In light of controversy over Presidential pardons in recent administrations, I propose the following Amendment to the United States Constitution:
The President of the United States' right to grant reprieves and pardons, as defined in Article II, Section 2 shall not apply to anyone who has worked in the office of the President or Vice President, or any of the President's Cabinet members. A President may not grant a reprieve or pardon to anyone who has worked within three levels of the chain of command of the President or Vice President at any time during the President's service to the United States in any capacity. Pardons and Reprieves may not be granted between the first day of October in Presidential election years, and the following January 21st. A President may not grant a blanket pardon or reprieve for unspecified crimes, but rather may only do so for specific convictions.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEClark to address convention attendees during Friday morning event
JUNE 5, 2007—YearlyKos Convention organizers announced today that Sen. Richard Durbin, Gov. Howard Dean, and Gen. Wesley Clark confirmed their participation in the second annual event, to be held in Chicago this August.
Dean, chairman of the Democratic National Committee and governor of Vermont from 1991 to 2003, will kick off the convention as Thursday's evening keynote speaker. Dean addressed the Netroots community at the 2006 YearlyKos Convention in Las Vegas.
"Gov. Dean has been one of the most influential forces in the new progressive movement," said Gina Cooper, YearlyKos Convention executive director. "His belief that every citizen matters, from California to Connecticut, from Alaska to Mississippi, matches our belief that the voices of regular Americans deserve to be heard. It's an honor for Gov. Dean to return to our venue and present the opening keynote."
Dean will follow opening remarks from Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas Zúniga and a warm Chicago welcome from Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) the Senate's assistant majority leader.
"The citizen forum Markos created at Daily Kos has been the launching point for many of the progressive projects that are strengthening our movement. We are grateful for the community he has nurtured and empowered," Cooper said. "And Sen. Durbin is one of our true progressive leaders in Congress. We are thrilled that he will join us to welcome YearlyKos attendees to his home state of Illinois."
On Friday, Gen. Wesley Clark, the retired four-star general and a vocal critic of the Bush administration's handling of the Iraq war, will speak to conference attendees as the morning's keynote speaker.
"Over the last few decades, Gen. Clark has distinguished himself as a both a scholar and a statesman," Cooper said. "We're pleased he's a part of our movement, and we're excited to have him once again join us at the YearlyKos Convention."
Organizers expect to announce more than 100 speakers, panelists, and workshop presenters between now and August. Sen. John Edwards, Sen. Barack Obama, and Gov. Bill Richardson have already confirmed their participation in a Presidential Leadership Forum set for August 4.
YearlyKos Convention 2007 will take place August 2–5, 2007 at the McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, Illinois. In addition to the forum, the conference will include panels and caucuses led by national and international experts; prominent nationally recognized political, issue and policy-oriented speakers; a progressive film screening series; and the most concentrated gathering of high-profile progressive bloggers to date.
Thursday's keynote is set for 7 p.m., and Friday's gathering will begin at 8 a.m. Both events are open to the media.
For more information about the YearlyKos Convention or for credentials, visit www.yearlykosconvention.org/press.
ABOUT YEARLYKOS CONVENTION
The YearlyKos Convention is an annual convention gathering people from all walks of life who belong to the Netroots community, the US-based (but globally focused and inclusive) non-partisan grassroots community that uses the internet and blogs as primary tools for expressing viewpoints; building consensus; acting to change the status quo; mobilizing huge numbers of people and informing each other and the world about current events, grassroots actions, networks, meetings, policy and more.
(Cross-posted from Whosplayin.com)
Why Democrats Oppose "Voter ID" Bills
This post is written to explain in greater detail than the sound-bytes and radio talk show propaganda, why it is that Democrats really oppose the Voter ID bills that have been introduced in a lot of states, including Texas.
First, let me take the opportunity to state unequivocally that Democrats, like our Republican colleagues, absolutely believe that all voters should be eligible American citizens.
But our higher concern is that all eligible citizens should be voters. Nothing would please us all more than to have an educated and engaged electorate that actually cares to research the candidates and issues and vote their conscience. This is the system that guarantees the continued success of almost 231 years of freedom from tyranny.
The concept of “one person – one vote”, though fairly new in world history, is pretty much universally accepted in this nation. There are admittedly, still some extremists out there who would exclude certain groups by the reinstitution of Jim Crow if they had the chance. But that’s not what this post is about.
Democrats have often been accused of wanting to register illegal aliens to vote and/or grant amnesty and citizenship to aliens in order to gain voter base. Though there is no evidence that this practice is widespread, and government reports have admitted as much, this practice, if it happens, is despicable. The Democratic Party absolutely condemns this and ANY practice which would either allow illegal voters, or deny the vote to legitimate voters.
For some years now, I've considered myself to be fiscally conservative with regard to government taxation and spending policies. I only wish that I had learned from a younger age to be fiscally conservative in my personal finances, but that's another story for another time. I had to learn that lesson the hard way.
When one thinks about "fiscal conservatism", the word "Conservative" pops out and seems to associate the line of thought with the political ideology of conservatism, but this is not the origin of the term. Conservatism, as it applies to money, is a principle borrowed from accounting and economic studies. There is no such thing as fiscal "liberalism" as far as I know - just fiscal conservatism and fiscal irresponsibility.
The problem is that as of late, the oxymoronic "radical conservatives" who have run this country, some states, and many municipalities, have run the term "fiscal conservatism" into the ground. Saying that one is "fiscally conservative" is like saying one is "patriotic". It's a hollow term, because there is no reasonable dichotomy from which another group would claim the opposite. You'll find no candidate advertising their "Fiscal recklessness" or "Radical tax and spend plan". What we need is another term that will put a bit more meaning into the description of one's stance on budgetary and tax policy.
Though a Google search reveals I'm not the first to use the term "Fiscal Progressivism", I'd like to be among the first to define it. In my view, Fiscal Progressivism is not the antithesis to Fiscal Conservatism, but is rather an expansion upon it that takes into account social and moral imperatives, and the total economic costs and opportunity costs of choices.Read More »