Wow – Good Turnout

The turnout at the August monthly meeting of the Roscommon Democratic Party was great. Thanks to all who have committed to winning the next elections in 2020. Everyone’s voice will be heard and we appreciate all of the volunteers who will work events and contacting other Dems in the county.

August 28 Monthly Meeting

All are invited to attend our monthly meeting which will be held on Wed August 28 at 5:00 PM. The meeting will be at the coffee shop Javacology which is located next to the Shell Gas Station in Prudenville. We will be discussing many subjects including some of our scheduled events such as the Sept 12 debate party and the presence at the Fireman’s Memorial Sept 19-21.
See you there. WE are committed to winning in 2020 and we need your support.

Next Debate Party at the Limberlost Sept 12th

Everyone is invited to the next Democratic Debate Party Sept 12 at 7:30 which will be at the Limberlost in Houghton Lake on Hwy 55 on the lake. We will watch the debate and discuss it. Please come on over and get to know the people who are currently leading the Roscommon Democratic Party. You can make it a night and include dinner at the Limberlost. WELCOME

If they can’t beat a ballot issue, they take it to court.

Michigan Republican Party files new federal lawsuit to stop redistricting commission

By Malachi Barrett | mbarret1@mlive.com

LANSING, MI — The Michigan Republican Party filed the second federal lawsuit challenging a voter-approved redistricting commission, arguing the process of drawing political districts will unconstitutionally violate the rights of political parties.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court Thursday, comes days after Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel asked the court to dismiss a separate lawsuit brought against the state by Republicans barred from serving on the commission. The Michigan GOP argues standards set for participants violate its right to freedom of association because political parties are blocked from choosing representatives to serve on the commission.

Sixty-one percent of Michigan voters approved a ballot initiative to amend the Michigan Constitution last November, creating a bipartisan 13-member redistricting commission comprised of four Democrats, four Republicans and five independents. The panel will decide how the state’s House, Senate and Congressional districts will be drawn starting in 2022 elections, a task previously handled by the Michigan legislature and approved by the governor.

Attorneys representing the plaintiffs argued the panel will likely feature Republican commissioners who do not represent Michigan Republican Party’s interests. Meanwhile, Democrats have not objected to the process.

“The entire point of Proposal 2 is taking the politics out of our democracy and putting power back in the hands of the people,” said Michigan Democratic Party Chair Lavora Barnes. “That is where Michigan Democrats stand on this and every issue—with the people.”

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Michigan Attorney General asks federal court to drop GOP redistricting lawsuit

The Michigan Attorney General asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit challenging the new process of drawing political districts.

A Michigan voter is ineligible to serve on the redistricting commission if they were a candidate or elected official, worked as a registered lobbyist or consultant, were an officer for a political party or employed by the legislature in the last six years. Family members of those with political ties are also ineligible.

Applicants must self-designate their party affiliation and testify under oath they meet the qualification standards. Because Michigan does not require residents to register with a political party, attorneys representing the plaintiffs argue there is no way to verify an applicant’s testimony.

“Thus, the proposal disqualifies those individuals who are most easily identified as bona fide affiliates of MRP … leaving MRP (and its affiliated legislative leaders) with almost no reliable means to determine an individual’s true political affiliation,” attorneys wrote.

The constitutional amendment allows party leaders in the Michigan legislature to review finalists who apply to serve on the commission. The state Senate majority leader, state Senate minority leader, speaker of the House, and state House minority leader are each able to strike up to five applicants, adding up to 20 strikes between the four leaders.

The remaining applicants are selected at random to fill the panel with four Democrats, four Republicans and five independents.

Michigan Republican Party Chairwoman Laura Cox said those rules allow Democrats to influence which Republicans serve on the panel.

“This crazy new system will even allow the Democrat Party to influence who represents the Republican party on the proposed commission, which on its face violates basic constitutional principles,” Cox said. “We do not oppose the concept of a fairly designed and implemented redistricting committee, but that is not what this is. Instead this is an assault on the associational rights of political parties.”

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit filed Thursday include Cox, and four other Republicans who are precluded from serving on the commission, including state Rep. Hank Vaupel, R-Fowlerville, former Republican Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land, Savina Alexandra Zoe Mucci and Dorian Thompson.

A separate complaint was filed in July by 15 residents, including Michigan Freedom Fund Executive Director Tony Daunt, state Sen. Tom Barrett, Board of State Canvassers member Norm Shinkle, Michigan Republican Party officials, lobbyists and political consultants. Plantiffs argued the panel’s selection criteria unconstitutionally punish people for engaging in the political process.

Both lawsuits are backed by the National Republican Redistricting Trust, an organization involved in national redistricting efforts and led by former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

“Democrats and their liberal allies may want Michiganians to be quiet, but I’m confident they’re in this fight for the long haul,” Walker said in a statement.

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Voters Not Politicians asks court to intervene in Republican redistricting lawsuit

Republicans are trying to end to a commission that residents put in charge of redrawing political districts in Michigan.

Nessel is representing Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, the named defendant in the case, and filed a brief with the U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids Monday. The a legal brief filed this week asks the court schedule a pre-motion conference to dismiss the complaint, arguing the commission was created to remove partisan bias from political map-making.

“The problem that the people of the State of Michigan sought to address with the amendment was the partisanship with which legislative districts were being drawn, and the solution they chose was to take that power out of the hands of people with a direct interest in the outcome,” Nessel argued in court documents.

Voters Not Politicians also filed a motion to intervene in the lawsuit earlier this month, arguing the legal challenge will undermine voter-backed efforts to remove partisan bias.

“Today’s new lawsuit by the Republican Party — which orchestrated a gerrymander “of historical proportions” in 2011 to rig the next decade of elections in our state — is not surprising, but it is a reminder of what’s at stake,” said Voters Not Politicians Executive Director Nancy Wang. “Those who have the most power to lose will do whatever they can to keep hold of it, but we are confident the redistricting amendment will withstand this legal challenge and all others, and that the will of the people will prevail.”

The last maps were created in 2011, when Republicans controlled both chambers of the state legislature and the governor’s office. A panel of U.S. District Court judges determined the process was a political gerrymander of “historic proportions” to benefit Republicans in four election cycles spanning eight years.

Republicans appealed the federal judge ruling, but the challenge was killed in June when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled partisan gerrymandering claims aren’t within the court’s jurisdiction.

Our monthly meeting and debate watch party!

We have two events in the coming weeks and sure would like to see you at them.

Our first is the monthly meeting of the Roscommon County Democratic Party. We are meeting this Wednesday at 5:30 and we gather at Javacology on M-55 in Prudenville.

Then we will gather for our third debate watch party on Sept. 12th at 8 o’clock and we will be meeting at the Limberlost on M-55 across from Spicer’s Boat City.

All meetings are open to the public, we hope you come with your family and friends.

The Efforts of the Roscommon Democratic Party

The county Democratic Party is involved in a variety of activities to support democratic values and work toward electing Democratic candidates to local, state, and national offices. The party members participate in local parades, the Fireman’s Memorial Event, the days of action which involve door knocking, phone calls, and mailings. We introduce ourselves to citizens in our community, educating the population through postings on our Facebook page as well as on this website, and in person. We also sponsor debate watch parties at local restaurants. We encourage all interested citizens to attend.
Do whatever you can to help our efforts. This includes meeting attendance, contacting members, contributing funds for our activities, and talk to and let neighbors know that we are looking out for their interests.
Thanks for all your efforts. We appreciate all you do to help the party move forward in reaching it’s goals.

Day of Action, August 24th:

As we grow our party locally we take part in monthly “Days of Action”. There are a number of ACTIONS that you might take part in. You could write letters, make phone calls, or knock on doors. We are trying to introduce ourselves to other democrats to let them know they are not ALONE.

If this is something you might be interested in please let us know by replying to this post Then we will work with you to create an action that you would be comfortable doing. We will provide you with a list of people to contact and a script to lead your effort.

So reply to this post and we will work with you to grow our party and elect Democrats into office.

Michigan’s Fireman’s Memorial Festival

When you attend the Michigan Fireman’s Memorial Festival in Roscommon Sept. 19-21 look for the booth maned by members of the Roscommon Democratic Party. Information on handouts will be available and you can also volunteer to work in the local party as we get ready for next year’s crucial Presidential Election.

On guns and white nationalism, one side is right and one is wrong

Columnist

August 4

When one side proposes ways that human beings might begin to solve a deadly problem while the other side leaves it up to God, you know which side is right.

When one side proposes solution after solution to contain gun violence — and offers compromise after compromise to get something done — while the other side blocks action every time, you know which side is right.

When the president of the United States and his most incendiary media allies fuel hatred of those who are not white while his opponents say we should stand in solidarity with one another, you know which side is right.

When one side brushes aside the dangers of racist and white nationalist terrorism while the other side says we need to be vigilant against all forms of terrorism, you know which side is right.

And when Americans are gunned down in incident after incident, when we are numbed by repeating the same sorrowful words every time, when we move within a news cycle from “something must be done” to “the Senate will block action” or “the politics are too complicated,” you know America’s democracy is failing and its moral compass is broken.

Our rancid political culture is, quite literally, killing our nation. And the problem is not caused by some abstraction called “polarization” or by “the failure of both sides to understand each other.” Those are the alibis of timid souls so intent on sounding “balanced” that they turn their eyes from the truth.

What is that truth? When it comes to gun violence and the need to confront white nationalism, one side is right and one side is wrong.

Until we face this, even two mass shootings within 24 hours will do nothing to galvanize action. In El Paso, 20 people were killed at a shopping center on Saturday and 26 were wounded by a gunman who, according to police, appears to have posted an anti-immigrant screed online before the shooting. Then at 1 a.m. on Sunday in Dayton, Ohio, another mass shooter left nine dead and 27 injured in area known for its lively nightlife that is heavily patrolled by police. The shooter was killed in less than a minute.

“Think about that minute,” said Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley. “The shooter was able to kill nine people and injure 26 in less than a minute.” The gun-permissiveness crowd wants us not to think about that minute. It puts the lie to the gun lobby’s claim that having armed people nearby when a mass killer strikes is all we need to keep us safe.

The wrong side in this debate does not want us to come together. On the contrary, its goal after every mass shooting is to deflect and divide. Here’s what Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said when asked by reporters what we should do about gun violence. “Listen, there are bodies that have not yet been recovered,” Abbott replied. “I think we need to focus more on memorials before we start the politics.”

No, Abbott, reading from the NRA’s script, started “the politics” right at that moment, and it is an insidious form of politics. Simultaneously, he deflected by pretending it’s impolite to answer substantive questions and divided by saying that those who raise them disrespect the dead.

Nothing disrespects those who are slaughtered more than the political paralysis Abbott and those like him are encouraging.

Invoking God and calling for prayer should never seem obscene. But it is always obscene to use the Almighty to escape our own responsibility.

“God bless the people of El Paso Texas. God bless the people of Dayton, Ohio,” President Trump said in a Sunday morning tweet from his New Jersey golf club.

Yes, may God bless them. But may God also judge Trump for a political strategy whose success depends on sowing racism, reaction and division. May God judge him for stoking false and incendiary fears about an immigrant “invasion,” the very word echoed by the manifesto that police suspect was the El Paso shooter’s. May God judge the president for cutting programs to fight white extremism at the very moment when the FBI is telling us that we are more at risk from white-nationalist terrorists than Islamist terrorists.

In pursuit of a mythical middle ground, the faint-hearted will counsel against calling out the moral culpability of those who divide, deflect and evade. Meanwhile, the rationalizers of violence will continue to claim that only troubled individuals, not our genuinely insane gun policies, are responsible for waves of domestic terrorism that bring shame on our country before the world.

But sane gun laws are the middle ground, and most gun owners support them. Opposing the political exploitation of racism is a moral imperative. And refusing to acknowledge that only one side in this debate seeks intentionally to paralyze us is the path of cowardice.