The Human Calculus: Political Futures vs. Human Life on the Colorado Ballot

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Donna Smith

Not long after I moved back to Colorado in early 2013, I met a young, up and coming state legislator named Crisanta Duran.  She was awarded the Health Care for All Colorado “Health Care Hero” award for her staunch support of a sound health care policy that would help working class families secure access to affordable health coverage and quality health care.  We had high hopes for her advocacy on behalf of those with little or no voice in the process.

 

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Outside First Presidential Debate, 24 Arrested at Protests & Jill Stein Escorted Away by Police

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Hundreds of people protested outside the debate at Hofstra University on Monday to demand the presidential debates be opened up to third-party candidates. At least 24 people were arrested. Green Party presidential nominee Dr. Jill Stein was es… Read the original and full post here.

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Did Obama Host a Summit on Migrants While Ignoring a Refugee Crisis in the U.S.’s Own Backyard?

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We continue to look at the U.N. Summit for Refugees and Migrants, which produced a nonbinding declaration on developing a coordinated and humane response to the migration crisis. The United States objected to language in the original draft of the resolution that said children should never be detained. This comes as teenagers held at the Berks County Residential Center are protesting their indefinite detention. Some have been held more than a year while they seek asylum with their mothers, who are also detained. We get response from detained 16-year-old Estefany Adriana Méndez of El Salvador, and we’re joined by two guests who participated in a shadow summit focused on the U.S. response to Central American refugees. Dr. Allen Keller is associate professor of medicine at NYU School of Medicine and co-founder and director of the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture and the NYU Center for Health and Human Rights. His letter published in today’s Washington Post is headlined “A refugee crisis in our own back yard.” We also speak with Elvis Garcia, a migration counselor at Catholic Charities. He is a former unaccompanied minor who fled Honduras at the age of 15. Read the original and full post here.

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Az Dems: Hillary “deplorables” statement, pneumonia won’t hurt voter outreach

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Brian Fore and Sarah Ann Niemann

Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2016

Az Dems: Hillary “deplorables” statement, pneumonia won’t hurt voter outreach

PHOENIX – Melrose Brown, a 17-year-old African American high school student, moved to Phoenix two years ago from Minnesota. Since then, she said, she has witnessed several instances of racism.

Once, when she was eating lunch, she said, a group of boys discussed how African Americans and other minority groups needed to return to their countries of origin.

“When they spoke about those things, I felt hurt,” Brown said.

That hurt prompted her to become active in politics, even though she can’t vote yet, because she believes policy can change hate. A former supporter of Democratic presidential primary candidate Bernie Sanders, Brown now supports Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.

Recently, Brown joined 21 other volunteers in a class on how to register voters. The class was held at the Arizona Democratic Party headquarters in downtown Phoenix.

Brown and several others attending the class said they were neither concerned nor worried that recent controversies surrounding Clinton would impact voter outreach and turnout.

On Sept. 9, Clinton called half of the supporters of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump a “basket of deplorables”, and on Sept. 11 she stumbled during a 9/11 ceremony in New York. Her campaign later revealed she had pneumonia.

Like Brown, Frank Sacco, a 90-year-old retired teacher and World War II veteran who served in the Pacific, was also not concerned about the recent Clinton controversies and their impact on voters.

Along with family and work obligations presenting a barrier for voter turnout, Sacco said he believes voters do not go to the polls on election day because they feel their votes don’t count.

But like others at the voter registration class, Sacco believes every vote counts.

“[It’s] extremely important in a democracy that people register and then be able to express their concerns by being at the ballot box,” he said.

Signing up voters is crucial for Democrats because Arizona may or may not be in play for Clinton.

According to an Arizona election forecast by the website FiveThirtyEight, Clinton has only a 25.6 percent chance of winning in Arizona.

However, a recent Arizona Republic/Morrison/Cronkite News poll suggests that if the election were held today, the numbers could be a lot closer. The poll shows Trump winning Arizona by 35.1 percent and Clinton trailing at 33.5 percent. Another 22.9 percent of voters remain undecided, while the rest selected a third party.

The Arizona Secretary of State’s Office reports that Democrats trail Republicans and independents in voter registration numbers.

According to Enrique Gutierrez, director of communications for the Arizona Democratic Party, Democrats launched a voter registration campaign in January to register 100,000 eligible voters.

Gutierrez said he doesn’t believe Clinton’s calling half of Trump’s supporters “deplorables” will hurt the party’s voter outreach drives.

Democrats have opened several offices in predominantly Latino communities that carry on daily operations such as voter registration. Staffers include community members and Spanish speakers, Gutierrez said last week.

“We don’t want them to just only see the ads that are going on TV, but sometimes we want that one-on-one interaction with them,” Gutierrez said.

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North Carolina Sees Economic Fallout from Anti-LGBT Law as NCAA Moves Championships Out of the State

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The NCAA has announced it will move its seven championship events out of North Carolina in response to the state’s decision to pass the anti-LGBT law known as HB 2, or the “bathroom bill.” The law nullifies ordinances protecting LGBT people from discrimination and prohibits transgender people from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity. ACLU staff attorney Chase Strangio says it is encouraging to see sports organizations and corporations responding to the mobilization efforts of the trans community and their allies. Read the original and full post here.

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North Carolina Sees Economic Fallout from Anti-LGBT Law as NCAA Moves Championships Out of the State

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The NCAA has announced it will move its seven championship events out of North Carolina in response to the state’s decision to pass the anti-LGBT law known as HB 2, or the “bathroom bill.” The law nullifies ordinances protecting LGBT people from discrimination and prohibits transgender people from using the bathroom that matches their gender identity. ACLU staff attorney Chase Strangio says it is encouraging to see sports organizations and corporations responding to the mobilization efforts of the trans community and their allies. Read the original and full post here.

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