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Thursday
Nov 20th

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Congresswoman McCollum works to reduce hunger for homebound Minnesota seniors

Washington, DC – Today, the offices of Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-04) and Congressman Erik Paulsen (MN-03) are at Cub Foods in Bloomington, MN to highlight the work of local nonprofit Store-to-Door and the problem of hunger among Minnesota seniors. 

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Rep. Ellison Calls on Congress to End Racial Profiling in America

Today, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Co-Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee On The Constitution, Civil Rights And Human Rights and urged action to end racial profiling in America.
Rep. Ellison’s testimony:

Campaign 2012 Digest

Happy Tax Day, everyone! As you file your taxes, let’s remember that Mitt Romney is still bucking the precedent set by his own father and presidential candidates for the past 40 years by refusing to release his tax returns to the general public.

The Hill: DNC hammers Romney on transparency in new web video
“The Democratic National Committee released a new web video Tuesday bashing Mitt Romney on transparency and continuing to pressure him to reveal more details of his tax reform proposals and personal financial history. The Democrats seize on comments overheard by an NBC News reporter Sunday night in which Romney, meeting with high-level donors, outlined proposals for changing the tax code, potentially eliminating government agencies, and plans to attract Latino voters…

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Campaign 2012 Digest

What You May Have Missed…

NBC News: Romney offers policy details at closed-door fundraiser
“Mitt Romney went well beyond his standard stump speech at a closed-door fundraiser on Sunday evening, and offered some of the most specific details to date about the policies he would pursue if elected.  In a speech to donors in the backyard of a private home here, the former Massachusetts governor and presumptive GOP presidential nominee outlined his plans to potentially eliminate or consolidate federal agencies, win back Latino voters and reform the nation's tax code.  And even Ann Romney, the subject of a national debate last week over the role of women in the workplace, was more direct than usual. She sounded like a political tactician when she described a Democratic consultant's criticism of her decision to be a stay-at-home mom as ‘an early birthday gift.’  Romney went into a level of detail not usually seen by the public in the speech, which was overheard by reporters on a sidewalk below. One possibility floated by Romney included the elimination of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Cabinet-level agency once led by Romney's father, George.”

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US-Cuba policy: 50 years of failure

US-Cuba policy: 50 years of failure

This past February marked the 50thanniversary of Washington’s embargo against Cuba. The birthday, which went uncelebrated here and in the Caribbean, was a grim reminder of the persistence of one of Washington’s most egregious foreign policy blunders.

Enacted less than a year after President Kennedy’s ill-fated attempt to unseat Fidel Castro’s fledgling communist government at the Bay of Pigs, the embargo was designed with the express purpose of ousting Castro and his fellow revolutionaries from power. Renewed on a yearly basis under the aegis of the Trading with the Enemy Act of 1917, the policy was last extended in September 2011 by President Obama, who stated, “I hereby determine that the continuation for 1 year of [the embargo] with respect to Cuba is in the national interest of the United States.”

But is it?

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Afortunadamente, acá no los matan

Afortunadamente, acá no los matan

Editor’s Note: Panamanian Attorney and rights activist Alberto S. Barrow reached out to Insight regarding a discussion in Panamanian media about whether Black girls should be allowed to wear braids in school. A child had been expelled with the argument that ethnic hair styles were a distraction from the central mission of education…learning. That thread will be presented in coming editions of Insight News and at our website, www.insightnews.com. But today, we are presenting, in Spanish and English another piece authored by Barrow: a commentary on racial profiling people of African descent experience in Panama, just like in Florida, as in the Trayvon Martin case. Most importantly this connection with Mr. Barrow has opened a doorway to an important content platform, Analisis Afrodescendiente, which we will engage to share with you issues, ideas, challenges and successes of descendants of Africa living in Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and beyond. These essays and discussion remind us and confirm that our struggle is the same worldwide: dignity and respect for our persons, our heritage and culture, and our right to full participation in the affairs of governance, locally, nationally and globally.
Al McFarlane

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Florida arrests Zimmerman

Florida arrests Zimmerman

Florida law enforcement officials Wednesday afternoon arrested George Zimmerman for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. Special prosecutor Angela Corey is charging Zimmerman with second-degree murder.

Zimmerman has admitted to shooting the unarmed 17-year-old Martin in February, but claims he acted in self-defense. Local police detained then re...leased Zimmerman, partly because of Florida's so-called "stand your ground" self-defense law, which gives people wide latitude to claim self-defense in altercations.

Corey says that authorities did not come to their decision to charge Zimmerman with second-degree murder lightly, nor was it based on public pressure, according to an Associated Press and CBS News report. The charge carries a maximum sentence of life in prison. Second-degree murder is typically charged when there is a fight or other confrontation that results in death and where there is no premeditated plan to kill someone.

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We can’t wait: Protecting taxpayer dollars from wasteful payment errors and fraud

Today, as families across the country are filing their taxes, the Obama Administration is launching a new online tool that will enable the Federal government to prevent the waste of taxpayer dollars on improper payments. The Do Not Pay tool will prevent the kind of payment errors that have occurred in government for too long,  such as sending funds out to dead people or entering into contracts with companies who have attempted to defraud the government. In his 2013 Budget, the President put forward a series of proposals that would save taxpayers $102 billion over the next decade by reducing payment errors and improving collection of outstanding debts owed to the government. These included provisions the President has submitted in multiple budgets and yet Congress has still not taken action. In the meantime, the Administration has been hard at work doing what it can without legislation, creating the Do Not Pay portal at the Department of the Treasury. The new tool brings together multiple government databases into one simple check point, and deploys advanced data matching and analytics to identify and stop wasteful errors before they happen.

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Rick Santorum Says He's Leaving Race

Rick Santorum Says He's Leaving Race

Source: Associated Press
GOP candidate Rick Santorum says he's leaving the presidential race, making Mitt Romney the likely nominee.

 

Congresswoman McCollum receives letter calling out wasteful Pentagon spending from women state legislators

Congresswoman McCollum receives letter calling out wasteful Pentagon spending from women state legislators


Peruvian Attorney and current Legislative fellow in the Office of Senator Katie Sieben Patricia Lozada, MN State Senator and WiLL VP Sandy Pappas, Cong. McCollum, MN State Senator Mary Jo McGuire.

Congresswoman McCollum this week received a letter from more than half of the women state legislators of Minnesota that calls for a reduction in military spending. The letter was presented by Minnesota state Senators Sandy Pappas and Mary Jo McGuire and state Representative Phyllis Kahn.

“It is not acceptable for House Republicans to pass a “millionaires manifesto” that showers millionaires and billionaires with tax breaks and other benefits, and protect billions in oil company subsidies and wasteful Pentagon spending, while abandoning the middle class and local communities,” said Congresswoman McCollum. “Washington should be a partner for opportunity an economic growth for our entire country by investing in education, basic research, modern infrastructure and clean energy.”

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2012 Dinkins Forum examines voter suppression

2012 Dinkins Forum examines voter suppression

The 2012 David Dinkins Leadership and Public Policy Forum: Voting Rights v. Voter Suppression focused on a recent wave of legal measures which threatens voter participation. NAACP president Ben Jealous delivered the keynote address. The Forum took place on March 26 at Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs.
 
Pictured left to right:
Ester Fuchs, professor of international and public affairs and political science; Fred Harris, director of Columbia’s Institute for Research in African American Studies and professor of political science; Elinor Tatum, publisher and editor-in-chief of the New York Amsterdam News; Benjamin Jealous, president of the NAACP; Ted Shaw, professor of professional practice, Columbia Law School and Rodolfo de la Garza, professor of political science.

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