Kennedy was the final, and typically showiest, Republican to question her. He suggested that there may be a perception that “if you took Wall Street, turned them upside down, and shook ’em, you’d fall out of their pockets.” When he said that “you called Sen. Sanders everything but an ignorant slut”—Graham, in the background, followed up with “I wouldn’t’ve said ‘ignorant’ ”—Tanden showed her anger for the first time, saying, “That is not true, Senator.”
Kennedy then asked her repeatedly whether she meant the insults she tweeted when she tweeted them.
She tried a few different dodges between reiterations of the question. “I really feel badly about them, Senator.” “Social media is a terrible discourse.” “I feel terribly about them.” “I look back at them, I said them, I feel badly about them, I deleted tweets.”
She finally relented.
“Senator, I must have meant them,” she said. “But I really regret them.”
More news, tweets, videos, etc in the comments. Sure Happy It’s Thursday!
As the game doesn’t come on until 6:30 ET, there’s other news this Sunday.
It cannot be overstated how powerful it will be if Amazon workers in Alabama vote to form a union. They are taking on powerful anti-union forces in a strong anti-union state, but their victory will benefit every worker in America. I’m proud to stand with them. https://t.co/3JtUeAzJOY
We’ll start with Stephen Colbert’s interview with Bernie Sanders last night on The Late Show. There are 2-3 segments, in which Bernie got about 20 minutes altogether. Among the topics: the experience of the riot in the Capitol building, Biden’s America Rescue being introduced, and how to reach Trumpers.
Here’s the first one. Bernie’s introduced at the 2:30 mark.
Second segment, in which at the 7:00 mark, they discuss America Resue:
And the last one:
More tweets, news, videos in the comments. TGIF – we’ll have a happy hour later if there is interest.
Sen. Bernie Sanders late Thursday implored President-elect Joe Biden and the incoming Democrat-controlled Congress to make a robust coronavirus relief bill containing $2,000 direct payments the “first order of business” upon taking power, warning that failure to quickly deliver real material aid in the midst of devastating crises could lead to electoral backlash on the scale of the 2010 midterms.
“Remember what happened in 2010? Democrats got wiped out,” Sanders (I-Vt.), the incoming chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, said in an appearance on CNN Thursday evening. “They had the power, but they did not deliver for the American people.”
To avoid a repeat of 2010—when Republicans won control of the House and gained seats in the Senate, ending a brief period of unified Democratic control during the Obama presidency—Sanders said the new Congress must urgently pursue “an aggressive agenda that says we understand that millions of people… are lining up in their cars in order to get emergency food, people can’t pay their medical bills, people are going deeper and deeper into debt, people are facing eviction.”
“We have to act and act now,” Sanders said, arguing that Democrats must be “bold in a way that we have not seen since FDR in the 1930s.”
“The first order of business, by the way,” the Vermont senator continued, “is to pass an emergency Covid-19 bill which, among many other things, says to working-class Americans, ‘We know you’re in pain, and we’re gonna get you a $2,000 check… We are on your side.'”
"Let me just be very clear as the incoming chairman of the Senate Budget Committee: Remember what happened in 2010. Democrats got wiped out. They had the power, but they did not deliver for the American people. We must have an aggressive agenda." @BernieSanders#ChairmanSanderspic.twitter.com/QOB7rWwPrS
Sanders’ remarks came days after Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff won their runoff races in Georgia, positioning Democrats to take control of the U.S. Senate by the narrowest possible margin.
The Democratic victories in Georgia were credited in part to a last-minute push for $2,000 direct payments in the days leading up to the pivotal runoffs, an effort led by Sanders and members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.
While Senate Republicans ultimately blocked Sanders’ attempt to force a vote on a House-passed bill that would have provided one-time $2,000 payments to most Americans, Warnock and Ossoff both embraced the checks on the campaign trail and slammed their GOP opponents for standing in the way of desperately needed relief. President-elect Joe Biden also backed the demand, promising that the election of Warnock and Ossoff would “put an end to the block in Washington on that $2,000 stimulus check.”
Following the Democrats’ victories, soon-to-be Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) told reporters Wednesday that “one of the first things that I want to do when our new senators are seated is deliver the $2,000 checks to the American families.”
The Washington Post reported Wednesday that “it’s unclear how quickly Congress could actually vote on the checks. That depends on when the elections in Georgia are certified, which could be delayed by GOP challenges, making the timing uncertain.”
The certification deadline for Georgia counties is January 15, and the state deadline is January 22—two days after Biden’s inauguration.
“Additionally, it’s not clear whether the House and Senate would vote on the checks as stand-alone legislation, or as part of a larger package that could also include items like state and local aid and an extension of unemployment benefits,” the Post noted. “Congressional aides cautioned that discussions with the Biden team over how to proceed were in early stages.”
The GA special election is being held today and the polls close at 7ET / 6CT / 5 MT / 4 PT.
The stakes are high for the election. Alex Seitz-Wald of NBC News writes:
The stakes are clear, but the outcome is a tossup in Georgia’s twin Senate runoff elections Tuesday that will determine control of the Senate and the launch trajectory of President-Elect Joe Biden’s incoming administration.
Both parties have pulled out all the stops in the monumental clash between Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock and Republicans Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue. Almost half a billion dollars has been spent on TV, radio and digital advertising since the November general election alone, easily making these the most expensive Senate races in history, and both Biden and outgoing President Donald Trump campaigned in the state Monday.
Many pollsters sat out the race as they take stock of misses in November, but experts and limited polling all point to close contests that will come down which party can do a better job turning out its voters.
“Georgia, the whole nation is looking to you,” Biden, the first Democratic presidential candidate to win the state in decades, said at an Atlanta rally Monday.
What are some things to be looking for? The Atlanta Constitution-Journal suggests the following:
The polls are set to close at 7 p.m. ET on Election Day, and that’s when ballot counting can begin. Absentee ballots must be received by the close of polls to be counted. Military and overseas ballots postmarked by Tuesday and received by Friday will be counted, and absentee voters also have until Friday to fix any problems so their votes can be counted.
No ballots, including absentee ballots received in advance of Election Day, can be counted until the polls close. But a state election board rule requires county election officials to begin processing absentee ballots — verifying signatures on the outer envelope, opening the envelopes and scanning the ballots — before Election Day. That should speed things up on Election Night. Still, some absentee ballots received by mail or in drop boxes up until 7 p.m. on Election Day will still need to be processed.
WILL WE KNOW THE WINNER ON ELECTION NIGHT?
Just like in November, it’s possible Americans will go to bed without knowing who won. All indicators point to the likelihood of very tight margins in both races.
Media organizations, including The Associated Press, often declare winners on Election Night based on the results that are in, voter surveys and other political data.
But in a close race, more of the vote may need to be counted before the AP can call a winner.
Additionally, folks will be looking at certain counties, and especially at African-American turnout. Targetsmart, a polling firm NBC News is partnering with to examine the early vote posted this tweet last night:
How have Dems built an advantage in the early vote? Historic turnout from African-American voters. They increased their share of the early vote by 2.9 pts relative to the general election. White college voters increase by 0.1 pts. Meanwhile, white non-college turnout has lagged. pic.twitter.com/pABIJ6Xhkn
Politico reports that the Biden camp is skeptical of the Dems prevailing there.
Privately, Biden’s team does not expect to win the races, according to Democratic officials, but they are more optimistic about their chances than they were weeks ago. Though the president-elect narrowly won the state in November, they attribute that to a powerful anti-Trump sentiment that did not translate down the ballot. Perdue received about 88,000 more votes than Ossoff, and the top two Republicans combined got more than 636,000 votes than Warnock in the special election.
Makes one wonder what the internal polling for the campaigns looks like.
It's @GabrielSterling! 3,093,376 early in person+absentee votes cast before Election Day, as of latest update.
Columbia County issues – looks like the county didn't fully do Logic and Accuracy testing. Couple polls open will stay open mins later.
Read these ten stats related to the $2K checks and then you decide.
1. The total cost of $2,000 checks ($465 billion) is less than half the amount that American billionaires have made during the pandemic ($1 trillion). The total cost of the checks is less than the amount that just 16 American billionaires increased their net worth by during the pandemic ($471 billion).
2. Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk gained more wealth during the pandemic ($158 billion) than Congress just authorized for additional unemployment benefits for millions of Americans ($120 billion).
3. Jeff Bezos’s personal wealth increased more every second of 2020 ($2,800) than Congress is considering giving Americans who are facing eviction, starvation and bankruptcy ($2,000).
4. Congressional lawmakers are being paid $3,300 of government money every week to come up with ways to block $2,000 checks to millions of Americans.
5. It took Congress less than a month to pass legislation giving a $700 billion bailout to bank executives during the financial crisis. It has taken Congress more than 8 months to even seriously consider a far less expensive bill to give $2,000 checks to millions of Americans during this economic crisis.
6. A $2,000 survival check would give the average soldier more money than the proposed 3 percent military pay increase that is included in defense legislation that Sens. Bernie Sanders and Ed Markey are filibustering in order to force a vote on the survival checks.
7. The richest 5 percent of Americans received more in Trump tax cuts in 2020 ($145 billion) than Congress is spending on increased unemployment benefits for millions of Americans during the economic crisis ($120 billion).
8. In 2016, “children, elderly, disabled people, and students made up around 70 percent of the poor,” according to the People’s Policy Project. Unlike unemployment benefits, $2,000 checks would help them.
9. About 60 percent of Georgia households make less than $75,000, meaning Georgia Republican senators allowing $2,000 checks to be blocked would deny aid to roughly 2 million of their state’s households as they run for reelection.
10. As Republicans try to block the $2,000 check legislation, a new national survey found that 78 percent of Americans support it, even as some pundits insist that the proposal is “divisive.”
News, tweets, videos in the comments section. Last Hump Day in 2020!