Progressive Breakfast for September 23

Morning Message

Solutions To The Teacher Shortage Crisis Even Republicans Will Like

...we don’t have to wait for the federal government. Republicans should love that many efforts to address teacher shortages can happen at state and local levels of government ... The [Learning Policy Institute] report offers three broad recommendations to address shortages through policy changes related to teacher compensation, distribution and, retention. These broad recommendations are broken down further into more focused efforts that could be applied at local levels ... Of course, the worst way to address the teacher shortage crisis is to lower the qualifications for instructors and reduce the quality of teaching. Unfortunately, many states are taking that path...

Calls For Charlotte Video Release

Demands rise for release of Charlotte police shooting video. NYT: “There is currently no law in North Carolina that regulates the public release of body camera video. Instead, each local law enforcement agency makes its own rules. The new state law [taking effect Oct. 1] maintains that body camera video is not a public record that can be released through freedom of information requests. It also says that law enforcement agencies can only show such recordings to people who are seen or heard on them … Public release would require a court order…”

“Donald Trump’s Crime Policies Might Hit Minorities Harder, Experts Say” in NYT: “Mr. Trump’s policy prescriptions have stirred concern among some experts in national security and law enforcement, including prominent Republicans who warn that Mr. Trump’s agenda could undermine public safety by generating a backlash in communities that the police and intelligence officials rely upon for cooperation…”

Clinton Backs Estate Tax Hike

Clinton proposes 65% estate tax. WSJ: “Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton would levy a 65% tax on the largest estates and make it harder for wealthy people to pass appreciated assets to their heirs without paying taxes … In all, Mrs. Clinton would increase taxes by about $1.5 trillion over the next decade, increasing federal revenue by about 4%, though that new burden would be concentrated on relatively few households.”

Trump bets on coal and fracking. NYT: “Mr. Trump’s energy promises to those attending a corporate conference contained a fundamentally incompatible concept, as expanding the exploration of natural gas is the surest way to hurt coal production … Energy experts said Mr. Trump’s pledges on gas and coal pandered to his audience while showing a lack of basic knowledge about energy markets.”

GOP Ditches Flint

No Flint aid in GOP bill to keep government open. The Hill: “Republicans on Thursday presented what they said was a clean bill stripped of conservative policy riders, such as language blocking the administration from ceding authority over the Internet … But it does not include aid for the community of Flint … They think if Democrats try to block the funding bill, they’ll get blamed for derailing legislation to keep the government operating, fight Zika and help thousands of displaced people in Louisiana. Democrats say they’re getting jammed and vow to fight back … The Senate will vote at 2:15 pm Tuesday. If the motion fails, negotiators will have to resume work three days and a few hours away from a possible shutdown.”

Breakfast Sides

Education Department strips for-profit college accreditor of its authority. US News: “The Department of Education officially stripped the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools – the largest accrediting agency of for-profit colleges and universities – of its authority Thursday, handing down the final blow in a long controversy over the council’s ability to be an effective watchdog for students and billions of taxpayer dollars … ACICS was the accrediting agency for now-shuttered Corinthian Colleges and ITT Technical Institute campuses.”

Additional Obama appointee added to court for case over Obama climate rules. The Hill: “The addition of Judge Nina Pillard tips the scales further toward Democratic appointees for the case, which comes before the Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit next week. Six of the judges now hearing the oral arguments were appointed by Democrats and four by Republicans … Pillard had recused herself previously from the case for a reason the court never explained.”

House Dems join with tribal leaders to oppose Dakota Access Pipeline. The Hill: “…Democrats said they were heartened by a promised Obama administration review of Dakota Access and a court order blocking its construction in North Dakota. But they said more needs to be done to stop the project … ‘We are calling on the Army Corps of Engineers to withdraw the exiting permits for the Dakota Access Pipeline and initiate a transparent permitting process …,’ Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.) said.”