US MIDTERM ELECTIONS – I took my 3-year-old to Congress to fight for health care. I feel like we won the midterms.

Republicans voted against our health care. It just cost them the House.

Elena Hung and her daughter, Xiomara, meet Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) on the Hill last year. Bella Lucy for Vox

|AIWA! NO!My daughter Xiomara spent the first five months of her life in the neonatal intensive care unit. She was born with a number of medical conditions affecting her airway, lungs, heart, and kidneys — luckily, due to her medical care, she is thriving today.

When I look back on those 169 days I spent at her hospital bedside, I am overwhelmed with gratitude all over again. Because of the Affordable Care Act, I was able to focus on her care instead of worrying about how to afford our bills or filing for bankruptcy.

Under the ACA, families like mine who have children with complex medical needs cannot be denied medical coverage due to preexisting conditions or face a lifetime cap. When the GOP threatened to take away that peace of mind in early 2017, I knew I had to speak up. I have always been a fiercely private person, but I found something more precious than my privacy to protect: my daughter.

On Tuesday night, after a hard-fought battle to protect our care, health care advocates like me won. Children with complex medical needs like Xiomara won. The Republican Party voted against our health care more than 50 times, and it just cost them control of the House of Representatives. Exit polls showed that health care was the No. 1 issue for voters this midterm election, and a majority — almost 60 percent — of Americans said Democrats would better address preexisting conditions as a health care issue.

As Vox’s Dylan Scott wrote, Obamacare repeal “proved devastatingly unpopular when the GOP actually tried to pass it, and voters made them, and Trump, pay the price on Election Day.”

Taking the fight to Congress

Ever since the GOP took control of the government, Republicans have been obsessed with attacking Americans’ access to affordable health care and disability rights in every corner of our country. Last summer, the Senate tried (and failed) to pass a health care repeal bill that would have cut Medicaid by more than $800 billion and left 23 million Americans uninsured.

Last December, they followed suit by passing a disastrous tax bill that is estimated to leave 13 million Americans without health insurance in the next 10 years. The Republican attacks on our health care never died down as they backed a lawsuit that threatens people with preexisting conditions, loosened restrictions on junk insurance policies that skirt consumer protections outlined in the Affordable Care Act, and made Medicaid harder and harder for families to access.

Every step of the way, health care advocates, including patients and caregivers, fought back. We made sure that lawmakers looked our children in the eyes, heard our stories, and remembered our families.

Along with my friends who also have medically complex children, I went to Capitol Hill last year — with our kids and their medical bags in tow! — and spoke directly with the lawmakers elected to represent us. Before I knew it, my life was consumed by political advocacy. I began to raise my voice louder than I thought possible.

Through Little Lobbyists, a parent-led group of families with children with complex medical needs, we shared our stories and explained what was possible with access to health care — and what was at stake without it. We had countless meetings. We spoke at rallies and press events. We made phone calls. We wrote op-eds and letters to the editor across the country. We educated our community and empowered them to hold their elected officials accountable. We mobilized voters. For nearly two years, we fought back nonstop.

Hung and Xiomara meet Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD). Bella Lucy for Vox

As the results rolled in on Tuesday night, it was clear that our work made the difference. While I watched the map turn from red to blue, Xiomara was asleep in the room next to me; her ventilator, feeding tube, and emergency medical bags safely close by. I saw the hard work of millions of health care advocates come to life, and in that moment, I was hopeful.

I am tired, but like millions of advocates across the country, I won’t back down. I have never given up on my daughter, and I won’t give up now.

Americans vote on health care. It’s a life-or-death issue.

It’s not a difficult equation: If our lawmakers dare threaten the health care that American families rely on, then we will do everything in our power to hold them accountable and vote them out of office.

In the lead-up to Tuesday’s results, it became obvious that health care advocates were driving Americans to the ballot box. Friends and community members shared their health care story to empower the people around them. Polling pointed to health care as the No. 1 issue in the elections. Health care became Democrats’ closing argument.

Republicans, finally recognizing that voters were going to hold them accountable, lied about their own voting records. They tried to rewrite their history of voting against people with preexisting conditions, but the American people wouldn’t be fooled.

The results of the midterm elections have sent an undeniable message to the Republican Party: Attempting to repeal our health care is not a winning issue. Our health care is non-negotiable. I am more hopeful than I have been in months; the American people won, and my daughter’s health care was protected.

Notably, the Democrats taking control of the House means that the Republicans won’t be able to move forward on their plans to defund Medicaid or repeal the Affordable Care Act, which ensures that people with preexisting conditions have coverage and that there is no annual or lifetime limits on care. This is huge; it makes all the difference to families likes mine with children with complex medical needs and disabilities.

Elena Hung is co-founder and president of Little Lobbyists and co-chair of the Health Care Voter campaign.

REPUBLICAN PARTY Right Wing Members Of Congress Invite English Defense League (EDL) Founder Tommy Robinson To a Major Event In Washington DC, Despite His Criminal Record In UK

 There are plans for Robinson to take his message across the globeRight wing members of Congress have invited the EDL Member Tommy Robinson To a Major Washington DC GOP event on 14 November.

MATTHEW MCGREGOR, openDemocracy Uk|AIWAI! NO!|Stephen Lennon, also known as Tommy Robinson, has been invited to speak at a major conference in Washington DC. If he’s allowed to attend, it will give him a big platform to push his anti-Muslim agenda. It will give him the respectability of appearing alongside members of Congress. And it could net him in the range of £1million via fundraising. The question is whether – given his long criminal record – he’ll be allowed to attend.

Here’s the situation: the Middle East Forum has, in conjunction with the David Horowitz Freedom Center, invited Lennon to the United States in mid-November. In addition, Rep. Paul Gosar and six other members of Congress have invited Lennon to speak to the Conservative Opportunity Society in a closed-door event.

Our analysis suggests that Lennon will raise in the range of £1m as a result of the exposure and links he can foster on this trip if he is allowed into the US. We expect him to use his media profile and funding to tour the country organising demonstrations about grooming scandals. Previous demonstrations organised by, or for, Lennon have descended into violence and left a trail of division.

Robinson still faces a possible jail term for contempt of court having posted footage he filmed from outside a grooming gang’s trial online

On Tuesday 23rd October, outside the Old Bailey in London, Lennon announced his intentions:

“I want to spend the next six months travelling to towns and cities blighted by these problems. By next summer the entire world is going to the true extent of the rape of Britain. Again, I am going to have more in videos coming up”.          

Some people have asked how he’d be allowed to travel to the US given his record. In 2013 Lennon was jailed for 10 months for using someone else’s passport to travel to the USA. Lennon used a passport in the name of Andrew McMaster to board a Virgin Atlantic flight from Heathrow to New York. He entered the US illegally then used his own passport to return to the UK. It is believed that Lennon received a ten-year ban on re-entering the US following his 2013 conviction.

But the Trump administration can override these bans if they want to, giving Lennon the possibility of getting in for his lucrative speaking engagement. It seems that the people behind the invite to Lennon have made a request to the US administration to lift his ban. The Middle East Forum and the David Horowitz Freedom Center both have very good political links to the Trump administration.

The people behind this event are pushing at a half-open door. The Trump administration has strong links to the self-defined “counter-jihad” movement. There were early appointees like Steve Bannon, Mike Flynn and Sebastian Gorka. More recent appointments include National Security Advisor John Bolton, who has close links to Pamela Geller, an American activist notorious for her anti-Islamic writings, and the new chief of staff of the National Security Council, Fred Fleitz, part of a group who promote anti-Islamic conspiracy theories. Trump himself received briefings from  Frank Gaffney, a key figure behind the ‘Obama is a Muslim’ conspiracy theory, and Bridget Gabriel, head of the largest anti-Muslim campaign group in the US, ACT for America. ACT recently boasted of having monthly meetings with the White House. This is an administration infected with anti-Muslim prejudice.

The Trump administration has shown its own support for Lennon, especially following his imprisonment for contempt. The British ambassador to the US was lobbied in June by Trump’s ambassador for religious freedoms, Sam Brownback, who demanded the UK government be more sympathetic towards the former EDL leader. At the same time, Donald Trump Jnr, Trump’s son, personally tweeted out his support for Lennon.

About the author: Matthew McGregor is campaigns director of Hope not Hate.

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ITALY, ROME: Human Remains Uncovered At Vatican Diplomatic Office

Remains found at Vatican’s diplomatic office in Rome could be breakthrough to the investigation in the disappearance of two 15 – year old girls in 1983.

Forensic experts are examining if the remains belong to those of two 15-year-old girls who disappeared in 1983.

“During restoration works in a space annexed to the Apostolic Nunciature of Italy… fragments of human bone were found,” the Vatican said in a statement referring to the diplomatic office of the Holy See in Rome.

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NPRPope Francis On Clergy Sex Abuse: ‘We Showed No Care For The Little Ones’ : NPR

The statement said chief prosecutor Giuseppe Pignatone was heading the investigation. Forensic specialists have been asked to determine the “age, sex and date of death” of the body, according to Reuters.

Italian media reports said forensic scientists were examining if the remains might be those of Emanuela Orlandi, the 15-year-old daughter of a member of the Vatican police who disappeared in 1983. Police are also checking if the remains belong to Mirella Gregori, another 15-year-old who had disappeared in Rome 40 days before Orlandi.

Vatican City (/ˈvætɪkən/ (About this sound listen)), officially Vatican City State (ItalianStato della Città del Vaticano;[d] LatinStatus Civitatis Vaticanae),[e][f] is an independent city-state[9] enclaved within RomeItaly. Established with the Lateran Treaty (1929), it is distinct from yet under “full ownership, exclusive dominion, and sovereign authority and jurisdiction” of the Holy See (LatinSancta Sedes).[g][10] With an area of 44 hectares (110 acres), and a population of about 1,000,[3]it is the smallest state in the world by both area and population.

The Vatican City is an ecclesiastical[3] or sacerdotalmonarchical[11] state (a type of theocracy) ruled by the pope who is, religiously speaking, the bishop of Rome and head of the Catholic Church. The highest state functionaries are all Catholic clergy of various national origins. Since the return of the popes from Avignon in 1377, they have generally resided at the Apostolic Palace within what is now Vatican City, although at times residing instead in the Quirinal Palacein Rome or elsewhere.

Orlandi’s disappearance was widely linked to organised crime or to an attempt to force the release of Mehmet Ali Agca, a Turkish man who had tried to assassinate Pope John Paul II in 1981, according to BBC.

Orlandi’s brother Pietro has campaigned for decades to find out what happened to her and has accused the Vatican of remaining silent.

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Roman Candle Toursthe vatican gallery of maps ceiling 10197

The Vatican statement, however, made no mention of Orlandi. Investigators have not ruled out that the disappearance of Orlandi and Gregori could be connected.

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America’s Young Voters Are Warming to Socialism Because They Don’t Know Its History

  • 47% of Democrats view capitalism positively, down from 56% in 2016
  • 57% of Democrats now view socialism positively, little changed from 2010
  • Republicans very positive about capitalism; 16% positive on socialism

Democrats More Positive About Socialism Than Capitalism

Annie Holmquist, GALLUP POLL|AIWA! NO!|November 6, 2018 is approaching fast which means is US elections are on the horizon and individuals young and old are making their list, checking it twice, and… deciding which candidates are worthy of support.

The younger generation is especially getting into the spirit of things, most recently evidenced by Taylor Swift’s endorsement of candidates in her home state.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Wins as a Democratic Socialist With a 21st-Century Vision
With a values-based campaign that championed Medicare for All and the abolition of ICE, the 28-year-old Latina beat a top Democratic incumbent.

Naturally, this surge of civic responsibility seems like a good thing. But are today’s young Americans equipped with the knowledge they need to make sound, sensible decisions in the voting booth?

I thought of this question while watching a new video segment from John Stossel. Stossel stepped away from the microphone for once and gave his place as host to young Gloria Álvarez, who explains her experience growing up in the shadow of democratic socialism. She explains:

I’m from Guatemala. I’ve seen the impact of socialism.

My father escaped Cuba. My grandfather suffered under communists in Hungary before escaping. As a child, I was taught socialism was wrong. I grew up mocking it. But democratic socialism sounded okay. It made sense to me that government should take care of the economy.

But then I watched socialism fail in Latin America. I learned that every time a country started down the socialist path, it failed.

Álvarez has had enough experience to recognize that democratic socialism isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, but many of her young American counterparts haven’t come to this conclusion. In fact, a new survey suggests the opposite.

In September of 2018, Maru/Blue and BuzzFeed News performed a random survey on the political views of young millennials aged 22 to 37. Particularly striking was the question on socialism, which asked young people whether they would call themselves “democratic socialist, a socialist or neither.”

A solid third responded by saying they would never identify with that label. However, another third of respondents were happy to identify with some facet of socialism. Perhaps even more revealing is the fact that a quarter of respondents pleaded ignorance, recognizing that they needed to know more about the viewpoint before claiming it as their own.

Where does such ignorance come from? Thomas Jefferson would likely suggest it stems from the minimal instruction today’s students receive in history:

“History, by apprising them of the past, will enable them to judge of the future; it will avail them of the experience of other times and other nations; it will qualify them as judges of the actions and designs of men; it will enable them to know ambition under every disguise it may assume; and knowing it, to defeat its views. In every government on earth is some trace of human weakness, some germ of corruption and degeneracy, which cunning will discover, and wickedness insensibly open, cultivate and improve.”

Only 12 percent of America’s high school seniors are proficient in U.S. history. If we made this subject a bigger focal point of the education system, would the next generation of voters be more aware and able to discern the pros and cons of socialist government, democratic or not?

This article was reprinted from Intellectual Takeout.

Michael Cohen’s Lawyer Says Trump Should Be Worried Because Of Audio Tape

trump at un
Trump waiting for his slot to deliver speech at UN General Assembly

In the interview, Trump said he was “totally uninvolved” with Cohen’s dealings, and added his former attorney had other clients.

“Michael Cohen, if you take a look at what he did, this had to do with loans, and I guess the taxi industry is something that I have nothing to do with, he did this on his own time,” he said.

Cohen’s attorney, Lanny Davis, told USA Today his client had two words as reply to the president’s statements: “Audio and tape.” Davis also stated the president should be worried.

Davis took to Twitter on Tuesday to reply to Trump’s statement. “Under oath @MichaelCohen212 [Michael Cohen] acknowledged and took responsibility for @realdonaldtrump @potus [Donald Trump] bad behavior. Trump calling anyone a #liar is a compliment!” he said.

In another tweet, he said Trump would never testify under oath as he could not afford to tell the truth.

Lanny Davis@LannyDavis

2-@MichaelCohen212 who testified under oath doesn’t fear the . @realdonaldtrump @potus will NEVER testify under oath because he can not afford to tell the .

In an Associated Press interview, transcripts of which were released Tuesday, Trump talked about Cohen, Jamal Khashoggi, Brett Kavanaugh, and the upcoming elections, among other things.

“Michael Cohen was your personal attorney for many years. He testified under oath in federal court that you directed him to commit a crime. Did you, sir?” the interviewer asked Trump, to which the president said, “Totally false. It’s totally false.”

Following Trump’s reply, the interviewer asked whether Cohen was lying under oath, and the president replied, “Oh, absolutely he’s lying. And Michael Cohen was a PR person who did small legal work, very small legal work. And what he did was very sad, when you look. By the way, he was in trouble not for what he did for me; he was in trouble for what he did for himself. You do know that? Having to do with loans, mortgages, taxicabs, and various other things, if you read the paper. He wasn’t in trouble for what he did for me; he was in trouble for what he did for other people.”

 

Michael Cohen's Lawyer Says Trump Should Be Worried
President Donald Trump in an interview Tuesday said Michael Cohen lied under oath, an allegation the latter’s lawyer dismissed. In this image, Cohen exits federal court, New York City, Aug. 21, 2018. Photo: Getty Images/Drew Angerer

 

In August, Cohen pleaded guilty to eight criminal counts which included violating federal campaign finance laws. Some of the violations were linked to the attorney’s hush payment to two women who alleged they had an affair with Trump. Cohen said the president also directed him to pay $130,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels.

Earlier this year, Cohen released a tape of the conversation he had with the president in 2016. In the three-minute recording, the two can be heard talking about how to purchase the rights to the story of former Playboy model Karen McDougal who alleged she had a yearlong affair with Trump. Though the audio was not clear at the time, Trump can be heard saying “pay with cash.”

Last week, Davis announced his client, Cohen, changed his registration back to Democrat from Republican. The conversion happened Friday, which was the deadline for New Yorkers to register to vote in the upcoming midterm elections.

Cohen had initially converted to Republican in 2017. “It took a great man to get me to the make the switch,” he said at the time referring to Trump. He described his current move as an effort to distance “himself from the values of the current” administration.

CRIMSON TAZVINZWA – How Fleeing Zimbabwe Saved My Life And For Those Close To Me … I Don’t Speak To Them Often – I Don’t Want Them To Be Stitched-up. ‘Let It Be’ Jamal Khashoggi. You’re Not Alone Mate!

DR. KELLY, THE BRITISH NUCLEAR WEAPONS EXPERT & PHYSICIST DIED A MYSTERIOUS DEATH; IT MAY NOT HAVE BEEN MYSTERIOUS AT ALL … HE DIED!!!

David Kelly 2000s.jpg
Screenshot of David Kelly, Welsh scientist and authority on biological warfare

|CRIMSON TAZVINZWA, AIWA! NO!|“No time to say Good Bye to your lot in the villages including your venerable grandfather Mr. HLUPO Nyathi MAKONI (The Buffalo) in 2000! There are many of them still lying around … the Nyathis I mean. He is gone now. God bless His Soul. The man who sold one of the ‘best and fattest oxen’ in the village so I went to school; (but for me to become a journalist instead.  Aah!’. Mum: Modesta Makoni Nyathi (Buffalo)Tazvinzwa went to BE with the Lord 7 July 2018 – YOU DIED in some hospital in Botswana for Zimbabwe has NO CREDIBLE left.

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Crimson Tazvinzwa

You’re not alone though CRIMSON; … You have not been back to Zimbabwe since then; people say ‘You’re now on British Passport’ – it’s OK – I hope you now see how it’s not OK.

“Just go!, My uncle Joseph Makoni Nyathi whom I had not seen for ages (20- years plus then …then) said. He was trembling so was I. That was it! That was at Harare Road Port! “Africa Unit Square” in Harare – The Freedom Corner. Jan Von Ovangelle, Hilde (vana), Julliet Masama and Chritospher Muchabayiwa – Thomas mapfumo’ bass guitarist);  were all there but no mbiras/xylophones or drums aah boys and girls –  to see me off to oblivion. Except it never had to be!

I have lived in a cycle of bad and good; and where almost to ‘exact calculations‘ bad happens first; and in a very BAD way.

Getting on a connecting coach at Harare Road Port for Johannesburg South Africa and then  connecting flight to Zurich, Switzerland. Where I was met by Nathalie Oestreicher, Kaspar Scheidegger, Claudia Frey and the whole shebang! Kaspar’s mum, I don’t remember the name. Oh dear! She paid 160.000 Swiss franks for my indemnity for when I do some stupid thing as breaking someone’s window by mistake or my lawn overgrew onto someone else’s yard. Yes! You get arrested for that in Switzerland. Scary! But sobering. She did pay that amount but I also I never broke a thing nor did I whack a fly in Switzerland.

For then I couldn’t fly straight from Harare. Imagine! iT WOULD HAVE BEEN OBVIOUS. And easily caught. At that … Poor.

It was illegal for the likes of me.

That would have been fatal.

I packed what I could and burnt what I could at 78 Lomagundi Road, Malborough; Harare. Jan Ovangelle and Julliet Masama my Belgian housemates would bear wetness to this.Map of A1, Harare, Zimbabwe Most importantly my ‘documents’. Nobody asked me to; but I thought it was the most importnat thing to do – IDENTITY. I made it to Suisse unscathed; escaped with a a few bumps on my head and face – historical, of course; that’s another story for another month … ; which even up to now in my naivety would not call for torcher – few ‘bumps on my head’ incurred doing what I love doing –  reading, listening, observing, talking to real people, listening and writing, and commenting – not even writing news as it were and as it happens; imagine how would that have been – news synonymous with event/occurrence or as it happens; more controversial – spend most of the time in court than necessary; than being in the field – documentary is my hiding spot. Forget about my childhood dream of ‘becoming a bus driver or an assistant bus driver. My uncle always addressed me as ‘Teacher’ even before I went to school – his argument: ‘I explained things too much … in graphic details; that was the thing for me … never became a DRIVER anyway which ends well; here I am, a journalist and trainer; whom at that most people struggle to understand; let alone fathom – me neither; don’t understand myself; there were just scraps!

Journalism is DIFFICULT for you’re an enemy of ALL including your FAMILY. Surely it shouldn’t be!

Let me say now and for all. If what happened to Washington Post Journalist Jamal happens to me … that would be the end of the world for such things don’t happen in England. Magna Carta!

I have been in my somnambulism … not at all!

HUMAN RIGHTS AND JUSTICE – Around the world, 15 million girls marry each year; On International #DayoftheGirl call for an end to child marriage. #EndChildMarriage

“Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses” (Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948)

|CRIMSON TAZVINZWA|AIWA! NO!|Malawi should increase efforts to end widespread child marriage, or risk worsening poverty, illiteracy, and preventable maternal deaths, warned Human Rights Watch in a 2014 report.

“I’ve never experienced happiness: Child marriage in Malawi” documents how child marriage prevents girls and women from participating in all spheres of life in Malawi, a country where 1 in 2 girls is married before age 18.

Child marriage is a harmful practice that violates girls’ rights to health, to education , to be free from violence, and to choose if, when, and whom to marry.

The report outlines concrete measures for Malawi’s President, Joyce Banda, and the government to protect girls from child marriage including:

  • Enact the Marriage, Divorce, and Family Relations Bill, which set the legal minimum age of marriage at 18;
  • Develop a comprehensive national action plan to prevent and address the consequences of child marriage;
  • Develop a national policy on adolescent reproductive health;
  • Train law enforcement officials to investigate and prosecute cases of violence against women, including child marriage
  • Support non-governmental organisations working on violence against women and girls, including child marriage
  • Support shelters for survivors of gender-based violence

READ THE REPORT

GIRLS’ VOICES

Watch:

Read the press release.

Girls who marry as children see their rights to health, to education, to be free from violence and to choose, violated. Over 80 women and girls shared their experiences with Human Rights Watch.

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