Monday, February 19, 2018

Conservatives In Congress-- From Both Parties-- Decide To Beat Up On Disabled People


James Langevin (D-RI)

Jim Langevin (D-RI) is kind of a middle of the road Democrat. Generally speaking, he's not a progressive but he's certainly not a Blue Dog. When he was a 16 year old boy scout he was injured in a gun accident which left him paralyzed. He was elected to Congress in 2000, the first quadriplegic to ever serve in Congress. Far right Texas Congressman Ted Poe offered a bill that puts the Disability Rights Section of the Department of Justice in jeopardy. So Langevin offered an amendment to remove the requirement that a person who claims discrimination must first provide written notice that allows 60 days for an owner to acknowledge receipt of the complaint and 120 days to demonstrate substantial progress in removing the barrier before legal action may be pursued. Basically he was trying to keep the feasibility of law suits for people with disabilities who get illegally discriminated against by businesses.

And sure, the greedy asinine Republicans were almost all gung-ho to pass Poe's bill without Langevin's amendment. So they voted Langevin's amendment down Thursday before heading off for another nice vacation. It failed 188-226. I was happy to see 15 Republicans get in touch with their souls and vote against what Ryan and McCarthy were demanding of them. Most of them are vulnerable Republicans in swing districts or Republicans who have decided to just abandon the whole fucked up Trump-enabling Congress--
Barbara Comstock (VA)
Ryan Costello (PA)
Brian Fitzpatrick (PA)
Rodney Frelinghuysen (PA)
Gregg Harper (MS)
John Katko (NY)
Peter King (NY)
Leonard Lance (NJ)
Dave Reichert (WA)
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL)
Chris Smith (NJ)
Fred Upton (MI)
Kevin Yoder (KS)
The only Republicans who don't fit either category but who voted NO were Jim Sensenbrenner (WI) and Glenn Thompson (PA). Nice-- whatever the motivation. But it didn't help because, as usual, Ryan and McCarthy know exactly which Blue Dogs and New Dems from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party to go to when they need to find some sellouts. These were the Blue Dog and New Dem sell-outs this time, mostly the usual suspects:
Ami Bera (New Dem-CA)
Jim Cooper (Blue Dog-TN)
Lou Correa (Blue Dog-CA)
Henry Cuellar (Blue Dog-TX)
Bill Foster (New Dem-IL)
Scott Peters (New Dem-CA)
Kathleen Rice (New Dem-NY)
Kurt Schrader (Blue Dog-OR)
Kyrsten Sinema (Blue Dog), who Schumer picked to be the next senator from Arizona
Norma Torres (New Dem-CA)
Maybe you don't get why this is a big deal-- and why we need to make sure Blue Dog and New Dem nominees don't get the Democratic nominations anywhere-- so let's turn to... Teen Vogue. They get it. "The bill," wrote S.E. Smith, "which has been introduced and went nowhere before, would change the way that access to public accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) is enforced. Disabled people argue this legislation will introduce substantial barriers to accommodations. Proponents say the legislation is necessary to curb so-called 'drive-by' lawsuits that spuriously target businesses for purported ADA violations. Disability rights have been under threat from the Trump administration: Last year’s attacks on health care put disabled people in the crosshairs; proposed changes to Medicaid would radically limit access to needed health care; the Department of Education has rescinded certain guidance on disability and civil rights; and Jeff Sessions suggested, in reference to the opioid crisis, that people can take aspirin."
The ADA is a landmark piece of bipartisan legislation that affirms and protects the civil rights of disabled people. H.R. 620 specifically takes on Title III, a section that gives disabled people the right to sue public accommodations (like restaurants, hotels, and movie theaters) that don’t comply with the ADA’s accessibility requirements. When you hear “ADA,” you may think of wheelchair users who need ramps, lifts, and accessible bathrooms. But it applies to other disabilities too, as in the case of the complaint against Netflix by the D/deaf and hard of hearing community because the service wasn’t fully captioning its content.

“It's largely up to disabled folks to enforce the ADA by filing lawsuits when businesses violate our civil rights,” disabled attorney Matt Cortland tells Teen Vogue. Historically, the Department of Justice has also mounted suits under the ADA when doing so could expand access for a broad class of people.

Though businesses have been required to provide accommodations for nearly 30 years, they don’t always comply, as social worker Vilissa Thompson tells Teen Vogue. During a layover last year, Thompson entered a supposedly accessible bathroom stall with a door that couldn’t close around her chair. “The attendant who was with me had to stand in front of the door to be a cover of sorts while I had to do my business.”

Disabled people sometimes have to sue for the right to go to the movies, go grocery shopping, or have a fun night out with friends. Some people claim businesses are being plagued by bogus lawsuits filed by disabled people who are greedy for cash. This ignores a couple of things: Filing suit is expensive, and furthermore, ADA suits only entitle disabled people to legal fees and injunctive relief-- addressing the accessibility failure in question. And the legal system already has measures in place to address frivolous lawsuits, up to and including bar action against attorneys who engage in bad faith litigation.
So which shithead candidates are running this year as New Dems and Blue Dogs? Most candidates try to hide it but if you go to the Blue Dog and New Dem websites you get lists of their endorsees. I'm sure if you ask them if they would support the rights of disabled people, 100% of them would say they do. But I guarantee you, if they get into Congress, they'll be leaned on by their corrupt corporate campaign contributors and they'll soon be looking for rationales for living the rest of their professional lives on the Dark Side. That's what being a Blue Dog or a New Dem is all about. Unless you want to sink America into a Trumpazoid swamp, don't support or even vote for any of these:

And below are the New Dems who the Blue Dogs haven't formally endorsed, at least not yet. These days there are basically no substantive differences between the Blue Dogs and the New Dems. Most New Dems are also Blue Dogs and most Blue Dogs also join the New Dems. They should just formally merge and call themselves what they are: the Republican wing of the Democratic Party, bought and paid for by Wall Street.
Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ)
Greg Stanton (AZ)
Dave Min (CA)
Harley Rouda (CA)
Hans Keirstead (CA)
Lauren Baer (FL)
Jason Crow (CO)
Elissa Slotkin (MI)
Angie Craig (MN)
Dean Phillips (MN)
Mikie Sherrill (NJ)
Susie Lee (NV)
Chrissy Houlahan (PA)
Jana Lynne Sanchez (TX)
Dan Kohl (WI)

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At 7:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Any replacements for Pelosi and Schumer -if we would be lucky enough for them to no longer hold Party power- would come from this list.

Still think the DINO-Whigs can be reformed from within?

At 8:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Conservatives In Congress-- From Both Parties-- ......

Doesn't that make up pretty much 99% of the congress?

At 12:00 PM, Anonymous Hone said...

Shame on those who voted to take away rights of the disabled. Morality and ethics are gone, gone, gone from way too many members of Congress. Shame on the New Dems and Blue Dogs.

It looks like politicized teenagers are one of our hopes for the future. They are ANGRY and this is certainly justified. How will they be able to pay for college with the insane costs? And they don't want to be shot and die in their high schools either! Hurray for them! Maybe college students will join their protests. They seem to be energizing and mobilizing. Just like the 60's! Maybe a huge march in D.C. would help and would surely embarrass and humiliate the Republicans and Trump and drive him further off the cliff of sanity.

This is gonna be a very bad week for Americans. Each one gets worse, which is unimaginable but keeps happening. Trump is lashing out big time.

At 1:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And right on cue, Lyin' Ryan is ramping up the campaign to eliminate Social Security and Medicare. Looking for a good deal on a pitch fork. Looks like I might need one soon.

At 3:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If only the disabled had a 9-figure superpac with which to adequately bribe the democraps to give a shit about them.

We all know that the only demos about whom the democraps care are those who can pay.


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