Manic Monday Markup 8/25/14…
…And the World:
We begin today in France, where the government has just resigned after a row opens up between the Economy Minister and the rest of the government run by Prime Minister Manuel Valls and President Francois Hollande. Arnoud Montebourg, the economy minister, criticized the nation’s austerity plan and neighboring Germany, which he sees as behind the effort. The dissolution of the cabinet will allow for a new government to be organized.
Libyan Islamist militias have apparently taken Tripoli’s airport and thus the capital as well. While the loss is a blow to hopes that the Libya can hold itself together, the Parliament elected this year retains international recognition and access to the nation’s oil reserves.
In ISIS today, the radical Islamist militant group has taken an airbase in Syria, not far from their regional headquarters. Meanwhile, British officials say they are close to identifying the man who appeared to kill journalist James Foley in a video released last week.
The New York Times writes about how apparent systemic fraud in Afghanistan’s presidential runoff may make a full, peaceful, democratic transition with legitimacy in the eyes of all nearly impossible.
Russia will send another convoy of aid to Eastern Ukraine despite Kiev’s doubts about its neighbor’s intentions. Meanwhile, Ukraine marks 23 years of independence from the Soviet Union.
Another Cairo-brokered Israeli-Hamas ceasefire on the way?
President Barack Obama has ordered a review of the transfer of military grade equipment to civilian police departments.
The investigation into the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. continues at a snail’s pace. Meanwhile, The New York Times and The Washington Post both attempt to write about the background of the 28 year-old police officer who fired the shots that killed Brown, Darren Wilson.
E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post writes about how when Republicans run against Obamacare, they are really only running against the word. Pollsters are telling Democratic candidates that once voters realize what is actually in the law, many find it ain’t so bad.
Speaking of running, a columnist for The Concord Monitor skewers Scott Brown’s campaign for US Senate in New Hampshire.
One of the contestants for the mayor of Providence, Brett Smiley, has dropped out of the Democratic primary in a bid to swing the nomination to another, Jorge Elorza. Elorza, in turn, may be in a better position to keep two-time mayor Buddy Cianci out of City Hall again.
Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy may get an early Christmas present if independent Johanthan Pelto cannot get on the ballot. So far the signatures Pelto collected are coming up short, but the final count has not been certified.
Amidst a scramble of last minute information, California strips away the last vestiges of the anti-immigrant Proposition 187, stricken by federal courts years ago.
The State of Things:
State officials and Pan Am railways have agreed in principle to transfer the rail line from the Vermont border to Springfield over to the commonwealth. The deal, which would permit additional upgrades along the nearly 50 mile route, is part of efforts to reintroduce regular rail service along the line.
The Mayor of Everett has been accused of sexual harassment.
A new transit station along the Orange Line will open this summer in Somerville, the first of many in fact. But will the city to Boston’s north be able to cope with the resulting growing pains?
Worcester State Rep. Mary Keefe defends her vote to censure former rep Carlos Henriquez earlier this year shortly before she voted to expel him. One of Keefe’s opponents in the Democratic primary, Phil Palmieri, has tried to use this vote against Keefe. For her part, Keefe says she supported censure because she felt voters, not legislators should decide Henriquez’s fate. When the censure vote failed, she joined the vote to expel.
The Fourth Estatements:
A profile of the new head of NBC news.
Repeal the Casino Deal advocates are not amused by talk among politicians to pass legislation that would enable MGM Springfield to be built if voters statewide strike the law.
The Reminder writes about the proposed Worthington Street redevelopment plan.
Our take on last week’s 10th Hampden State Rep debate hosted by the Armoury-Quadrangle Civic Association. Also read Elizabeth Roman’s piece on Masslive.
Demographics, midterm turnout and a bad election cycle may well conspire to wrest the US Senate from Democratic control after eight years. However, despite that, Democrats have started to come out from under the bed on the Affordable Care Act. True, Republicans are still railing about “Obamacare,” but it has all, but faded into a rhetorical issue. The law is only worth ginning up the base and not so much stirring up moderates against Democrats. Still, that does not stop some GOP candidates from resorting to same pool of lies, primarily in that effort to keep the base riled up. Today we award the Tweet prize to “LOLGOP” a satirical handle based in Michigan that often makes light of and calls attention to Republican antics. There irony-laden tweet today brings together both the reality of the law and its opponents need to still deceive about what it does.
It's Obama's fault. If Obamacare weren't working so well, Republicans wouldn't have to lie about it so much. http://t.co/zFtPjAGdxK
— L O L G O P (@LOLGOP) August 25, 2014