Unless Congress acts by July 1, 2013 student loan rates will double from 3.4% to 6.8%. Meanwhile banks borrow money from the US Government at only .75%. Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has filed a bill to give students the same loan rate as banks for a year. Why should taxpayers be supporting banks – a private interest over a public interest – helping students to complete college.
In a Huffington Post article entitled Elizabeth Warren: Student Loans Should Have Same Rate Big Banks Get and in an article by Joan McCarter on Daily Kos entitled Elizabeth Warren: Students should get the same loan rate as big banks a video is included of Warren’s statement before the US Senate:
“Some people say that we can’t afford to help our kids through school by keeping student loan interest rates low,” said Senator Warren. “But right now, as I speak, the federal government offers far lower interest rates on loans, every single day–they just don’t do it for everyone. Right now, a big bank can get a loan through the Federal Reserve discount window at a rate of about 0.75%. But this summer a student who is trying to get a loan to go to college will pay almost 7%. In other words, the federal government is going to charge students interest rates that are nine times higher than the rates for the biggest banks–the same banks that destroyed millions of jobs and nearly broke this economy. That isn’t right. And that is why I’m introducing legislation today to give students the same deal that we give to the big banks.”
“Big banks get a great deal when they borrow money from the Fed,” Senator Warren continued. “In effect, the American taxpayer is investing in those banks. We should make the same kind of investment in our young people who are trying to get an education. Lend them the money and make them to pay it back, but give our kids a break on the interest they pay. Let’s Bank on Students… Unlike the big banks, students don’t have armies of lobbyists and lawyers. They have only their voices. And they call on us to do what is right.”
Daily Kos, joined by the Center for American Progress goes a step beyond just reporting the story and posting the video by including a link to urge people help push this legislation by urging their Senators to co-sponsor this legislation. Click on this link to tell the Senate to give students the same low interest rates the big banks get
Please help build support for this bill by joining in this effort.
King County Councilmember Larry Phillips recently sent out the following e-mail:
King County Parks Levy on August Ballot
I am pleased to announce that today the Metropolitan King County Council approved sending to the voters—on the August 2013 ballot—a six-year property tax levy lid lift proposal to raise revenue for the maintenance and operations of the County’s regional park system, as well as funding for local city parks and the Woodland Park Zoo. If approved by voters, the proposed levy would replace two voter approved measures set to expire at the end of 2013.
The King County Parks system has evolved from 150 acres in 1938 to more than 26,000 acres today, including regional county parks and trails such as Marymoor Park, Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center and the Sammamish River Trail.
The adopted legislation sends to voters a six-year property tax levy lid lift of 18.77 cents per $1,000 of assessed value – an estimated $56 per year for the owner of a home valued at $300,000. If approved by voters, the proceeds from the levy would go toward funding the maintenance and operation of King County’s 200 parks, 175 miles of regional trails, and 26,000 acres of open space. Levy funds would also be used to expand the regional trails system – including developing the Lake to Sound Trail – and to expand the Community Partnership and Grant program, as well as to support local city parks and the Woodland Park Zoo.
The levy proposal is consistent with King County’s practice to end the use of county General Fund monies on regional parks, trails and open spaces, and on local facilities in the rural unincorporated areas, so the primary source of funding for the parks system is the voter-approved levy. King County also continues its regional business plan for parks with support from non-profit, corporate and community partners.
The beauty of King County and our great natural resources are only surpassed by the energy and creativity of the people who live here, and the community support for our parks system is the perfect example of this fact. Voters will decide in August whether to continue supporting a parks levy that provides funding to operate and maintain parks like Marymoor and Cougar Mountain, and to expand the regional trail system.
Thank you for the opportunity to share this important news with you.
Larry Phillips, Councilmember
Metropolitan King County Council, District Four
King County Courthouse
516 Third Avenue, Room 1200
Seattle, WA 98104-3272
The Seattle City Council has unanimously passed it’s updated Street Tree Ordinance. There were no amendments – if changes are desired in legislation it’s necessary to get them done in Committee before they come to the full Council for a vote. Thank you to everyone who took time to write or contact the Seattle City Council on this issue.
You can view the adopted Ordinance # 117745 by clicking on this link.
The gist of the bill is that permits will be required to remove or do major trimming to street trees and tree replacement is required for trees removed “if site conditions permit”.
Applying for a permit to remove a street tree does not mean it will be removed.
A tree can only be removed if it is a hazardous tree, poses a public safety hazard, is in a condition of poor health or poor vigor or cannot be successfully retained due to public or private construction or development conflicts.
Notice of an application to remove a tree must be publicly posted at the site for 14 days and public comment will be accepted before the Director makes a decision.
Any person violating the act shall be subject to a fine of up to $500 per day.
In addition any person who destroys, injures or mutilates a street tree may be subject to a fine equal to the appraised value of the tree and if the violation is willful or malicious, the penalty may be trebled.
All tree service providers engaged in pruning, removing or otherwise treating street trees shall register annually with the Department of Transportation.
Any major pruning, removal or treatment of street trees by a Tree Service provider shall be certified by an ISA certified arborist or ISA certified worker.
You can read the full ordinance to get more details. If you have concerns about specific language or its interpretation you should let Nolan Rundquist at the SDOT know as they will be preparing CAMS or Client Assistance Memos to explain details to the public to clarify issues which may be confusing.
Nolan Rundquist, the City Arborist at SDOT has been working many years to get this ordinance drafted and passed and should be thanked for sticking with it. Also the Seattle Urban Forest Commission helped in reviewing the proposal as well as members of the public. And Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin deserves special recognition for leading the Council effort to enact this update.
Next up in the next few months will be the 5 year update of the Urban Forest Management Plan which is being renamed the Urban Forest Stewardship Plan.
The third component of the urban forest updates is the private property tree ordinance proposal. DPD (Seattle Department of Planning and Development) has said they will release a new draft sometime in June and we can expect the issue will be before the Seattle City Council for a vote early next year.
So far this has been the hardest component of the urban forest updates to reach agreement on because of DPD’s bias toward development as its mission rather than the protection of trees. This is why efforts need to be continued to move oversight of trees to the Office of Sustainability and Environment (OSE). DPD’s prime mission is to help developers build projects, not protect trees. To get maximum protection, tree oversight needs to be in a department where they have an advocate to speak for them and OSE’s mission is most consistent with that.
Keep updated on Seattle tree and urban forestry issues by following Friends of Seattle’s Urban Forest
Dear Friends of Trees,
The Seattle City Council is going to vote on a new Street Tree Ordinance on Monday April 29, 2013. The last time they updated the ordinance was 1961 – over 50 years ago. The new ordinance is much improved. It has been floating around for about 10 years in various drafts. The current draft that is being voted on is Council Bill 117745. We need people to let the Seattle City Council that it’s time to pass this legislation.
Council Bill 117745 would continue the requirement that people get permits to remove street trees and for major pruning. It would require 2 week posting of permits. Tree service providers must register with the City. Penalties are accessed for illegally removing a tree based on its assessed value and treble damages if it is a willful or malicious act. There is no charge for a permit and trees must be replaced “if site conditions permits”. This is one weakness in the bill because it could require that the tree be planted elsewhere if site conditions do not permit. Tree replacement is necessary if we are to have no net loss of canopy as a result of tree removal. Also there is no requirement that the replacement tree be comparable in canopy coverage even if the site allows for that.
You can help in two ways.
Send an e-mail to the Seattle City Council members and urge them to pass the Updated street Tree Ordinance – Council Bill 117745 to help protect Seattle’s trees and urban forest! Tell them why this is important to you. Here are their e-mails:
Attend the City Council meeting - There will be 15 minutes at the beginning of the Council meeting for public testimony, a maximum of 2 minutes per person. It would really help to show support for the ordinance by having people testify for it or just being present in the audience showing support and maybe giving a cheer after they vote. You can also sign in support of the bill and not testify.
Seattle City Council meeting, Monday, April 29, 2013, 2 PM
600 4th Ave, Council Chamber, Seattle City Hall, Floor 2
Thanks everyone for helping get this legislation passed.
Chair – Save the Trees-Seattle
PS – Check out our facebook page at Friends of Seattle’s Urban Forest We try to keep folks updated on what’s happening with trees and our urban forest on this page.
The Center for American Progress has put out a list of some of the things that President George Bush did while President. It’s entitled “13 Reasons to be Glad George W Bush is no Longer President“. I’m summarizing the list below based on their list but it is pretty obvious that there are a lot of reasons not to miss Bush as President. Most of the things he did are still causing us problems today, like increasing income inequality and deregulating business and investment activity and politicizing the issue of climate change. It seems some people are already forgetting, so I think it’s a great idea to review his” legacy”. It reminds us that there is a world of difference between how President Obama and President Bush and their respective Parties view the future of America and the priorities they chose.
Here’s the list from the Center for American Progress. Go to their original post to see more details.
- Authorized the use of torture
- Politicized climate science
- Ignored Afghanistan to launch a war in Iraq
- Botched the response to Hurricane Katrina
- Defunded stem cell research
- Required Muslim men to register with the government
- Reinstated the global gag rule
- Supported anti-gay discrimination
- Further deregulated Wall Street
- Widened income inequality
- Undermined worker protections
- Ideological court appointments
- Presided over a dysfunctional executive branch
Tim Eyman’s latest proposed initiative continues his right wing libertarian approach to try to shut down state government. He is proposing to limit tax increases to one year and push for repeated votes at tax payer expense for minority rule that would let a 1/3 minority of Legislators run our state government by taking over the Washington State Legislature. It is a recipe for disaster.
Our current problem in the legislature is not one of over taxation but of out of control tax expenditures given by Legislators to special interests. The state has a revenue problem – giving away tax exemptions instead of collecting revenue. See http://dor.wa.gov/docs/reports/2012/Exemption_study_2012/Intro_and_Summary_of_findings.pdf
Take B&O taxes listed in the 2012 State Tax Exemption Report -on B&O taxes on business – the state gave out 176 tax breaks totaling some $7.5 billion while collecting only $6.5 billion in revenue. The exemptions were 54% of the potential tax base.
The 2012 Tax Exemption Study also stated that in the 2011 – 2013 budget some $21 billion was collected in B&O taxes and sales/use taxes. At the same time some $20 billion in these same taxes was not collected and was essentially an expenditure of state funds to support those that got the exemption.
The state currently has some 640 tax exemptions in place. Under a 2/3 Constitution Amendment tax expenditures could be put in place by a majority vote but would require a 2/3 vote to repeal.
A 2/3 vote constitutional amendment would lock in all these exemptions that are forcing higher taxes on those that pay and don’t get an exemption. It is a recipe for disaster.
Eyman’s anti-tax hysteria borders on the ludicrous. It serves no purpose but to push a radical philosophy exposed by those like Grover Norquist and Tea Party fanatics to shut down government. It is irresponsible and harmful to the state government and Washington State’s residents. It would prevent significant tax reform and benefit special interests and corporations while hurting those who need state help. It would prevent adequate funding of education and other essential state services.
People need to say NO to Eyman’s continued anti-tax monologue. Enough is enough.
As reported by Think Progress and others last month, the right wing Tea Party supporting billionaire Koch Brothers are exploring buying newspapers in an obvious attempt to use their fortune to get a mouthpiece to voters.
“Right-wing funders and business industrialists David and Charles Koch may purchase the Tribune Company newspapers, which include the Chicago Tribune, Baltimore Sun, and the Los Angeles Times. The brothers are “interested in the clout they could gain through the Times’ editorial pages,” the Hollywood Reporter notes. Responding to the report, a spokesperson for Koch told the website that the brothers are “constantly exploring profitable opportunities in many industries and sectors”
Daily Kos and others have entered the fray by purchasing an ad in the LA Times, after initially being rejected. They did so by refiling the ad, linking their statements to articles printed in the LA Times that noted “the Koch Brothers bankrolled the Tea Party, denied global warming and bought politicians.”
The Los Angeles Times advertising department has reversed its earlier decision to reject an advertisement from Daily Kos and the Courage Campaign urging the Chicago-based Tribune Company not to sell the 132-year-old Times to the billionaire Koch brothers. The ad will run in the main news section of Wednesday’s edition of the Times….
Tribune, whose merger in 2000 with Times-Mirror Corp., the Times’s owner at the time, made it the second largest newspaper publisher in the nation, has been reported to be considering selling the Times, the nation’s fourth most widely read newspaper, to the ultra-right-wing Kochs.
The Hollywood Reporter first broke this story on March 13, 2013. The Tribune Company has recently emerged from bankruptcy proceedings and is looking for a buyer for their newspapers. As the Hollywood Reporter points out, the Koch Brothers represent right wing politics in the extreme. They are billionaires and own Koch Industries which is currently the second largest privately owned company in the US.
The Koch brothers have long dominated American industry; their holdings include Georgia Pacific paper products as well as major fertilizer, refinery and oil pipeline companies. More recently they have become known for their financial support of Republican candidates, especially those from the Tea Party, and the fight against regulations and legislation aimed at curbing climate change.
The Koch Brothers involvement in the Tea Party however goes far beyond just supporting them. As Brendan DeMille of the Huffington Post in February wrote in an article entitled, “Study Confirms Tea Party was Created by Big Tobacco and Billionaire Koch Brothers“:
A new academic study confirms that front groups with longstanding ties to the tobacco industry and the billionaire Koch brothers planned the formation of the Tea Party movement more than a decade before it exploded onto the U.S. political scene.
Far from a genuine grassroots uprising, this astroturf effort was curated by wealthy industrialists years in advance. Many of the anti-science operatives who defended cigarettes are currently deploying their tobacco-inspired playbook internationally to evade accountability for the fossil fuel industry’s role in driving climate disruption.
The Koch Brothers represent a threat to the free exchange of news and information and obviously have a history of trying to push their extreme right wing philosophy and politics at any cost and by any means. Their involvement and purchase in any newspaper or other media ownership poses a real threat to a free press, which we know is an ideal, yet special interests pushing their own extreme political biases over objectivity because they have the money and resources to own the media threatens our society and basic democratic values and principles in our country and the world.
It is with sadness that I learned of the passing of a friend and colleague a few days ago. Blair Butterworth was a prominent political consultant in the Northwest where he lived for over 40 years. Blair was an integral part of the Don’t Bankrupt Washington campaign to pass Initiative 394 in 1981. The voters passed the initiative with a 58% yes vote. It was the first loss for the Winner /Wagner Associates – the nuclear industry’s PR firm after they successfully beat back many attempts across the country to limit or stop nuclear power expansion.
Rather than running the campaign as a nuclear safety or environmental issue, the campaign was centered around the ever increasing financial costs of building nuclear power plants. In Washington State, the Washington Public Power Supply System, committed to trying to build 5 nuclear power plants. Two were slated for Satsop and three in the Tri-Cities in eastern Washington.
Costs escalated from an initial estimate of $4 billion to over $24 billion before it all came tumbling down, resulting in the biggest municipal bond default in US history at the time. Unsuccessful attempts were made in the Washington State Legislature to control the costs but they were unsuccessful. In 1980 a group called SAVES – Support a Vote on Energy Spending attempted to get signatures to put an initiative on the ballot. At the same time those opposed to nuclear power almost were collecting signatures on an initiative to ban nuclear waste coming to Hanford. Grassroots support was stretched and in the end only the Don’t Waste Washington initiative got on the ballot. It was passed by voters.
In December I met with the people involved in the SAVES effort and informed them that I was going to refile the initiative and push it as Don’t Bankrupt Washington. Some changes were made in the drafting – the most significant long term being to add a requirement that cost effectiveness studies must be done on all large public power plants (over 250 MW) before they could issue bonds. This was in addition to receiving a public vote of support from the areas that the public utility districts in WPPSS served who would be purchasing the power.
The cost effectiveness study provision was added after I consulted with Jim Lazar – a consulting economist in Olympia. It turned out to represent a significant change in energy policy dynamics in our state, especially after studies were done on the WPPSS project that showed it was less expensive to generate new energy from other sources like energy efficiency and renewable energy than from huge costly centralized nuclear power plants.
Blair Butterworth became involved as the campaign moved forward by helping to raise needed funds and developing our campaign message. Thanks to Blair it eventually became a campaign of national significance. He helped recruit the polling firm of Dresner, Morris and Tortelli. Dick Morris was the main pollster we worked with. Morris subsequently went on to be a consultant for Bill Clinton before he became the right wing writer and adviser for conservative Republican campaigns.
When polling showed there was strong public support for our initiative, we were able to reach out with Blair’s connections and know how to raise national money. I went to New York and Washington DC with Blair to present our campaign to national funders. With Blair’s help we were able to raise over $65,000 on this trip, including a $45,000 donation from Alida Rockefeller Dayton.
Our stop in New York took us to a meeting with Tony Schwartz, who liked what we were doing, and agreed to do our ads for one third of his normal cost.. Tony Schwartz is best known for having produced the famous “daisy ad” during the Johnson/Goldwater Presidential campaign. The ad only aired once, never mentioned Goldwater, but the result was a precipitous 15 percentage point drop in Goldwater’s support immediately afterward. He authored several books, including “The Responsive Chord” in which he argued that ads didn’t really change voters views but tapped into what they already believed.
Blair’s campaign advice was invaluable throughout the campaign. Initiative 394 won by 58% of the vote on election day despite the nuclear industry setting a statewide spending record at the time by spending over $1.25 million dollars. We raised some $200,000 which at the time was also a record for grassroots initiative campaigns in our state.
The Don’t Bankrupt Washington campaign was written up in more detail in the book, “Citizen Lawmakers – The ballot Initiative Revolution” by David D Schmidt in 1989. The campaign was an exciting time for grassroots campaigns and Blair was a great associate and key to our success.
Blair was involved in many other campaigns. You can read more about Blair’s life at:
“Blair Butterworth, top political consultant is dead“, Strange Bedfellows, Seattle PI,March 29, 2013
“Obituary: Strategist Blair Butterworth helped Democrat win elections“, Seattle Times, March 29, 2013
“Prominent Political Consultant Blair Butterworth Has Died“, Seattle Weekly, March 29, 2013
Fond Memories of an Extraordinary Man, by Blair Butterworth, Seattle Times , March 22, 2005
A third initiative effort is underway for district elections for Seattle City Council members. Two previous efforts have not been successful with the voters. The current proposal is for a hybrid system. It proposes to divide Seattle into 7 districts and elect a Council member from each one. Two additional members would be elected city wide. Right now all City Council members are elected citywide. You can see the proposal more specifically by visiting their website at Seattle Districts Now.
The real question is what is broken and is it necessary to radically change the current system.
Would district elections of Seattle City Council members be good for Seattle? The proponents argue that current Seattle City Council members are out of touch with the neighborhoods and don’t respond to constituents. They argue that they have no one to take their neighborhood problems to and that having one Council member elected from their district will solve that problem.
I believe it is wishful thinking to make the assumption that the district person elected is going to somehow be more responsive to neighborhood concerns and things will be better than the current situation. There is no guarantee. Council members are elected for 4 years so it would be 4 years before someone could run again to change things. And there is the danger that district Council members may also pay a lot less attention to issues in other districts as well as city wide issues.
There is also the problem that even if you get a good District City Council member, you still need 5 votes out of 9 to get things done on the Council. Former City Council member Sam Smith was fond of repeating this over and over.
Dividing the city into districts means that because 7 of the new Council members would each only represent 1/7 of the voters and only 2 all of the voters, that this combination would give the Mayor more power and diminish the power of the City Council compared to the current City Council /Mayor structure where they are all elected citywide.
Right now nine City Council members represent all voters and voters can approach any of the nine City Council members for help. Council members are responsible for the whole city, not just 1/7 of the city. Under district elections you are pinning your hopes on one City Council member to be your primary representative.
What if that city council member is not responsive to your needs? Going to any of the other 6 district Council members probably will not be as successful because they are much less likely to feel the need to respond to your concerns as you are no longer their constituent who can vote against them. And if the issue does not involve a neighborhood in their district they are more likely to not get involved.
It’s just like trying to talk to a state legislator about a problem in your legislative district and he/she is a representative from another legislative district. He/she may listen to you but will more than likely tell you to talk to your own elected representatives.
You have 2 other city wide City Council members to try but it is not the same as having 9 possible council members to approach as you can now.
In addition proponents of district elections argue that it is too expensive to run for Seattle City Council and that being able to run in a smaller area means more people can run and have a chance of winning without having to raise big dollars. In the 2011 cycle, incumbent City Council members raised on the average about $250,000 and most challengers usually raised much less. Money means outreach and voter contact and without it is is difficult to run.
I have run twice for the Seattle City Council myself and came in third twice. I understand the money problem but I also think that with this proposal people may be putting too many hopes on the idea that changing the election process will generate more success in electing neighborhood candidates. I think the problems are bigger than that.
One basic fact will still remain. Most incumbents in Seattle are pretty well versed on the issues before them and have name recognition and media exposure that challengers usually do not. Not all challengers are qualified to run for office, lacking experience in city issues or campaign experience. Voters need a reason to throw an incumbent out. And they need some sense that the challenger will do a better job.
It is a false assumption to assume that incumbency, name recognition or money will no longer be big factors in who gets elected. Once elected in a District it will be hard to remove incumbents. One only has to look at how long some state Legislators have stayed in office and how hard it is to challenge them.
As to money I believe the same interests that support the current elected City Council members will still put their money into candidates that represent their interests. Money will still be a significant factor in City Council races.It is highly likely that most of the current City Council members will adjust to a new system and either run for a District seat in the area they live in or one of the two citywide seats and some will move if need be to another district to run.
The downtown interests and developer interests and business interests that neighborhood groups point to as funding the current Council members are not going to declare defeat or ignore City Council races because of District elections. They will support the same people who represent their interests whether they run in District elections or City wide. They will also recruit candidates to run in Districts to represent their interests if current Council members do not run in those districts. And expect they will spend as much as now to elect their candidates only the efforts will now be focused on a much smaller population of voters.
Business interests will still be able to target their mailers to voters in the Districts and will still be able to draw contributions and support from business interests citywide as well as PAC donations.
Meanwhile I think neighborhood candidates will have a more difficult time raising money because neighborhood people across the city will be less likely to give money to elect a candidate not running in their neighborhood. It is similar to what happens now in electing State Legislators. Most of their individual donors live in their legislative district. And other money coming from PAC’s will have the same strings attached as if they were running citywide.
Perspective neighborhood candidates will also have to face the limitations of running based on where they live. With district elections the options will be limited to either running against the incumbent in your district or for one of the two city wide seats. If their district incumbent is entrenched or popular or both their options are limited for running.
Right now perspective candidates can pick any incumbent city council candidate to run against or any seat. They can pick who they consider the weakest incumbent is. With district elections they would have to move to do that if it isn’t their incumbent district city council member. Moving unfortunately is not an option for most people or candidates, particularly challengers who are not guaranteed to win in any sense of the word.
Unfortunately moving would take you out of the district you live in, raising the issue of being a carpetbagger. In addition it would remove you from your previous district connections and involvement and credentials that supposedly are one of a neighborhood candidate’s assets to running in a district. And if you lose you have to wait 4 more years before you can run again in that district. Right now if you lose you can run again in two years if an open seat emerges or you just decide to run again against a different sitting incumbent.
Suppose you live in a District that has an incumbent neighborhood advocate like say Council member Nick Licata and you want to run. You’re not going to run against him so your only option is to run for one of the two citywide seats up every 4 years, which may also have 2 popular incumbents. Do you move? Your options to run have now become much more limited and the options of other good candidates have also become more limited, because of the restrictions that district boundaries place on your ability to run.
These and other concerns need to be weighted carefully before neighborhood advocates and others charge forward with significant changes to how we elect City Council members. I believe difficulties will still remain and it will be just as difficult to get elected as it is now. Downtown and business interests will still play a pivotal role in funding and electing candidates and are not going to concede the City Council to neighborhood advocates.
The prime criteria to get elected will still remain – the need to be a credible candidate with a clear compelling reason for voters to vote for you, the ability to articulate a vision for the future of the city, not just your neighborhood, the ability to raise money, the ability to communicate your message to voters and the ability connect with the voters.
As Rachael Maddow notes, more Americans support background checks for people buying guns at gun shows than support capitalism, Italian food, or taking a vacation. What don’t Republicans in Congress and in our state legislature not understand? Talk about being out of touch.
The Washington Post ABC poll was conducted March 7 – 10th. As Bloomberg News reports:
More than nine in 10 Americans favor mandatory background checks for purchases at gun shows, according to a poll out today.
The ABC News/Washington Post survey showed 91 percent supporting such checks, with 8 percent opposing them. Making illegal gun sales a federal crime was backed by 82 percent, with 15 percent in opposition.
President Barack Obama’s call to ban military-style assault weapons is supported by 57 percent and opposed by 41 percent.
A second poll done by the Quinnipiac University from Feb 28 to March 4th found similar results:
By an 88 – 10 percent margin, including 85 – 13 percent among voters in households with guns, American voters support background checks for all gun buyers. Voters also support 54 – 41 percent a nationwide ban on the sale of assault weapons and back 54 – 42 percent a nationwide ban on the sale of ammunition magazines with more than 10 rounds.
Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to move forward on background check legislation. The Committee vote was 10 to 8 with all 8 Republicans voting no. Republicans are not listening to voters but to the NRA and gun lobby money. In the Quinnipiac Unviersity poll 83 % of Republicans polled supported universal background checks. Republicans continue to be out of tune with the public’s strong support for Congress to act to control gun violence.
The Senate Judiciary Committee has also by a 10 to 8 party line vote approved the ban on assault weapons proposed by President Obama and to limit ammunition clips to a maximum of 10 bullets.
Democrats Voting YES
Patrick Leahy – VT
Diande Feinstein – CA
Chuck Schumer – NY
Dick Durbin – IL
Stephen Whitehorse – RI
Amy Klochbar – MN
Al Franken – MN
Christopher Coons – DE
Richard Blumenthal – CT
Mazie Hirono – HI
Republicans Voting NO
Chuch Grassley – IA
Orin Hatch – UT
Jeff Sessions – AL
Lindsey Graham – SC
John Cronyn – TX
Michael Lee – UT
Ted Cruz – TX
Jeff Flake – AZ
Tags2008 Elections August 18 2009 Primary Barack Obama BIAW Bush campaign disclosure campaign finance Chris Gregoire congress Democrats Dino Rossi elections endorsements fuel efficiency standards George Bush global warming Governor Gregoire Hillary Clinton I-1033 Ingraham High School initiative 1033 Initiative 1053 initiatives John McCain King County Democrats No on 1033 No on I-1033 Peter Goldmark Presidential election Property Taxes Public Disclosure Commission Republicans Save the Trees - Seattle Seattle City Council Seattle School Board Seattle School District Senator Cantwell Tim Eyman Trees Urban Forestry US Senate US Supreme Court Washington State Washington State Legislature Washington State Supreme Court
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