Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Rep. Milo Smith Blocks Vote on Nonpartisan Redistricting in Indiana

According to an article in the Columbus Republic, Rep. Milo Smith (R-Columbus) is continuing to hear from angry Hoosiers who had hoped to be more fairly represented in our legislature by ending gerrymandering through a nonpartisan redistricting commission. Smith said he "has concerns with House Bill 1014 because it could waste legislative time and taxpayer dollars and diminish the integrity of the General Assembly."

And how would that occur? HB 1014 requires the General Assembly to approve the commission's redrawn district map, and if it turned down the commission's proposal, Smith asks, “How are people going to feel about that? They are going to say we (the General Assembly) never had any intention of approving the commission’s redistricting.” One man's "logic" is derailing any consideration of redistricting, but when the man chairs the Indiana House Elections and Apportionment Committee, he can prevent a bill from coming to a vote in his committee--even one co-authored by House Majority Leader Brian Bosma.

We in Tippecanoe County aren't Rep. Smith's constituents, but he would surely want to hear the feelings of citizens from throughout the state about how they are being represented--or misrepresented--in the legislature. Call Rep. Milo Smith at 317-232-9620 and demand him to bring HB 1014 to a vote!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Buttigieg Earns Endorsements for DNC Chair

South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg has earned the endorsements of nine other mayors in his bid to become DNC chair. These include the mayors of New Orleans, Austin. and Santa Fe. New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu called Buttigieg part of "a new generation of leadership." Landrieu continued, "Mayor Pete understands that the most successful progressive leadership and best ideas are coming from outside of the Beltway. We must be united to respond to this new administration. Pete is the best person to unite us." Austin Mayor Steven Adler said that Buttigieg "stands out as one of the strongest and clearest voices for and from the future of the Democratic Party." Former DNC chair Howard Dean also praised Buttagieg on Hardball tonight. Read more about Buttigieg's endorsements here.

CNN is sponsoring a debate among the DNC candidates on Wednesday, February 22 at 10 p.m. on CNN. It will be moderated by CNN's Dana Bash and Chris Cuomo. The election of the chair will be on Saturday, February 25.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Donnelly Will Vote Against Sessions for Attorney General

Senator Joe Donnelly has announced that he will vote against Senator Jeff Sessions for attorney general. In a newsrelease, Donnelly explains his opposition:
"I am concerned that the wide range of opposition to Senator Sessions’ nomination from civil rights advocates, including many Hoosiers, will impede Senator Sessions’ ability to work effectively with many communities across the country to carry out the important mission of the Justice Department. I am also concerned Senator Sessions will support recent actions taken by the administration on refugees and visa holders. For these reasons, I am unable to support his nomination to be the Attorney General."
You can read Donnelly's entire press release here.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Immigration Rally at Purdue

About 200 people gathered on the Memorial Mall at the heart of Purdue's campus to protest President Trump's immigration executive order today. Many speakers addressed the group, including students who had been separated from loved ones and graduate students who were afraid to leave the country. David Sanders, president of the University Senate, assured the international faculty and students that they have the full support of the Senate. You can read the J&C coverage of the event here and see WLFI coverage below.



Mitch Daniels Blasts Trump's Travel Ban, Briefly

Purdue President Mitch Daniels expressed his opposition to President Trump's travel ban in a brief statement: “The President's order related to immigration is a bad idea, poorly implemented, and I hope that he will promptly revoke and rethink it. If the idea is to strengthen the protection of Americans against terrorism, there are many far better ways to achieve it.” As typical, Daniels is brief and to the point. He says the right things about Trump's executive actions, which is fine as far as it goes.

However, the Association of Public and Landgrant Universities (APLU) has posted the statements of 135 public university presidents here, and they are all longer than two sentences. They express strong support for their institutions' international faculty members and students, the importance of international cooperation in research, the fear and confusion of the university's international faculty and students, where people could seek help with immigration issues, etc. Read a bit of a statement from IU's President Michael McRobbie:

"At Indiana University, we embrace openness to the world. This has long been a hallmark of great global universities such as ours that seek to attract the best students, scholars and researchers from every country and champion the cause of greater cultural understanding.

The executive order issued on Friday that bars citizens and refugees from certain countries from entering the U.S. is contrary to the very core of our values as an institution committed to excellence and innovation, a diversity of community and ideas, respect for the dignity of others and engagement in the economic, civic, cultural and social development of our state, our nation and our world."

And there's five more paragraphs in that vein! Would it be unreasonable to hope to hear a bit more from President Daniels on this issue that is vital to the life of the university and the nation?

Joe Donnelly Opposes Tillerson and DeVos

Senator Joe Donnelly announces he will vote against Trump's nominees for Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos.





Be sure to call Senator Donnelly and thank him for his votes! (202) 224-4814