Motley Moose – Archive

Since 2008 – Progress Through Politics

Midday News – Tuesday, 23 Apr 2013 (and Open News Thread)

From the newswires …

How Closing The Online Sales Tax Loophole Would Help Low-Income Families

The Marketplace Fairness Act, which has bipartisan support in the Senate, would change that, giving states the authority to levy sales taxes on online purchases even when the retailer isn’t based within a state’s borders. Passing the legislation would both remove an unfair advantage for online retailers give cash-strapped states more authority to collect sales taxes. But despite warnings from conservatives that it would represent a “government takeover of the internet” and levy “taxation without representation,” the loophole also makes sales taxes even more regressive, since low-income families often don’t have access to online retailers


Kansas Governor Approves Sweeping Anti-Abortion Law, Writes ‘JESUS + Mary’ In His Notes On The Bill

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R) has signed a stringent anti-abortion bill that blocks tax breaks for abortion providers, requires doctors to tell women about the disputed link between abortion and breast cancer, and defines life as beginning at conception in the state constitution. However, despite the fact that the omnibus legislation is 70 pages long, it does not necessarily explicitly state everything that the Republican governor wishes to convey on the abortion issue.

Before Brownback signed HB 2253 into law at a ceremony at the statehouse on Friday, an AP photo reveals that he made a few additions of his own in his notes on the bill.


42 Million People Watched Last Hour Of Manhunt For Accused Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

In 1993, 42.4 million households tuned in to the series finale of Cheers. Last Friday, almost 42 million people tuned in ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, Fox News Channel or MSNBC to watch the last hour of the manhunt for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the 19-year-old who today was charged with using a weapon of mass destruction and malicious destruction of property resulting in death in the bombings a week ago of the Boston Marathon. There’s no question that a national news event, particularly one centered on a spectacular and seemingly inexplicable crime, would draw an enormous audience. But the juxtaposition of those figures from twenty years apart serves to illustrate a useful point: national tragedies, particularly crime stories, are perhaps the last form of television that has a truly mass audience.

Read More: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Read Miranda Rights In Bedside Proceedings (TRANSCRIPT)

Read More: The First Glimpse Of The Federal Case Against The Alleged Boston Bomber

Read More: Number Of People Injured From Boston Bombings Rises To 282


Quick Takes …

WaPo: Baucus To Retire, Won’t Seek Re-Election In 2014

Poll: Colbert Busch Opens Up 9 Point Lead Over Sanford

Republicans Who Voted Against Sandy Aid Ask For Aid To West, Texas After Explosion



  1. New Republic: Get Ready for Gun Control As a Wedge Issue in 2016

    This week, the Manchin-Toomey amendment requiring background checks on gun purchases failed in the Senate, in part-perhaps in large part-because senators bought into the myth of an omnipotent National Rifle Association. The good news for gun control advocates is that the myth could break in 2016.


    Real Clear Politics: Gun Control Vote Likely Won’t Affect Midterms

    In the wake of gun control’s stinging defeat on the Senate floor last week, proponents are consoling themselves with the fact that midterm elections are on the horizon. A common refrain is enunciated by the Daily Beast’s Michael Tomasky: “You cannot oppose the will of 90 percent of the public and expect no consequences.”

    Actually, I’d be more surprised if there were electoral consequences, for four reasons …


    E.J. Dionne: The Way Forward on Guns

    Victories often contain the seeds of future defeats. So it is — or at least should be — with the Senate’s morally reprehensible rejection of expanded background checks for gun buyers.

    The outcome is a test of both an invigorated gun safety movement and a gun lobby that decided to go for broke.

  2. virginislandsguy

    The Incredible Shrinking Budget Deficit

    Analysts started the year projecting that the deficit in the current fiscal year would be about $900 billion. Earlier this year, they lowered the estimate to $850 billion. Now they have lowered it again, to $775 billion, or about 4.8 percent of economic output.

  3. princesspat

    Regardless of the reasoning, the Democratic primary to replace Baucus will be a fascinating litmus test for the liberal coalition after the failure of gun control (advocates insist they haven’t given up, but no one seems to know what their path forward might be right now). In the more militant corners of the left, there have been calls for a liberal Tea Party to enforce more ideological purity, forsaking the likes of Baucus and Senators Mark Pryor of Arkansas, Mark Begich of Alaska, and Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, all of whom voted against the gun bill. (It’s worth noting that even a unified Democratic caucus would have fallen short of the 60 votes required to pass the measure.) A liberal Tea Party, the contentious post-Newtown vote, and changing American demographics — all against the dramatic backdrop of Big Sky country, where a Democrat has won the presidential vote just twice in the last 60 years (Johnson in ’64, Clinton in ’92) — it’s a great stage to play out a big battle.

    Keeping a Democratic majority in the Senate is going to be an interesting challenge.

  4. princesspat

    The Gun Vote and 2014: Will There Be an Electoral Price?

    It’s worth considering in more detail how the senators’ re-election status might have affected their votes. Doing so yields a more subtle conclusion than we’d reached initially. Senators who are up for re-election in 2014 were more sensitive to attitudes toward gun-ownership in their states. However, this influenced behavior in both directions. Senators running for re-election were especially likely to vote for Mr. Manchin’s amendment if they represented states with low rates of gun ownership, but especially unlikely to do so if they came from states where gun ownership is common.

  5. From

    As former President George W. Bush steps back onto the public stage, he’s facing both criticism from detractors who point to his lingering unpopularity and divisive impact on the GOP, and praise from supporters who cite the importance of “compassionate conservatism” to the modern Republican Party.

    His brand of compassion is not the same as mine, apparently.  

  6. France Legalizes Gay Marriage After Harrowing National Debate

    France legalized gay marriage on Tuesday after a wrenching national debate and protests that flooded the streets of Paris. Legions of officers and water cannon stood ready near France’s National Assembly ahead of the final vote, bracing for possible violence on an issue that galvanized the country’s faltering conservative movement.

    The measure passed easily in the Socialist-majority Assembly, 331-225, just minutes after the president of the legislative body expelled a disruptive protester in pink, the color adopted by French opponents of gay marriage.

    In recent weeks, violent attacks against gay couples have spiked and some legislators have received threats – including Bartelone, who got a gunpowder-filled envelope on Monday.

    Harrowing, I guess! Interesting that the protesters against marriage equality adopted pink, a color long associated with gay rights activists. I had to re-read that to figure out why a protester in pink would be disrupting the vote.

  7. Poll: 47 Percent ‘Angry’ Or ‘Disappointed’ That Gun Legislation Failed

    … the WaPo/Pew poll [also] indicated there may be a slight intensity gap between gun control advocates and opponents. The poll showed that 20 percent of respondents were “very happy” that the bill failed while 15 percent were “angry” – two descriptions positioned on opposite ends of the poll’s spectrum.

    The 47% number makes me wonder how solid the 85% to 90% in favor of background checks really was … or if there were timing errors in the poll that had been referred to in the run-up to the vote.

    As they say “that does not compute”.

  8. eBay: No Internet sales tax

    The Internet sales tax bill threatens small businesses by treating them the same as multibillion dollar retailers that have stores and warehouses around the country. eBay’s message to lawmakers on sales taxes is simple. Protect small businesses that use the Internet to promote growth, jobs and competition that best serves consumers.

    Small business, blah blah, job killing taxes, blah blah.

    Er, the small business does not pay the sales tax, the consumer does. And what about small business owners in brick and mortar stores who have to collect sales tax?


    Daniel Gross, The Daily Beast: Three Cheers for the Internet Tax!

    Governments are starved for revenue, particularly at the state and local level. We may be in a golden age of federal deficit reduction, but the federal deficit is still large. States and cities, which can’t run deficits, have been cutting jobs and spending across the board for lack of revenue. Since the beginning of 2009, states and cities have hacked 704,000 jobs. Levying sales taxes on Internet commerce would allow many states to tap into a new vein of funds.

    One of those states is Wisconsin whose recovery from the recession was hampered by the policies of the teaparty Republicans running the state. The sales tax will fund much needed safety nets for people at risk.

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