Wednesday, July 17, 2019


By Cash Michaels
Contributing writer

            The last time North Carolina Congresswoman Alma Adams (D-NC-12) said anything about the possible impeachment of President Trump, it was May 19thwhen she issued a statement which ended, “Impeachment is not off the table.”
Adams was one of those who, because of the findings of the Mueller Report, felt that Trump “…has demonstrated a clear disregard for the rule of law and must be held accountable.”
Since then, the Mecklenburg district congresswomen has held her fire, agreeing with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) to maintain a steady process of factfinding  before formally voting to congressionally indict the controversial commander-in-chief.
But last weekend, that may have changed once Trump took to Twitter again, and spewed what many have described as “racist” attacks on four of Rep. Adam’s Democratic colleagues – four progressive women of color – effectively, but falsely saying that they were not American citizens because of their constant criticisms of his administration.
“It’s been more than twenty-four hours since the President’s hateful, un-American tweets…,” Adams said in a statement issued Monday,”…and there has been no apology. Instead, the President has doubled down on his dangerous rhetoric, proving that he is a racist who is unfit to serve.”
Adams was closer to calling for Trump’s impeachment as she’s ever been, calling him “…a racist who is unfit to serve,” and what he said during a public event at the White House Monday, didn’t help matters. “They hate our country. They hate it, I think, with a passion.” That diaribe followed an explosive tweet on Sunday where the Republican president accused Reps. Ayanna Pressley (Mass.), Rashida Tiaib (Mich.), Alexandria Ocasio- Cortez and Ilhan Omar (Minn.) of “racial hatred,” demanded that they apologize to the nation, the state of Israel and him.
Earlier in his weekend tweetstorm, Trump demanded that all four congresswomen of color “go back to your own country.”
“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came?” he opined.
However, all are American citizens. Pressley, Tiaib and Ocasio-Cortez were all born in the United States. Rep. Omar is a naturalized citizen.
The four congresswomen, known in the Washington press corps as “The Squad,” did not allow Trump’s divisive broadsides go unanswered.
"This is the agenda of white nationalists,” Rep. Omar told reporters Monday during a press conference at the Capitol. “Whether it is happening in chat rooms, or it is happening on national TV, and now it's reached the White House garden.”
So it is time for us to stop allowing this President to make a mockery out of our Constitution. It is time for us to impeach this President."
At that same presser, Rep. Pressley chimed in.
"He does not embody the grace, the empathy, the compassion, the integrity that that office requires and that the American people deserve," Rep. Pressley said. "That being said, I encourage the American people and all of us in this room and beyond to not take the bait. This is a disruptive distraction from the issues of care, concern, and consequence to the American people."
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex (D-NY) promised that Trump’s attacks will not dissuade them from their goals for the nation.
"I am not surprised when the President says that four sitting members of Congress should 'go back to their own country' when he has authorized raids without warrants on thousands of families across this country,” she told reporters. “I am not surprised that he used the rhetoric that he does when he violates international human rights and takes thousands of children away from their families." 
"We can't allow hateful actions by the president to distract us from the critical work to hold this administration accountable to the inhumane conditions at the border that is separating children from their loved ones and caging them up and illegal horrific conditions," she said.

By Cash Michaels
Contributing writer

            A three-judge Superior Court panel last week agreed with the nonpartisan group, Common Cause NC, and allowed 35 pertinent files from the late Republican mapmaker Thomas Hofeller to be used in a court case this week where the 2017 legislative redistricting map drawn for the GOP legislative majority by Hofeller is being challenged as unconstitutional.
            Hofeller died in 2018. His computer files containing his work for NC Republican legislative leaders, and in this case, Rep. David Lewis, chair of the House Redistricting Committee, are the main exhibits in the Common Cause NC lawsuit charging that even though Democrats in 2018 elections won more votes, Republicans, with Hofeller’s expertise, created skewed voting districts where they won more seats, effectively making it impossible for Democrats ever to win back their majorities.
            That three-judge Superior Court panel – judges Paul Ridgeway, Joseph Crosswhite, and Alma Hinton – will listen to at least two weeks of testimony which started Monday. If Common Cause NC and the NC Democratic Party win the case, the Republican-led NC General Assembly will be required to redraw the current voting districts in time for the upcoming 2020 elections next year.
            Democrats expect that those new districts would be fairer, and thus, they would win a majority of the seats. If that happened, then that would mean that the Democratic Party would be in charge of redrawing the legislative voting maps for the next ten years after completion of the 2020 U.S. Census, which reapportions districts after a national headcount, thus giving them a better opportunity, they hope, to maintain their majority if they should win the lawsuit, and the 2020 elections thereafter.
            The meat for the case for Common Cause NC rests with the Hofeller files, of which only 35 of 75,000 found on hard drives turned over to Common Cause NC by the deceased GOP mapmaker’s daughter pertain to the 2017 NC legislative maps.
            If published reports about the files are accurate (they had not been introduced into evidence at press time before this story) the files would prove that Republican legislative leaders, and specifically Rep. Lewis, lied to a federal court in 2017 about whether the redistricting maps drawn were already completed. In fact, they were, plaintiffs attest, but GOP legislative leaders maintained that they weren’t, thus delaying a special election.
            But Common Cause NC also maintains that unlike the recent U.S. Supreme Court partisan gerrymandering case, where the High Court’s 5-4 conservative majority ruled that federal courts have no place in the political election questions managed primarily by states and their courts – thus allowing North Carolina’s partisan gerrymandered 13 congressional districts in favor of Republicans to stand – This legislative partisan gerrymandering case is different because North Carolina’s Constitution specifically outlaws the kind of partisan gerrymandering being allowed in this case.
            Voting precincts were split, established boundaries were violated, and “malevolent intent” in denying voting populations their state Constitutional rights was employed.
            Attorneys for Lewis and the General Assembly counter that the files were not part of the maps Hofeller drew for the NC General Assembly, and should have no bearing on the case. They further defend the 2017 maps, saying that they passed constitutional muster then.
            Whatever happens with this case, a ruling is not expected for sometime, and whatever the decision, it is expected to be appealed to the NC Supreme Court.


            [RALEIGH]The NC Supreme Court’s only Republican associate justice  reportedly has criticized  the other six associate justices, all Democrats, in a campaign speech last weekend. 
            According to WRAL-TV and a tape they reportedly received of the remarks, Justice Paul Newby told a Wake County audience that his six Democratic colleagues are very much like New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortex, the controversial Democratic congresswoman who was recently targeted by Pres. Trump, along with three other newly elected congresswomen of color, with racist remarks. “Imagine seven ‘AOC’s’ on the State Supreme Court,” Justice Newby reportedly said. 
            Newby was angry when Gov. Roy Cooper chose colleague Cheri Beasley, a black woman, as chief justice over him. Newby has announced that he will challenge Beasley for her chief justice seat in 2020.

            [WASHINGTON, DC]  Eight out of ten Republican members of North Carolina’s thirteen-member Congressional delegation did not vote along with their three Democrat colleagues Tuesday evening when the U.S. House voted for a resolution formally condemning Pres. Donald Trump for his racist “go back home” tweets directed at  four Democratic congresswomen of color. Trump, who held a “Keep America Great” rally in Greenville Wednesday night, maintains that his tweet last weekend and subsequent remarks were not racist, saying, “I don’t have s racist bone in my body.” Only four Republicans in the House voted to condemn Trump for his remarks.

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