Howard Dean's Take on the Past 24 Hours @ SCOTUS

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.

Organizers are already in Virginia, winning primaries with strong, progressive candidates. They need your support of $4 or more today to carry the fight into November.

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.

We've already won our first wave of primaries in Virginia -- your donation of $4 or more right now will fuel our campaign as as we head toward November.

Thank you for all you do,


Gov. Howard Dean, M.D.
Founder, Democracy for America

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Categories: LGBT Women Voting Rights

What you didn't see: DOMA being struck down already saved this family

10:00am: DOMA is struck down

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.

From The DOMA Project:

This morning our intern, Gabe, ran the 77-page ruling and delivered it the Immigration Court five blocks from our office. It was still warm from the printer.

The ruling was delivered, and the immigration judge stopped the proceedings.

Sean and Steven may be the very first binational couple effected by the repeal of DOMA

Even with DOMA repealed, the fight still needs to be taken to the states. Add your voice, and pledge to elect pro-equality legislators!  

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Categories: LGBT

Texas Republicans fight dirty to restrict access to abortion

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. 

From: ThinkProgressTimeline, 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. 

The GOP's War on Women only seems to be getting started. The moves in Texas come right off the heels of the explosive Senate debate in Wisconsin, and the extreme bill just passed by the House of Representatives

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The "Bipartisan" proposal that 83% of voters don't support

The student loan compromise: Raise rates and don't pay attention to polls

It isn't a stretch of the imagination to realize that people want lower interest rates, and the last 6 weeks has seen an intense fight by the GOP to do anything but that.

Senate Democrats have backed a bill that would peg interest rates to the 91-day Treasury note rate plus a percent decided by the Education secretary. It would cap interest rates for the subsidized portion of the loan at 6.8 percent and the unsubsidized portion and graduate loan at 8.25 percent. It also includes the White House proposal to expand the income-contingent loan repayment plan. - RollCall

What does that mean for voters and college grads? You can find out here :

Student Loan infographic

Student loan rates are set to double on July 1st. Check out the full infographic to see the bigger picture. 

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Categories: Education

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