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LP VP 2016 Nomination Candidate Will Coley Leaving Tennessee for New Hampshire
(from: Independent Political Report @ September 21, 2017, 04:27 PM)

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Skadden, Big New York Law Firm, Faces Questions on Work With Manafort
(from: NY Times The Caucus @ September 21, 2017, 03:49 PM)

The Justice Department wants information about Skadden?s work on behalf of a Russia-aligned former president of Ukraine.

Jimmy Kimmel Wasn?t the First Host to Get Serious About Politics
(from: NY Times The Caucus @ September 21, 2017, 03:35 PM)

When Jimmy Kimmel talked seriously about health care, it was an uncommon moment for him, but other late-night hosts have substituted politics for punch lines.

This Week in Statehouse Action: Sine Die of the Living Dead edition
(from: Swing State Project @ September 21, 2017, 03:32 PM)

Some things just won?t stay dead.

The GOP?s attempt to repeal Obamacare and kick millions of Americans off of their health insurance. Zombies. Jesus. Jon Snow.

And now we can add Republican attempts to sow fear and division with blatantly racist campaign ads in Virginia elections this cycle to the list. 

Dawn of the Dead Horse: It sure is getting beaten.

Campaign Action
  • First, there was Republican gubernatorial nominee Ed Gillespie?s fear-mongering ad that was chock full o? racist dog whistles and sought to target Northam as weak on immigration policy and for allegedly supporting ?sanctuary cities.?
    • The ad claimed that Gillespie will keeps us ?safer? by ?get[ting] tough on illegal immigration? and used racially charged language and tropes often used to smear members of the Latino community.
  • Then there was the blatantly racist direct mail piece dropped by a Virginia Republican?s ?leadership PAC? (read: political committee that does certain things so GOP candidates can keep their hands clean) against Elizabeth Guzman, a Latina House candidate.
    • The mailer uses the term ?illegal alien,? a term that?s dehumanizing and is just one of the many racially charged dog whistles often used to cloak racism in a veneer of moral authority while perpetuating negative stereotypes.
    • The mailers also are designed to evoke the racist trope that giving driver?s licenses to members of this community would lead to gun violence or voter fraud. (Take a gander at them yourself right here.)
  • Now we?ve come back around to Gillespie, who?s just dropped another ?anti-immigration? ad that makes his first one look positively tame by comparison (but don?t get it twisted?the first one is still awful). 
    • Gillespie?s ad essentially equates ?dangerous illegal immigrants??itself a racist anti-Latino trope?with MS-13, a dangerous and violent street gang that actually heavily targets undocumented Latinos.
    • The ad further equates Northam?s vote against prohibiting ?sanctuary cities? with ?increasing the threat of MS-13.?
    • It uses photos of imprisoned MS-13 members and flashes the gang?s ?Kill, Rape, Control? motto across the screen in a positively Willie Horton-esque attempt to stoke racially charged fears among Virginia voters.  
  • And here?s a fun fact about that Northam vote on ?sanctuary cities?: The vote Gillespie hits Northam for in the ad was almost certainly engineered by GOP lawmakers to force Northam to break a tie in the state Senate?solely to give the Republican an anti-immigration talking point, because, well, Virginia doesn?t technically have any ?sanctuary cities? to ban in the first place.

The ad is straight out of Trump?s racist fear-mongering playbook, and it?s just the latest indication of Gillespie?s terror and desperation

Ohio State Appeals Court Says Ohio Constitution Does Not Require that All Parties Nominate by Primary
(from: Ballot Access News @ September 21, 2017, 03:27 PM)

On September 21, the Ohio State Court of Appeals issued a 35-page opinion in Libertarian Party of Ohio v Husted, 16AP-496. The Ohio Constitution says, “All nominations for elective state, district, county and municipal offices shall be made at direct primary elections or by petition as provided by law.” The Ohio Libertarian Party had filed a lawsuit against the 2013 ballot access law, which says that newly-qualifying parties do not have a primary. The party had argued that the 2013 ballot access law violates the Ohio Constitution, which seemed to mandate that all parties nominate by primary.

The Ohio State Court of Appeals interpreted that part of the Ohio Constitution to mean that the legislature is free to abolish primaries for any parties, and instead to provide that parties without a primary would nominate by petition. This conclusion seems to contradict the historical record, which shows that this part of the Ohio Constitution was added over 100 years ago to stop parties (or at least the major parties) from nominating by convention. The decision has no discussion of the history of this part of the Ohio Constitution.

The decision also rejects the party’s argument that equal protection is violated by forcing new parties to nominate without a primary. Ohio voter registration forms do not ask the applicant to choose a party. Therefore, the only government-provided “membership lists” for qualified parties come from the list of voters who chose a particular party’s primary ballot. The major parties, which always have primaries, obtain a useful list of their adherents by obtaining the list of voters who chose that party’s primary ballot. A newly-qualifying party, which has no primary, doesn’t obtain such a list. But the Court ruled that the disparity does not violate equal protection.

As a result of this decision, there is now no state constitution in any of the 50 states that mandates primaries for all qualified parties. Ohio had seemed to be the only such state. The Oklahoma Constitution gives the legislature the authority to mandate primaries for all qualified parties, but does not say the legislature must do that.

One reason the opinion is so long is that it takes the first fifteen pages to set forth the complicated history of ballot access litigation in Ohio, especially Libertarian Party cases, for the period 2004 to the present.

Utah Green Party Has Enough Valid Signatures to be Ballot-Qualified for 2018
(from: Ballot Access News @ September 21, 2017, 01:48 PM)

The Utah Green Party now has enough valid signatures for party status for 2018. This is the first party petition the Green Party has completed this year, anywhere in the nation. The law requires 2,000 signatures. The party did it with volunteers.

Law Firm Faces Questions for Ukraine Work With Manafort
(from: NY Times The Caucus @ September 21, 2017, 01:42 PM)

The Justice Department wants information about Skadden?s work on behalf of a Russia-aligned former president of Ukraine.

Ninth Circuit Enjoins Compelled Speech in Case Over San Francisco?s Requirements for Print Ads for Sugary Drinks
(from: Ballot Access News @ September 21, 2017, 01:05 PM)

On September 19, the Ninth Circuit enjoined a San Francisco ordinance that compels print ads for sugary drinks to carry this statement: “Drinking beverages with added sugar(s) contributes to obesity, diabetes, and tooth decay. This is a message from the City and County of San Francisco.” The statement must be bordered in black and must be so large as to comprise 20% of the square area of the ad.

This decision is one of a long line of cases that prohibit compelled speech. In other words, the free speech part of the First Amendment not only protects the right to speak, but the right not to speak, especially if the compelled speech is not indisputably true. This precedent, like similar precedents, will help the plaintiffs in Soltysik v Padilla, the lawsuit pending in the Ninth Circuit on California ballot labels for members of unqualified parties. Under the California election law, if they are running for Congress or partisan state office, they must have “party preference: none” printed next to their names, even if they do have a party preference. The plaintiff in Soltysik wants “party preference: Socialist” to be his ballot label. He is a registered Socialist. But the laws forces him to say he has no party preference.

The recent decision on San Francisco’s compelled speech can be read at this link. The case is American Beverage Association v City and County of San Francisco, 16-16072.

Common Sense: Tax Reform for the Rich: Reduce the Rates but Lose the Breaks
(from: NY Times The Caucus @ September 21, 2017, 12:33 PM)

Curbing special treatment for state and local taxes, mortgage interest and capital gains could pay for meaningful changes across the board.

George Skelton, Veteran Los Angeles Times Reporter for State Politics, Asks Governor Brown to Veto Two Bills on Presidential Elections
(from: Ballot Access News @ September 21, 2017, 11:29 AM)

George Skelton, Los Angeles Times reporter for California government, here argues that Governor Jerry Brown should veto both SB 568 and SB 149. The former bill moves the primary in all years, for all office, from June to March. The second bill requires presidential primary candidates to reveal their income tax returns.

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