Political Mojo | Mother Jones http://www.motherjones.com/Blogs/2010/05 http://www.motherjones.com/files/motherjonesLogo_google_206X40.png Mother Jones logo http://www.motherjones.com en Kansas Republicans Have Come Up with a Disgraceful New Way to Screw the Poor http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/heres-how-kansas-republicans-are-screwing-poor <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Starting in July, a new law in Kansas will restrict the amount of cash a welfare recipient can take out of ATM's to just $25 a day&mdash;a move that critics say introduces a whole new host of financial burdens&mdash;including high ATM fees and travel costs&mdash;when they access cash.</p> <p>Max Ehrenfreund at the <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/05/21/kansas-has-found-the-ultimate-way-to-punish-the-poor/" target="_blank"><em>Washington Post </em></a>explains:</p> <blockquote> <p>Since&nbsp;most banking machines&nbsp;are stocked only with $20 bills, the $25 limit is effectively a $20 limit.&nbsp;A family seeking to withdraw even $200 in cash would have to&nbsp;visit an&nbsp;ATM 10 times a month, a real burden for a parent&nbsp;who might not have a car and might not live in a neighborhood where ATMs are easy to find.</p> </blockquote> <p>The law, backed by a GOP-dominated Kansas legislature and Republican Gov. Sam Brownback, will benefit the pockets of large banks while taking money from poor families who rely on food stamps.</p> <blockquote> <p>In Kansas's system, every withdrawal incurs a $1 fee, and if the beneficiary doesn't have a bank account, they will have to pay the ATM fee, too. Those fees might be worth it for some families, though, because the card issued by the&nbsp;state of&nbsp;Kansas isn't like a debit card from&nbsp;an ordinary bank. Ordinary debit cards allow their holders to make purchases for free in stores.&nbsp;In Kansas, beneficiaries get two free purchases a month. After that, they pay 40 cents&nbsp;every time they&nbsp;use the card&nbsp;to buy something.</p> </blockquote> <p>The ostensible rationale for this redistribution of wealth is to minimize waste and prevent low income residents from spending their money on non-essentials like alcohol and the much-feared <a href="https://video.search.yahoo.com/video/play;_ylt=A2KLqID3R19Voj8AGCQsnIlQ;_ylu=X3oDMTByZWc0dGJtBHNlYwNzcgRzbGsDdmlkBHZ0aWQDBGdwb3MDMQ--?p=Jon+Stewart+Welfare+Lobster&amp;vid=18b18abf873d9a1be0d926b9b75785fa&amp;l=4%3A46&amp;turl=http%3A%2F%2Fts3.mm.bing.net%2Fth%3Fid%3DWN.%252fdXqe5QFyMSifoOUVN2FVQ%26pid%3D15.1&amp;rurl=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DHxBDhoIpl5g&amp;tit=Jon+Stewart+slams+Kansas+for+welfare+hypocrisy+and+gun+insanity+%5BFULL+HD%5D&amp;c=0&amp;sigr=11bm6l0bl&amp;sigt=129lccqen&amp;sigi=12141uhgf&amp;age=1428684620&amp;fr2=p%3As%2Cv%3Av&amp;fr=yhs-mozilla-001&amp;hsimp=yhs-001&amp;hspart=mozilla&amp;tt=b" target="_blank">lobster feast</a>. This is the demonizing-the-poor trope that Republican lawmakers frequently deploy to justify punitive control over how low income people spend their money. In addition to the limit on withdrawals, the state's new law carries restrictions to ludicrous levels by prohibiting spending on items such as <a href="http://www.kslegislature.org/li/b2015_16/measures/documents/hb2258_02_0000.pdf" target="_blank">swimming pools and fortune telling sessions.</a></p> <p>As <em>Mother Jones </em>has written in the past, such <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/03/10-poverty-myths-busted" target="_blank">concerns</a> are wildly misplaced and seriously hurt the poor. President Obama recently addressed this conservative characterization, calling out Fox News for portraying the poor as <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/fox-news-probably-never-even-read-the-grapes-of-wrath" target="_blank">lazy "leeches"</a> eager to waste government funds.</p> <p>Fortunately, Kansas' controversial new provision may actually turn out to be <a href="http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2015/05/17/266888/kansas-could-lose-millions-for.html" target="_blank">illegal,</a> violating federal law that mandates welfare recipients "have adequate access to their cash assistance" without enduring high fees.<br> &nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo Economy Income Inequality Fri, 22 May 2015 16:19:19 +0000 Inae Oh 275716 at http://www.motherjones.com Josh Duggar Resigns From Family Research Council Amid Molestation Allegations http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/josh-duggar-resigns-family-research-council-amid-molestation-allegations <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Thursday, Josh Duggar <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2015/05/21/josh-duggar-apologizes-resigns-from-family-research-council-amid-molestation-allegations/" target="_blank">resigned</a> as head of the Family Research Council's lobbying arm amid allegations from a sealed police report <a href="http://www.intouchweekly.com/posts/bombshell-duggar-police-report-jim-bob-duggar-didn-t-report-son-josh-s-alleged-sex-offenses-for-more-than-a-year-58906" target="_blank">obtained by <em>In Touch Weekly</em></a> that he sexually molested multiple underage girls when he was a teenager.</p> <p>Duggar, the eldest son of the reality TV family on TLC's <em>19 and Counting</em>, expressed regret for his actions <a href="https://www.facebook.com/duggarfamilyofficial/posts/653931128073873" target="_blank">in a statement on the Duggar family's Facebook page</a>:</p> <blockquote> <p>Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret. I hurt others, including my family and close friends. I confessed this to my parents who took several steps to help me address the situation. We spoke with the authorities where I confessed my wrongdoing, and my parents arranged for me and those affected by my actions to receive counseling. I understood that if I continued down this wrong road that I would end up ruining my life.</p> </blockquote> <p>Josh's parents Jim Bob and and Michelle Duggar <a href="http://defamer.gawker.com/josh-duggar-accused-of-molesting-several-sisters-as-a-t-1706096839" target="_blank">reportedly knew</a> about the alleged sexual misconduct, which began in 2002, for more than a year before reporting it to the authorities. After the Springdale Police Department received an anonymous tip in 2006, they investigated, but Duggar was never charged with anything. You can read the partially redacted police report <a href="http://imgur.com/a/zqPMi#0" target="_blank">here</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>The Duggars <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/03/duggars-huckabee-santorum-2016" target="_blank">emerged</a> as political players for the social conservative right in 2007, when Jim Bob, a one-time state representative, endorsed former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee for president. After the 2012 election, when the family backed Rick Santorum, Josh Duggar <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2015/05/21/josh-duggar-apologizes-resigns-from-family-research-council-amid-molestation-allegations/" target="_blank">catapulted</a> into conservative circles in Washington as the executive director of FRC Action.</p> <p>The family <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2012/01/rick-santorums-secret-weapon-duggars" target="_blank">remains</a> an influential force among social conservatives due to its <a href="http://www.newsweek.com/inside-duggar-familys-conservative-ideology-76547" target="_blank">pro-life views and strong Christian faith</a>. In December, Michelle Duggar <a href="http://www.arktimes.com/ArkansasBlog/archives/2014/08/18/michelle-duggar-and-the-family-council-try-to-torpedo-fayetteville-non-discrimination-ordinance-with-lies" target="_blank">pushed</a> for the repeal of a measure in Arkansas that would have prevented housing and employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.</p> <p>In May, Jim Bob and Michelle endorsed Huckabee, <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/duggar-family-deserts-rick-santorum-for-mike-huckabee-2015-5" target="_blank">calling him "a man of faith."</a> As of Thursday night, Jim Bob's endorsement is still on Huckabee's presidential campaign site. <em>Mother Jones</em> has reached out to the Huckabee camp for comment.</p> <div class="inline inline-left" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/Jim%20Bob%20Duggar%20Endorsement%20Huckabee.png"><div class="caption">mikehuckabee.com</div> </div> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections The Right mike huckabee Fri, 22 May 2015 02:56:49 +0000 Edwin Rios 275706 at http://www.motherjones.com Could LA's $15 Minimum Wage Sweep the Nation? http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/how-15-minimum-wage-could-sweep-nation <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Tuesday, Los Angeles became the third major West Coast city to pass a $15 minimum wage ordinance. Though the law won't fully go into effect until 2020, it's a huge deal. LA is larger than San Francisco and Seattle, the two other $15-an-hour cities, combined. It also has a much larger contingent of low-wage workers. The ordinance will give a raise to an estimated 750,000 Angelenos, or about 46 percent of the city's workforce.</p> <p>LA's wage hike points to the potential for a major minimum wage boost to sweep the country. Although experts <a href="http://www.vox.com/2015/5/20/8631639/los-angeles-minimum-wage" target="_blank">disagree</a> <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/21/opinion/a-15-minimum-wage-bombshell-in-los-angeles.html" target="_blank">about</a> the LA measure's impact on growth and employment, the City Council passed it by a 14-to-1 margin. The $15 wage polls well in LA <a href="https://www.nelp.org/content/uploads/2015/03/Minimum-Wage-Poll-Memo-Jan-2015.pdf" target="_blank">and nationally</a>, despite a dearth of national politicians pushing for such a large increase. If organizers play their cards right, this suggests a $15 wage could gain traction in other cities.</p> <p>So how did it happen? The original proposal, after all, was a more modest one. The measure's backers attribute their success to a combination of grassroots and national organizing. The umbrella group leading the push, the Raise the Wage Coalition, includes more than 260 local organizations from labor, business, entertainment, and the civil rights movement. It marshaled <a href="http://economicrt.org/publication/los-angeles-rising/" target="_blank">economic studies</a> to justify a $15 wage and delivered more than 100,000 petition signatures in favor. But it also benefited from what organizers call "air support"&mdash;the national campaign to pressure Walmart and McDonald's into implementing a $15-an-hour base wage.</p> <p>"It created a narrative that made it really hard for council members to simply look past the realities of what hard-working people are experiencing," says Rusty Hicks, executive secretary treasurer of the LA County Federation of Labor. "The facts and campaign brought to bear in LA were in many ways only a next step in the move to address income inequality."</p> <p>The organizers are already eyeing other SoCal cities. "It is not our intention to just stop in LA," says Laphonza Butler, president of the Service Employees International Union in California and co-organizer, with Hicks, of Raise the Wage Coalition. "We need to raise the wage all across the region."</p> <p>The group's next most likely contenders are Pasadena and West Hollywood.</p></body></html> MoJo Corporations Labor Top Stories minimum wage Thu, 21 May 2015 20:46:40 +0000 Josh Harkinson 275681 at http://www.motherjones.com Job-Seeker Hillary Clinton Posts Resume on LinkedIn http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/area-woman-looking-employment <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Have you heard the news? Hillary Clinton is on the hunt for a new gig.</p> <p>And in an effort to attract prospective employers, the former secretary of state just joined <a href="https://www.linkedin.com/in/hillaryclinton" target="_blank">LinkedIn with her very own profile</a>. She even dressed up her page with an article on how to "jump-start small business."&nbsp;</p> <div class="inline inline-center" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/clintonlinkedin.png"></div> <p>Enjoy the imminent deluge of spammy messages, Hillary!&nbsp;Everyone deserves a distraction from <a href="http://mobile.nytimes.com/2015/05/22/us/politics/first-batch-of-hillary-clinton-emails-captures-concerns-over-libya.html?_r=2&amp;referrer=" target="_blank">"sensitive but unclassified"</a> emails.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Hillary Clinton Tech Thu, 21 May 2015 14:38:28 +0000 Inae Oh 275641 at http://www.motherjones.com Here's What Osama bin Laden Wrote About Climate Change http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/read-bin-ladens-thoughts-climate-change <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Wednesday morning, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence released a trove of newly declassified documents discovered during the 2011 raid on Osama bin Laden's compound. Among the many letters, videos, and audio recordings <a href="http://www.odni.gov/files/documents/ubl/english/Letter%20Implications%20of%20Climate%20Change.pdf" target="_blank">is</a> an undated document apparently written by bin Laden discussing the "massive consequences" of climate change, a phenomenon he describes as having more victims than wars.</p> <p>The newly released document is <a href="http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCATRE69028P20101001?sp=true" target="_blank">very similar </a>in content and language to a recording released in 2010, in which the Al Qaeda leader expounded on climate change and criticized the international community's lackluster relief efforts in response to flooding in Pakistan. The speech, about 11 minutes in length, was accompanied by a video compilation that included images of natural disasters and Bin Laden.</p> <p>In the document, Bin Laden calls attention to the fate of Pakistani children, who, he says, had been "left in the open, without a suitable living environment, including good drinking water, which has exposed them to dehydration, dangerous diseases and higher death rates." He also laments that "countries are annually spending 100 thousand million euros on their armies" while failing to address the humanitarian crisis in Pakistan.</p> <p>This was not the only time Bin Laden spoke about climate change. In a <a href="https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/2015-03-25/bureaucracy-terror" target="_blank">different letter</a> between Bin Laden and senior Al Qaeda leaders&mdash;also seized during the 2011 raid and written about by <em>Foreign Affairs</em> in March&mdash;Bin Laden remarked on a study about climate change and asked his associates to send it <em>Al Jazeera. </em>In 2010, <em>Al Jazeera</em> <a href="http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2010/01/20101277383676587.html" target="_blank">obtained</a> an audio recording of Bin Laden criticizing the "industrial states," the United States among them, for contributing to climate change.</p> <p>Read the full text of the undated letter below:</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <div id="DV-viewer-2084350-letter-implications-of-climate-change" class="DV-container"></div> <script src="//s3.amazonaws.com/s3.documentcloud.org/viewer/loader.js"></script><script> DV.load("//www.documentcloud.org/documents/2084350-letter-implications-of-climate-change.js", { width: 630, height: 354, sidebar: false, container: "#DV-viewer-2084350-letter-implications-of-climate-change" }); </script><noscript> <a href="http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/2084350/letter-implications-of-climate-change.pdf">Letter Implications of Climate Change (PDF)</a> <br><a href="http://s3.documentcloud.org/documents/2084350/letter-implications-of-climate-change.txt">Letter Implications of Climate Change (Text)</a> </noscript></body></html> MoJo Climate Change Climate Desk Foreign Policy International Iraq Osama Bin Laden Wed, 20 May 2015 16:59:14 +0000 Jenna McLaughlin 275571 at http://www.motherjones.com Obama Finally Joins Twitter http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/barack-obama-finally-joins-twitter <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>After years of being bound to the occasional "-bo" sign-offs on the official <a href="https://twitter.com/BarackObama/" target="_blank">@barackobama</a> Twitter account (run by his political group Organizing for Action), President Barack Obama finally got his own personal account today!</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Hello, Twitter! It's Barack. Really! Six years in, they're finally giving me my own account.</p> &mdash; President Obama (@POTUS) <a href="https://twitter.com/POTUS/status/600324682190053376">May 18, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Here's a photo of President Obama sending the very first <a href="https://twitter.com/POTUS">@POTUS</a> tweet from the Oval Office. <a href="http://t.co/EQGmVAlybh">pic.twitter.com/EQGmVAlybh</a></p> &mdash; Kori Schulman (@ks44) <a href="https://twitter.com/ks44/status/600349943354667008">May 18, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>The <a href="https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2015/05/17/introducing-potus-presidents-official-twitter-account" target="_blank">official word</a> from the White House informs us the new account will serve as a&nbsp; way for the president to "engage directly with the American people, with tweets coming exclusively from him."</p> <p>The shiny new @POTUS handle describes Obama as a "Dad, husband, and 44th President of the United States." One probable mistake, though: He left his <a href="http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2015/05/barack-obama-joins-twitter-as-potus.html" target="_blank">DM's </a>wide open.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo Media Obama Tech Mon, 18 May 2015 16:44:24 +0000 Inae Oh 275416 at http://www.motherjones.com Obama Just Announced a Plan to Restrict Police Use of Military-Style Equipment http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/obama-police-military-equipment <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Monday, the White House announced a plan to set new restrictions on local police departments from obtaining <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/18/obama-military-equipment-police_n_7304504.html" target="_blank">military-style equipment</a> from the federal government. The limitation on military gear is part of an ongoing effort to rebuild trust between community members and law enforcement officials following the unrest seen in Ferguson, Missouri, particularly the police response to protesters there.</p> <p>The announcement is in response to a report put forth by a <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2014/12/18/obama-names-task-force-to-examine-trust-between-police-and-minority-communities/" target="_blank">task force</a> created by the president in December to address broken police relations, especially in minority communities, across the country. <a href="http://bigstory.ap.org/article/10785eac6d3e4c26a1baed8f0d796b48/obama-bans-some-military-style-equipment-provided-police" target="_blank">Banned items </a>include wheeled-armored vehicles, battering rams, grenade launchers, and more.</p> <p>"We are, without a doubt, sitting at a defining moment in American policing," Ronald Davis, head of the Department of Justice's Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/19/us/politics/obama-to-limit-military-style-equipment-for-police-forces.html?hp&amp;action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;module=first-column-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news&amp;action=click&amp;pgtype=Homepage&amp;module=first-column-region&amp;region=top-news&amp;WT.nav=top-news" target="_blank">told reporters on Monday.</a> "We have a unique opportunity to redefine policing in our democracy, to ensure that public safety becomes more than the absence of crime, but it must also include a presence for justice."</p> <p>For a deeper look into how local police departments became so militarized, check out our in-depth report, <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/10/swat-warrior-cops-police-militarization-urban-shield" target="_blank">"The Making of the Warrior Cop," here.</a></p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Military Obama Top Stories Mon, 18 May 2015 12:42:46 +0000 Inae Oh 275401 at http://www.motherjones.com Grinning, Sparring, Losing: Mitt Romney's Surreal Night Inside a Salt Lake City Boxing Ring. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/evander-holyfield-emerges-victorious-bout-mitt-romney <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Muhammad Ali's winning formula for boxing was to "<a href="http://youtu.be/bNpFiZDqcog?t=1m47s" target="_blank">float like a butterfly and sting like a bee</a>." There was plenty of floating, but not much stinging, for former presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Friday night, during a two-round charity bout in Salt Lake City, against former five-time heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield.</p> <p>Revealing some prime #grandpabod in bright red satin shorts (remember, he <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2012/09/report-monsanto-man-mitt-romney-eats-organic" target="_blank">only ate organic on the campaign trail</a>?), and sporting an "I can't believe I'm doing this but WTF" grin, the former governor's sparring skills just couldn't cut it.</p> <p>The <em>Associated Press</em> <a href="http://abcnews.go.com/Weird/wireStory/mitt-romney-evander-holyfield-fight-charity-event-31071058" target="_blank">captured</a> what's been dubbed the "<a href="http://www.cnn.com/2015/05/16/politics/mitt-romney-boxing-evander-holyfield-rumble/" target="_blank">Quake on the Lake</a>":</p> <blockquote> <p>Romney, 68, and Holyfield, 52, sparred, if you could call it that, for just two short rounds before Romney ran away from the boxer and threw in the towel, giving up a round early in the lighthearted fight that came amid several other fights by professional boxers and an auction.</p> <p>The two barely threw any punches and largely just danced around, occasionally lightly jabbing each other in the midsection in what was much more of a comedic event than an actual bout.</p> </blockquote> <p>Let's be honest: Holyfield, who once famously <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/1997/06/29/sports/tyson-disqualified-for-biting-holyfield-s-ears.html" target="_blank">lost part of his ear</a> in a fight with Mike Tyson, could have knocked out the <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/01/mitt-romney-david-corn-advice-47-percent" target="_blank">former governor of Massachusetts</a> with a single punch. But the joyous thing, the <em>meaningful</em> thing, was that <em>he tried</em>. Please proceed, governor:</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="600" src="https://vine.co/v/eKxU6hul7QL/embed/simple" width="100%"></iframe><script src="https://platform.vine.co/static/scripts/embed.js"></script>Romney landed at least one solid jab, it seems:</p> <div class="inline inline-left" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/AP122253876126_0.jpg"><div class="caption"><strong>Kapow! </strong>Rick Bowmer/AP</div> </div> <p>Holyfield then took a fall to make things interesting:</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="600" src="https://vine.co/v/eKxPppqIzUn/embed/simple" width="100%"></iframe><script src="https://platform.vine.co/static/scripts/embed.js"></script>In the end, a ring-side Anne Romney&mdash;who always has her boyfriend's back&mdash;threw in the towel on Mitt's behalf, and Holyfield emerged victorious:</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="600" src="https://vine.co/v/eKx2tIVE2XJ/embed/simple" width="100%"></iframe><iframe frameborder="0" height="600" src="https://vine.co/v/eKx3ti9Vhrq/embed/simple" width="100%"></iframe>The black-tie affair raised at least $1 million for <a href="http://charityvision.net/" target="_blank">Charity Vision</a>, a Utah-based nonprofit that helps doctors perform surgeries for the blind in developing countries. That amount of money is apparently equivalent to Holyfield's net worth, and 1/25 of Romney's, <a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/sarahburton/everything-you-need-to-know-about-the-romney-holyfield-fight#.qo4MJJ78a" target="_blank">according to <em>Buzzfeed's</em> Tale of the Tape</a>.</p> <p>After the match, Holyfield apparently quipped to Romney: "You know what? You float like a bee and sting like a butterfly."</p> <p>And so everyone had an enjoyable time, especially Ann Romney:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Loved being part of Mitt's posse tonight. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CVfightnight?src=hash">#CVfightnight</a> <a href="http://t.co/gBc89JFObV">pic.twitter.com/gBc89JFObV</a></p> &mdash; Ann Romney (@AnnDRomney) <a href="https://twitter.com/AnnDRomney/status/599429322928050176">May 16, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></body></html> MoJo Sports Top Stories Sat, 16 May 2015 16:06:06 +0000 Edwin Rios 275376 at http://www.motherjones.com BREAKING: Jury Sentences Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to Death http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/breaking-jury-reaches-verdict-boston-marathon-bomber-dzhokhar-tsarnaev <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p><strong>Update</strong>: They sentenced him to death.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="cy">Jurors sentence Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to death for his role in the Boston Marathon bombing <a href="http://t.co/scXY4yDfBy">http://t.co/scXY4yDfBy</a></p> &mdash; Mark Berman (@markberman) <a href="https://twitter.com/markberman/status/599295611771453440">May 15, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>They are reading the verdict right now. The jury only has two choices: sentence him to life in prison or death.</p> <p>Here's<a href="http://www.necn.com/news/new-england/Boston-Marathon-Jury-Decides-Tsarnaev-Death-Life-Prison-302988491.html" target="_blank"> a live stream from NECN</a>:</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <script type="text/javascript" charset="UTF-8" src="http://www.necn.com/portableplayer/?cmsID=160432365&amp;videoID=xZN_oIINgKBR&amp;lvshell=160432365&amp;origin=necn.com&amp;sec=news&amp;subsec=new-england&amp;width=600&amp;height=360"></script><p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo Fri, 15 May 2015 19:19:04 +0000 Ben Dreyfuss 275341 at http://www.motherjones.com Important Advice From the CDC: Don't Poop in the Pool http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/dont-poop-in-the-pool <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Thursday the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a very important message for anyone planning to swim this summer: Don't poop in the pool. Also, try not to be in a pool where someone else has pooped. At least, if you can avoid it, don't swim with your mouth open in a pool if you, or someone else, has pooped nearby.</p> <p>These are just a few of the ways you can try to avoid getting <a href="http://www.webmd.com/children/norovirus-symptoms-and-treatment" target="_blank">norovirus</a>&mdash;a nasty and highly contagious stomach virus that sometimes <a href="http://www.ibtimes.com/cruise-ship-outbreak-2015-disgusting-stomach-bug-norovirus-sickens-more-150-star-1918277" target="_blank">makes its way onto cruise ships</a>&mdash;as you enjoy all sorts of aquatic activities that are not limited to pools. Lakes have high levels of poop-related-risks it seems, as the CDC announcement describes how some people in Oregon swam in a lake last year and ended up getting the virus, which causes vomiting and diarrhea. The outbreak ended up sickening 70 people, some of whom didn't even swim in the lake (state health officials found, however, that swimmers were over twice as likely to get sick).&nbsp;</p> <p>Other important tips include not peeing in the water, not vomiting in the water, and maybe skipping swimming that day if there's a chance you might do any of those things.</p> <p>This important message comes in honor of <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/swimming/" target="_blank">Healthy and Safe Swimming week</a> and is mostly geared toward children (or parents of children) who are not only more at risk for norovirus but are also prime suspects of doing things in water that one shouldn't do. They also, apparently, are bad at swimming with their mouths closed. Per the CDC's press <a href="http://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2015/a0514-norovirus-from-swimming.html" target="_blank">release</a>:</p> <p>"Children are prime targets for norovirus and other germs that can live in lakes and swimming pools because they&rsquo;re so much more likely to get the water in their mouths," said Michael Beach, Ph.D, the CDC's associate director for healthy water. "Keeping germs out of the water in the first place is key to keeping everyone healthy and helping to keep the places we swim open all summer."</p></body></html> MoJo Health Thu, 14 May 2015 21:04:17 +0000 Gabrielle Canon 275291 at http://www.motherjones.com Alan Grayson Just Called a Reporter a "Shitting Robot" http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/alan-grayson-shitting-robot-senate <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.)&mdash;known as something of an active volcano ever since he said in a 2010 floor speech that the Republican health care plan was to "die quickly"&mdash;is considering running for Senate next year. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has already settled on a candidate, Rep. Patrick Murphy, but Grayson <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2015/05/12/rep-alan-grayson-florida-man/" target="_blank">believes</a> that "our voters will crawl over hot coals to vote for me."</p> <p>That feeling of invincibility extends to his dealings with reporters. To wit, today's interview with Adam Smith of the <em>Tampa Bay Times</em>:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Good talk w <a href="https://twitter.com/AlanGrayson">@AlanGrayson</a>: "R u some kind of sh*ttng robot?! U go around sh*tting on people?!" he inquired, loudly</p> &mdash; Adam Smith (@adamsmithtimes) <a href="https://twitter.com/adamsmithtimes/status/598481550909513728">May 13, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Alan Grayson!</p></body></html> MoJo Elections Wed, 13 May 2015 15:23:59 +0000 Tim Murphy 275206 at http://www.motherjones.com Obama Just Called Out Fox News For Making the Poor Out to Be "Leeches" http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/fox-news-probably-never-even-read-the-grapes-of-wrath <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Via<em> <a href="http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/2015/05/obama-accuses-fox-news-of-portraying-poor-people-as-206995.html" target="_blank">Politico</a>,</em> oh snap:</p> <blockquote> <p>President Barack Obama criticized Fox News on Tuesday, accusing the network of portraying poor people as "leeches."</p> <p>In a discussion at Georgetown University, Obama said the media made an effort to &ldquo;suggest the poor are sponges, leeches, don't want to work, are lazy, are undeserving," and he then singled out Fox News for special rebuke.</p> </blockquote> <p>From the White House transcript:</p> <blockquote>There&rsquo;s always been a strain in American politics where you&rsquo;ve got the middle class, and the question has been, who are you mad at, if you&rsquo;re struggling; if you&rsquo;re working, but you don&rsquo;t seem to be getting ahead. And over the last 40 years, sadly, I think there&rsquo;s been an effort to either make folks mad at folks at the top, or to be mad at folks at the bottom. And I think the effort to suggest that the poor are sponges, leaches, don&rsquo;t want to work, are lazy, are undeserving, got traction. And, look, it's still being propagated.</blockquote> <blockquote>I mean, I have to say that if you watch Fox News on a regular basis, it is a constant menu&mdash;they will find folks who make me mad. I don&rsquo;t know where they find them. They&rsquo;re like, "I don&rsquo;t want to work, I just want a free Obama phone"&mdash;or whatever. And that becomes an entire narrative, right? That gets worked up. And very rarely do you hear an interview of a waitress&mdash;which is much more typical&mdash;who&rsquo;s raising a couple of kids and is doing everything right but still can&rsquo;t pay the bills.</blockquote> <blockquote>And so if we&rsquo;re going to change how John Boehner and Mitch McConnell think, we&rsquo;re going to have to change how our body politic thinks, which means we&rsquo;re going to have to change how the media reports on these issues and how people&rsquo;s impressions of what it's like to struggle in this economy looks like, and how budgets connect to that. And that&rsquo;s a hard process because that requires a much broader conversation than typically we have on the nightly news.</blockquote> <div id="fb-root">Amen.</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>Here's the video, courtesy of <em>Media Matters</em>:</div> <blockquote><script>(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));</script><div class="fb-video" data-allowfullscreen="true" data-href="/Mediamatters/videos/vb.26595441166/10152894312231167/?type=1"> <div class="fb-xfbml-parse-ignore"> <blockquote cite="/Mediamatters/videos/10152894312231167/"> <p>BOOM. President Obama just called out Fox News by name for their awful coverage of poverty in America and for regularly pushing false stereotypes about poor people. Watch:</p> Posted by <a href="https://www.facebook.com/Mediamatters">Media Matters for America</a> on Tuesday, May 12, 2015</blockquote> </div> </div> </blockquote></body></html> MoJo Tue, 12 May 2015 19:50:00 +0000 Ben Dreyfuss 275151 at http://www.motherjones.com West Virginia Democrats' Best Hope Might Be This Billionaire Coal Magnate http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/jim-justice-west-virginia-governors-race <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Over the last six years, West Virginia Democrats have seen their grip on state politics slip away in no small part due to their alleged collaboration with President Barack Obama's "War on Coal." The solution: put a coal kingpin on the ballot.</p> <p>On Monday, Jim Justice, owner of Southern Coal Corp., announced he would run for governor as a Democrat in 2016, to replace the retiring incumbent Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin. Justice, the state's richest citizen with an estimated net worth of $1.6 billion, is a political novice but a state icon. In 2009, he purchased the Greenbrier, a historic mountain resort that had fallen on hard times, and restored it into a first-class resort. During his gubernatorial campaign kickoff event, Justice drew a parallel between his state's lackluster reputation, and the derelict condition of the White Sulphur Springs retreat. "[Times] were tough at the Greenbrier, too," he said.</p> <p>In Justice, Democrats have found a walking counterpoint to the war-on-coal attacks. (The attacks are also largely unfounded&mdash;under Tomblin the state has rolled back mine safety regulations.) In contrast to, say, frequent Greenbrier guest Don Blankenship, who as CEO of Massey Energy famously re-designed his property so he wouldn't have to use his town's polluted drinking water and is currently awaiting trial on conspiracy to violate mine-safety laws, Justice has always styled himself as a man of the people. A 2011 <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/magazine/wva-billionaire-jim-justices-mission-to-restore-the-greenbrier-resort/2011/02/09/AB5NO5M_story.html" target="_blank"><em>Washington Post</em></a> profile began with a surprise sighting of Justice at an Applebee's near his hometown. The richest man in the state, it turned out, was grabbing a late snack after coaching his hometown's high school girls basketball team.</p> <p>But Southern Coal Corp. isn't without its issues. An NPR investigation last fall found that the company <a href="http://www.npr.org/2014/11/15/363024382/billionaire-spent-millions-in-charity-but-avoided-mine-fines" target="_blank">owed</a> nearly $2 million in delinquent fines for federal mine safety violations. (After the report was published, Justice agreed to work out a payment plan.) And he may not have the Democratic field to himself, either; senate minority leader Jeff Kessler (D) <a href="http://wvmetronews.com/2015/05/11/no-justice-effect-on-kessler-who-calls-himself-only-real-democrat-in-gov-race/" target="_blank">filed</a> his pre-candidacy papers in March. No Republicans have thrown their hats into the ring yet.</p></body></html> MoJo Elections Mon, 11 May 2015 22:21:51 +0000 Tim Murphy 275081 at http://www.motherjones.com Creeper Rand Paul Staffer Licks Camera Lens at Town Hall Event http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/rand-paul-staffer-licks-camera-lens-town-hall-event <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Rand Paul is frequently dubbed the <a href="http://www.buzzfeed.com/rosiegray/rand-paul-is-not-the-most-interesting-man-in-politics#.dlOM4N9kj" target="_blank">most interesting man</a> in politics, but one of his staffers is apparently attempting to best the Republican presidential candidate for the dubious distinction. In the case of&nbsp;<a href="http://www.nationaljournal.com/2016-elections/rand-paul-lick-20150511" target="_blank">David Chesley</a>, Paul's political director in New Hampshire, however, "interesting" may be generous. Straight up bizarre is more like it.</p> <p>An innocent tracker was recording <a href="https://twitter.com/lachlan/status/597819080746360832" target="_blank">video</a> for a town hall event today, when Chesley, a bald middle-aged man, started bobbing his head directly in front of the camera, taking up the entire field of vision. After a few seconds of bobbing&mdash;perhaps pondering his next disruptive move&mdash;he opened his mouth, stuck out his tongue, and licked the lens.</p> <p>Yes, lick.</p> <p>The campaign has not yet explained why the man who is charged with helping Paul win the key state to New Hampshire did this. But frankly, who cares.<strong> Watch the incident below:</strong></p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/v3EAwGXE1vs" width="630"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Rand Paul Mon, 11 May 2015 18:40:47 +0000 Inae Oh 275061 at http://www.motherjones.com J.K. Rowling Reveals "Elizabeth Warren" Was a Ravenclaw http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/jk-rowling-elizabeth-warren-ravenclaw <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Is Elizabeth Warren actually just an enigmatic adolescent ghost? Maybe! On Monday, <em>Harry Potter</em> author (and greatest living British person) J.K. Rowling dropped a bombshell in response to a question from a Twitter fan:</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">.<a href="https://twitter.com/HotmHayles">@HotmHayles</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/lankytwat">@lankytwat</a> Moaning Myrtle's full name was Myrtle Elizabeth Warren.</p> &mdash; J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) <a href="https://twitter.com/jk_rowling/status/597730858808782848">May 11, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Nothing to do with the United States Elizabeth Warren I hasten to add! 'Elizabeth' is just one of those classic British middle names.</p> &mdash; J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) <a href="https://twitter.com/jk_rowling/status/597734378328821760">May 11, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>According <a href="http://harrypotter.wikia.com/wiki/Myrtle" target="_blank">Harry Potter Wiki</a>, Moaning Myrtle was a member of Ravenclaw House. Five points for Ravenclaw!</p></body></html> MoJo Books Congress Mon, 11 May 2015 16:05:48 +0000 Tim Murphy 275046 at http://www.motherjones.com Video Visitation Giant Promises to Stop Eliminating In-Person Visits http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/securus-prison-phones-video-visitation <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Video visitation is the hot new trend in the corrections industry. Companies like Securus and Global Tel*Link, which have made big bucks charging high prices for inmate phone services, are increasingly pitching county jails new systems that will allow inmates to video-chat with friends and family. Using new terminals installed onsite, inmates can communicate with approved users who log in remotely on a special app similar to Skype. For inmates whose loved ones don't live anywhere near their corrections facility, that can be good news.</p> <p>But as I <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/01/jail-prison-video-visitation" target="_blank">reported for the magazine in February</a>, those video-conferencing systems sometimes come with a catch&mdash;jails that use the systems are often contractually obligated to eliminate free face-to-face visits, leaving family members no choice but to pay a dollar-a-minute for an often unreliable service.</p> <p>In a press release last week Securus <a href="http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/securus-technologies-revises-video-visitation-policy--defers-to-prisonjail-officials-on-rules-for-onsite-visits-300077180.html" target="_blank">has announced</a> it will no longer require jails to ditch in-person visitation:</p> <blockquote> <p>"Securus examined our contract language for video visitation and found that in 'a handful' of cases we were writing in language that could be perceived as restricting onsite and/or person-to-person contact at the facilities that we serve," said Richard A. ("Rick") Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Securus Technologies, Inc.&nbsp; "So we are eliminating that language and 100% deferring to the rules that each facility has for video use by inmates."</p> </blockquote> <p>Translation: Nothing to see here, move along! But while inmates might be getting their face-to-face visitation back, Securus' concession on in-person visits comes even as it's fighting the Federal Communication Commission's efforts to regulate the cost of intrastate prison phone calls (it capped the price of interstate prison phone calls in 2014 at 25 cents per minute). And the corrections technology industry isn't the only group defending the status quo&mdash;the executive director of the National Sheriffs&rsquo; Association told <a href="http://www.ibtimes.com/why-american-jails-may-drastically-curtail-inmate-phone-calls-1904855?ft=95p2z" target="_blank"><em>IB Times</em></a> earlier this month that if the FCC interferes with phone prices (corrections facilities often get a cut of the profits), some jails may just decide to cut off access to phone calls.</p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Mon, 11 May 2015 15:30:20 +0000 Tim Murphy 274856 at http://www.motherjones.com That Time Mike Huckabee Preached Against Booze, Sex, and Monty Python http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/mike-huckabee-monty-python-life-brian <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Good luck tracking down sermons from Mike Huckabee's two decades as a Baptist preacher. The GOP presidential candidate, who once started a television station out of his church to broadcast his sermons, <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2007/12/huckabee-hides-his-full-gospel" target="_blank">kept those tapes under wraps</a> during the 2008 presidential campaign.</p> <p>Among the handful of sermons open to the public is a partial recording of a 1979 sermon in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, at the congregation Huckabee had tended as a pastor a decade earlier when he was a student at Ouachita Baptist University. The sermon, included in the school's special collections, catches a young Huckabee confident in his beliefs and fluid in his rhetoric, riffing from one New Testament passage to the next in critiquing the most "pleasure-mad society that probably has ever been since Rome and Greece, in the days when there was just absolute chaos and debauchery on the streets":</p> <blockquote> <p>It's a sad thing but it's true in this country: 10,000 people a year are directly killed by alcohol in this country. Ten thousand. But we license liquor. There's one person a year on average killed by a mad dog, just one. But you know what we do? We license liquor, and we shoot the mad dog. That's an insane logic! But it's what's happening, it's because we love pleasure more than anything else. A lot of times we look around our society we see this problem we see pornography and prostitution and child abuse and all the different things that we're all so upset about. You know why they're there? You know why they're in the communities? You say "because the Devil"&mdash;they're there because of us.</p> </blockquote> <p>It was dark days indeed, he argued, when "an x-rated theater can open up down the street from a church." Above all, Huckabee was upset with Monty Python's 1979 movie, <em>Life of Brian</em>. Huckabee was hardly alone in condemning <em>Life of Brian</em>, which follows the story of a Jewish man, Brian, who is mistaken for the Messiah because he was born on the same day as Jesus. The film was banned in Ireland; picketed in New Jersey; <a href="http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive/pdf?res=9B0CE5D61339E732A25757C0A96F9C946890D6CF" target="_blank">denounced</a> by a coalition of Christian and Jewish leaders; and canceled in Columbia, South Carolina after a last-minute intervention from Republican Sen. Strom Thurmond. (On the other hand, the movie does have a score of 96 at <a href="http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/monty_pythons_life_of_brian/" target="_blank">Rotten Tomatoes</a>.) Per Huckabee:</p> <blockquote> <p>There was a time in this country when a movie like <em>The Life of Brian</em> which, I just read&mdash;thank God the theaters in Little Rock decided not to show, but it's showing all over the Fort Worth&ndash;Dallas area, which is a mockery, which is a <em>blasphemy</em> against the very name of Jesus Christ, and I can remember a day even as young as I am when that would not have happened in this country or in the city in the South.</p> </blockquote> <blockquote> <p>But friend, it's happening all over and no one's blinking an eye, and we can talk about how the devil's moved in and the devil's moved in but what's really happened is God's people have moved out and made room for it. We've put up the for sale sign and we've announced a very cheap price for what our lives really are. We've sold our character, we've sold our convictions, we've compromised we've sold out and as a result we've moved out the devil's moved in and he's set up shop. And friend [he's] praying on our own craving for pleasure.</p> </blockquote> <p>No word on whether Huckabee will defund the <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iV2ViNJFZC8" target="_blank">Ministry of Silly Walks</a> if elected.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Elections Religion mike huckabee Fri, 08 May 2015 17:34:42 +0000 Tim Murphy 274941 at http://www.motherjones.com This Study Will Add Fuel to the Abortion Wars http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/new-study-premature-infants-abortion-20-week-ban <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On Thursday, the <em>New York Times</em> carried a front-page story reporting new research that could have a profound impact on the nation's abortion debate: <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/07/health/premature-babies-22-weeks-viability-study.html?_r=0" target="_blank">a study</a> concluding that a small number of premature infants born at 22 weeks can survive with intensive treatment.</p> <p>The study, which appears in the <em>New England Journal of Medicine</em>, followed 5,000 infants born between 22 and 27 weeks of gestation. Seventy-eight of those infants were born at 22 weeks and given treatment to increase their chances of survival; 18 of them survived. Of the 18, which the researchers followed up on as toddlers, 6 experienced severe impairments, from blindness to debilitating cerebral palsy, and 7 were relatively healthy.</p> <p>The news has huge implications for the the medical community, where there has been debate about how much treatment to provide to babies born at this stage of gestation. But it could also have sweeping consequences for the fight against abortion rights&mdash;giving abortion opponents new support for a popular abortion ban, while possibly undermining their quest to overturn <em>Roe v. Wade, </em>the 1973 Supreme Court decision that established a right to abortion.</p> <p>In the immediate future, the news is most likely to impact <a href="https://www.lifesitenews.com/pulse/gop-leader-promises-vote-redux-on-20-week-abortion-ban-may-7-protest-remain" target="_blank">the coming congressional debate</a> over House Republicans' proposed 20-week abortion ban, which many see as a direct challenge to <em>Roe</em>. In that ruling, the justices forbid the states from banning abortion before a fetus was viable outside the womb. A 20-week ban, mainstream medical groups have argued, bars abortion before viability.</p> <p>But abortion foes may use this new study to argue that 20 weeks is indeed within the range of viability, and a ban on procedures after 20 weeks is legal. (When abortion opponents talk about 20-week bans, technically, they mean 22-week bans. <a href="#correction">Click here to read a full explanation</a>.)</p> <p>Viability, however, is not a bright red line. And this new research is less of a breakthrough and more of a rigorous confirmation of what smaller, less systematic studies have already observed. One such study <a href="http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/126/3/443.full.pdf%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC%C2%AC___" target="_blank">found</a> that 85 percent of infants born at 22 weeks (or 20 weeks, in political parlance) die within 12 hours. Another study <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19491184" target="_blank">found</a> that 98 percent of 22-week-old infants are born with major health issues such as brain hemorrhaging, and 93 percent die within a year. (The University of California-San Francisco Medical Center, by contrast, <a href="http://www.ansirh.org/_documents/research/late-abortion/Viability.FactSheet.8-2010.pdf" target="_blank">states</a> that no infants born earlier than 23 weeks have survived.) Some major medical groups have been debating whether to move average viability to 23 weeks from 24 weeks. But there are no signs that the study will cause medical organizations to set 22 weeks as the new average viability.</p> <p>Abortion foes have always had dual motives for pushing 20-week abortion bans. (About 2 percent of all abortions would be affected by a 20-week abortion ban. About <a href="http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_induced_abortion.html" target="_blank">13,000 women</a> sought these abortions in 2011, the most recent year for which there is reliable data.) In public, they insist that these bans are only preventing abortions of viable infants. The majority of the medical community wouldn't agree, but there is broad public support for the idea of banning abortion on viable pregnancies.</p> <p>At the same time, as I <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/01/republican-abortion-ban-20-weeks" target="_blank">reported</a> earlier this year, 20-week bans are designed to bring a challenge to <em>Roe v. Wade</em> before the Supreme Court. In <em>Roe</em>, the justices ruled that states could not set a specific date for viability. (That determination was left up to doctors.) The legal wing of the abortion rights movement is fighting some 20-week bans, which have been <a href="http://www.guttmacher.org/statecenter/spibs/spib_PLTA.pdf" target="_blank">passed in 10 states</a>, on the grounds that they violate <em>Roe</em>. If one of those cases were to make it to the Supreme Court, it could be an opportunity for the justices to overturn <em>Roe</em>'s viability standard altogether.</p> <p>Here's Samuel Lee, a former lobbyist for Missouri Citizens for Life, explaining how a measure he wrote, requiring doctors to perform viability tests before providing abortions to women who appeared to be at least 20 weeks pregnant, was designed to overturn <em>Roe</em>:</p> <blockquote> <p>The 20 weeks gestational age was chosen to push the envelope on when the state's interest in protecting the life of the unborn child could take place. It was designed as an opportunity to attack the Roe trimester framework, while still giving the Court some wriggle room (the statute required a determination of viability, not a prohibition of abortion after viability). It was an opportunity for the Court to discuss an interest by the state in protecting unborn human life earlier than the viability line of demarcation permitted&hellip;It was chosen because it was earlier than the earliest limits of viability at the time, but not so early that the unborn child could never be viable.</p> </blockquote> <p>The Supreme Court upheld Lee's provision in 1989. Later, Justice Thurgood Marshall's papers revealed that the conservative majority in <em>Webster</em> had come within one vote of using the 20-week provision to strike down <em>Roe</em> entirely.</p> <p>If the average age of viability were to inch backward toward 22 weeks&mdash;with this study being the first step&mdash;then 20-week abortion bans would cease to pose a broad constitutional challenge to <em>Roe. </em>At the time of its ruling, after all, the Supreme Court majority noted that average viability began at 28 weeks (the start of the third trimester), but it was possible that fetuses would someday be viable as early at 24 weeks.</p> <p>In other words, the medical advances behind this new research don't automatically undermine <em>Roe</em>&mdash;especially when it comes to something as nebulous as viability. But they may fuel the drive for a national 20-week abortion ban.</p> <p id="correction"><em>*Abortion opponents typically count the weeks of pregnancy from the date of fertilization, while the medical community uses the more rigorous method of counting the weeks of pregnancy from the start of a woman's last menstrual period. In medical terms, then, the House Republicans' 20-week abortion ban is actually a 22-week abortion ban. Unless we're talking about the bans, this article uses the medical method of dating a pregnancy.</em></p></body></html> MoJo Reproductive Rights Supreme Court Top Stories Thu, 07 May 2015 20:16:27 +0000 Molly Redden 274896 at http://www.motherjones.com Breaking: Freddie Gray's Death Is Ruled a Homicide. All 6 Officers Will Face Criminal Charges. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/05/baltimore-freddie-gray-charges-homicide <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p><a href="http://bigstory.ap.org/article/14eb12d9b62b48c0b20d410283822aa7/latest-police-custody-death-all-6-officers-charged" target="_blank">All six Baltimore police officers </a>involved in the death of Freddie Gray, the 25-year-old who died in police custody last month, sparking tense <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/04/protesters-new-york-city-baltimore-freddie-gray" target="_blank">protests</a>, will face criminal charges. The announcement was made by Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby during a press conference Friday morning. The various charges include manslaughter, murder, and assault:</p> <center> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">Here are the criminal charges against each officer in the murder of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/FreddieGray?src=hash">#FreddieGray</a> <a href="http://t.co/L8xBeT7edk">pic.twitter.com/L8xBeT7edk</a></p> &mdash; Shaun King (@ShaunKing) <a href="https://twitter.com/ShaunKing/status/594155539455672321">May 1, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script></center> <p>Mosby told reporters that Gray's death has been ruled a homicide and that the knife found on <a href="http://www.thedailybeast.com/cheats/2015/05/01/baltimore-to-file-charges-in-gray-case.html" target="_blank">Gray during a search</a> was "not a switchblade," as Baltimore police previously <a href="http://www.msnbc.com/msnbc/baltimore-protest-police-report" target="_blank">alleged</a>, and its possession was therefore "lawful under Maryland law."</p> <p>Officer Caesar Goodson Jr., who was driving the police van that Gray was transported in after his arrest, was charged with second-degree murder, along with manslaughter, assault, and misconduct charges. If found guilty, he could face up to 63 years in prison, according to the <a href="http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/baltimore-city/bs-md-ci-freddie-gray-mosby-presser-0502-20150501-story.html#page=1" target="_blank"><em>Baltimore Sun</em></a>.</p> <p>"To the people of Baltimore and the demonstrators across America, I heard your call for 'no justice, no peace,'" Mosby said on Friday. "To the youth of this city, I will seek justice on your behalf." Watch the announcement below:</p> <p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="354" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/gmMoH7Vy_CM" width="630"></iframe></p> <p><em>This post has been updated.</em></p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Race and Ethnicity Fri, 01 May 2015 15:46:29 +0000 Inae Oh 274641 at http://www.motherjones.com Sen. Bernie Sanders Is Running for President. Here's a Sampling of His Greatest Hits http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/04/sen-bernie-sanders-running-president-greatest-hits <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) officially announced today that's he's running for president. The self-described socialist faces long odds in the Democratic primary, but chances are good that he'll at least force a discussion on issues dear to liberals. Here are some highlights of the best of <em>Mother Jones</em> coverage of Sanders:</p> <ul><li>Sanders visited our office earlier this month <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/04/bernie-sanders-inequality-president-interview" target="_blank">to discuss</a> income inequality, trade, and his motivations for running for prez.</li> <li>"<a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2014/11/election-day-national-holiday-sanders" target="_blank">Why don't we make Election Day a holiday?</a>" Sanders asks. Yes, why?</li> <li>Sanders <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2014/11/bernie-sanders-big-money-election-spending" target="_blank">goes on Bill Moyers</a> to perfectly predict big money's domination of the 2014 elections.</li> <li>Sanders asks the NSA whether it is spying on members of Congress. <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2014/01/nsa-spying-congress-bernie-sanders" target="_blank">The NSA won't say</a>.</li> <li><a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2011/03/bernie-sanders-top-10-tax-avoiders" target="_blank">Sanders' list of America's top 10 tax avoiders</a>.</li> <li><a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2010/12/bernie-sanders-filibuster" target="_blank">The greatest hits from Filibernie</a>, Sanders' eight-and-a-half hour filibuster in protest of the 2010 extension of tax cuts for the rich.</li> <li>Sanders <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2010/02/sanders-drop-nukes-go-solar" target="_blank">lambastes Obama</a> for giving loan guarantees to the nuclear power industry.</li> <li><a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2009/09/sen-bernie-sanders-i-vt-proposals-wall-street-video" target="_blank">Sanders has some ideas for reforming Wall Street</a>.</li> <li>"<a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2006/11/socialist-millionaires-club-interview-bernie-sanders" target="_blank">A Socialist in the Millionaire's Club</a>": a 2006 <em>Mother Jones</em> interview with Sanders, shortly after he was elected to the Senate.</li> <li><a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/1998/02/bernie-versus-bob" target="_blank">During a 1998 Congressional hearing, Sanders excoriates Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin</a> for supporting General Suharto, "a cruel, authoritarian dictator whose family is worth between $40 and $50 billion."</li> <li>And then there's this Sanders blurb from a November 1989 <em>Mother Jones</em> <a href="https://books.google.com/books?id=N-cDAAAAMBAJ&amp;pg=PA22&amp;dq=Bernie+Sanders&amp;hl=en&amp;sa=X&amp;ei=GJRCVcSkDZL9oQT8poGICw&amp;ved=0CC4Q6AEwBA#v=onepage&amp;q=Bernie%20Sanders&amp;f=false" target="_blank">roundup of promising third parties</a>:</li> </ul><div class="inline inline-center" style="display: table; width: 1%"><img alt="" class="image" src="/files/Bernie%20Sanders.png"></div> <p>The Progressive Coalition obviously never went national in the way Sanders had envisioned. But in 1991, a year after he was elected to Congress, he founded something more enduring: the <a href="http://cpc.grijalva.house.gov/" target="_blank">Congressional Progressive Caucus</a>. Since then, Sanders' view of third parties has evolved: "No matter what I do," he told <em>Mother Jones</em> last month, "I will not play the role of a spoiler who ends up helping to elect a right-wing Republican."</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Elections Income Inequality Top Stories bernie sanders Thu, 30 Apr 2015 21:50:07 +0000 Josh Harkinson 274621 at http://www.motherjones.com Why You Should Be Skeptical About the New Police Narrative on Freddie Gray's Death http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/04/washington-post-freddie-gray-jailhouse-informant <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>On a relatively quiet night in Baltimore, the <em>Washington Post</em> <a href="http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/crime/prisoner-in-van-said-freddie-gray-was-banging-against-the-walls-during-ride/2015/04/29/56d7da10-eec6-11e4-8666-a1d756d0218e_story.html" target="_blank">dropped a bombshell</a>. According to a sealed court document, a witness alleged that Freddie Gray&mdash;whose April death has triggered days of protests in the city&mdash;may have been deliberately attempting to injure himself while in police custody:</p> <blockquote> <p>A prisoner sharing a police transport van with Freddie Gray told investigators that he could hear Gray "banging against the walls" of the vehicle and believed that he "was intentionally trying to injure himself," according to a police document obtained by The Washington Post.</p> </blockquote> <blockquote> <p>The prisoner, who is currently in jail, was separated from Gray by a metal partition and could not see him. His statement is contained in an application for a search warrant, which is sealed by the court. The Post was given the document under the condition that the prisoner not be named because the person who provided it feared for the inmate's safety.</p> </blockquote> <p>It's easy to see how a sealed document like that, drafted by a police investigator, might have leaked to the press in spite of the court order, and in spite of the police department's general aura of secrecy. If Gray's injuries were self-inflicted, the police department is off the hook.</p> <p>But as WBAL's Jayne Miller noted, the new exculpatory allegation appears to be at odds with the police department's earlier narrative, as well as the timeline of events:</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">BPD Commissioner Anthony Batts on 4/23 told us second prisoner in police van said Freddie Gray was "mostly quiet". ..</p> &mdash; Jayne Miller (@jemillerwbal) <a href="https://twitter.com/jemillerwbal/status/593614899340824576">April 30, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en">We have reported that when van stopped to pick up 2nd prisoner, sources say, Gray was unresponsive. No evidence banging head against van</p> &mdash; Jayne Miller (@jemillerwbal) <a href="https://twitter.com/jemillerwbal/status/593616066091286529">April 30, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>And there's another reason to be skeptical. Information that comes out of jails is notoriously unreliable, for the simple reason that anyone in jail has a real incentive to get out; cooperating with the people who determine when they get out is an obvious way to score points. <a href="http://www.pewtrusts.org/~/media/legacy/uploadedfiles/wwwpewtrustsorg/reports/death_penalty_reform/Jailhouse20snitch20testimony20policy20briefpdf.pdf" target="_blank">This</a> report from the Pew Charitable Trust walks through the conflicts in detail. According to the Innocence Project, <a href="http://www.innocenceproject.org/causes-wrongful-conviction/informants" target="_blank">15 percent</a> of wrongful convictions that are eventually overturned by DNA testing originally rested on information from a jailhouse informant. Two years ago in California, for instance, a federal court <a href="http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jan/10/local/la-me-skidrow-stabber-20120110" target="_blank">overturned</a> the conviction of an alleged serial killer known as the "Skid Row Stabber" because the conviction rested on information from an inmate dismissed as a "habitual liar."</p> <p>Or maybe the witness in Baltimore is right&mdash;that happens too!&mdash;and what we thought we knew about the Freddie Gray case was wrong. But the department isn't doing much to quiet the skeptics. It <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/news/results-freddie-gray-investigation-public-baltimore/" target="_blank">announced</a> Wednesday that it will not make public the full results of its investigation into Gray's death, "because if there is a decision to charge in any event by the state's attorney's office, the integrity of that investigation has to be protected."</p></body></html> MoJo Crime and Justice Top Stories Thu, 30 Apr 2015 16:49:36 +0000 Tim Murphy 274551 at http://www.motherjones.com Obamacare Requires Birth Control Coverage. But Some Insurers Are Ignoring the Law. http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/04/obamacare-requires-better-coverage-insurance-companies-are-ignoring-law <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Ladies, if you've gone to the doctor in recent years expecting your contraception or ultrasounds to be free, only to be slammed with a co-pay or other charge from your insurer, it's likely your insurer is violating the Affordable Care Act.</p> <p>Thanks to Obamacare, insurance companies are now required to provide women with a host of coverage options, from free access to all FDA-approved birth control methods to preventative care to maternity care. But just because it's a legal requirement doesn't mean it's happening. According a <a href="http://www.nwlc.org/sites/default/files/pdfs/stateofcoverage2015final.pdf" target="_blank">new report</a> released Tuesday by the National Women's Law Center, insurance plans are not providing all the benefits women won under Obamacare.</p> <p>NWLC found many plans that were not actually providing cost-free access to the full range of birth control options required under the ACA. Of the more than 100 insurance providers surveyed, NWLC discovered thirty-three insurers in 13 states are not complying with birth control coverage requirement.</p> <p>The compliance issues went well beyond birth control. The report, which surveyed plans for sale on state and federally-run insurance marketplaces in 15 states over two years, found violations "related to maternity care, birth control, breast-feeding support and supplies, genetic testing, well-woman visits, prescription drug coverage, care related to gender transition for transgender individuals, chronic pain treatment, and certain pre-existing conditions," <a href="http://www.nwlc.org/press-release/new-reports-call-out-insurance-companies-violating-affordable-care-act%E2%80%99s-women%E2%80%99s-healt" target="_blank">according</a> to NWLC. Due to the sheer number of violations the group found, it predicts the problem is "systemic nationwide."</p> <p>The report calls on state and federal regulators to more closely monitor the plans being sold in the individual marketplaces. The report also proposes that insurance plans be made open to public comment so that advocates can review the plans and point out any violations before regulators certify the plans.</p> <p>In another <a href="http://kff.org/private-insurance/report/coverage-of-contraceptive-services-a-review-of-health-insurance-plans-in-five-states/" target="_blank">report</a> released earlier this month, the Kaiser Family Foundation reviewed 20 carriers' compliance with the ACA's birth-control mandate and also found violations. Of the 20 carriers Kaiser reviewed, only 11 provided cost-free coverage of the emergency birth control pill ella, which has a longer window of effectiveness than the standard progestin-based Plan B, <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/11/plan-b-morning-after-pill-weight-limit-pounds" target="_blank">particularly</a> for women with a higher body mass index. Two of the carriers didn't cover ella at all.</p></body></html> MoJo Health Care Wed, 29 Apr 2015 21:30:56 +0000 Pema Levy 274511 at http://www.motherjones.com Ruth Bader Ginsburg Shuts Down Gay-Marriage Challengers http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/04/ruth-bader-ginsburg-shuts-down-gay-marriage-challengers <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>As the Supreme Court started to hear oral arguments to <em><a href="http://www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2015/04/opponents-same-sex-marriage-claim-science-their-side" target="_blank">Obergefell v. Hodges</a></em>&mdash;the historic case that could determine the legality of gay marriage bans&mdash;on Tuesday, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg delivered <a href="http://www.supremecourt.gov/oral_arguments/argument_transcripts/14-556q1_7l48.pdf" target="_blank">quite the perfect response </a>to her same-sex-marriage opponents.</p> <p>Back in February, the 82-year-old justice expressed her optimism that the court will eventually <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/02/ruth-bader-ginsburg-believes-americans-are-ready-accept-scotus-gay-marriage-ruling" target="_blank">rule in favor of gay marriage</a>, citing the evolution in "people's attitudes" on the issue "has been enormous" in recent years. Although the rest of the court appeared <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/29/us/supreme-court-same-sex-marriage.html?_r=0" target="_blank">deeply divided</a> on Tuesday, judging by the fact that even <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/04/marriage-equality-supreme-court" target="_blank">anti-gay activists</a> are expecting gay marriage will ultimately win, we're hoping to see Ginsburg's prediction become a reality soon.</p> <p>Below are some of the same-sex-marriage arguments and her responses to each.</p> <p><strong>Argument: </strong>The court does not have legal right to change a "millennia" of tradition.</p> <p><strong>RBG's response:</strong> "Marriage today is not what it was under the common law tradition, under the civil law tradition. Marriage was a relationship of a dominant male to a subordinate female. That ended as a result of this court's decision in 1982, when Louisiana's Head and Master Rule was struck down. Would that be a choice that state should be allowed to have? To cling to marriage the way it once was?"</p> <p><strong>Argument: </strong>The institution of marriage is inherently linked to a couple's ability to procreate.</p> <p><strong>RBG's response:</strong> "Suppose a couple, 70-year-old couple, comes in and they want to get married? You don't have to ask them any questions. You know they are not going to have any children."</p> <p><strong>Argument: </strong>Gay marriage "impinges on the state" and takes benefits away from straight couples.</p> <p><strong>RBG's response: </strong>"How could that be, because all of the incentives, all of the benefits of marriage affords would still be available. So you're not taking away anything from heterosexual couples. They would have the very same incentive to marry, all the benefits that come with marriage that they do now."</p> <p><strong>Argument:</strong> Legal gay marriage has never been a possibility for most of history. Why now?</p> <p><strong>RBG's response: </strong>"[Same-sex couples] wouldn't be asking for this relief if the law of marriage was what it was a millennium ago. I mean, it wasn't possible. Same-sex unions would not have opted into the pattern of marriage, which was a relationship, a dominant and a subordinate relationship. Yes, it was marriage between a man and a woman, but the man decided where the couple would be domiciled; it was her obligation to follow him.</p> <p>There was a change in the institution of marriage to make it egalitarian when it wasn't egalitarian. And same-sex unions wouldn't&mdash;wouldn't fit into what marriage was once."</p></body></html> MoJo Civil Liberties Gay Rights Supreme Court Wed, 29 Apr 2015 21:02:37 +0000 Inae Oh 274526 at http://www.motherjones.com Nigeria Says It's Rescued Nearly 300 Women and Girls From Boko Haram http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/04/nigerian-troops-rescue-nearly-300-women-and-girls <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>Two-hundred girls and 93 women have been rescued from a Boko Haram stronghold in the Sambisa Forest, the Nigerian Armed Forces <a href="https://twitter.com/DefenceInfoNG" target="_blank">said</a> Tuesday. They could not&nbsp;immediately confirm if the girls rescued were among those captured in Chibok last year&mdash;<em>TIME</em> is <a href="http://time.com/3839035/nigeria-boko-haram-girls-rescue/" target="_blank">reporting that, indeed, they are not</a>&mdash;however, writing on Twitter, the NAF said only, "the freed persons are now being screened and profiled. We will bring you details later."</p> <p>In April 2014, Boko Haram kidnapped more than 250 girls from the Chibok boarding school in northern Nigeria, sparking global outrage and the social media campaign #BringBackOurGirls. Dozens of the girls have <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2015/04/28/world/africa/ap-af-nigeria-kidnapped-girls.html?_r=0" target="_blank">escaped</a> since their capture&mdash;<a href="http://features.hrw.org/features/HRW_2014_report/Those_Terrible_Weeks_in_Their_Camp/index.html" target="_blank">telling of horrors including rape and forced marriage</a>&mdash;while the rest have remained in captivity.</p> <p>Boko Haram, a militant Islamist group whose name in the local Housa language translates loosely to "<a href="http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-13809501" target="_blank">Western education is forbidden</a>," has terrorized northern Nigeria with bombings, assassinations, and kidnappings since 2009 and recently <a href="http://www.newrepublic.com/article/121340/boko-harams-pledge-allegiance-isis-doesnt-mean-anything" target="_blank">pledged allegiance</a> to ISIS. According to an Amnesty International <a href="https://www.amnesty.org/en/articles/news/2015/04/nigeria-abducted-women-and-girls-forced-to-join-boko-haram-attacks/?nl=nytnow&amp;em_pos=large&amp;emc=edit_nn_20150414" target="_blank">report</a> released this month, Boko Haram has kidnapped more than 2,000 women and girls since the beginning of 2014 and has killed at least 5,500 civilians.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p></body></html> MoJo Human Rights International Tue, 28 Apr 2015 22:20:41 +0000 Bryan Schatz 274451 at http://www.motherjones.com Rand Paul Blames the Baltimore Riots on Absentee Fathers http://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2015/04/rand-paul-baltimore-riots-absentee-fathers <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/loose.dtd"> <html><body><p>As one of a growing number of GOP 2016 wannabes, Sen. Rand Paul has tried to sell himself as the best Republican candidate to reach out to African-American voters. He's talked about the need for criminal justice reform. During the protests in Ferguson, Missouri, he called for demilitarizing police forces. Yet his response to the riots in Baltimore show that he has a long way to go. <a href="http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/rand-paul-freddie-gray-baltimore-morals" target="_blank">During an interview</a> with conservative radio host Laura Ingraham on Tuesday, the Kentucky senator blamed the turmoil not on the police brutality that resulted in the death of Freddie Gray, but on absentee fathers and a breakdown in families.</p> <p></p><div id="mininav" class="inline-subnav"> <!-- header content --> <div id="mininav-header-content"> <div id="mininav-header-image"> <img src="/files/images/motherjones_mininav/baltimorecops2.jpg" width="220" border="0"></div> <div id="mininav-header-text"> <p class="mininav-header-text" style="margin: 0; padding: 0.75em; font-size: 11px; font-weight: bold; line-height: 1.2em; background-color: rgb(221, 221, 221);"> More coverage of the protests in Baltimore. </p> </div> </div> <!-- linked stories --> <div id="mininav-linked-stories"> <ul><span id="linked-story-274411"> <li><a href="/politics/2015/04/how-baltimore-riots-began-mondawmin-purge"> Eyewitnesses: The Baltimore Riots Didn't Start the Way You Think</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274366"> <li><a href="/politics/2015/04/watch-president-obama-talk-about-whats-happening-baltimore"> Obama: It's About Decades of Inequality</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274361"> <li><a href="/mojo/2015/04/rand-paul-baltimore-riots-absentee-fathers"> Rand Paul: Blame Absentee Fathers</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274496"> <li><a href="/politics/2015/04/what-martin-luther-king-thought-about-urban-riots"> What MLK Really Thought About Riots</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274351"> <li><a href="/mojo/2015/04/following-riots-baltimore-residents-unite-clean-city"> Photos: Residents Help Clean Up</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274326"> <li><a href="/mixed-media/2015/04/baltimore-orioles-freddie-gray"> Orioles Exec: It's Inequality, Stupid</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274391"> <li><a href="/politics/2015/04/baltimore-teens-police"> These Teens Aren't Waiting Around for Someone Else to Fix Their City </a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274386"> <li><a href="/mixed-media/2015/04/athletes-celebrities-call-end-violence-baltimore"> Ray Lewis: "Violence Is Not the Answer"</a></li> </span> <span id="linked-story-274331"> <li><a href="/mojo/2015/04/bloods-and-crips-baltimore-protests"> Bloods and Crips Want "Nobody to Get Hurt"</a></li> </span> </ul></div> <!-- footer content --> </div> <p>"It's depressing, it's sad, it's scary. I came through the train on Baltimore last night, I'm glad the train didn't stop," Paul said, laughing at his own unfunny joke. He then pontificated of the unrest: "The thing is that really there's so many things we can talk about, it's something we talk about not in the immediate aftermath but over time: the breakdown of the family structure, the lack of fathers, the lack of sort of a moral code in our society. And this isn't just a racial thing, it goes across racial boundaries, but we do have problems in our country."</p> <p>By the way, a week ago, Paul's 22-year-old son William was <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2015/04/22/rand-pauls-son-dui/26213657/" target="_blank">cited</a> for driving while intoxicated after he was in a car crash.</p> <p>Listen to the audio of the interview, recorded by Media Matters (hat tip to <a href="http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/rand-paul-freddie-gray-baltimore-morals" target="_blank">TPM</a>):</p> <p><iframe frameborder="no" height="450" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/202955758&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;visual=true" width="100%"></iframe></p> <p>Paul wasn't the only presidential aspirant to comment on the riots. Hillary Clinton sent out a tweet on Monday calling for peace but supporting the protestors who were upset by Gray's death.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"> <p>Tonight I am praying for peace &amp; safety for all in Baltimore, &amp; for Freddie Gray's family - his death is a tragedy that demands answers. -H</p> &mdash; Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) <a href="https://twitter.com/HillaryClinton/status/592881927725658112">April 28, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Former Baltimore resident and likely presidential candidate Ben Carson pleaded with parents in the city to keep their children away from the disorder. "I urge parents, grandparents and guardians to please take control of your children and do not allow them to be exposed to the dangers of uncontrolled agitators on the streets," Carson said in a <a href="http://dailycaller.com/2015/04/28/ben-carson-pleads-with-people-of-baltimore-please-take-control-of-your-children/" target="_blank">statement</a>.</p> <p>Texas Sen. Ted Cruz <a href="http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/04/28/sen-ted-cruz-on-baltimore-riots-today-families-are-scared/" target="_blank">lamented</a> the school closures across the city. "No man, woman, or child should fear for his or her safety in America&mdash;not in their schools, not in their neighborhoods, not in their cities&mdash;but today families are scared," the GOP contender said.</p> <p>But long-shot Democratic candidate Martin O'Malley went further than just a simple statement. O'Malley, the former mayor of Baltimore, <a href="http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2015/04/28/martin-omalley-quits-european-tour-to-return-to-riot-stricken-baltimore/" target="_blank">canceled</a> a string of paid speeches in Europe to return home.</p></body></html> MoJo 2016 Elections Elections Hillary Clinton Rand Paul Ted Cruz The Right Baltimore Protests Tue, 28 Apr 2015 18:15:09 +0000 Patrick Caldwell 274361 at http://www.motherjones.com