Mitt Romney

Montana Bill Would Give Corporations The Right To Vote

Montana State Rep. Steve Lavin (R-ALEC)A bill introduced by Montana State Rep. Steve Lavin (R-ALEC) would give corporations the right to vote in municipal elections:

Provision for vote by corporate property owner. (1) Subject to subsection (2), if a firm, partnership, company, or corporation owns real property within the municipality, the president, vice president, secretary, or other designee of the entity is eligible to vote in a municipal election as provided in [section 1].

(2) The individual who is designated to vote by the entity is subject to the provisions of [section 1] and shall also provide to the election administrator documentation of the entity’s registration with the secretary of state under 35-1-217 and proof of the individual’s designation to vote on behalf of the entity.

The idea that “corporations are people, my friend” as Mitt Romney put it, is sadly common among conservative lawmakers. Most significantly of all, the five conservative justices voted in Citizens United v. FEC to permit corporations to spend unlimited money to influence elections. Actually giving corporations the right to vote, however, is quite a step beyond what even this Supreme Court has embraced.

The bill does contain some limits on these new corporate voting rights. Most significantly, corporations would not be entitled to vote in “school elections,” and the bill only applies to municipal elections. So state and federal elections would remain beyond the reach of the new corporate voters.

In fairness to Lavin’s fellow lawmakers, this bill was tabled shortly after it came before a legislative committee, so it is unlikely to become law. A phone call to Lavin was not returned as of this writing.

According to the Center for Media and Democracy, Lavin was a member of the American Legislative Exchange Council’s (ALEC) now defunct Public Safety and Elections Task Force. Last year, pressure from progressive groups forced ALEC to disband this task force, which, among other things, pushed voter suppression laws.

we refuse to accept that corporations are people

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This article is written by Ian Millhiser, and is posted at Think Progress at http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2013/02/22/1628631/montana-bill-would-give-corporations-the-right-to-vote/?mobile=nc
TP-justice

DeMint’s Bold Plan for Heritage: How to Lie More Effectively

Former Sen. Jim DeMint, hero to the overlapping Tea Party and Religious Right wings of the Republican Party, was kindly granted space by the Washington Post to tell us what he plans to do in his new job at the Heritage Foundation.

DeMint, a former ad man, promises to launch a “conservative revival” by figuring out how to do a better job selling conservative policies to the American public. That’s not exactly a big shift for the folks at Heritage, which is and always has been a giant marketing operation for right-wing “ideas.”

The most revealing thing in DeMint’s column is his use of a thoroughly debunked lie that Republicans tried to use against President Obama in last year’s campaign.  Says DeMint of President Obama, “He disabled welfare reform last year, when he took away the work requirements that were at the heart of that law’s success.”

That false claim earned politicians like Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum “Pants on Fire” ratings from Politifact and similar ratings from other fact checkers.  It’s a gross distortion of an Obama administration decision to give states more flexibility to come up with new ways to meet the law’s work requirements – something sought by Republican governors.  Even some Republicans, including one architect of welfare reform, called the charge false when the Romney campaign made it.

As we know from his climate change denialism, DeMint isn’t as concerned about truth as about creating his own reality — the way Fox News and the right-wing echo chamber have tried to do.  “One lesson I learned in marketing is that, for consumers and voters, perception is reality.”

Maybe reporters should start referring to Heritage as a “perception tank.”

this article was re-posted from Right Wing Watch, a publication of People For the American Way at
http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/demint-s-bold-plan-heritage-how-lie-more-effectively

by Peter Montgomery

UAW, SEIU PFAW and Other Org’s File Charges Against Romney for Violating Federal Ethics in Government law

From Nation of Change, by Greg Palast

United Auto Worker’s President, Bob King announced today that his Union and a consortium of other organizations that include the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), People for the American Way, SEIU, Public Campaign and the Social Equity Group has initiated and brought formal charges against Mitt Romney for “hiding” between $15.3 million and $115.0 million in Ann Romney’s so-called “blind” trust.

The formal charge filed with the US Office of Government Ethics focuses attention upon an aspect of the Romney “family” that has been previously overlooked – the financial manipulations by Mitt and Ann Romney serving to hide their huge wealth.  It also demonstrates that the relationship between Mitt Romney and one of his main contributors, Paul Singer is more than just that of a candidate and supporter.  This scheme began three years ago and partnered Ann Romney with hedge fund manager Singer, who would later become Presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s key donor.

This disgusting tale exemplifies precisely why what Romney and his Bain Company does has been defined as “vulture capitalism”.  When the economy collapsed in 2009 the Romney’s and Singer saw an opportunity to capitalize off of the dire straits the U.S. automakers found themselves facing.  Under their partnership Singer and Romney secretly bought controlling interest in Delphi Auto (the former GM auto parts division) through Singer’s Hedge Fund, Elliot Management.

With the government stepping up to bail out GM and Chrysler, Ann Romney and Singer “stepped up” to reap a windfall of money out of the TARP funds by extorting $12.9 Billion in taxpayer funding from GM and the government.  By threatening to cut off the supply of key steering columns to GM unless they received funds from the bailout, this extortion was successful.  The “profits earned” by the Romneys from this extortion scheme were then hidden in a trust after allegedly being laundered through an offshore corporation and a limited partnership agreement…

The union chief says, “The American people have a right to know about Gov. Romney’s potential conflicts of interest, such as the profits his family made from the auto rescue,” “It’s time for Gov. Romney to disclose or divest.”

“In 2009, Ann Romney partnered with her husband’s key donor, billionaire Paul Singer, who secretly bought a controlling interest in Delphi Auto, the former GM auto parts division.  Singer’s hedge fund, Elliott Management, threatened to cut off GM’s supply of steering columns unless GM and the government’s TARP auto bail-out fund provided Delphi with huge payments.  While the US treasury complained this was “extortion,” the hedge funds received, ultimately, $12.9 billion in taxpayer subsidies.

“While Romney was opposing the rescue of one of the nation’s most important manufacturing sectors, he was building his fortunes with his Delphi investor group, making his fortunes off the misfortunes of others,” King added.”The Romneys’ gigantic windfall was hidden inside an offshore corporation inside a Limited Partnership inside a trust which both concealed the gain and reduces taxes on it.”

This is but one of possibly many such manipulations and transactions involving the Romneys and other corporate owners during the period 2008 to today that were used to increase personal wealth at the expense of taxpayer bailouts used to save our nation’s economy.  One can almost hear the loud sucking vacuum as more and more tax dollars are being swept upward to the top 1% of the wealthiest families and owners of multi-national corporations…we can also imagine the mocking laughter emanating from behind closed boardroom doors of America’s Hedge Fund companies as they count and exchange the status of money from tax dollars to “earned” investor profits.  This truly is a form of vulturous activity which is being used to further break the backs of America’s working middle class.

Read the full Nation of Change Palast article here

Audio Reveals Romney Behind Employer Layoff Threats if Obama Wins

In audio of a conference call, Mitt Romney can be heard instructing employers on how to tell their employees who to vote for, and the consequences to their job if Obama wins.

Click here to listen to the full audio if you want to hear Romney answer questions from small business owners in this recorded presidential candidate town hall series sponsored by the conservative group NFIB.

The concluding remarks encourage business owners to talk with their employees about voting.  Please click here to go right to these remarks.

According to the Working blog at In These Times, Romney said, “I hope you make it very clear to your employees what you believe is in the best interest of your enterprise and therefore their job and their future in the upcoming elections. And whether you agree with me or you agree with President Obama, or whatever your political view, I hope, I hope you pass those along to your employees.”

Thanks to Citizens United, these kinds of scare tactics are legal, and they should sound familiar. Employers have been using these same kinds of threats to keep unions out of the workplace for decades.

It isn’t a coincidence that in recent weeks there has been a rash of Romney supporting billionaires warning of layoffs if Obama wins.

To read more of this excellent investigative report and get the details on how 3 specific corporations have told their employees how they should vote, please click here

 

FL Criminal Probe has been Launched into the GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal

State law enforcement agency says they have ‘found enough evidence to warrant a full-blown investigation’

Dept. of State advises election officials to sequester fraudulent registrations which ‘may become evidence used in court’

As Reuters reports tonight…

Authorities in Florida said they had opened a criminal probe into the activities of Strategic Allied Consulting, the firm hired by the Republican Party to register new voters in the crucial swing state ahead of next month’s presidential election.

A spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) said the agency had found enough evidence to warrant a full-blown investigation of Strategic Allied, a Virginia-based voter registration company doing work for the Republican National Committee and the Republican Party of Florida.

The Florida Division of Elections on Friday forwarded a complaint to FDLE after reports of suspicious voter registration forms linked to the company first surfaced in Palm Beach County.

“After reviewing this complaint, FDLE has decided that a criminal investigation into these allegations is warranted,” said FDLE spokeswoman Gretl Plessinger in an email.

To read this entire investigative report–there is a lot more information for you to read–please click here

North Carolina Republican paid voter registration operation linked to fraud

[why is it that those fighting to enact laws to “prevent voter fraud” seem to be the ones always getting caught?]

An effort by Republicans to register voters with paid workers is underway in North Carolina and across the nation. In the past month various ads have appeared on Craigslist, Facebook and other online job listings offering amounts from $11 to $13 per hour (and in some cases internship credit) to help Republicans and Mitt Romney win in North Carolina in November by identifying conservatives and registering them as voters. The operation is linked to an Arizona company with a history of fraud allegations including the destruction of Democratic registration cards.

…There is evidence that similar operations are being conducted in Colorado, Florida and, Virginia on behalf of the Republican Party. There is no evidence of business registration in either North Carolina, Colorado, or Florida (or Arizona).
[note:  link to earlier article – FL GOP FIRES ROMNEY CONSULTANT’S VOTER REGISTRATION FIRM AFTER FRAUDULENT FORMSREPORTED IN PALM BEACH COUNTY]

Strategic Allied Consulting, LLC, has set up a generic one-page web presence. The ambiguous text reveals nothing about the nature of the operation. The domain name is being used for email addresses by voter registration operatives in Florida. The domain name is registered to Sproul & Associates in Tempe, Arizona, a company founded by Nathan Sproul, former director of the Arizona GOP and the state’s Christian Coalition.

Please click here to read the investigative reporting by Greg Finn of BlueNC


One Percenters Buying Themselves an Aristocracy

The U.S. Constitution guarantees separation of church and state. What this nation needs now is separation of wealth and state.

Without such a protection, Americans stand to lose their democracy. They’ll be ruled instead by an aristocracy of 1 percenters.

That’s the 1 percenters’ plan. To them, it was no more than a perk when the U.S. Supreme Court enabled politicians to open their wallets for unlimited, anonymous campaign contributions. That’s because way before the 2010 Citizens United ruling, 1 percenters were working on a takeover. If the 99 percent don’t stop them soon, don’t establish some sort of separation of wealth and state, then the nation will lose its founding precepts — that all men are created equal and that governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. Aristocracies can ignore the governed.

Already the 1 percenters have been extraordinarily successful. The rich really do enjoy advantages. They’ve succeeded in stuffing Congress with their peers. In America, fewer than 1 percent of all people are millionaires. In Congress, 47 percent are. The median net worth of a U.S. senator in 2010 was $2.56 million.

To read this incisive article by Leo W. Gerard, President of the United Steelworkers, please click here

Mitt Romney Energy Plan Robs Taxpayers – Video

Big Oil…strings attached to campaign donations,,,Koch Brothers’ influence?  Any time someody says Big Oil needs subsidies–It just doesn’t smell right. Drilling in our National and State Parks. Smells like ALEC DNA to me.  But that’s just my opinion, I could be wrong.

“After raising nearly $10 million in Texas oil money in two days, Mitt Romney announces an energy plan on the Texas -New Mexico border later today that includes billions of dollars in giveaways to industry contributors. Romney will call for extensive expansion of oil and gas drilling — including along the coasts of Virginia and the Carolinas — and eliminating most federal safety and environmental standards that govern the development of energy resources on our public lands...”.

The Young Turks host Cenk Uygur breaks it down as you can watch by clicking here.

The Bain Files

Inside Mitt Romney’s Tax-Dodging Cayman Schemes

Gawker has obtained and published more than 950 pages of internal financial documents for 21 cryptically named entities in which Mitt Romney had invested—at minimum—more than $10 million as of 2011. Almost all of them are affiliated with Bain Capital, the secretive private equity firm Romney co-founded in 1984 and ran until his departure in 1999; many of them are offshore funds based in the Cayman Islands. Together, they reveal the mind-numbing, maze-like, and deeply opaque complexity with which Romney has handled his $250 million fortune.

To read all of this breaking news from Gawker, please click here

Election Fraud? Look at the Republican Party for Actual Election Fraud.

10+ recent cases of voter fraud by very high-profile GOPers…

…you’d think there was an epidemic of Democratic “voter fraud” in this nation. That’s certainly the way the GOP has framed it, fooled the corporate mainstream media into reporting it, and even scammed the White House and Congressional Democrats into going along with it when they signed legislation that defunded ACORN, a four-decade old community organization never found to have committed voter fraud, or even helped to see a single fraudulent vote cast in any election anywhere.

As it turns out, not only is there no such epidemic of Democratic voter fraud, but the opposite is true. Over the past year, very high profile Republicans — including this year’s presumed standard bearer, Mitt Romney; the Sec. of State of Indiana (the first state to institute polling place Photo ID restrictions) Charlie White; one time GOP front-runner Newt Gingrich; MO’s new GOP nominee for the U.S. Senate Todd Akin; and the group hired the Sacramento, CA Republican Party to collect voter registrations this year for Rep. Dan Lungren; among others (all detailed below) — have each been revealed as having committed or participated in election fraud — both voter registration fraud and actual voter fraud — in state after state.

For the details about these hypocrites and what they have been doing, please click here.