ted Cruz his favorite Cuban food. ...

For Democrats, that means talking to Latinos via Univision, to black radio, to LGBT magazines, to Asian newspapers, to genuinely liberal media outlets. And, of course, it means talking directly to supporters via email, Facebook, Twitter, other rising social media outlets, and even in person (gasp!). Those are the people who matter to Hillary's presidential bid, and that of every other Democrat on the ballot next November.

The Beltway hacks may not like this end-run around them, but so what? We may ultimately fail to learn whether a candidate wears boxers or briefs, but ultimately, "everyday Americans" are better served as a result.

Discuss
U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (C) listens to remarks at a roundtable campaign event with small businesses in Cedar Falls, Iowa, United States, May 19, 2015.    REUTERS/Jim Young
Hillary Clinton, at a small-business roundtable in Iowa, loses nothing by bypassing the traditional political press corps.
Chris Cillizza, the poster-child of everything that is wrong about political journalism, whines about lack of access to the Clinton campaign:
Do you not think it is of value to know how Hillary Clinton spent her time since leaving the State Department? And how the Clinton Foundation handled its business with various donors who would, undoubtedly, still be in the picture if she was elected president? Or what she thinks of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the fight currently happening in Congress? Or Iran? Or the Middle East?

You get the idea. The role of the media in this process is to show voters who these people are, really, and to explain how these people would govern the country if elected. Like the media or not, that’s a very important role — and one that is essential to a functioning democracy.

Such pompous bullshit from the asshole who once wrote:
My job is to assess not the rightness of each argument but to deal in the real world of campaign politics in which perception often (if not always) trumps reality. I deal in the world as voters believe it is, not as I (or anyone else) thinks it should be.
Do voters need to be informed about Hillary's position on the Pacific trade deal? Of course. But no one is looking at Cillizza to deliver that information. He's even said he doesn't care whether an argument is right or not! Thankfully, in this day and age, he is as irrelevant as Mark Halperin's insipid candidate scoring system.

The day when the political media was instrumental in getting a candidate's message out is over. Candidates now have myriad vehicles to communicate their message straight to the voters without having it wrung through the old media's filter. As consumers, this allows us to avoid the spin and biases of those reporters.

So who will ask the politicians the "hard questions"? Well, if by "hard questions" you mean ask whatever it is that has Fox News currently in a tizzy, then sure, the political hack reporters will do that. But if you're talking about things that actually matter to people, then don't hold your breath. The political press corps hasn't done that in forever.

The difference now is that no one reads their newspapers or watches their TV shows anymore. That era is over. In this age of social media, they genuinely don't matter. (And for the whiners, this response sums it up.)

So yes, if you're Hillary Clinton, you damn right ignore the dinosaur press corps. Fuck them. They haven't earned any respect, and there's nothing they can offer that is of any value to Hillary (or any other Democrat for that matter). And worst of all, there's nothing they can offer of value to the voters either.

It's now up to us and the partisan media to use modern media tools (like the social networks) to pressure our candidates to speak about the issues that we care about. It's not so easy as outsourcing it to the old press corps, but those guys weren't getting it done anyway.

Discuss

Thu May 07, 2015 at 12:10 PM PDT

The optimist's case for Hillary Clinton

by kos

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton talks about Syria during an event at the White House in Washington, September 9, 2013. REUTERS
The reasons to be skeptical of Hillary Clinton are legion, from her husband's record in the '90s, to her corporate ties (including being on the board of Walmart), to certainly worrisome foreign policy hawkish statements. I feel no need to rehash them since plenty of you have been doing so in recent months, and heck, years.

My approach to a better Hillary hasn't been trying to drum up a viable primary challenge since none will exist. The Democratic Party is showing unprecedented unity around her. As I've written before, there is no space for an insurgent challenger to Hillary this cycle because the public demand for an alternative is simply not there. You can wail and scream and kick all you want, but at over 60 percent in the polls, and even higher numbers among the party's growth demographics (African Americans and Latinos), Hillary will be our nominee.

So how to push for a more liberal Hillary, if she has nothing to fear from the primary? By trying to convince the party establishment that the triangulation bullshit of the '90s is played out and ineffective in today's political environment. In short, there are more of us than there are of them. If we vote, we win. And the path to victory isn't trying to win over nonexistent real "independents," but to motivate our low-performing base to turn out.

And on that front, the early days of the Clinton campaign are truly encouraging. Head below the fold for the details.

Continue Reading
  (March 27th, 2012) Hundreds of activists gathered in front of the Supreme Court building to rally and show their support for the Affordable Care Act during the second day of hearings regarding the law. ~ Washington, DC ~ Photo by David Sachs / SEIU
The law Republicans said would destroy the world, but of course made it better.
I keep coming back to this because it is just so crazy. Last time I focused on his "ask any employer" line, today, I'll highlight another part:
TODD: You made some dire predictions about health care. 2014 you said fewer people would have health insurance. According to plenty of surveys, more people have health insurance today than they did before it went down from – the uninsured rate went down 17 percent to just under 12 percent. You said it would destroy jobs. The first year it was implemented, the country added 3 million jobs. Why…

BOEHNER: Obamacare made it harder for employers to hire people. The economy expands and as a result, you are going to have more employees because businesses have to. But if you can ask any employer in America, and ask them whether Obamacare has made it harder for them to hire employees, they’ll tell you yes. Because it’s a fact.

Here is Boehner's prediction about Obamacare:
[Obamacare] will bankrupt our nation, and it will ruin our economy.
He also tweeted this:
Pres. Obama's #hcr law is expected to destroy 2.3 million jobs.
So ... he first predicts that passing the law will "ruin the economy" and bankrupt us, but now he says "The economy expands and as a result, you are going to have more employees because businesses have to."

Um, dude? How can that economy be expanding if Obamacare was going to bankrupt the nation and ruin the economy? In fact, in one 14-minute press conference, Boehner uttered the words "job-killing" seven times! Nevermind the fact that the deficit is going down, and the ACA is a major reason for that.

Of course, Boehner isn't the only nutbag who made insanely wrong predictions about the ACA. Rush Limbaugh said the law would cost the nation "2.5 million jobs minimum’ and would be a ‘literal tragedy,'" while Glenn Beck said, "This is the end of prosperity in America forever, if this passes. This is the end of America as you know it."

Former Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) said, "There will be no insurance industry left in three years", and he said that five years ago. Former Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) said, "It’s going to destroy our economy. … It’s going to push us into a total economic collapse," while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said "It will hurt the economy, it will kill jobs."

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) said, "I think that what's going to come out of Obamacare is worse than anybody can imagine. I think it will lead to bankruptcy in the states that are fully embracing it." Gov. Scott Walker (R-WI) said, "Firm after firm telling the White House, the administration this isn't going to work." Carly Fiorina was apoplectic, "I just don't think we can afford to wreck one-sixth of the economy and what is arguably a very excellent healthcare system." Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) was besides himself, "The full extent of damage the PPACA causes to small businesses, the nation’s economy, and the American health care system will only be revealed with time."

So yeah, good one, guys. You don't get to predict dire economic collapse, then say "the only reason employers are hiring is because the economy is doing well." Well, no shit that's why they're hiring. Point is, the economy isn't where you claimed it would be. You were wrong. As usual.

Discuss
Democratic candidates for U.S. president (L-R) U.S. Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT), U.S. Senator Joe Biden (D-DE), former U.S. Senator John Edwards (D-NC),  U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY), host  Pennsylvania Governor Edward Rendell (not a candidate), U.S. Senator Barack Obama (D-IL), U.S. Representative Dennis Kucinich, (D-OH) and New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson pose prior to a debate at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania October 30, 2007.   REUTERS/Tim Shaffer
Barack Obama didn't need debates to catch fire. He did so long before the first one.
A Hillary Clinton rival whines:
One Democratic 2016 campaign adviser who spoke to Business Insider said they believe the Democratic National Committee's debate schedule was "worked out" to benefit Hillary Clinton and hurt her opponents.

The adviser, who requested anonymity in order to speak frankly about the party's campaign arm, suggested the DNC is hosting a small number of debates in an attempt to give Clinton's more low profile rivals "less screen time." They also suggested the relatively late schedule of the debates will make it harder for Clinton's lesser known rivals to introduce themselves to voters.

First of all, is there any reason this "adviser" got anonymity for this attack? We're supposed to take Clinton's rivals seriously when they're too afraid to attack her on the record?

Given what we've been hearing from other reports, this adviser almost certainly works for former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley. Perhaps he doesn't want to overly damage his vice-presidential chances?

Furthermore, six sanctioned debates is more than enough. It's funny watching this dinosaur of an "adviser" whine about "screen time" at a time when candidates have myriad avenues to deliver their message across infinite screens. Poorly watched debates aren't the answer for a candidate looking to catch fire. Howard Dean and Wesley Clark caught fire in 2003 before a single debate took place. Barack Obama likewise did the same in 2007. The debates actually hurt Dean, and by the time they took place in 2007, Obama was already off to the races.

Debates may have had an outsized level of influence in campaigns from the '60s to the late '90s, but we live in a different world now. Stop whining about the old rules, and learn to play by the new ones. Six debates is more than enough for candidates to differentiate themselves, particularly after they've used new media tools to introduce themselves to primary voters.

That said, the DNC is wrong on one major aspect: the rules allow it to bar any candidate from attending its sanctioned events if they participate in any other debates. That blatantly undemocratic clause needs to be ignored by all candidates. If you don't want to call it a "debate," then fine, but if candidates want to participate in joint forums, hangouts, gatherings, symposiums, roundtables, or whatever, that's their right as Americans and fuck the DNC for trying to squash it. Hillary can show up to those additional events if she wants to. Or not. No one is forcing anything on anyone.

If the insurgent candidates want to generate some attention, they should openly flaunt that rule then demand to be included in the sanctioned debates. And if the DNC holds its ground, all of Clinton's opponents should boycott until Clinton is forced to either stand alone on stage like an idiot (thus the story becomes a farcical event), or she asks the DNC to bend the stupid rule.

Discuss
A
Obamacare is such a failure, it can't even kill the jobs Republicans said it would!
Meet the Press:
TODD: You made some dire predictions about health care. 2014 you said fewer people would have health insurance. According to plenty of surveys, more people have health insurance today than they did before it went down from – the uninsured rate went down 17 percent to just under 12 percent. You said it would destroy jobs. The first year it was implemented, the country added 3 million jobs. Why…

BOEHNER: Obamacare made it harder for employers to hire people. The economy expands and as a result, you are going to have more employees because businesses have to. But if you can ask any employer in America, and ask them whether Obamacare has made it harder for them to hire employees, they’ll tell you yes. Because it’s a fact.

There's the substantive response to this nonsense here.

But hey, Boehner says "ask any employer in America", and it just so happens that I'm one of those. Daily Kos currently employs 35 people. Vox Media, which I co-founded, is sitting at over 400 employees. And both those companies are in America, and so am I!

So ask me, "Has Obamacare has made it harder for you to hire employees?" And the answer is "what the fuck are you talking about? Of course not!" I mean, the whole concept is patently ridiculous. Why would the law make it harder? Note that Boehner doesn't even bother trying to explain why.

You know what would make it easier for me to hire more employees? Universal health care. Take away my healthcare costs at Daily Kos, and I save over $400,000 per year. That's what, four-six employees? I could use those extra employees, too. (With nearly 10 times the employees at Vox Media, I can't imagine how many millions that company would save with universal health care!)

So what is hurting my ability to hire more people? Not Obamacare, which if anything is actually helping because it has lowered the annual increase in insurance premiums. Perhaps that's why not a single business group filed an amicus brief in support of the King v. Burwell Supreme Court case challenging the law.  

Conservatives can rail against Obamacare all they want, but it has nothing to do with business. We're doing just fine with the law on the books, thank you very much for asking, Mr. Speaker.

Discuss
Apple website screenshot:
Tuesday morning, riding high after yet another gangbusters quarter, Apple reached a new high, worth more than $760 BILLION. This makes it worth more than, well, a ton of things, including all but 18 COUNTRIES in the world.

Think about that ... Apple is worth more than the GDP of Saudi Arabia, or Switzerland, or Sweden. And despite being this financial juggernaut, the company is still experiencing double-digit growth. In just the past three months, Apple booked profits of $13.6 billion on $58 billion in revenue. Four years ago, the last of Steve Jobs' reign, he bragged about hitting $50 billion in revenue ... for the YEAR.

Not only are those numbers eye-watering, but that profit margin is the envy of the entire business world. The company has just shy of $200 billion in its cash horde, even as it has stepped up efforts to return cash to its shareholders. A $1 trillion valuation isn't far away.

So by all objective measures, Apple is the most successful company in the modern era. (The Dutch East India Company wins overall top honors, with an inflation-adjusted valuation of $7.3 trillion.) Yet, keep in mind the following:

* Apple is based on California, and continues to expand its operations in the state. Conservatives bray incessantly about the Golden State's "high taxes and burdensome regulations," yet the world's most high-value and innovative companies continue to be based here. You don't see Apple or its peers fleeing to tax havens like Alabama. Why? Because those taxes and regulations actually create a favorable business climate for Apple, delivering it the talent it desperately needs.

More below the fold.

Continue Reading
Rep. Donna Edwards, D-Md., before a talk at NYC, March 19, 2011.
In the Senate, please.
Goal ThermometerDonna Edwards for Senate.

Donna Edwards for Senate!

I'm not sure I've ever typed more enthusiastic words in an endorsement. This is the sort of thing I dreamed about when I first started working on a stronger bench back in the early 2000s. The idea is simple: promote strong progressives for lower office, and when higher offices become available, we now have candidates with the requisite background and experience to make the run. And it's working!

We first endorsed Donna Edwards for Congress back in 2007, and now, eight years later, she is making a bid for the U.S. Senate in Maryland.

Since that first endorsement, Edwards has remained true to the values that attracted us to her in the first place. She wasn't someone who just supported the things we cared about, but actively led efforts to enact them. Check out our endorsement questionnaire and Edwards' responses here. Not only is she with us on everything, but she co-sponsored legislation on most of it, from Medicare for All, to immigration reform, to the Employee Free Choice Act. And on efforts to destroy Social Security, she was a leader in efforts by Democrats to derail any talk of "entitlement reform."

In other words, we don't just have an ideological ally here, we have a bona fide leader. It's the reason we pushed Edwards for DCCC chair just a few months ago. I also like this exchange:

6. If elected, do you pledge not to join the Blue Dog Coalition or Third Way?

YES. I have not joined the Blue Dog Coalition and do not rely on policy recommendations from Third Way.

And with Edwards, you know there is no equivocation there. She is the polar opposite of the Wall Street Democrat. She would, in essence, give us a second Elizabeth Warren in the Senate, and who doesn't want that? Third Way doesn't. Wall Street doesn't. We do.

It's up to us to have Donna Edwards' back. I'm in. I hope you are too. Even $3 makes a difference!

You want a better Senate? We give Elizabeth Warren allies. And Edwards is about the best Democrat you'll ever find. This one is big.

Did I mention this is my favorite endorsement post ever? Because it is!

Discuss

Thu Feb 26, 2015 at 11:18 AM PST

Yup, the GOP is f'd with young people

by kos

Pew Research:

Pew Research polling chart showing cratering support for the GOP among millennials.
This isn't self-IDd ideology. Pew "used a scale based on 10 political values questions about the role of government, the environment, homosexuality and other issues to measure ideological consistency." The results are clear: on the issues, liberalism is ascendant.

The obvious bottom line: the GOP is totally screwed if it doesn't learn how to court young voters. Yet here is the CPAC session today on reaching out to young voters:

Picture of CPAC session on young voters showing a near-empty room
Yeah, good luck with that, particularly when your message is one of bigotry, higher student loan fees, and outright hostility to sex.  

But there's more! You can see the GOP's death spiral in action, as each successive generation is less Republican, and more Democratic, than the previous one. That's demographic destiny, and while it doesn't guarantee progressive governance in the future, it means our job is much easier than theirs.

This chart also shows the death of the conservative Democrat, down to three percent of millennials. And what is that, a resurgence of the liberal Republican? A surprising 17 percent of Republican millennials are "mostly liberal." Given the large sample size (over 10,000 respondents), this isn't a statistical aberration. There really are a bunch of young Republicans who are more liberal than they realize because they don't hate on gays, African Americans, immigrants, the poor, or the environment.

Finally, look at how much more ideologically cohesive millennial Democrats are: 59 percent of young Democrats are liberal, while just 31 percent of young Republicans are conservative. The GOP is changing, whether they like it or not.

Discuss
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel puts on his jacket as he steps out of a phone bank, on election day in Chicago, Illinois, February 24, 2015. Emanuel is expected to easily take first place in Tuesday's municipal election, but polls show he may miss the 50
Winning one of the richest neighborhoods—barely!—doesn't make him a progressive.
Goal Thermometer Under fire for his record of kow-towing to the richest while hurting the poor and the brown in Chicago, embattled Mayor Rahm Emanuel's campaign is defending him against charges that he isn't progressive enough.
The campaign data’s still being sorted through, but Emanuel’s campaign cites his wins in 35 of the city’s 50 wards, including the 51 percent of the vote that the mayor pulled in the progressive Lakefront neighborhood, compared to García’s 32 percent, as evidence that the votes don’t match up to their opponents’ rhetoric. In Hyde Park, part of the South Side area that Obama used to represent in Springfield, Emanuel pulled 44 percent, compared to García’s 34.
Rahm spent $7 million on TV and millions more on other campaign activity (staff, radio, polling, data, GOTV, etc). His entire war chest stood at $15 million, and a pro-Emanuel superpac spent hundreds of thousands more on negative ads. His opponents, let by Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, on the other hand, barely spent a tenth of that.

All of this in a single city, remember. We're not talking the whole state of Illinois.

So thanks to all that spending, Rahm wins 51 percent in "Lakefront", which is not a neighborhood at all. Maybe the author meant Lakeview (Wrigleyville)? If so, that area is about 85 percent white, so the fact that Rahm could barely muster a slim majority in this racially polarized city despite outspending his opponents 10-1 ... doesn't exactly bolster his bonafides as a progressive.

Hyde Park is home to the University of Chicago, and is also one of the more racially diverse neighborhoods in the city: 47 percent white, 30 percent African American, 12 percent Asian, and six percent Latino. Not sure what Rahm's 44 percent there is supposed to tell us about his progressivism. And 56 percent of people there voted against him.

As these maps show, the whiter and richer the neighborhood, the better Rahm did. The browner the neighborhood, the poorer he did.

Now one could analyze these sorts of results by exploring the role of race in the election (goosed, of course, by Rahm's record school closings, a whopping 90 percent in African American or Latino neighborhoods), and use these election results to marvel at Chicago's continued racial polarization. But to point to Rahm's Wriglefield results as evidence of his progressivism is just bizarre.

Those results actually back up the reformer's argument: Rahm is great for the wealthy. He's their guy! He's fine on social issues while protecting their financial privilige. But for those struggling to make ends meet? He's a corporatist asshole Democrat. And if we learned anything in the first round, it's that this very progressive city voted for his more progressive opponents by a 55-45 margin. So let's help them finally get rid of Rahm, by chipping in $3 to Garcia's campaign!

Discuss
Chicago Mayoral candidate Jesus
Rahm slayer Jesus "Chuy" Garcia.
Goal ThermometerBrilliant Nixonland and Before the Storm author Rick Perlstein has penned the definitive guide to Rahm Emanuel's mayorship and re-election bid, and it's not pretty.

He starts with the revelations that taking a page out of the worst of the CIA excesses, the Chicago police have a secret detention facility. Then there's his school board appointees profiting from school closures, like "the Emanuel school board appointee who runs an investment fund for companies that privatize school functions." Moving on, he discusses how 60 of Emanuel's top 106 contributors received special favors from the city, and how his public schools CEO juked graduation rate statistics, and how he used Rovian tactics to turn his progressive opponents' best strength (their reformer creds and populist record) against them. Seriously, it's a must read if you want to get on your Rahm hate, and who doesn't? The guy is a real piece of shit.

Yet despite having the advantages of incumbency and near-universal name ID, despite spending $7 million of his $15 million war chest on TV, despite having President Barack Obama stump for him ... he still got only 45 percent of the vote, with his opponents racking up a combined 55 percent.

As a Bulls fan, I've watched Rahm's constant barrage of television ads on the popular game broadcasts, so I noticed him going hard negative against his top challenger Jesus "Chuy" Garcia a few weeks ago. It was a curious turn of events, with polls showing Rahm near the 50 percent mark he'd need to avoid a runoff. It was a sign that things weren't looking good for him. You don't go negative unless you absolutely have to.

In Chicago this past weekend, I once again saw the near-saturation levels of Rahm propaganda, on TV, on billboards, everywhere you looked, seemingly. But sitting in a cab, heading out to the United Center to catch a game with my son on our father-son trip, the cabbie had on a soul station. And an ad came on, narrated by the popular Karen Lewis, head of the Chicago Teacher's Union, "the mayor has closed a record number of schools, 90 percent in our Latino and black neighborhoods."

Bam! It was a direct hit, feeding not just into anger over the school closings, but the blatant inequities in the decision to do so. In racially polarized Chicago, you can see in these maps by our elections team just how much Rahm suffered in non-white neighborhoods. Chuy spent less than 1/10th what Rahm did, yet notched a solid 34 percent second place, with other liberal candidates taking the rest. Rahm is wounded and vulnerable.

But you know what they say about wounded and cornered assholes animals, right? Chuy already faced $450K in negative ads from a superpac allied with Rahm, expect that to go up by multiples. But as the first round showed, all the money in the world couldn't buy Rahm love. And all his negative hits on Chuy didn't kill him. But will six more weeks of going nuclear on his opponent do the trick? That's the big question, because it's about to get REAL ugly in Chicago.

But as we saw the first round, money won't decide this. We don't need to outraise Rahm. We just need enough so that Chuy can get his message out. This is our chance to take stock of everything that Rahm Emanuel has done to our party and progressive politics over the past decade, and then say "fuck you" by throwing $3 into Garcia's campaign.

Discuss
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