Hillary Clinton to Call for Body Cameras, End to Mass Incarceration

Hillary Clinton mass incarceration

Hillary Clinton to Call for Body Cameras, End to Mass Incarceration

Hillary Clinton reform proposal to end mass incarceration

Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton is weighing in on the rash of police-involved shooting of black men. She will call for reforms in the criminal justice system that would “end the era of mass incarceration,” the Los Angeles Times reports.

“The speech will mark the unveiling of Clinton’s first major policy proposal as a presidential hopeful, coming as candidates are under pressure to confront the unrest in Baltimore. The city erupted in rioting Monday night, following the funeral of Freddie Gray, an African American man who was mortally injured while in police custody.”

Politico is going after Hillary Clinton her death penalty shift.

Betty Jo Lewis’ Obituary Asks Readers to Vote for Hillary Clinton

Betty Jo Lewis' Obituary

Betty Jo Lewis’ Obituary Asks Readers to Vote for Hillary Clinton (Photo Credit: Carman Funeral Home)

Hillary Clinton has a supporter from the grave. Betty Jo Lewis’ obituary asks readers to vote for Hillary Clinton. That’s contrary to Larry Upright’s obituary in which the family asked friends and family not to vote for her.

Lewis died on April 13 at a local hospital in Lexington, KY.

Betty Jo Lewis’ obituary, which was posted in The Independent, summarizes her accomplishments, which include being a seamstress and a union member:

Donations may be sent to the Ashland Community Kitchen, where her grandson, Ryan, is executive director. Also, please vote for Hillary Clinton. Betty would really appreciate it, as she is surely disappointed she won’t get the chance to do so.

Clinton Foundation Admits Mistakes As Controversy Swirls Over Foreign Donations

clinton foundation scandal

Clinton Foundation Addresses Foreign Donation Scandal (Cartoon Credit: Ed Gamble)

The Clinton Foundation has addressed the foreign donation controversy engulfing Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, prompted by the book “Clinton Cash.”

The foundation said, “Yes, we made mistakes, as many organizations of our size do, but we are acting quickly to remedy them, and have taken steps to ensure they don’t happen in the future.”

Clinton Foundation statement: As the Foundation’s impact has grown, so too has its commitment to transparency. When Hillary Clinton was appointed Secretary of State, we took unprecedented steps to avoid potential conflicts of interest by going above and beyond what is required of any philanthropy and instituted voluntarily annual disclosure of all of our donors on our website. We also established a policy around the foreign government contributions we accept, recognizing that in order to continue our life improving work we rely on the contributions of government, as is the case with most large scale global charities.

Today, our donor disclosure and foreign government contributor policy is stronger than ever. Since Secretary Clinton decided to run for President, we have committed to disclosing all of our donors on a quarterly basis.  In addition, we announced that we will only accept funding from a handful of governments, many of whom the Foundation receives multi-year grants from, to continue the work they have long partnered on.

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I also want to address questions regarding our 990 tax forms. We have said that after a voluntary external review is completed we will likely refile forms for some years.  While some have suggested that this indicates a failure to accurately report our total revenue, that is not the case. Our total revenue was accurately reported on each year’s form – our error was that government grants were mistakenly combined with other donations. Those same grants have always been properly listed and broken out and available for anyone to see on our audited financial statements, posted on our website.

It seems that Hillary Clinton isn’t quaking in her boots over the so-called controversy because the book reveals no bombshells. The campaign has sought to discredit the conservative author and activist Peter Schweizer because he has a history of unsubstantiated writings. By the way, his credibility was shot when I realized he once served as Sarah Palin’s foreign policy adviser.

More on Peter Schweizer from Media Matters:

ABC News reported that it “uncovered errors” in Peter Schweizer’s upcoming anti-Clinton book, Clinton Cash.Schweizer has a long history of sloppy research and reporting — earlier this week, ThinkProgress revealedthat the conservative author cites a hoax press release in the book.

On April 23, ABC News explained that their independent review of the source material used for Clinton Cash“uncovered errors in the book, including an instance where paid and unpaid speaking appearances were conflated.” The book purports to reveal connections between Hillary Clinton’s time as secretary of state, donations to the Clinton Foundation, and paid speeches given by the Clintons, but Schweizer reportedly admitsin the book he cannot prove his allegations.

According to ABC, Schweizer “said the errors would be corrected.” The book is due for release on May 5; it is unclear whether the errors will be corrected before the first publication.

Media Matters identified ten previous instances in which Schweizer made serious factual errors, issued retractions, or relied on questionable sourcing.

The Republicans should be careful how they run with this so-called scandal. Hillary Clinton has a way of bouncing back from controversies. This could actually help her as people like Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and other right wing talking heads pile on. The campaign can frame the attacks as a witchhunt rather than a geniune attempt to uncover facts as part of the vetting process. If the attacks come across as partisan, then many Americans will dismiss it as partisan bullsh*t. That would work in Hillary Clinton’s favor.

For more blog discussions on Clinton Foundation scandal, CLICK HERE.

Hillary Clinton Shows Commitment to Diversity with Openly Gay Campaign Manager

Robby Mook Hillary Clinton campaign manager

Hillary Clinton Shows Commitment to Diversity with Openly Gay Campaign Manager (Photo Credit: Attribution Unknown)

While the Republicans are throwing the kitchen sink at Hillary Clinton, she is quietly building a very diverse campaign staff, including hiring openly gay Robby Mook as her campaign manager. The Democrats understand the power of diversity, mirroring the changing American demographics.

Vermont native Robby Mook is the first openly gay man to run a presidential campaign in American history. He’s no slouch. He successfully ran Terry McAuliffe’s Virginia gubernatorial campaign against Tea Party favorite Ken Cuccinelli. In short, he should be able to deftly steer Hillary Clinton in dealing with Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, who are also Tea Party favorites.

Mook previously worked for the Democratic National Committee and directed Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign in Ohio, Nevada, and Indiana, where she won the popular vote.

He also managed New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen’s successful campaign last fall, which ended the GOP’s 30-year control of that seat.

Robby Mook may not have a political science degree, but he has a history of success, which will serve Hillary Clinton well. So, while they sling mud in her direction, she is gathering a team of heavyweights, including Indian-American policy wonk Maya Harris,  to take her into the homestretch.

Maya Harris Key to Hillary Clinton Getting High Women of Color Turnout on Election Day

Maya Harris Key to Hillary Clinton High Women of Color Turnout on Election Day

Maya Harris (r) Key to Hillary Clinton High Women of Color Turnout on Election Day (Photo Credit: Twitter via @MayaHarris)

Maya Harris, key to Hillary Clinton getting high women of color turnout on Election Day.

Maya Harris, the sister of California Attorney General and U.S. Senate candidate Kamala Harris, is one of Hillary Clinton’s most interesting campaign hire so far. Last Tuesday, the Clinton campaign named three wonks to lead her policy team — Jake Sullivan, a top aide during her stint at the State Department, Ann O’Leary, who worked as legislative director in her Senate office, and Maya Harris, who isn’t a known member of Clinton’s inner circle.

Maya Harris did not hold a key position in the Clinton State Department, Senate office or even her 2008 presidential campaign. Harris, a law professor and a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, published a paper that may hold the key to why Hillary Clinton hired her in the first place. The paper may help Clinton expand the Barack Obama coalition that helped him beat John McCain and Mitt Romney by wide margins in 2008 and 2012 — women, particularly women of color.

Harris’ paper, entitled “Women of Color: A Growing Force in the American Electorate,” issues a scathing rebuke of politicians and political strategists of only addressing the concerns of women of color “as a part of broader efforts aimed at womeen, youth, or a specific racial or ethnic group.” Harris argues that women of color are their own fast-growing voting bloc. She maintains that any politician who wants to win must make sure that “their interests are priorities on the policy agenda.”

Harris writes, “As the 2008, 2012, and 2013 elections demonstrated, women of color are a key, emerging voting bloc with the potential to significantly affect electoral outcomes.” While Barack Obama lagged with white women voters, he overwhelming got the voters of women of color. The same held true for Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia gubernatorial race. She writes, “turnout by women of color in an off-year election helped provide Terry McAuliffe (D) the margin of victory in the 2013 Virginia gubernatorial election.”

“In the past two years [2012 & 2013], more than 2 million women of color have joined the vote-eligible population. As more people of color participate in elections, demographic trends suggest that women of color will become increasingly prominent electoral players,” Harris writes.

Maya Harris doesn’t simply address how to win the votes of women of color in elections. She addresses why politicians should try to go after this key demographic. “Women are the country’s largest voting bloc, and women of color are the fastest-growing segment of that group,” she writes. She goes on to note that “women of color represent 74 percnt of the growth in eligible women voters since 2000.”

Harris tweeted that “ are nearly 90% of overall voting-eligible population growth for women since 2012.” Here is a chart that show the importance of women of color voting bloc:

Fast-growing Women of Color Voting Bloc

Fast-growing Women of Color Voting Bloc

It will be interesting to see if Hillary Clinton can sustain the Obama coalition that came out in large numbers — women, black voters, Hispanics, LGBT and young voters. Many on the right believe Hillary Clinton won’t be able to sustain the minority turnout on election day, but the fact that she hired Maya Harris signals that the campaign is serious about expanding that coalition. Harris’ point is that most of the voters in the Obama coalition were women. Hillary Clinton can sustain that coalition. She just has to give them a good reason to turn out.

The numbers are on Hillary Clinton’s side, as the Republican Party continues to alienate women voters, particularly women of color, with playing politics with the confirmation of Loretta Lynch as the country’s first black female Attorney General. While their actions may not be racially motivated, it certainly sends the message to black voters that the Republicans have little use for us. The Republicans are relying on the white male demographic to win, but that alone can’t get them into the White House. Hillary Clinton must deliver policy appealing directly to women, particularly women of color, to drive high turnout in 2016. She has to go where Barack Obama didn’t go with formulating policy that appealed to black voters. Maya Harris is the adviser who has a proven track record in understanding how to use policy to bring women of color to the polls.

New Hampshire Democrats See Hillary Clinton Primary Challenge

New Hampshire Democrats See Hillary Clinton Primary Challenge

New Hampshire Democrats See Hillary Clinton Primary Challenge (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Hillary Clinton primary challenge

New Hampshire Democrats see Sen. Elizabeth Warren as a credible threat to Hillary Clinton in the primaries. The New Hampshire Union Leader reports, “The Democratic Party will have a primary race whether presumptive front-runner Hillary Clinton ultimately decides to enter the race or not, political observers and state Democrats said.”

Democratic Party chairman Ray Buckley: “I fully anticipate we’re going to have a very robust primary. It’s going to happen. A challenger to Clinton will emerge. There will be an alternative, and I anticipate a very vibrant primary.”

Josh Green: Sen. Elizabeth Warren would be credible threat to Clinton in the primaries.

Can Elizabeth Warren and Martin O’Malley Challenge Hillary Clinton for Democratic Nomination?

Can Elizabeth Warren and Martin O'Malley Challenge Hillary Clinton for Democratic Nomination?

Can Elizabeth Warren and Martin O’Malley Challenge Hillary Clinton for Democratic Nomination? (Photo Credit: Wikipedia)

Can Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley challenge Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination? Personally, I believe Warren is too liberal while O’Malley is a relative unknown. Still, Barack Obama was a relative unknown when he started the 2008 presidential campaign and ran a stellar campaign against the Clinton establishment the first time around. That’s why I am giving Martin O’Malley a second look. He certainly has less baggage than Clinton.

Martin O’Malley was well-received in Iowa during a recent appearance in Davenport. He blasted the GOP presidential contenders on their stance on income inequality.

“How ironic since their choices led to it,” he told The Des Moines Register in an interview Saturday. “This is their theory, and we tried it for the better part of these last 30 years: Concentrate wealth at the top, take regulation out of the equation and keep wages low. So for them now to say that they’re somehow very appalled and concerned about inequality is ironic, to put it most kindly.”

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During O’Malley’s appearance at the Scott County Democrats’ “Red, White and Blue Dinner,” he offered a prescription for “making the dream true again” that includes raising the minimum wage, expanding Social Security benefits, making pre-kindergarten universally available and ensuring equal pay for women. “Sing it with me people,” O’Malley said. “When women succeed, America succeeds.”

The speech, which drew multiple standing ovations, both underscored O’Malley’s opportunities and the challenges in the nation’s first presidential nominating state, where early polls show Clinton with a commanding lead and O’Malley barely registering. In interviews afterward, many Democratic activists said they were only starting to learn about O’Malley. Source: Des Moines Register

The Boston Globe is making the case for Elizabeth Warren. I like her a lot because she’s for the middle class, but I find some of her positions too liberal. She would have to move a little to the center for me.

Unlike Clinton, or any of the prospective Republican candidates, Warren has made closing the economic gaps in America her main political priority, in a career that has included standing up for homeowners facing illegal foreclosures and calling for more bankruptcy protections. If she runs, it’ll ensure that those issues take their rightful place at the center of the national political debate.

Some of Warren’s admirers feel she’d be better off fighting for those causes in the Senate — but her opportunities to enact reforms there are shrinking, which should make a presidential run more attractive. As a member of the minority party in the Senate, her effectiveness is now much more limited than when she first won election, since Republicans control the legislative agenda. Democrats face an uphill challenge to reclaim the Senate in 2016 and face even slimmer prospects in the House. For the foreseeable future, the best pathway Warren and other Democrats have for implementing their agenda runs through the White House.

A presidential campaign would test Warren as never before. Her views on foreign policy are not fully formed. And on many other important issues — climate change, gun control, civil rights — Warren could struggle to articulate clear differences between herself and Clinton. That’s a risk she should be willing to take.

It will be interesting to see who will step up and challenge Hillary Clinton. The path to the White House shouldn’t just be handed to another Clinton or another Bush, for that matter.

Democratic Frontrunner Hillary Clinton Building “Research-Driven” Campaign

Democratic Frontrunner Hillary Clinton Building "Research-Driven" Campaign

Democratic Frontrunner Hillary Clinton Building “Research-Driven” Campaign (Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton “is assembling a heavily research-driven campaign designed to prevent a repeat of her poor performance in 2008,” the Washington Post reports.

“Clinton still faces many of the same challenges she had seven years ago, when she went from being a juggernaut and most likely the first female president in American history to a perceived stumblebum out of touch with the political moment… But backers say this time Clinton is developing a smarter, more relevant campaign message… The former secretary of state is also trying to play down any sense of inevitability and aims to adopt many of the same data-focused strategies that Barack Obama used to snatch the race from her in 2008.”

Did the House GOP Just Hand Hillary Clinton White House in 2016?

Did the House GOP Just Hand Hillary Clinton White House in 2016?

Did the House GOP Just Hand Hillary Clinton White House in 2016? (Photo credit: Donkey Hotey)

Bill Clinton must be salivating at the prospects of his wife becoming the next president of the United States. The stunning implosion of the Republican Party and the inability of the Teahadists to recognize that they literally brought this country to its knees over a law, plus shaved billions off the economy and caused real hardship in many homes across the country for 16 days, is enough to have a real impact at the polls come 2014 and 2016.

Michael Hirsh: “In the innermost sanctum of Clintonland, it is difficult to imagine that Hillary and Bill, two of the savviest politicians in the country, are not pinching themselves to make sure that it’s all real. Perhaps they’re dancing a jig together, or knocking back shots and howling at the moon out of sheer, giddy joy at their good luck. (OK, Hillary’s not howling, but Bill might be.) Or maybe they are just quietly kvelling over the latest turn of events.”

“Because the trend lines are unmistakable, and they’re looking better all the time: If she wants to run in 2016, Hillary Rodham Clinton could have the easiest walk into the White House of any candidate in either party since, well, one has to go back a very long way. Maybe to Reagan in ’84. LBJ in ’64, or Eisenhower in ’52, or even FDR in 1932, 1936 and 1940. The presidency is looking like it’s hers to lose, more than ever.”

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Sir Elton John: I Hope Hillary Clinton is the Next President

Sir Elton John: I Hope Hillary Clinton is the Next President

Sir Elton John: I Hope Hillary Clinton is the Next President (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Legendary singer Sir Elton John is letting his feelings known about his choice for our next president — Hillary Clinton.

“I’ve always been a big Hillary fan. I hope she’s the next American president,” John told the AP before presenting Clinton with an award from his foundation on Tuesday. “I hope she runs.”

“She’s a great human rights campaigner for people of color, for people of [varied] sexual orientation,” the singer said. “She’s made our fight easier by being such a staunch supporter of AIDS and for people’s human rights.”

The former secretary of state was honored by the Elton John AIDS Foundation for her work in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

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