fresh voices from the front lines of change







Trump's Racist Outburst Threatens DACA Deal

Immigration Talks Muddled Amid Trump’s Vulgar Comments. WSJ: "President Donald Trump questioned why the U.S. would admit people from 'shithole countries' Thursday, roiling discussions over a bipartisan Senate deal to protect young undocumented immigrants. Mr. Trump made the comments at a private White House immigration meeting that included a bipartisan group of lawmakers, asking why the U.S. would want to admit people from Africa, the source of many diversity lottery applicants, according to two people briefed on the meeting."

Government Shutdown One Week Away

GOP leaders feel squeeze as shutdown threat nears. Politico: "Concerns are mounting over whether GOP leaders can wrangle the votes to avoid a government shutdown next week — with Republicans feeling pinched on the right and the left. Defense hawks in the GOP, who say short-term spending bills cripple the military, are threatening to vote against another stopgap without a long-term deal in hand to increase Pentagon funding. Progressive groups, meanwhile, are pressuring Democrats to oppose any government funding measure without an accord to shield more than 700,000 Dreamers from deportation. The resistance from both ends of the political spectrum is making GOP leaders anxious, senior Republican sources say. They have to land two major, controversial bipartisan agreements in the next seven days — one on spending, one on immigration — or face a potential shutdown that would underscore their dysfunction and threaten their already fragile majorities."

More Layoffs at Indiana Plant Trump Swore To Save

More layoffs at Indiana factory Trump made deal to keep open. Reuters: "More than 200 workers clocked in for their final shifts on Thursday at Carrier Corp. in Indianapolis in the latest round of layoffs at a plant President Donald Trump toured in December 2016 to trumpet a deal to save jobs and prevent its closure. Under pressure from the newly-elected Trump, Carrier and its parent company United Technologies Corp, dropped its plan in late 2016 to close the plant and move 1,400 factory jobs to Mexico. In return, the company received $7 million in state tax breaks to stay in Indiana. Trump praised the deal, under which he said 1,100 jobs would be saved, as a model of how he would push American companies to keep jobs in the country. Trump did save hundreds of positions at Carrier, but manufacturing workers who now face unemployment say they feel let down by a deal that started out as a presidential campaign rallying cry but turned out to be less than it appeared."

Texas Illegally Denied Students Special Education

Texas illegally excluded thousands from special education, Federal officials say. NYT: "For years, Texas education officials illegally led schools across the state to deny therapy, tutoring and counseling to tens of thousands of children with disabilities, the federal government said Thursday. In a letter to the Texas Education Agency, which oversees education in the state, regulators from the federal Department of Education said the state agency’s decision to set a “target” for the maximum percentage of students who should receive special education services had violated federal laws requiring schools to serve all students with disabilities."

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Why America’s School Funding Crisis Is A Race And Gender Justice Issue. Jeff Bryant: "Stories about freezing classrooms in Baltimore and a teacher being handcuffed and arrested for asking a question to her school board in Louisiana reveal why the nation's school funding crisis is a race and gender justice issue."

Fat Cat Tuesday: A Commemoration of CEO Excess. Leo Gerard: "Fat Tuesday is Mardi Gras, a day of revelry, gluttony, intoxication and showers of shiny plastic beads. Fat Cat Tuesday is the day – Jan. 2, 2018 – on which the boards of directors of America’s biggest corporations handed their CEOs more money than those same CEOs would deign to pay their workers for an entire year of labor, 260 days. It was a day of revelry, gluttony and private jets for CEOs and worthless shiny plastic beads for workers."

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