In 2006 and 2008, Democrats took over the House and Senate, in a cleansing move made to wash away the rampant corruption and cronyism of the Republican congressional era. With the White House in hand in 2008, a flood of legislation made it's way out, securing civil rights, helping the less fortunate, and ensuring justice. The ACA (Obamacare) was the jewel in the crown.
In 2008, there was also the great Bush crash, where the stock and housing markets tanked, and the jobless numbers swelled. Republicans pushed back against every recovery option they could, in an effort to kill a recovery and the chances of the president getting a second term. The economy recovered, albeit much more slowly than desired. They also prevented the closing of Gitmo, and forced the president to compromise on many issues.
As a result, the Republicans rode into the House in 2010 on a wave of anti-Obama fervor from the Republicans and malaise on the part of Democrats and independents. Republicans promised JOBS JOBS JOBS. The turnout also helped secure Republican leadership at the state level, which they leveraged during a census year to gerrymander districts to ensure a permanent Republican majority in the state houses.
So what has happened since? They keep talking about the budget deficit, but the main legislative initiatives they focus on both nationally and at the state levels revolve around a severe anti-woman, pro-Christian (and thus unconstitutional) idealism.
If DOMA didn't already exist, they would try to create it. It would be just as unconstitutional as the one that the SCOTUS just struck down. They don't take no for answer, though
The legal team behind Proposition 8, California’s gay marriage ban, on Saturday filed an emergency motion asking the U.S. Supreme Court to block a flurry of weddings that began weeks before many thought possible because of a surprising federal appeals court ruling.
Lawyers with the Arizona-based Alliance Defending Freedom claim in a petition that 9th Circuit Court of Appeals acted too early and and unfairly when it let same-sex marriage resume in California on Friday.
Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Austin Nimocks wrote that the Supreme Court's consideration of the case is not over because his clients still have 22 days to ask the justices to reconsider their decision, saying that Proposition 8's backers did not have legal authority to defend the ban.
The petition was denied by Justice Kennedy, and the group was considering petitioning to a different Supreme Court justice. Mike Huckabee declared that same-sex marriage is like polygamy and prostitution
. That's somewhat ironic since the Prop 8 campaign was pushed by a Mormon group who have their own history with polygamy.
In the same "not giving up" vein is TX Governor Rick Perry who is calling yet another special session of the state congress to try to push through a draconian (and likely unconstitutional) bill restricting abortions. That starts today, and both sides are prepared for a big fight
. The Republicans seem to have the upper hand, however, having learned from their first defeat. What's in the bill?
The proposal would ban most abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy and require stricter standards for abortion clinics that opponents say would shut down most of the state's clinics. Supporters say the measure is necessary to protect women's health and to keep fetuses from feeling pain.
The bill is based on the notion that a fetus can feel and recognize pain, something that has no basis in real science.
Every state is vulnerable to these regressive idealogues. In Ohio, three anti-abortion amendments were attached to the budget bill
. And just so you know where the governor stands:
While the three abortion measures in the budget went untouched, the governor did veto 22 measures from the budget, including provisions pertaining to Medicaid, the sales tax, and Spider Monkeys.
Meanwhile, things like a record-sized dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico
and the hottest temps on record
(and their possible causes) go unnoticed by the Republicans (and the Dems who are kept busy trying to stem the tide of uber-conservative legislation).
This is why elections matter, and they matter most where they get the least attention: at the state and local levels. Virigina elects it's state government on the "odd" years, and it's likely other states do too. Vote every time.