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Bush lied about weapons of mass destruction, let Bin Laden attack us, let him escape, let the American car industry fall to its knees, let American families lose their homes, failed to take advantage of the Clinton surplus, destroyed our system of education (Every Child Left Behind), and left the American economy in its worst state since the Great Depression.

Forget about show me the WMD.  Show me the successes of GWB!





Supreme Court upholds health care law


By Tom Curry, National Affairs Writer

Updated at 11:55 a.m. ET: In a dramatic victory for President Barack Obama, the Supreme Court upheld the 2010 health care law Thursday, preserving Obama’s landmark legislative achievement.

The majority opinion was written by Chief Justice John Roberts, who held that the law was a valid exercise of Congress’s power to tax.

Roberts re-framed the debate over health care as a debate over increasing taxes. Congress, he said, is “increasing taxes” on those who choose to go uninsured.

Poll: Do you agree with Supreme Court ruling on health care law?

Tom Goldstein of the SCOTUS blog breaks down the Supreme Court’s ruling on health care. Also, when asked why Chief Justice John Roberts upheld the law, Goldstein said, “I think he believed it.”


Click here for the text of the ruling

The 2010 law, the Affordable Care Act, requires non-exempted individuals to maintain a minimum level of health insurance or pay a tax penalty.

The essence of Roberts’s ruling was:

•       “The Affordable Care Act is constitutional in part and unconstitutional in part,” Roberts wrote.

•       “The individual mandate cannot be upheld as an exercise of Congress’s power under the Commerce Clause. That Clause authorizes Congress to regulate interstate commerce, not to order individuals to engage in it.”

•       But “it is reasonable to construe what Congress has done as increasing taxes on those who have a certain amount of income, but (who) choose to go without health insurance. Such legislation is within Congress’s power to tax.”

Roberts made a point of noting that he and the other justices “possess neither the expertise nor the prerogative to make policy judgments. Those decisions are entrusted to our Nation’s elected leaders, who can be thrown out of office if the people disagree with them. It is not our job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices.”


Click here for Twitter reactions to the ruling

In a landmark ruling, the Supreme Court upholds President Obama’s national health-care insurance act. NBC’s Pete Williams reports. TODAY’s Matt Lauer discusses the ruling with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie and David Gregory, host of “Meet the Press.”


The law, Roberts wrote, “makes going without insurance just another thing the Government taxes, like buying gasoline or earning income. And if the mandate is in effect just a tax hike on certain taxpayers who do not have health insurance, it may be within Congress’s constitutional power to tax.”

Jason Reed / Reuters

A sharply divided Supreme Court on Thursday upheld the centerpiece of Obama’s signature healthcare overhaul law that requires that most Americans get insurance by 2014 or pay a financial penalty.

He said “The question is not whether that is the most natural interpretation of the mandate, but only whether it is a ‘fairly possible’ one.”

He said the Supreme Court precedent is that “every reasonable construction” of a law passed by Congress “must be resorted to, in order to save a statute from unconstitutionality.” 

Dems cheer high court as galvanized GOP vows ‘full repeal’

Veteran Supreme Court lawyer Tom Goldstein told NBC’s Pete Williams that “the Affordable Care Act was saved by Chief Justice John Roberts.”

Claire McAndrew of Washington, left, and Donny Kirsch of Washington celebrate outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., Thursday, after a the court’s ruling on health care.

Goldstein said the Obama administration “got the one vote they really needed in Chief Justice John Roberts.”

When he served in the Senate in 2005, Obama voted against confirming Roberts as chief justice, arguing that he lacked empathy for underdogs and “he has far more often used his formidable skills on behalf of the strong in opposition to the weak.”

(Twenty-one other Democratic senators, including Joe Biden, also voted against confirming Roberts. Twenty-two Democratic senators voted to confirm him.)

Obama hailed his victory: “The highest court in the land has now spoken. We will continue to implement this law and we’ll work together to improve on it where we can.”

But he urged Americans to refrain from re-fighting “the political battles of two years ago” or trying to “go back to the way things were.”

The four justices joining Roberts in upholding the law were Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

The dissenting justices were Justices Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito.

For individuals who choose to not comply with the individual insurance mandate, Congress deliberately chose to make the penalty fairly weak: only $95 for 2014; $325 for 2015; and $695 in 2016.

After 2016, that $695 amount is indexed to the consumer price index.

Congress specifically did not allow the use of liens and seizures of property as methods of enforcing the penalty.

Non-compliance with the mandate is also not subject to criminal or civil penalties under the Tax Code and interest does not accrue for failure to pay the penalty in a timely manner, according to the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation.


Chief Justice Roberts announces the Supreme Court’s opinion in health care law

NBC’s Pete Williams reported that Roberts reasoned that “there’s no real compulsion here” since those who do not pay the penalty for not having insurance can’t be sent to jail. “This is one of the scenarios that administration officials had considered that if the court did this they would consider it a big victory,” Williams said.

In his reaction to the court’s decision, Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney said, “What the court did today was say that Obamacare does not violate the Constitution. What they did not do was say that Obamacare is good law or that it’s good policy.”

He said the ruling had made it clear “If we want to get rid of Obamacare, we’re going to have replace President Obama.”

But in a major victory for the states who challenged the law, the court said that the Obama administration cannot coerce states to go along with the Medicaid insurance program for low-income people.

The financial pressure which the federal government puts on the states in the expansion of Medicaid “is a gun to the head,” Roberts wrote.

“A State that opts out of the Affordable Care Act’s expansion in health care coverage thus stands to lose not merely ‘a relatively small percentage’ of its existing Medicaid funding, but all of it,” Roberts said.

Congress cannot “penalize States that choose not to participate in that new program by taking away their existing Medicaid funding,” Roberts said.

The Medicaid provision is projected to add nearly 30 million more people to the insurance program for low-income Americans — but the court’s decision left states free to opt out of the expansion if they choose.

In today’s survey, the editorial staff ask what should be done with President Obama’s health care law.  Here are the results.


Quick vote

What should the Supreme Court do with the health care law President Obama signed two years ago?
Uphold it
Toss it all
Toss parts
Total votes: 56122



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Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney will become the Republican nominee but will never become President of the United States.

rison Thousands of people have taken our Political Spectrum Quiz, which places you on a grid according to your political leanings. We’ve gathered a lot of statistics from this quiz. What fun would it be if we didn’t create neat maps from the data? Below are four US maps showing state-by-state comparisons reflecting the average scores on four different axes. One caveat to consider is that quiz-takers are self-selected and thus not a representative sample. Social Libertarian vs. Authoritarian By State Libertarian vs. Authoritarian This map is regenerated periodically. As of this writing, social authoritarians are found mostly in the South and in a few mountain states. The most socially libertarian states are found in the Pacific Northwest and New England. Please note, this map represents social policy, not economic! The next map tackles economic policy. Place a 300×240 pixel version of this map on your blog or favorite forum: libertarian vs. authoritarian
Political Maps
You may repost up to two of these maps, but please retain the link back to this page. Economic Left vs. Right By State Political Left vs. Right As of this writing, the South is the politically furthest right. The Pacific Northwest and several New England states are the furthest left. It’s interesting to see how much Maine diverges from some of its neighboring states. California is not is far to the left as some might expect. Place a 300×240 pixel version of this map on your blog or favorite forum: economic left vs. right
Political Maps
You may repost up to two of these maps, but please retain the link back to this page. Neocon vs. Non-interventionalist By State Neocon vs. Non-interventionalist This map shows a pattern that is becoming familiar. Neoconservatism is concentrated mostly in the South. Non-interventionalist states are scattered in the Northeast and along the West Coast. Place a 300×240 pixel version of this map on your blog or favorite forum: neocon vs. non-interventionalist
Political Maps
You may repost up to two of these maps, but please retain the link back to this page. Liberal vs. Conservative By State Liberal vs. Conservative The Southern and several Mountain states are the most culturally conservative, as well as Alaska. The liberal side of the culture war is unsurprisingly found in several Northeast states as well as on the West Coast. The Mid-Atlantic, Mid-West and several Mountain states represent the political middle. Place a 300×240 pixel version of this map on your blog or favorite forum: liberal vs. conservative
Political Maps
You may repost up to two of these maps, but please retain the link back to this page.

<a href=””><img src=”;

Mitt Romney v. Obama: 44 – 45%
Mike Huckabee v. Obama: 43 – 46%
Sarah Palin v. Obama: 43 – 50%
Newt Gingrich v. Obama: 40 – 51%
Rick Santorum v. Obama: 34 – 49%
Tim Pawlenty v. Obama: 32 – 49%

No matter how you slice it, President Obama kicks all of your fucking asses, you fucking assholes!


Wed May 25, 12:43 pm ET

Woman overcomes total memory loss to graduate from college

By Liz Goodwin


By Liz Goodwin liz Goodwin Wed May 25, 12:43 pm ET

On her first day of community college, 45-year-old Su Meck threw up two times out of sheer terror.

Going back to school as an adult is scary for anyone. But Meck, a homemaker and former aerobics instructor from Gaithersburg, Maryland, had a very special reason to be apprehensive. She suffered total memory loss at the age of 22 when a ceiling fan fell on her head as she was cooking, leaving her in a coma with a brain full of cracks. When she came to, she remembered nothing about her past, and had the mental capacity of a young child. Meck woke up to a life she didn’t remember having, that of a young mother and wife living in Fort Worth, Texas. Family members remember her looking at them with a chilling lack of recognition after the accident.

“It was literally like she had died,” her husband Jim told the Washington Post. “Her personality was gone.

“It was Su 2.0. She had rebooted.”

So even though she had studied at Ohio Wesleyan University, where she met and married her husband, Meck did not remember a single day of her education. As far as she was concerned, she had never set foot inside a classroom. But Meck triumphed–she graduated with her associate’s degree in music with a 3.9 grade point average last Friday.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” she told The Lookout in an interview of going back to school. “I didn’t know how to act or what to do. How I basically got through this whole ordeal is watching other people and mimicking what they do. I wasn’t sure if I was going to really be able to do that in a classroom.”

She asked her three children–two of them college-aged at the time–how to take notes and how students are supposed to act.

“I didn’t understand the whole concept, like do you write down everything the teacher says? How do you know what to write down? It was really, really scary,” she remembers.

Her youngest child, Kassidy, was just starting high school and helped her mom with her remedial math course. Meck couldn’t even multiply numbers–she relied on addition, which she had learned from examining her children’s homework when they were younger. “My daughter was fabulous,” Meck says. “She was a huge help, especially with the math.”

Meck initially kept her condition a secret from her classmates and professors, who she says were very kind and helpful. But she was haunted by the feeling that at any time, she could be “sitting there and not knowing if I was doing it right.” She was baffled when her professors told her to buy blue books for her exams. Scantrons also escaped her: She remembers circling the letters instead of filling them in.

Meck finally told some of her peers and instructors about her condition in her last year at the college. She had never told anyone outside of a small circle of close friends and family before.

There was also a more insidious fear: That she wouldn’t live up to the person she used to be.

“I was an excellent student before … and that was kind of rough because it was like, ‘Is everyone expecting me to be this before person? Because I can’t be that person. I’m not that person.'”

Meck plans to enroll in Smith College in Massachusetts next fall as a transfer student, and eventually get a masters degree in library science. She hopes to work in a music division of a library. She was a talented musician before her accident, and once shortly after the total memory loss she sat down at a piano and played Scott Joplin’s “The Entertainer,” her mom told her. She has never been able to do that since, and struggled to re-learn piano in college.

One downside of her condition being out in the open now is people are very curious about what she was like before the accident, which frustrates Meck.

“You can ask Jim that, you can ask my family that, but you can’t ask me that. Because I don’t know,” she says.

Her children, however, grew up only remembering the post-accident Meck. (Two of her children were very young when the fan fell on her, one was born after the accident.) She learned to be a mother again through “trial and error,” she says, and her children also adapted. Her son became very adept at remembering their parking space, since Meck’s short-term memory was also impaired at first.

“They didn’t know that mom was any different,” she says. “I guess Benjamin [the oldest child] talked about, ‘You’re different from other moms, but not in a bad way.’ All the other moms would sit and drink coffee, but I would sit on the floor and do the puzzles, because I had never done puzzles before … I was just a different mom I think.”

Her husband, however, did remember what she was like before she lost her memory, and Meck says that was hard. “I am definitely not the same person he married,” she says of Jim. “It’s been rough. It couldn’t have not been. It’s not all Disney endings–It’s life, it’s not always perfect.”

Today is their 26th wedding anniversary, but Meck doesn’t remember her wedding day. She says they’re thinking of picking a new day to celebrate, one that she remembers.

(Meck: Sanjay Suchak/Montgomery College)