Marcia Fudge Drops Out Of House Speaker Race, Endorses Nancy Pelosi

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Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) announced Tuesday that she no longer plans to challenge Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) for the role of speaker of the House.

In a statement released to the media, Fudge said she has become satisfied with Pelosi’s assurances that the “protections of the Votings Rights Act will be reinstated and improved.” Fudge added that she is confident the House will be successful under Pelosi’s leadership. 

Fudge’s announcement marks a surprising turn of events, given the strong language she used to criticize Pelosi’s leadership last week, calling her out for appearing as an elitist in the party and not advocating vocally enough for African-Americans in Congress.

“What is wrong with acknowledging the fact that the Democratic Party is becoming more young, more black, and more brown?” Fudge said. “And letting that be reflected in our leadership.”

An opening for Fudge appeared last week when 16 Democrats signed a letter vowing to oppose Pelosi.

Fudge told HuffPost she was “overwhelmed” by the number of people reaching out to support her speaker bid, even without officially throwing her hat in the ring.



The Ungrateful Nation

Here are a few facts about America.

The unemployment rate among those with a high school education is 3.9 percent. The poorest quintile of Americans have seen their post-tax incomes increase 80 percent since 1979, according to Congressional Budget Office data, and post-tax and transfer income for that quintile has skyrocketed 32 percent since 2000. The upper-middle class in America constituted 13 percent of the population in 1979; as of 2014, it constituted 30 percent. According to Pew Research from 2015, when it comes to standard of living, "The U.S. stands head and shoulders above the rest of the world. More than half (56 percent) of Americans were high income by the global standard ... and 2 percent were poor."

Fantastic products are cheaper than ever. Human Progress investigated the amount of time Americans must spend to earn enough money to buy key products and found that since 1979, the amount of time spent to earn a refrigerator had dropped 52 percent, 95 percent for microwaves, 65 percent for gas ranges and 61 percent for dishwashers. Between the mid-1960s and 2007, Americans were able to work less and leisure more: They worked nearly eight hours fewer per week, according to The Heritage Foundation. The wage gap is almost entirely a myth: Women who work the same jobs as men for the same number of hours, and have the same work history and same education as men make the same as men. The chief obstacles to income mobility in the United States are related to personal decision-making, not racial discrimination: As the Brookings Institution points out, of the people who finish high school, get a full-time job and wait until age 21 to get married and have children, nearly 75 percent join the middle class, and just 2 percent remain in poverty.

What of freedom? In America, people of all religions practice freely, so long as the government isn't attempting to cram social justice down on them. People are free to speak, so long as government actors aren't utilizing the heckler's veto. We are free to use the press, free to associate and free to protest.

All of this is the result of the greatest governmental philosophy ever committed to paper: God-given individual rights protected by limited government. We haven't always lived up to that philosophy -- in some areas, we've progressed mightily, and in others, we've regressed. But the overall success of the United States should be ringing proof that at the very least, we should be grateful and proud to live here.

Yet as of July 2018, fewer than half of Americans surveyed by Gallup said they are extremely proud to be American. Just 32 percent of Democrats, down from 56 percent in 2013, said they are extremely proud to be American; only 42 percent of independents said are were extremely proud to be American. That's ridiculous. Regardless of political affiliation, we should be proud to live in a society founded on eternal truths, in which we have the ability to thrive based on our own choices.

In 1789, as America struggled to find her footing after a revolution against the most powerful military and economic engine in the world, then-President George Washington issued a proclamation. He thanked God for "his kind care and protection of the People of this Country," for "the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty, which we have since enjoyed -- for the peaceable and rational manner, in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness."

If Washington could urge gratefulness in 1789, we'd be fools not to do so now, when our lives are so much better in every material way. This Thanksgiving, let's remember what we have -- and let's remember the eternal ideas that provide the groundwork for our prosperity.


US shuts down busiest border crossing between Mexico, California

U.S. border officials on Monday shut down all vehicular traffic flowing north from Mexico into California at the country's busiest border crossing and diverted staff to help bulk up the infrastructure and security there, in anticipation of the arrival of thousands of migrants traveling in caravans from Central America.

The San Ysidro port of entry, which processes 20,000 pedestrians and 70,000 vehicles moving from Tijuana to San Diego each day, closed all passenger and commercial lanes and one of its two pedestrian crossings.

The port's 26 passenger lanes and 22 pedestrian lanes see more traffic than any in the entire Western Hemisphere.

"U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials have temporarily suspended vehicle processing for northbound travelers at the San Ysidro port of entry Monday morning to position additional port hardening materials," CBP, the federal agency that oversees all port activity, said in a statement issued Monday.

An unspecified number of "temporary impediment measures," or objects meant to block people from entering, including razor wire and Jersey barriers, were being set up at the port. "After the materials are in position, CBP will resume processing northbound vehicle traffic in select lanes at the border crossing," CBP said.

In a follow-up email, a CBP spokesperson confirmed the shutdown was being done to prepare for the potential arrival of thousands of additional people at the border.

“U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) continues to prepare for the potential arrival of thousands of people migrating in a caravan to the United States through the Southwest border," according to the email. "Part of those preparations include installation of temporary impediment measures at and between the Ports of Entry, such as concertina wire or Jersey barriers."

Travel flowing southbound was unaffected by Monday's move. People crossing on foot were directed to the Pedestrian West facility while the east one was closed.

Last week, CBP shut down a few lanes at San Ysidro and the nearby Otay Mesa port to install and pre-position similar blockades.

CBP did not state how long all northbound traffic was suspended Monday.

CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan told reporters at a recent press conference announcing a troop deployment that some migrants who are unable to apply for asylum at ports due to limitations in the number of people officers can process in a day might instead choose to illegally enter the country.

An estimated 1,700 people were apprehended and deemed inadmissible at ports of entry each day in October across the entire southern border.

The possibility of thousands of people descending on one port or section between ports prompted the Trump administration to send thousands of troops to the border as reinforcements.




The Opinion Poll

The president's possible impeachment - 30.8%
Policy areas where they can work together with fellow Republicans - 69.2%
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