If I’m right about cities, then Republicans are in deep trouble.

philly-city-hall-flagIt’s been too long since we’ve had a political post hasn’t it? Last week, as part of my “Urban Lessons” mini-series, I wrote on how cities are perhaps the fountainheads of everything that ends up in suburban and rural areas. The things that take place in cities, it seems, always ends up flowing outward into the rest of the country, even if it takes decades or generations to do so.

I had that on my mind when watching this segment of The Rachel Maddow Show from Monday night’s episode. The segment is based off an excellent piece by Alexander Burns in Politico called “GOP big-city mayors vanish”. In it, Burns writes:

Largely unnoticed in Washington, urban Republican politicians have emerged over the last year as perhaps the nation’s most severely endangered political species, as the party has either failed to compete for high-profile mayor’s offices or has been soundly rebuffed by voters. It’s a significant setback that some Republicans view as an ominous sign for the GOP in a country growing steadily more urban and diverse.

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ACLU of Pennsylvania Files Suit Against Voter ID Law

I’ve not hidden my opposition to the recent wave of Voter ID laws being passed and pursued across the nation. I have written about this on this site, posted articles on the topic, and argued extensively on Facebook about this.

I have offered a simple mathematical challenge that no supporter of these laws has been able to meet: if it can be shown that more fraud would be prevented than voters being disenfranchised, I’ll change my mind and support these issues.

As I said, no supporter of these laws has been able to demonstrate this. They have given anecdotal evidence of random voter fraud, they have appealed to philosophical reasons behind this policy, and to try and show how the voters that would be disenfranchised wouldn’t deserve to to vote anyway because they would not be “enthusiastic”, “eager”, or “self-motivated” (because apparently every person without an ID  only ever votes because liberal social activist organizations manipulate and pay them to vote Democrat).

Yesterday, the ACLU of Pennsylvania, among other organizations, officially filed suit against the Commonwealth, claiming that the Voter ID law passed by Governor Tom Corbett violates the Commonwealth’s Constitution. They seem to have a pretty good case.
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a word on the effect of Corbett’s budget on Philly social services…

The Philadelphia Inquirer had this front page article today on Governor Tom Corbett’s drastic proposed Pennsylvania budget cuts and their particular effect on social services.

I work for one of the main social service agencies in Philadelphia. I can tell you that these effects will be real, not exaggerated, and felt by everyone (and perhaps even illegal). Is there really no more balanced, thoughtful, or nuanced approach to this?

In a notable quote from the article, executive director of NHS Human Services, Paul Sachs, told the Council committee about how the changes would eventually cost us more, not less:


We will see an increase in medical hospitalizations for the types of problems that frequently coexist with behavioral-health problems, such as diabetes, pulmonary, and cardiac conditions, not to mention sensitivity to extremes of cold or hot weather. And, I am sorry to say, we will see more people die whose deaths could have been avoided…. The governor’s budget cuts will not save money. Rather, it is an elaborate cost shift to emergency medical care and criminal justice systems, neither of which is designed to address the core problems facing these vulnerable individuals.

Please contact your local representative and let them know that you want this Commonwealth known for fighting for the vulnerable, and to at least show a little restraint, creativity, and nuance in how it maintains fiscal responsibility.

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