Republicans are on the verge of unprecedented political power — or an electoral catastrophe

The Republican Party is the strongest it has been in decades and could be on the verge of a victory that could give them more electoral power than at any time since 1920, the year women first voted for the president.

That’s the conclusion of Sean Trende and David Byler who have put together an index of party strength:

You can quibble with the methodology and focus on the role gerrymandering and other methods of voter disempowerment have played. But it’s undeniable that Republicans have done much better than Democrats in winning down-ticket races since the Democratic landslide of 2008. And this is how you accumulate political power.…

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INTERVIEW: Progress Michigan’s Lonnie Scott on their upcoming fundraiser comedy show with The Daily Show’s Al Madrigal

“We wanted to bring everyone in the progressive community together to talk about issues that they are concerned about and working on every day and to have some fun doing it.”

As I wrote about last week, our friends at Progress Michigan are having fundraiser in Ann Arbor on June 3rd that features comedian Al Madrigal from The Daily Show along with others. I sat down with Progress Michigan Executive Director Lonnie Scott to discuss the show, why it is necessary, and what people can expect.

Information on purchasing tickets can be found at the end of the interview.
Tell us a little bit about Progress Michigan.

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WARNING: Hillary Clinton is NOT the overwhelming favorite to win in 2016

In a great article in Salon about the danger of Alex Jones and his legion of conspiracy theorists who have infiltrated GOP thinking and exposed Obama’s vicious invasion of Texas, Bob Cesca ends with a conspiracy theory of his own by suggesting that Hillary Clinton is “widely favored to win in 2016.”

Bob isn’t alone in this conspiracy theory — which I know is actually a “hypothesis,” word nerds. Politico‘s media reporter Dylan Byers — who prides himself on being so unbiased that he doesn’t even allow his genitalia to lean in a specific direction — recently called the race Clinton’s “election to lose.

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GUEST POST: Replacing forced arbitration contract trickery with transparency

The following is a guest post by Lonnie Scott, Executive Director of Progress Michigan.

If you’ve ever opened up a credit card, taken out a student loan or signed up for a cell phone plan, you’re probably bound to arbitration through some version of a consumer financial contract you’ve consented to – whether you know it or not.

Buried in the fine print of take-it-or-leave-it contracts, forced arbitration terms rob consumers of their constitutional right to their day in court in the event of a dispute. Instead of being able to have their case heard by a judge and jury, consumers must instead go to private arbitration where a panel of adjudicators review their case and make a determination that is legally binding and enforceable in the courts.…

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Senate version of Michigan Republicans’ “Local Government Control Prohibition Act” drops, same as House version

Earlier this week, House Republicans held a hearing on H.B. 4052, a bill that would prohibit local governments from passing employment-related ordinances that are more restrictive than state-level laws. Although it is called the “Local Government Employer Mandate Prohibition Act”, it really should be referred to as the “Local Government Control Prohibition Act” because it strips what is commonly known as “home rule” from local governments.

The list of things covered by the current version of H.B. 4052 is pretty large. It would prohibit a local governmental body from adopting, enforcing, or administering an ordinance, local policy, or local resolution that:

  • Regulates the relationship between an employer and its employees or potential employees, if the regulation contains requirements exceeding those imposed by state or federal law.
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Stop pretending immigration reform will ever happen under these Republicans

Remember what happened in the House on Thursday when the GOP nominee releases in ad in Spanish next September that drops all the “secure the border” pablum that got him the nomination and vows to reform the immigration system in a way Democrats haven’t.

House Republicans voted to remove language that would have instructed the secretary of defense to consider allowing undocumented Americans to serve in the military from the National Defense Authorization Act by a 221-202 margin.

Every Democrat voted against the amendment.

Instead of being satisfied with the win, the anti-immigrant right attacked the small percentage of Republicans who voted with Democrats.…

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Republicans decide working poor Michiganders haven’t been screwed enough, want to eliminate EITC to pay for roads

Given their history, it takes a lot for Michigan Republicans to do something so cruel, so heartless, so Henry F. Potterish that it surprises you. But I am confident in saying that their most recent gambit to find funding for road repairs in our state rises to that level. In an effort to race $1 billion to put toward roads, House Republicans are proposing an elimination of the Earned Income Tax Credit, virtually the only tax credit available to poor people and which helps the working poor, folks holding down a full-time job but still struggling to make ends meet. Keep in mind, the EITC would have been restored from 6% to 20% if Prop 1 had passed.…

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Republican push to repeal Michigan’s prevailing wage law just another power grab

Once again the Michigan Senate is moving to repeal the state’s “prevailing wage” law that has been in place for half a century, the law the Republicans once claimed would wreck the economy but which did the opposite, helping to sustain the once-growing middle class. They’re singing the same right wing anthem again, the one about saving the taxpayers money when what they are really seeking is increased profits for contractors by helping them depress workers’ wages. (It’s always worth noting that when the GOP talks about taxpayers and labor in the same sentence, they imply that those who labor are a group apart and not taxpayers too.…

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