6th Circuit: Obamacare is Constitutional

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals rules that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is Constitutional, affirming the ruling of the district court.

“We find that the minimum coverage provision is a valid exercise of legislative power by Congress under the Commerce Clause and therefore AFFIRM the decision of the district court.”
In the beginning of this legal saga, the Affordable Care Act won a series of victories, followed by a string of defeats. Now, this higher court ruled in it's favor. It is as clear as ever that we need to look to the highest court in the land to resolve the debate.

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Fundraising Message from the President

Message from the president, donate now.

We're closing the books on the first fundraising quarter of the 2012 race at midnight tomorrow.

A lot of folks will be interpreting our numbers as a measure of this campaign's support.

They're not wrong, but they are wrong about why.

We measure our success not in dollars but in people -- in the number of everyday Americans who've chosen to give whatever they can afford because they know we've got more work to do.

I'm asking you to be one of them. Please donate $5 or more before midnight tonight:


Thank you,


P.S. -- Your gift automatically enters you to join the Vice President and me for dinner. We'd love to meet you. Please donate here:

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Income Tax is Ineffective

At first glance, it seems fair: you pay proportional to what you make. However, this does not take expenses into account. If I live in New Jersey the living wage for a two adults and two child, according to http://www.livingwage.geog.psu.edu, is $33.00 an hour (or roughly $68,000 a year).
The living wage shown is the hourly rate that an individual must earn to support their family, if they are the sole provider and are working full-time (2080 hours per year).
If this family of four makes any less than that, they won't be able to afford one of the following categories:
  • Food
  • Child Care
  • Medical
  • Housing
  • Transportation
However, families of four making less 68,000 a year are still charged income tax. Every dollar of income tax makes this NJ family of four more unable to make ends meet. What's the point of taxing someone closer to poverty? Why should we tax people closer to needing government assistance? Why are we taking people on money that they don't have? I think I have a solution.

I think it is fair to say that someone making $68,000 in NJ isn't going to have any money in the bank because the cost of living is $68,000. After food, health care, housing, local and state taxes, etc they have nothing left to spare. Anyone making below this is in the red and this debt mounts every year, driving them closer to poverty. Therefore, it is my opinion that we should not tax the income of anyone making $68,000 or less in NJ. The living wage varies by city, so a person in Texas making $68,000 would still have to pay because the living wage is ~$52,000 a year. They should still be responsible to payroll, sales and property taxes because that is built into the living wage. Anything more to this is making anyone earning less than the living wage poorer and poorer every year. But what about the NJ wealthy?

Let's say a wealthy family of four lives in Hunterdon County, NJ. The cost of living is 72,000 a year. However, they make $500,000 a year. After subtracting the living wage (500,000-72,000) they have $422,000 in the bank. They should be taxed on that $422,000 that they have in the bank, not the $500,000 that they made. They have money left after paying expenses to pay the income tax. Their income tax won't put closer to poverty.

However, I don't think the families making below $68,000 should get off easy. For everyone making below the living wage, mandatory community service. This way, they contribute by making the country a better place for all to live and pay their debt to society without driving them into debt.

The whole idea behind this is taxing people who have money left to be taxed. We don't tax a business that lost money, why should we tax families going into debt. It's all about being fair and doing what you can.
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Sen. Obama Promised to Withdraw from Afghanistan?

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via WikipediaI have seen statements by Obama detractors saying that Obama's pledge to reduce Afghanistan troop levels by 33,000 in the next year is a disingenuous move, only done to partly fulfill a campaign promise. (I think these people should put the joint down, Ron Paul hasn't gotten it legalized yet anyway!) Then Senator Obama actually promised to send MORE troops in Afghanistan, not take them out.
"Our troops have fought valiantly there, but Iraq has deprived them of the support they need — and deserve," Obama said. "As a result, parts of Afghanistan are falling into the hands of the Taliban, and a mix of terrorism, drugs and corruption threatens to overwhelm the country. As president, I would deploy at least two additional brigades to Afghanistan to re-enforce our counterterrorism operations and support NATO's efforts against the Taliban."
Obama exceeded this promise with two troop surges. I don't know where these people are getting their information, but they better go elsewhere; Obama never promised to leave Afghanistan before this past Wednesday.

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GOP: When the Going Gets Though, the Tough Give Up

Apparently the concept of 'compromise' is defined differently by Republican Congressmen. With GOP compromise you either comply with their demands or they walk. It is remniscent of Bush negotiations: "Either you are with us, or you're against us".

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Obama: 33,000 Afghanistan Reduction

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via WikipediaIn a speech earlier tonight, Obama announced that 10,000 troops will come home from Afghanistan by the end of this year and an additional 20,000 by next summer. By 2014, our job there will be done. Obama ends his speech by saying we need to focus our resources at home to "reclaim the American Dream".

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UN: Gay Rights are Human Rights

United Nations Member States-1948Image via Wikipedia
Let's give a round of applause for the UN. Now the UN member nations need to follow suit. Only 6 states and 8 nations recognize same sex marriage. This is no different than the Civil Rights movement or the push for Women's

Sources: http://www.npr.org/2011/06/22/137342470/-un-recognizes-gay-rights-as-human-rights?ft=1&f=1001
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California: No Pay Until Budget Passes

Is there no other way to make these people do their jobs? It is so ridiculous that lawmakers cling to their position instead of working on a compromise. This isn't like a reform that could wait a couple years for more discussion and analysis, this is a budget that needs to be passed...pretty much right now. Isn't there any body in this nation that can set aside their differences and their pride to pass something in the best interest of the people?

Sources: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2011/06/22/137338791/california-lawmakers-wont-get-paid-until-budget-is-balanced?ft=1&f=1001

Turn Right USA, Pathetic Liars

Los Angeles City Councilmember Janice Hahn cam...Image via WikipediaSometimes lies are so big and so outrageous that it is scary to think that people may believe them. A Conservative PAC 'Turn Right USA' said the following of Democratic congressional candidate Janice Hahn.
Janice Hahn hired hard-core gang members with taxpayer money to be 'gang-intervention specialists.' She even helped them get out of jail, so they could rape and kill again.
Politifact.com rated this false. I don't think this statement say anything about Conservatives, but I do think it says something about Turn Right USA. Nothing they say should be taken seriously unless you do some serious research first. The lie is so outrageous and so wrong; it shows the character of the people behind Turn Right USA. Pathetic.

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Father's Day Letter From Mrs. Obama

I received this email from barackobama.com on behalf of Michelle Obama. I thought it said a lot so I thought it would be good to pass it along. Happy Father's Day!

As families around the country get together to celebrate fathers today, I'm thinking about dads like Alex.

Alex is the father of two boys and two girls, ages six to 13. During the week, he works the 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. shift as a front-desk supervisor at a Seattle hotel. After work and on the weekends, he devotes his time to a summer organizing program that's giving more than 1,500 first-time organizers the training they need to help build this movement in their communities.

He says he hopes this organizing work will help teach his kids the power one person can have -- that if "they see something that needs to be changed, they know they can make a difference."

I wanted to share a video of Alex explaining what prompted him to join this program and devote his summer to this work.

I was really moved by what he had to say. Take a look, and share it with a dad you're thinking about today:

Today, I'm also proud of my husband, the man who drove our first daughter and me home from the hospital 13 years ago next month, determined to be the kind of father he hadn't had for himself.

Barack often says he decided that day that if he could be anything in life, he'd be a good dad, and he dedicated himself then and there to making sure our daughter had every opportunity he could provide.

When it comes down to it, that's why we're all here -- Barack, Alex, myself, and everyone who's part of this campaign. We're all working to make sure we leave our kids with a country that's fairer and more full of opportunity -- just as our parents did for us.

Thank you for being part of that work, and part of this campaign.

Wishing you a happy Father's Day,

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McCain Dislikes GOP Isolationism

John McCain official photo portrait.Image via WikipediaUS Senator and former GOP presidential candidate John McCain says he is uneasy over the growing isolationism that is taking center stage in the GOP primary race. He also suggests Reagan would be shocked to hear such isolationism coming from Republicans. The Libya question is interesting because it has bipartisan support on both sides. However, I agree with McCain that Obama did the right thing. Gadafhi said he was going to go into Tripoli and kill everyone. What would people have said if we had the chance to stop that and we didn't. We did a great job BECAUSE nothing happened.

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MCCONNELL: Beating Obama Most Imporant

MCCONNELL: The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.

Just a reminder, the Republicans aren't even afraid to say that politics, not people, is most important.


Obama V GOP 17 June 2011

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via Wikipedia
Big gain by "any GOP" against Obama. Modest gains for Romney, Pawlenty and Palin. Huntsman and Cain new to RCP. The rest see modest losses against Obama.

RCP average:

Obama beats any GOP by 2.2 (Last 5)
Obama beats Romney by 5.2 (Last 6.4)
Obama beats Paul by 11 (Last 8)
Obama beats Pawlenty by 13.7 (Last 14.1)
Obama beats Huntsman by 14 (Last N/A)
Obama beats Gingrich by 14.7 (Last 13)
Obama beats Cain by 15.7 (Last N/A)
Obama beats Bachmann by 17.7 (Last 17)
Obama beats Palin by 18 (Last 19.5)

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GOP Lie Race: 436 Days to RNC

Surprise candidate Rick Perry shook things up, knocking Pawlenty out of the running and taking the first place spot in the Lie Race. Romney gained in the lie race and opinion polls. Everyone else essentially stayed the same. Sarah Palin will have to get her lies lined up if she wants to retake her #1 spot and Bachmann has a lot of ground to cover.

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Libya, Never-ending Conflict

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via WikipediaThe conservatives are right, Libya will be an endless war just like Iraq. Oh wait, it took us 1 month to get their leader to agree to switch to a democratic process? Gadaffi wants elections to be held with international oversight? Good call Obama.

Sources: http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/110616/libya-gaddafi-son-saif-islam-elections-video

Romney Wrong on Recovery

It seems that Romney receives a new 'False' rating from Politifact every day. Slowest recovery since Hoover? Not by any measure.

Sources: http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/jun/16/mitt-romney/mitt-romney-says-were-slowest-job-recovery-hoover/

Obama Helps Dads Be Better Parents

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via WikipediaIn typical liberal fashion, Obama creates an initiative aimed at improving the quality of life in America: Year of Strong Fathers, Strong Families. This program plans to cut the cost for father-son time. It's partners, including bowling allies, aquariums, and zoos, sponsor free or nearly free admission for fathers and sons.
Obama has also increased funding to fatherhood responsibility awareness groups from $50 to $70 million over the next 5 years.

GOP Lie Race: 438 Days to RNC

I was curious to see if there was a correlation between number of lies told, as reported by politifact.com, and the percent of opinion poll voters, as reported by realclearpolics.com of the GOP presidential hopefuls. In the image below, they are ranked by number of lies. Tea Partiers Sarah Pain and Michelle Bachmann lead the pack in lies and Palin ranks number 2 in opinion polls. However, Bachmann's lies aren't getting her the same support. Mitt Romney is in third in the lie race, but first in the opinion polls. I am eager to see how this changes over the coming months.
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Bachmann Enters White House Race

NASHUA, NH - MARCH 12: U.S. Rep. Michele Bachm...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Representative Michelle Bachmann (R-MN) filed her application to officially become a candidate for president of the United States. Polls show that Bachmann has fallen from 5th to 8th place among GOP presidential hopefuls with 5.1%.

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Santoum lies about Obama

Rick Santorum says President Barack Obama "has put (up) a stop sign … against oil drilling, against any kind of exploration offshore or in Alaska." This is completely untrue. I wonder if how many of these are just made up entirely on the spot. Permits have slowed because of tighter regulations set ordered by Obama but they have far from stopped.

Source: http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/jun/15/rick-santorum/rick-santorum-says-barack-obama-has-raised-stop-si/
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Dinner with Obama

A $5 donation can get you a seat at the table with Obama, pretty good deal.


Romney Stands by Global Warming Beliefs, RomneyCare Mandate

Governor Mitt Romney of MAImage via Wikipedia
Mitt Romney has stood by several beliefs that are contrary to those of mainstream Republicans. In the past, the GOP frontrunner has voiced his belief that Global Warming is caused by humans. This week at a town hall, he stood by this statement. In this tenure as Governor of Massachusetts, he passed a low similar to Obama's Affordable Care Act, also known as "ObamaCare". This "RomneyCare" has the same individual mandate so despised by Republican and Tea Party voters. However, Romney still stands by the law, emphasizing other differences between the two. Can Romney get the GOP nomination by being contrary to the average Republican voter on two important issues?

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High Unemployment? Blame Government Cuts

There are people who like to blame Obama's policies for the high unemployment rate. They say it is bad for business. If you look at the past year you will see a different story.

Mining +86,000
Manufacturing +158,000
Leisure and Hospitality +220,000
Trade, transportation and ultilities +288,000
Education and Health +445,000
Professional and Business Services +520,000
All others with minor changes +36,000 (total)

Total private change: +1,753,000

There are two reasons why it hasn't been any easier to get a job
1) Discouraged workers have reentered the market
2) Local, State and Federal Government workers -873,000

Accounting for government cuts, the economy only added 900,000 jobs. Thanks to government cuts, the net creation has been almost halved. If those 873,000 weren't cut, there would be that many more openings for the 14.8 million unemployed Americans. If it weren't for these cuts, the unemployment rate would be 8.6%.

Summary: The private sector is getting bigger, but the public sector is offsetting that by shrinking.

Source: ftp://ftp.bls.gov/pub/suppl/empsit.ceseeb1.txt
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The GOP Thinks the Economy is a Joke

I was catching up on my reading when a certain article caught my eye. Apparently, the 'Democrat debt ceiling increase' defeated earlier this week was actually sponsored by a Republican. I thought this was odd so I kept reading. It all started to make sense when I discovered that it was more smoke and mirrors, it's chief sponsor Dave Camp (R-Mich) said "This vote, a vote based on legislation I have introduced, will and must fail." Seriously? How much more disingenuous can you get? Maybe I am jumping to conclusions, maybe this wasn't all theater...except he made a statement to Wall Street assuring them that this was nothing more than theater. I wish they would take this situation seriously. We didn't elect you to entertain us, GOP. Now if you are done putting on a show you can address some of the nation's problems for a change. You can't point fingers at Obama all day and do nothing but act.

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Quote of the Day: June 2, 2011

"It kinda seems weird that these Muslims from Egypt, Pakistan, Libya & IRAN are agreeing with Obama!!!! I mean don't they MURDER people because they DONT AGREE WITH SHARIA??????!!!! Dont they MURDER CHRISTIANS????"

I know that it is pretty early in the day, but I know a Quote of the Day when I see one. This is a prime example of the ignorance and prejudice that perpetuates hate. This is so incorrect that it is sad; if you agree with this quote, you should start Googling 'Islam'.

Obama Still Strong A Month After Osama

Official presidential portrait of Barack Obama...Image via WikipediaAfter the killing of Osama Bin Laden, President Barack Obama's popularity skyrocketed. Now, a month later, The RCP Average shows Obama at 51.8 approval and 44.4 disapproval, or a +7.4 spread. Before Osama was killed, Obama's RCP average was 46.7 approval and 47.7 disapproval, or a -1.0 spread. In the past month, Obama's approval rating has gone up and his disapproval rating has gone down. This shows that Obama is a more popular man now than he was before he ordered the killing of Osama Bin Laden.

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