In normal years, this would be the official kickoff to the political Silly Season. This year, however, is not normal, as instead we're right at the kickoff of Presidential Debate Season, and the votes are already in -- the silly subject we're all going to obsess over this year is named Donald Trump.
The past few weeks have seen a wave of conservative support for "Ban the Box" initiatives, a practice that delays questions on criminal background until after job applicants have had the opportunity to demonstrate qualifications. For the over 70 million Americans who are subject to employment discrimination due to criminal history, the change has come none too soon.
A March 24 hearing prior to the passage of a controversial bill out of committee that preempts cities in Texas from regulating hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") for oil and gas obtained from shale basins, featured numerous witnesses who failed to disclose their industry ties, including some with ties to the Koch brothers.
The Koch agenda, which is now on tape and in transcript form for anyone who wants to look, is devastating to Republicans if Democrats make it an issue. Democrats just have keep asking the question Republicans refuse to answer, about whether they would repudiate the agenda laid out at the Kochs' secret conference.
A DeSmogBlog investigation reveals that Kristina Moore, the Senate staffer listed as the author of U.S. Sen. David Vitter's (R-La.) "green billionaire's club" report published by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) on July 30, has career roots tracing back to the Koch Brothers' right-wing machine.