Last night, as Senate Democrats held the floor to oppose the nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) for Attorney General, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) was silenced when she tried to read Coretta Scott King’s letter opposing Sessions’ nomination for a federal judgeship 30 years ago. In the middle of her speech, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell invoked an obscure rule against “impugning” another senator and called for a vote to stop Warren from speaking. The vote passed along party lines and Warren was silenced, but McConnell’s plan backfired. His silencing line: “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,” became an instant rallying cry and Warren’s Facebook Live reading of the letter got millions of views.
Despite last night’s drama, Sessions’ final confirmation vote is expected to come today. And Sessions has not become any more qualified for a federal judgeship in the 30 years since Coretta Scott King wrote her letter. He was too racist to be a federal judge in 1986, and he’s too racist to be Attorney General in 2017. He’s spent his career fighting against voting rights and trying to keep immigrants out of the country. As Rep. Lewis said during Sessions’ confirmation hearing, “It doesn’t matter how Senator Sessions may smile… we need someone who is going to stand up, speak up, and speak out… for people who have been discriminated against.”
ACTION OF THE DAY
#StopSessions. Betsy DeVos’s narrow win showed the impact of the resistance. Today the fight continues with Sessions. Last night McConnell silenced Elizabeth Warren when she tried to read Coretta Scott King’s letter opposing Sessions. Fight back today by sharing her letter on Facebook and Twitter. Then call your Senator (202) 224-3121 and read King’s letter to make sure they hear it.
Hold music. The Trump Administration is getting more of it after the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard arguments over Trump’s suite of extreme immigration orders. The Trump Administration argued that the President has the power to make immigration decisions based on national security. The court wasn’t buying it. The Attorneys General suing the Trump Administration argued that the orders result in religious discrimination and pointed to the thousands of people already hurt by the order.
(Dakota) Access granted. Yesterday, the Army approved the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Not only does the pipeline threaten the drinking water for millions and encroach on sacred Standing Rock Sioux Tribe land, it’s getting the green light without a completed environmental impact statement. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has vowed to keep fighting. Want to help? If you’re in DC, you can join a vigil at the White House tonight. If not, you can donate to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe here.
The 1960s called. They want Trump’s cabinet back. Trump’s disastrous pick for Secretary of Labor, Andrew Puzder – who’s confirmation hearing has been pushed back again amidst a flurry of controversy- sounds a lot like a character out of Mad Men. Don’t believe us? Take this quiz.
#PriceIsWrong. Last night Sens. Sanders and Cruz held what could have been a presidential debate if either one of them had succeeded in securing their party’s nominations about the ACA. The ACA will be front and center again today as Sens. Murray and Wyden, CAP President Neera Tanden, activists, and one of Rep. Tom Price’s own constituents take the stage to explain why Price is wrong for HHS Secretary. Watch it here.
“I don’t know Putin”. Trump’s tweet yesterday was 140 characters full of lies. The truth? Trump has admitted to having a relationship with Vladimir Putin, and has extensive and extremely questionable financial ties with Russia. Thanks for reminding us yet again, Mr. President, of the urgent need for an independent investigation into Russian involvement in your election.
At least someone is having a good time.