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Progressive Politics in Minnesota, the Nation, and the World

Why Do Rural Voters Vote Republican?

Category: GOP Politics
Posted: 02/19/17 21:45

by Dave Mindeman

Open Letter to Rural America:

Listen, those of you who live away from the hustling city life...away from the traffic jams and the big malls...those who can still hear the birds and the rustling of the wind. I hope you are paying attention because you have a lot at stake in this political uncertainty.

Donald Trump promised to bring jobs and prosperity - but who will benefit? If you are supposing that it should be you, consider this. Although Trump's ideas on trade might help the old manufacturing establishment, it is going to hurt farmers. It will hurt agriculture.

Relations with Mexico are being strained and that is a problem because Mexico is a big part of the farm export market. There has even been talk within the Mexican government of moving trade to China or Brazil. And the potential of another market in Cuba is also stalled as the Trump administration tries to find a path.

Trump's nominee for Ag Secretary is Sonny Perdue - a former Georgia governor who, more than likely, will lean toward southern textile industry rather than grain farmers in the Midwest. And, incidently, Perdue's Ag position seems to be one of the last cabinet posts to get any attention.

So, a lot of that looks a little troubling for Minnesota. But state government isn't helping much. We have 3 Republican Congressman who might be able to get Trump's ear - but Lewis has little time for agriculture...all he does is talk about taxes. Erik Paulsen is the stooge of corporations, especially the Medical device industry...only Tom Emmer seems to have any interest in Minnesota agriculture.

And then there is the GOP legislature. The Republican House and Senate invested a lot of time and money into convincing outstate Minnesota that the Republicans are the ones doing things for them and who can do more in the future.

But the evidence says NO on that one. The Republicans have always had minimal requests for broadband expansion into the rural areas. The Governor and Democrats have always proposed 10 times the investment. And rural communities depend on LGA funding for the local governments. But the MN GOP has been cutting that nearly every year.

Republicans have demanded slashing the Minnesota health care system but with little regard as to how dependent rural hospitals are on the ACA and its expanded coverages. Or on the need for incentives to get medical students into rural facilities.

Rural areas voted overwhelmingly for Trump and for Republican legislators. But when you look at the real life facts and data....

you have to ask....WHY?
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About That Press Conference - It Was A Disaster, Believe Me

Category: Donald Trump
Posted: 02/16/17 22:46

by Dave Mindeman

This is no longer about partisanship. No longer about party. No longer about principle. No longer about who's right or who is wrong.

This is about surviving Donald Trump.

I watched his press conference today and, sorry, that was the most embarrassing thing I have ever witnessed. Forget the policy. Forget the attempts at political points. Forget all of it.

That was a 747, nose down plane crash.

During that presser, Donald said that you people (the press) will all say tomorrow that Donald was ranting and raving.

Well, I would call what I witnessed the very definition of ranting and raving. It was textbook ranting and raving. To say it was ranting and raving would be good reporting.

To you Republicans....really? You really think that was a Presidential performance. Seriously? I mean it. It was awful. It was pathetic. It was...oh hell, I need more adjectives. This was just not good for the image and future of the United States.

I used to think that we'd have to tolerate Trump because if he was gone, it would just mean President Pence. And since that would probably be just as bad policy wise, might as well deal with Trump.

I no longer think that. I now prefer President Pence - because I value order and not chaos. Policy difference, not policy danger.

Donald Trump is not capable of being President of the United States. He is not capable of being normal. As he would say, it's a disaster, believe me.

Some serious leadership is needed here - and yet the Republican silence tells us that they never really were a country first type of Party. They are only looking to extract whatever they can underneath the cover of a madman.

It is beyond any level of logic I can come up with. We are in big trouble.
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Careening Toward A Constitutional Crisis

Category: Donald Trump
Posted: 02/16/17 00:22

by Dave Mindeman

The NY Times has just released a report that is very disturbing.

President Trump plans to assign a New York billionaire to lead a broad review of American intelligence agencies.

That billionaire is Trump ally, Stephen Freiberg - co-founder of Cerebus Capital Management. No official announcement yet, but Freiberg has been mentioned for a top administration position.

Freiberg has no experience in the intelligence community. But he has very close ties with Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner.

This is chilling.

In fact, it smacks of McCarthyism. Trump is trying to minimize the information coming out of the various intelligence agencies as illegal politicized leaks. It is assumed that Freiberg would conduct his review as a means of ferreting out the people passing out the leaked information.

Freiberg would operate out of the White House and probably report only to Trump. He could say anything. He could accuse anyone.

It is part of this ongoing effort to discredit inside information sources. Trump is working on minimizing the press. He is questioning the motives of protesters. And now, he is going to attempt to discredit the people who could release damaging information about what he has done and plans to do.

If anyone is questioning the idea that Trump is moving into an authoritarian transition in this country, that question is being answered.

We do not have an NIH director yet. Former Senator Dan Coats has been nominated for the job, but has not been confirmed. Mr. Coats smells a rat:

Mr. Coats is especially angry at what he sees as a move by Mr. Bannon and Mr. Kushner to sideline him before he is even confirmed, according to current and former officials. He believes the review would impinge on a central part of his role as the director of national intelligence and fears that if Mr. Feinberg were working at the White House, he could quickly become a dominant voice on intelligence matters.

We are careening into a Constitutional crisis.....and Congressional Republicans are sitting on the hands.

We are in big trouble.
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