Thursday, April 23, 2015

Cutting Up The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau... Bipartisan Affair?



Thanks to a tiny gaggle of reactionary Blue Dogs, Boehner's latest attempt to gut the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection can be called "bipartisan." H.R.1195 passed yesterday, 235-183, with 5 Republicans voting for the interests of their constituents and 4 faux-Democrats crossing the aisle in the other direction and voting with Wall Street and the GOP. The bill was sponsored by Bob Pittenger (R-NC), and among the co-sponsors was right-wing Arizona Blue Dog Kyrsten Sinema. The bill itself wasn't that controversial, but it includes an amendment that would cut the CFPB's budget by $45 million over the next five years and $100 million over the next decade. The Democrats who voted with the GOP yesterday:
Brad Ashford (Blue Dog-NE)
Henry Cuellar (Blue Dog-TX)
Collin Peterson (Blue Dog-MN)
Kyrsten Sinema (Blue Dog-AZ)
2016 will see aggressive DCCC efforts to raise money for the Democrats who vote with the GOP and have managed to alienate Democratic base voters. Brad Ashford, Kyrsten Sinema and other faithless Blue Dogs and New Dems will get millions of dollars from the DCCC, much of it from progressives who are unaware that the DCCC distributes their money to Democrats who vote as badly as some Republicans! If you want to contribute to progressives running for the House, never give to the DCCC. Always contribute directly to progressive candidates you'll find endorsed by Blue America, PCCC, DFA and like-minded organizations.

The other notable House vote yesterday was passage, 307-116, of a controversial new cyber info-sharing bill, H.R. 1650. Devin Nunes sponsored the bill, although a bunch of New Dems-- Patrick Murphy (FL), Jim Himes (CT), Terri Sewell (AL), Adam Schiff (CA) and Mike Quigley (IL)-- signed on as co-sponsors. Generally speaking, the progressives Blue America endorses and supports were the ones who voted against it, like:
Xavier Becerra (CA)
Matt Cartwright (PA)
Judy Chu (CA)
Donna Edwards (MD)
Keith Ellison (MN)
Alan Grayson (FL)
Raul Grijalva (AZ)
Mike Honda (CA)
Barbara Lee (CA)
Ted Lieu (CA)
Beto O'Rourke (TX)
Mark Pocan (WI)
Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ)
The above are all members whom Blue America backed and who all voted against the latest unconstitutional domestic spying bill (the 79 Democrats who voted "no" were joined by 37 Republicans). The bad Democrats we warned you about before the election include:
Pete Aguilar (New Dem-CA)
Brad Ashford (Blue Dog-NE)
Ami Bera (New Dem-CA)
Don Beyer (New Dem-VA)
Brendan Boyle (New Dem-PA)
Cheri Bustos (Blue Dog-IL)
Jim Cooper (Blue Dog-TN)
Jim Costa (Blue Dog-CA)
Joe Crowley (New Dem-NY)
Henry Cuellar (Blue Dog-TX)
John Delaney (New Dem-MD)
Tammy Duckworth (IL)
Gwen Graham (Blue Dog-FL)
Steve Israel (Blue Dog-NY)
Ann Kuster (New Dem-NH)
Sean Patrick Maloney (New Dem-NY)
Donald Norcross (NJ)
Scott Peters (New Dem-CA)
Kyrsten Sinema (Blue Dog-AZ)
Privacy advocates blasted the legislation. "These bills do little to protect the Internet, but rather reward companies who undermine the privacy of their customers," said Nathan White, senior legislative manager at the advocacy group Access Now, in a statement. The Blue America-endorsed candidates stand strong for Net Neutrality and cyber-privacy, and last night Alex Law wasn't surprised when he saw Norcross voting with the conservatives-- again. 

"Yet again," Law told us, "we have a clear difference between myself and my opponent in the Democratic primary in NJ-01. Today, Donald Norcross voted in support of the Protecting Cyber Networks Act, a bill that is a surveillance bill disguising itself as a cyber-security bill. This bill gives companies a significant expansion in their ability to monitor customers' online activities. It allows them to share vaguely defined 'cyber threat indicators,' which then automatically go to the NSA. The NSA is then authorized broad law enforcement rights that could stretch beyond cyber-security.This chain of events is a slippery slope. I totally disagree with the structure of this bill. We must stand up for individual privacy. What we have in this bill is a wolf in sheep's clothing, and if I were in Congress, I would have voted against it like other progressives such as Alan Grayson and Judy Chu."

If you'd like to help make sure progressives like Alex do get into Congress in 2016, please consider contributing here.

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At 9:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As bad as Republicans are, it's becoming harder to support Democrats. Too many of the candidates parading before us are actual Republicans, but don't have the necessary attractants to be successful as a Republican. So they turn to the Democrats to provide their avenue to success no matter how many of their constituents they betray on their path to a Golden Retirement as a corporate lobbyist.


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