The Supreme Court will hear a case this October on climate issues. Specifically, the EPA’s Cross-State Air Pollution Rule. This rule is designed to force "upwind" states to take responsibility for the pollution they emit that lands in other states. It makes sense, right?
U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit ruled 2-1 in favor of dismantling the rule in favor of dirty power plant operators. I mean, I'm sure they aren't personally dirty but they do represent the interests of fossil fuel advocates who don't want to be held liable for pollution.
The promise of action of climate change has been up in the air for a while, and Obama has finally taken a firm stand (even if it was just as firmly ignored by most TV networks). But almost immediately following his speech the Supreme Court announced that it would take up the climate rule that was struck down by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit that forces "upwind" states to enact tougher regulations on polluters whose emissions drag down air quality in "downwind" states. Seems reasonable, right? Grist reports that the Court of Appeals took the side of high-pollution power plant owners whose general argument was, "Not my problem."
It's called the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, and losing it would cost the nation dearly in 2014.
Threatening to put the lives of thousands of people at greater risk in the name of a few less climate regulations is irresponsible. We haven't been shy about calling out big business on their efforts to overwhelm the American people. Check out our other posts on big businessand climate change!
Yesterday's historic Supreme Court decision was a blessing for thousands of gay men and women in the country -- but for folks in Virginia, Ohio, and 35 other states, real change could be a long ways off.
Equal marriage is now back in the hands of the states. And too many of those states are controlled by right-wing nut jobs like Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, who argued that gay marriage inevitably leads to polygamy.
Extremists like Cuccinelli are holding our whole country back. That's why DFA launched our Purple to Blue project -- to start moving us forward again, one state at a time.
It's not just about LGBT rights. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court gutted the heart of the Voting Rights Act, giving Republican governors the freedom to suppress voters and gerrymander districts with abandon. Later that same day, the country was captivated by Texas as one courageous female state senator almost singlehandedly turned back the biggest attack on women's rights yet.
These battles are being fought in all fifty states, and the attacks won't stop until we retake control of state capitols across the country. That's why DFA's commitment to a fifty-state strategy is so important -- and why your support is so critical.
10:30am: A New York City immigration judge stopped the deportation proceedings that would split up Steven and Sean, a gay couple who were married in New York.
Steven is from Colombia, and when he married his partner Sean in New York last year, they also joined the fight against DOMA. The case to keep Steven in the US, and with his partner was saved when the law was considered unconstitutional.
When Governor Perry originally called for a special session of the state legislature, it wasn't about abortion. Instead, it was about redistricting. A special session does play by different rules though, and GOP lawmakers went on the attack.
Timeline, and just what happened:
Perry calls for a special session after the Texas redistricting proposal is shot down by Washington for racial discrimination.
With two weeks remaining in the session, anti-abortion legislation is proposed.
Democrats are locked out of the amendment process
This even makes it difficult to add an exception for rape and incest. No, really, Texas lawmakers are actually clueless about the issue.
Facing defeat, House Democrats in Texas sought to use parliamentary moves to delay the bill, pointing out flaws in paperwork and even showing up late to debates.
The House passes the bill, and now Senate Democrats are moving to filibuster.
What's in the bill:
New rules on how abortion providers can run clinics, which would ultimately close down 37 out of 42 clinics across the state, leaving much of the state without coverage.
Chiefly that abortion providers must have privileges at a local hospital - something many hospitals restrict for religious reasons or to avoid protests and controversy
No, it's not an accident that this tactic is exploited
A ban after 20 weeks, which is a move seen in 8 other states (notably, North Dakota put in a ban after 12 weeks - a move currently facing the courts)
Just how uninformed are Texas lawmakers?
To find out, just check out this quote:
The bill's sponsor, Rep. Jody Laubenberg, R-Parker, faced pointed questioning from Democrats opposing the bill. She opposed amendments to makes exceptions for victims of rape or incest and to rely on the latest, peer-reviewed medical studies for making legal decisions.
"The woman had five months to make that decision, at this point we are looking at a baby that is very far along in its development," Laubenberg said in rejecting new exceptions to the measure. "What I would like to do is raise the standard. You have clinics that are out there already at that standard of care and all I'm asking is that we raise the others to that level." (Source)
No, really, the bill's sponsor believes that rape kits are a form of abortion.