Tag Archives: Kerry

Not A Game by Senator John Kerry

Posted by: Betsm

Written by Senator John Kerry/Cross-posted from TPM

Senator John Kerry

Senator John Kerry

Too often, the way it’s played and the way it’s reported, Americans might think everything that happens in Washington is a game.

But look, this is anything but a game. The business before the Senate is literally life and death on many issues, and the parliamentary tricks to delay and obstruct the basic workings of our government have real-world consequences.

What am I talking about? Start with the latest example: one Senator’s effort to delay the votes on some critically-needed legislation for Americans out of work and hurting in our economy.

A lot of people today are clicking on this news story about Senator Bunning.

Political theater? Much more than that. Here’s what’s at stake: 2000 federal highway workers were furloughed this morning, losing the pay that their families depend on and halting work on critical national infrastructure. Nearly 1.2 million could lose their unemployment benefits without an extension of that program, pulling away a critical financial lifeline.

This has to end.

In the last Congress, the Republican minority more than doubled the previous record for filibusters, and they are on a pace to challenge or surpass that “accomplishment” this Congress as well. And filibusters are only the most obvious part of it. (TPM put together a great chart on filibusters which you can see here.)

On issue after issue, votes large and small, the strategy from the GOP at the highest levels has been the same: exploiting every Senate rule, playing every trick to try to slow things down. They put holds on bills that later pass by 90 votes, filibuster things they later vote for, block things they previously proposed. They used the filibuster to shoot down a debt commission that they themselves called on President Obama to implement! They block completely uncontroversial nominees and cause days of delays on the most critical of legislation. They even stalled on money for our troops last year, just to try to delay debate on health care reform.

It doesn’t have to be this way. There are good Senators on both sides of the aisle. Last week, five Republican Senators (including Scott Brown of Massachusetts, and I don’t care about party label, I call it the way I see it – Scott cast the right vote for Massachusetts there) joined with Democrats to break a GOP filibuster to pass a jobs bill helping small businesses hire in this tough economy. Senator Lindsay Graham and I are working hard together to develop a bill on energy and global climate change.

But as long as the GOP leadership continues with the scorched-earth campaign, it will be tough to get done the things we know we need to do.

We need this to end. Debate big differences. Disagree. Use the filibuster when big matters of principle hang in the balance – and sometimes they do. But at the end of the day, Washington has to function – people are counting on it. When it comes to unemployment insurance for workers who have been laid-off through no fault of their own, stop playing games immediately, allow a vote, and then get to work trying to solve some problems, not playing tricks with the Senate rules. The framers invested the minority with rights to protect the Senate – not to destroy it.

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Filed under Economy, Jobs, Partisan Politics, Politics, Republicans, Sen. John Kerry, Senate, Uncategorized, Unemployment

A New Green Youth Movement by Senator John Kerry

Posted by Audiegrl

futuregreen

JohnKerry_launchSenator John Kerry—I know the difference a generation of young Americans in motion can make.

I was in college at a time of great political ferment and fundamental changes to our social fabric: the Civil Rights Act, the beginning of the counterculture and the passage of the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution that set us on a disastrous path of deepening involvement in Vietnam.

When I came home from war disillusioned, I joined with millions of young people who marched against Richard Nixon’s Vietnam policy, against racial bigotry, against gender bias, and we changed our country for the better. We read Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” and our generation formed the bedrock of the activism that gave America its first Earth Day and the modern environmental movement.

Now, it’s time for a new generation of Americans to get in motion — because the very survival of our planet depends on them.

Now is the time for young people who learned to flex their political muscle last November to shift into high-gear and get Washington to take on our historic legislation to combat global climate change.

Starting today I am challenging young Americans throughout the country to make their voices heard on this urgent matter. I am doing this through the Organize to be Heard Challenge.

Please visit http://consequence09.org/challenge for more information on the campaign.

I need you to help America seize control of our energy, economic and security future, and the future of generations to come.

PrintDon’t think you can’t make a difference? You already have. In the last election, more than 24 million 18-to-29 year-olds went to the polls because it was time for a change. This critical mass of young people — the Millennial generation — changed the direction of our country in a profound way on education, the economy, foreign policy and, of course, global warming.

But you can’t stop now. We face a threat to the very existence of our planet. Rising sea levels, drought and famine will not stop without action — action now.

We can put America back in charge of its energy future. We can invest in our economy and create clean energy jobs. We can strengthen our national security by reducing our dependence on foreign oil. And we can secure our future by eliminating harmful pollution that threatens us all.

We can do all of this. We can do it together. And that, I can assure you, is what we’ve always done in America and what we can do again.

Follow John Kerry on Twitter: www.twitter.com/JohnKerry

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More @ consequence09logo

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Filed under Change, Climate Change, Democrats, Economy, Energy, Green, Inovation, Politics, Sciences, Technology

Taking Control of Our Energy Future by Senator John Kerry

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Op-Ed by Senator John Kerry

John Kerry, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

John Kerry, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

Huffington Post/John Kerry

It’s on.

Today, Senator Boxer and I introduced our “Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act” that aims to put Americans back in charge of our energy future and our security — doing nothing less than reinventing the way America produces and uses energy. At the same time, it will help to put millions of Americans back to work, protect our children’s health and our environment, invest in homegrown innovation, and create a true 21st century economy.

After decades of debate, years of avoiding the challenge, billions spent on the status quo keeping us stuck in the past, it’s time for us to seize control of our energy future, our planet’s future, our security future, and our economic future.

green_jobs_americaWe send a billion dollars a day overseas to feed our addiction to oil. Our economy is at the mercy of fluctuations in the price of a resource we don’t control. And scientists and generals warn that the climate change caused by carbon pollution threatens our health, our environment and our security.

Our bill sets carbon pollution reduction targets, creates powerful new incentives for companies to find ways to meet them, and makes historic new investments in technology and efficiency that will improve every sector of our energy economy.

More @ Huffington_Post_Logo

To read the bill, a bill summary, explanation of each section, etc, follow this link.

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Filed under Climate Change, Democrats, Energy, Green, Jobs, Law, Opinions, Politics, Uncategorized