The South Dakota legislature recently passed a bill which would have allowed most people to carry a concealed firearm without first obtaining a permit. To his credit, the state’s Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard vetoed this bill on Friday:
[T]he more he studied House Bill 1248, the more the governor had doubts. And by Friday, he had seen enough to veto the bill.
?When I looked at the bill, it really was a solution in search of a problem,? Daugaard said Friday. ?The process for gaining a concealed carry permit is very simple and easily accomplished. I just don?t see this (bill) as something that would improve that by a great deal.? . . .
But the bill?s supporters say Daugaard?s veto was misguided.
?I believe that concealed weapons permit is a restriction on your constitutional right,? said Sen. Larry Rhoden, R-Union Center, who sponsored HB1248. ?Whether or not it?s a legitimate restriction – that can be debated. But it is a restriction. If you don?t have a good, rock-solid restriction to leave that restriction in place, why not remove that restriction??
Rhoden, of course, is wrong about the Constitution. Although the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment protects most individuals right to own a firearm, it also concluded that “the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited.” It then suggested that a long list of gun regulations are entirely consistent with the Second Amendment, including “prohibitions on carrying concealed weapons.”
Ellen DeGeneres stopped by her hometown JC Penney in Metairie, Louisiana, where she worked as a teenager, and tried to help customers return merchandise, dress for a wedding, and pick out glasses. DeGeneres’ new partnership with the company drew criticism from conservative activists earlier this year, who accused the retail chain of undermining traditional values. JC Penney stood by the openly-gay comedian. Watch the segment:
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) continued its challenge against the CIA's withholding of information on the agency's use of drones to carry out "targeted killings." The case centers on whether it is lawful for the CIA to "refuse to confirm or[...]
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Ask Mitt Romney a question about education, and it's predictable that he'll come back with two answers: bashing teachers unions and calling for more testing. That's exactly what happened this week when Fox News Sunday's Brett Baier asked Romney if he thinks the federal Department of Education should be abolished. Explaining what role he thinks the federal government should continue to take even if his alleged belief that "education has to be managed at the state level, not at the federal level" was implemented, Romney predictably attacked teachers unions:
But the role I see that ought to remain in the president's agenda with regards to education is to push back against the federal teachers unions. Those federal teachers unions have too much power, in some cases, they overwhelm the states, they overwhelm the local school districts. We have got to put the kids first and put these teachers unions behind.That's right. Mitt Romney wants you to believe that teachers unions are so powerful that it takes the federal government to counter them?state and local governments are powerless against them. That is, of course, one of those statements that would be totally hilarious if it wasn't a claim that Republican presidential candidates and governors were making, en masse, as the reason to crush teachers unions, and if their reasons for wanting to crush teachers unions didn't have quite so much to do with the desire to make it easier to fire experienced teachers and replace them with cheaper, inexperienced teachers. It might be funny if it wasn't such a terrible insult to people who pour their lives into their classrooms and their students, working long hours for not enormously much pay. In fact, as Romney was saying this, the leaders of the Milwaukee teachers union were "campaigning for members to sacrifice a week?s worth of their pay to help reduce class sizes next year in Milwaukee Public Schools. The MPS Children?s Week Campaign is asking educators to give up 2.6% of their salary next year to allow for class-size relief."
Romney thinks if he always makes sure to include the word "unions," we won't notice that what he's saying is that he wants to put teachers down, to eliminate their ability to bargain over class sizes and how much test results will be used to measure educational quality and to treat teachers as the enemies of their students, rather than as educators and advocates. This is nothing new from Mitt Romney. But it's an insult every time he says it.
Michael Bay wants to take the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and turn them into aliens. There goes my childhood.
My guess is that, as per usual, Paul Ryan will use tomorrow?s event to propose regressive cuts to existing social programs but insist that it?s necessary to save our fiscal future, or something. Also, there will be large tax cuts for rich people.
I?ve already said it today, but Ta-Nehisi has been doing great work following the Trayvon Martin case.
The iPad sold like gangbusters over the weekend.
Sometimes I wonder if I?m the only black person who actively listens to Peter Gabriel:
Fred Karger--the openly gay, Jewish, pro-choice, pro-LGBT, pro-pot, anti-war GOP candidate--beat Ron Paul in the Puerto Rico primary Sunday. Karger, who has no SuperPAC and despite qualifying for the GOP debates has been excluded from the podium,[...]
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Federal prosecutors filed motions late last week to prevent defense lawyers for 2008 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Edwards from bringing up issues they believe would engender sympathy from jurors serving in his upcoming trial on campaign finance charges related to his affair with a campaign videographer.
Justice Department attorneys filed separate motions asking a judge to prevent the Edwards defense team from mentioning the penalties Edwards could face if he's found guilty, his recent health issues or the fact that a witness against him was found in contempt of court over not turning over a copy of a sex tape between Edwards and his mistress Rielle Hunter.
Referencing Edwards' health issues "would serve no purpose other than to generate sympathy for the defendant, confuse the issues before the jury, and potentially mislead the jury as to the relevant facts," federal prosecutors wrote. Likewise, they said that referencing the possible punishment Edwards could face "may raise concerns in the mind of the jury about the appropriateness of such penalties and may improperly engender sympathy for the defendant."
Prosecutors also want to prevent defense attorneys from raising or cross-examining former Edwards campaign aide Andrew Young and his wife over a contempt order issued in state court after they initially refused to turn over property which included what prosecutors described as a "now-infamous videotape" of Edwards and Hunter. That case has since been settled and the sex tape destroyed.
Edwards, who was indicted on six charges last June after accepting over $900,000 from a wealthy donor to help hide his affair that federal prosecutors allege counted as a campaign donation, has tried to dismiss the charges on the grounds that he would have wanted to keep his affair hidden even if he wasn't running for office. Jury selection in the case is scheduled to begin on April 12.
The change of venue motion, placed in the context of the allegations contained in the [Kelly M.] Rindfleish complaint, suggests that extraordinary efforts were made to evade the residency requirement in order to bring a political operative (Rindfleish --- who was also previously tied to the Assembly Republican Caucus Scandal that put several high-ranking state officials in jail several years earlier), into the Milwaukee County Executive Office in order to misuse that position for the political advantage of Walker in his 2010 gubernatorial campaign.
The fact that Walker signed off on both her initial hire and her later promotion strongly suggests that Walker was in on the scheme from day-one. That inference is reinforced by the 'smoking gun' 5/14/10 emails between Walker and Russell and between Rindfleisch and Russell. That series of emails reveals that Rindfleisch pulled the plug on the secret email system just ten minutes after Walker told Russell, in the wake of public exposure of former Milwaukee County employee Darlene Wink's illegal political missives sent during office hours: 'We cannot afford another story like this one?That means no laptops, no websites, no time away during the day, etc.'
All-in-all, these points seem to back up our contention from last week, in the wake of the establishment of his new Legal Defense Fund, that Scott Walker may be now be a target of prosecutors in the long-running 'John Doe' investigation which has already led to the indictments of four of his former top deputies.
Harvard grad Mitt Romney bashed the "faculty lounge at Harvard" yesterday, favorably cites Harvard prof today.[...]
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