Thursday, September 21, 2017

CONYERS: CBC Foundation Legislative Conference On Jobs

Jobs, Justice, Peace.

Conyers speaks on Martin Luther King, Jr., how Coretta Scott King continued his work in jobs initiatives, and the need for the Federal Reserve to create jobs.

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Kids For Cash Did Not Have The Opportunity To Make A Plea

Boy, some people have all the nerve.

The kids he sent to his buddy's juvenile delinquent facility did not get the opportunity to make a plea for freedom, particularly when they were being drugged and tortured.

One youth even committed suicide, and he thinks he can plea his way to release?

I wonder how many parents had their parental rights terminated, and their children adopted out because of his greed.

Kids for Cash judge makes plea for freedom

A federal judge held a hearing Thursday on the latest appeal of ex-Luzerne County Judge Mark A. Ciavarella Jr., who is serving a 28-year prison term for his convictions in the 'Kids for Cash' scandal.

Prosecutors said Ciavarella and fellow county Judge Michael Conahan received nearly $3 million in kickback payments from developers of private developers of juvenile detention centers and improperly channeled juvenile offenders to those centers, often without appointing attorneys to represent the youths.

Ciavarella, who is trying to void a 28-year federal prison term that he contends is essentially a life sentence, is arguing that his original lawyer's failure to try to invoke a statute of limitations claim was fatal to his defense at trial.

During Thursday's hearing, prosecutors, including Assistant U.S. Attorney William Houser, challenged that assertion. They argued that Ciavarella's convictions were valid because he committed crimes, including the filing of false financial reports, that fell within the statute of limitations.
The focus was on Ciavarella's conviction on an honest wire services mail fraud charge tied to his receipt in 2003 of a $997,600 "finder's fee" for assistance in building a juvenile detention center in his county.

Wilson argued that the statute of limitations should have barred prosecutors from charging Ciavarella for any offenses that supposedly occurred before September 2004.

She asked Ciavarella's trial lawyer, Al Flora, if the statute of limitations argument could have been raised at trial without undercutting the defense's main contention that the judge had not committed any crime.

"That is not inconsistent with arguing that there were no bribes or kickbacks," Flora replied.
Conner told prosecutors to provide written post-hearing arguments on the statute of limitations issue and the matter of, "Am I constrained to find the trial counsel's performance was defective?" Also, they are to address whether the defense's failure to use a statute of limitations defense likely altered the trial's outcome.

Conner told Wilson to address prosecution claims that Ciavarella committed crimes related to the 2003 finder's fee - such as filing allegedly false financial interest reports - that did fall within the statute of limitations.

Ciavarella has already won one round on appeal. The U.S. Court of Appeals vacated one of his mail fraud convictions on statute of limitations grounds in 2013, but left his overall sentence intact.

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CONYERS: CBC Foundation Legislative Conference On Medicare For All

Because #Obamacare Alone Isn’t Enough.


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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Meet Judge Daniel Cahill: Kansas Has A "Kids For Cash" Scheme Going On

Recently, one of my fans posed this question to me:
Kansas 29th District Court Judge
Daniel Cahill,
Presiding over child welfare cases

How can a judge sit on a contractors panel ???

With the swiftness of godspeed, I retorted,

Just ask Maura Corrigan!

Just in case you are not familiar with the "Kids For Cash" scandal where former Luzerne County, Pennsylvania Judge Mark Ciavarella, Jr. was busted sending kids to his buddy's, Robert Mercie, the builder of PA Child Care private juvenile detention facility,  for any reason he could conjure up, like, not liking the way a kid looked, and, in return, where he took kiddie kickbacks, well, I though I would remind you.

Now, why would I bring up such an horrific memory of children being tortured for profit in the privatized child welfare, well, it is because I want the world to remember the legacy of Madame Maura Corrigan (said, always in a high British accent).

See, "The Madame" was the one who put together that Pew Foster Care Research Group which promoted the act of judicial lobbying, whereby judges would sit on the boards of child welfare organizations to "maximize their revenues".

Kansas pushed a bill against judicial lobbying, but, of course, it was crushed.

Taken from the embedded document, below, my fan raised serious concerns with the veracity of the quote:
"Cahill’s dedication to children and families runs deep. Each December he serves on the judges’ panel at the KVC Resource Family Conference and explains to foster and adoptive families the whys and hows behind some of his decisions."
"He has NEVER ruled in favor of a single solitary NATURAL parent." stated my fan.

"There is no money in it.", I said.

So, that leaves us to identify, or rather unearth, as judges are typically not mandated to disclose campaign finances and personal business ventures, his financial activities.

Well, according to State of Kansas Secretary of State, Governmental Ethics Commission, Cahill has not filed any reports on his campaign finance since 2008.

But hey, what does the Office of the Governor know....or care?

09/23/2008CAHILL DANIEL 12342 Donahoo RD 
Kansas City 66109
07/24/2008CAHILL DANIEL 12342 Donahoo RD 
Kansas City 66109
03/09/2016CAHILL DANIEL 

03/02/2016CAHILL DANIEL 

11/10/2009CAHILL DANIEL 

10/27/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

10/27/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

10/27/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

09/03/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

07/28/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

07/28/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

02/08/2008CAHILL DANIEL 

10/25/2004CAHILL DANIEL 

10/01/2004CAHILL DANIEL 

07/26/2004CAHILL DANIEL 

05/13/2004CAHILL DANIEL 


Stay tuned because I smell a Kansas "Kids For Cash" fraud scheme of someone trying to slime his way into a federal appointment....which shall never happen.

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Foster Care Bonds: Making Child Slavery, Sexy Again

How can one garner the best interests of a child?

Invest in tiny human bonds!

Humans, particularly the products off The Poors, have always been a commodity for sale, oops, because it is illegal to sell people and now-a-days, we charge service fees.

They are already selling children on the Wall Street and there is a strong movement to invest in social impact bonds, so why not let the little guy makes some side money and invest in foster children?

The way the U.S. has set up its financial system, it is very easy for a bank to leverage a loan on the trust of a child only because a child is still considered property pursuant to chattel law.

If the loan goes bad, one can always do a property quiet title, or rather what is compassionately called, termination of parental rights, wiping the debt with a reissuance of a new Social Security Number.

This has been going on for years so the financial institutions conjured the concept of why not make slavery sexy, again?

Always remember, the 13th Amendment has an "exception" to the new human currency.

Foster care bonds is just another privatization hustle to make money speculating in human capital.

Invest in Foster Children: A Radical New Idea

Similar to War Bonds, everyone would be funding the success of a child.

article imageFoster care has reached an impasse. We have found ourselves in a meta-crisis, where the root crisis is how we think. Albert Einstein famously remarked, “The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them.” In recent writings, I have proposed some truly radical, yet revolutionary ideas. One idea was the creation of an entirely new field and profession: Bachelor of Science in Foster Parenting.

In order to execute these radical ideas, we first need a new source of funding. For this, we can look to the past as everything that is old is new. First, let’s take a look at an old, yet successful approach – War Bonds. We will then discuss how Government Bonds work. Lastly, we will discuss the creation of the Foster Care Bond, where you have the unique opportunity to be fully invested in the success of a foster child.

Buy Your War Bonds!
government bondsDuring World War II, War Bonds were promoted by movie stars who toured the country. They used slogans such as, “If you can’t go across . . .  Come across!” Approximately $185 billion in bonds were sold. Imagine the impact if we were to do this today. Think of Britney Spears or Kid Rock touring the country rallying support to purchase bonds. Additionally, one of the largest advantages of War Bonds was the fact that the money was essentially recycled back into the U.S. economy after World War II.

What are Government Bonds?
So, what are bonds? Essentially, there are three types of bonds: Government, Municipal, and Corporate. They are used to raise funds to issue to whoever wants to buy them. They are similar to stocks, yet bonds are more like a loan in that you are lending money to an organization. In return, the organization promises to pay interest.
Our focus here is Government Bonds. See below for a quick look at Government Bonds.
checkboxes 1
Now let’s take a look at U.S. Savings Bonds.
checkboxes 2
So, how can we use Government Bonds to fund foster care?
Invest in Foster Care
Let me start with a question: Can you name one place in the U.S. that is getting foster care right? Really think about it . . . anything come to mind? People are upset with the failures in the foster care system, and they should be. But what is anyone doing about it? Who is stepping forward to be the voice of the voiceless? Not many, but there could be.

I truly believe my radical ideas can work, but they will need an even more radical idea to fund them. If we created a new type of bond, similar to the approach taken in 1990 with the Education Savings Bond, we could create a way to fund foster care. One that allows everyone to be personally invested in the success of the system.

Similar to War Bonds, everyone would be funding the success of a child. Think of the phenomenal success this would bring to a child and the system by simply purchasing a Foster Care Bond!
Let me emphatically conclude with this: There is no way this will work with the current foster care system. The system is operating so poorly, I can almost guarantee the money invested would be used for the wrong initiatives and would be poorly accounted for. This is why we must scrap the current system and begin with a new model. This is one of the few examples where we would be better off recreating the wheel.

Let’s imagine for a moment that we could hit the reset button and start from scratch. By simply investing in a Foster Care Bond, we would be able to adequately fund this new system. The entire country would have the opportunity to be personally invested in the success of every foster child.
“Every valuable human being must be a radical and a rebel, for what he must aim at is to make things better than they are.” – Niels Bohr

Jamie Schwandt

Dr. Jamie Schwandt (Ed.D.) is an author and former foster child. He is a TV show host, motivational speaker, lean six sigma master black belt, statistics professor, and a major in the U.S. Army. Dr. Schwandt is the author of the books Finding Your Hero (2015) and Succeeding as a Foster Child (2014). He is the host of the inspiring TV show Dreaming Big and is a fitness expert with a unique mindset for positive growth. You can find his published work herehis websiteFacebook, and Twitter.

CONYERS: Judiciary Braintrust: Organizing The Resistance - Civil Rights In The Trump Era

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
I am glad to be the honorary host of the Judiciary Braintrust at this 2017 Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Annual Legislative Conference (ALC).

Please join me on Friday, September 22, 2017 by clicking here.

Criminal Justice Reform: Making America Accountable for Black Lives in Conjunction with NOBLE

Friday, September 22, 2017 from 9:00 AM - 10:45 AM in Room 147B
Recent events demonstrate that racial profiling remains a divisive issue that strikes at the very foundation of our democracy. The issues of race and reasonable suspicion of criminal conduct are so closely linked in law enforcement practices that profiling has an impact on virtually every area of criminal justice policy. From the prison pipeline to clemency and over-criminalization, race has a continuing impact on policy development in the criminal justice system. This panel will feature experts from the judiciary, law enforcement, and the advocacy community to provide an overview of the continuing challenges in juvenile justice, drug and sentencing policy reform efforts.

Voting: Engaging Activism Beyond the Ballot Box (Sponsored by League of Conservation Voters)

Friday, September 22, 2017 from 11:00 AM - 12:45 PM in Room 147B
The continuing attacks on voting rights has evolved new voter suppression strategies that will require novel strategies to protect African-American political interests. This forum will assemble voices from across the community spectrum to explore issue development and coalition building for greater activism from the local to federal level.

Haiti: Empowerment Beyond Our Borders

Friday, September 22, 2017 from 1:00 PM - 2:45 PM in Room 147B
This issue forum will focus on efforts to support and build the Haitian economy and community with an emphasis on housing, education, and economic development. This panel will feature experts from the non-governmental organizations, the advocacy community, the U.S. government, and the Government of Haiti.

HR 40: Deconstruction of Institutionalized Racism

Friday, September 22, 2017 from 3:00 PM - 4:45 PM in Room 147B
Since its introduction in 1989, H.R. 40, the Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act, has sought to further a national dialogue on the plight of Africans-Americans in the context of slavery, Jim Crow, and other legally sanctioned forms of discrimination. With a renewed dialogue on the issue of reparations, both on the domestic and international levels, this legislation presents a real opportunity to create an official government-based discussion. This Braintrust will bring together commentators from a variety of positions to explore strategies for broadening the debate on reparations in an increasingly “post-racial” society.

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Child Welfare Fraud Gets Its First Grand Jury?

Relax, this is just another example of Medicaid fraud in child welfare.

What caught my eye was the fact that there was a grand jury.

We need to bring back the right of grand jury, or just establish it in child welfare fraud allegations.

What is a grand jury?

It is a group of, typically, 12, with more in reserve, based upon the Magna Carta, but what is most interesting is that you cannot serve on a grand jury if you are a convicted felon and whose name cannot be found on a property tax rolls.

In the world of child welfare, this means that the likelihood of "The Poors" (always said with clinched teeth) participating on a grand jury is slim.

The Poors are typically the ones who are having their children legally kidnapped by CPS for being poor.

In child welfare proceedings, there are no juries, hell, there is no parallel jurisprudence because child welfare workers have the right to lie.

The Poors, well, those who have the wherewithal to approach law enforcement to even get a grand jury convened, have been successful in the issuance of an indictment on a child welfare case worker for fraud.

In trial, there will be the petit jury, which I do not believe hails from the same restrictive criteria of a grand jury, but that is an entirely different rabbit hole.

The Poors, whistleblowers as they are the original sources, are the only ones who have first hand knowledge of fraud in child welfare.

Now, let us sit back and see if the Kansas Attorney General Medicaid Fraud Control Unit is going to go after the fraudulent billing in these cases, but I would not hold my breath as there exists substantial conflicts of interests, oh, like, Medicaid fraud in child welfare,


A grand jury has returned a 22-count indictment against Richelle Schultz, a former Jefferson County Department of Human Services caseworker accused of falsifying information.

Schultz, whose job was to investigate complaints of child abuse and neglect, has been charged with 12 counts of attempt to influence a public servant and 10 counts of forgery, the district attorney's office said in a news release.

Schultz was employed with JeffCO between December 2015 and July 2016. Schultz' offenses are alleged to have occurred between April 30, 2016 and June 30, 2016.

After leaving the job in July 2016, a review of Schultz' work determined she had entered false information into the department's database in 12 cases. In the 12 cases Schultz said she had interviewed the victim, family and/or witnesses and a later investigation showed she had not.

The indictment was returned on Sept. 1, 2017. Schultz turned herself into the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office on September 15 and and posted a $16,000 bond on Sept. 16.
Her next court date is slated for Oct. 2.

Oh, by the way, entering false information into the States' child welfare databases, and the courts, is pro forma.

I wonder how many parental rights were terminated and children adopted out because of this?

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Saturday, September 16, 2017

Mueller meets with House Judiciary chairman, top Democrat

WASHINGTON — The chairman and top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee have met
U.S. House Judiciary Committee Chairmen
Goodlatte & Conyers
with Special Counsel Bob Mueller. That’s according to the committee, which says they met Thursday.

Mueller is investigating allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 election and any possible links to President Donald Trump’s campaign.

Several congressional committees are also investigating, but Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia has said his panel will defer to Mueller. Goodlatte has said the panel will exercise oversight over Mueller as appropriate, and that Mueller should not be impeded by politics.

Goodlatte has also called on the Justice Department to appoint a second special counsel to investigate “unaddressed issues” related to the 2016 election and former Obama administration officials, including Hillary Clinton.

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The six-month delay in initiating this process does no justice for these DREAMers and the families who will be torn apart.

And the Trump Administration’s pretext for this action—DACA’s supposed unconstitutionality—simply doesn’t carry water.

I stand with DREAMers & call on House Republicans' Leaders to pass the DREAMAct now.


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CONYERS: Ahead Of Constitution Day, Conyers Introduces Resolution Urging Congress And The States To Reform The Electoral College

Washington, D.C. Sunday’s  ~ Constitution Day, House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) introduced H. Con. Res. 79, a resolution expressing the sense of Congress that it and the States should consider a constitutional amendment to reform the Electoral College and to establish a process for electing the President and Vice President by a national popular vote.  The resolution also encourages the states to further their efforts to form an interstate compact to award their Electoral College votes to the national popular vote winner.  Rep. Conyers released the following statement upon the bill’s introduction: 

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
“This Sunday, September 17, is Constitution Day, which marks the 230th anniversary of the Philadelphia Convention’s approval of the Constitution.  We should rightly celebrate the day that the Framers endorsed the basic framework of our democratic system of government enshrined in our Nation’s governing charter.  Yet, we should also use this day as an opportunity to reflect on the fact that the Constitution still retains the Electoral College, a fundamentally anti-democratic process for electing our Nation’s highest federal officeholders.

“On five occasions in our history, the Electoral College has permitted the national popular vote winner to lose the presidential election, including the most recent election, where Hillary Clinton won nearly 3 million more votes than Electoral College winner Donald Trump. This occurs because a presidential candidate needs only 270 electoral votes and 48 states award their electoral votes on a “winner-take-all” basis.  As a result, the Electoral College creates perverse incentives for candidates that further distort the presidential campaign process in undemocratic ways.

“For example, the Electoral College encourages candidates to focus their campaign efforts on only a handful of so-called swing states.  During the last presidential campaign, for example, both major party candidates largely bypassed three of the four states with the largest populations and skipped campaigning in 12 of the 13 smallest states as well.  

“Additionally, the Electoral College is an anachronistic institution intended, in part, to protect the institution of slavery. According to Yale Law School Professor Akhil Reed Amar, who participated in a forum on Electoral College reform sponsored by House Judiciary Committee Democrats last year, the Electoral College was established, in part, to preserve the political influence of slaveholding states. Although enslaved populations were not allowed to vote, slave states insisted that three-fifths of enslaved persons be counted when determining a state’s representation in the House, which in turn affected the number of Electoral College votes allotted to the state.
“Given its history and undemocratic nature, it is clear that the Electoral College system must be replaced with a process that determines the election of the president and vice president by a national popular vote.  As such, Congress and the States should consider a constitutional amendment to reform the Electoral College.

“And, Congress should also encourage the States to reform the Electoral College through the formation of an interstate compact. Eleven states representing 165 electoral votes have already entered into an interstate compact to cast their electoral votes for the national popular vote winner.  When enough states – representing 270 electoral votes – join the compact, the presidential election will essentially be determined by national popular vote, obviating the need for a constitutional amendment.
“In a democracy, no person’s vote should be worth more than any other person’s vote.  Congress should affirm its commitment to this essential principle and definitively declare that the American people, not state-based Electors, should have the power to directly select the President and Vice President of the United States.”

Original cosponsors include,  Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX), Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN), Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA), Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-IL), Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Rep. Al Green (D-TX).
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Thursday, September 14, 2017

Campaign & Congressional Fraud: "It Is All About The Procurement"

I remember when I first started asking questions about the clouds and hosting.

I also remember being treated like the plague.

The only thing I wanted to do was to preserve the work of my friend.

See, with each cycle of congress and campaign, the previous work of the representatives were wiped from search.  

I found that quite strange that the work did not go into the clouds of the national archives, not even the campaigns.

I also found to be quite strange was when the campaign of my friend went over to Drupal.  I had copy of the contract but, it was lost during the course of my mission.

I just found the contract to be strange as it was charging something to the tune of $5,000 a month to run a 3-page static, low maintenance website that failed to preserve the history of his campaign, which is actually his legacy.

These people were comingling campaign and congressional resources (i.e. contracts, corporations, cloud storage access and information) that the public could not access, that would eventually be wiped from the annals of history.

So....what had happened was......

I looked at it like this.  Everywhere I turned there were people trying to sell his toenails for a dollar.

It was perverse and repulsive.

Everyone was plotting and scheming to take him out of office, sell his seat, whatever they could do to lie make a fast buck or further a career.

Upon launching the preservation of his legacy, I found a serendipitous revelation:  Our missions were similar, except that mine was much more technical, but basically the same thing.

I was so tickled that I just continued to creat art.

I figured if no one cared about my friend or the existence of humanity, I would, and I would archive and show them how to do it for just about free, well, the intrinsic, passionate rewards are considered as benefits.

For your viewing pleasure, and a cursory introduction to the legacy of my friend's work, I share with you a glimmer of the dismissive attitude of D.C.

It is all about the procurement because no one vets the contractors. 

If they did, the Detroit Land Bank Authority, which is not incorporated in any of the 50 states or territories, would not be doing business with the United States, Michigan, Wayne County, City of Detroit or the people.

In this situation, you have congressional staffers who have established corporations and are doing business with the federal government.

That is so jacked up, it is like the fox guarding the hen house because alot of this money was funneled through political campaigns.

Cloud Web Hosting Options

The U.S. House of Representatives, Office of the Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) is seeking information and guidance in recommending a path forward to migrating its public web sites to the Cloud.

The Request for Information (RFI) is below.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

CONYERS Applauds Bernie Sanders' Senate Introduction Of Medicare For All Legislation

Conyers Adds 118th Cosponsor to House Legislation Today

Washington, D.C. – Congressman John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13) today released the following statement on the Senate introduction of Medicare for All legislation:

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
“The Affordable Care Act has done a great deed for our nation in providing millions who were uninsured with health insurance. It is vital that we continue to protect and build on this progress; however, it’s a fact that there are still millions of Americans who don’t have health insurance or have high-deductible plans that they can’t afford to use.

“I’ve been introducing H.R. 676, The Expanded And Improved Medicare For All Act since 2003. Under my bill, instead of a complicated, expensive network of exchanges and employer-sponsored plans and networks administered by for-profit insurance companies that some people can afford and many others can’t,  we would have one health insurance plan, one health insurer and one network available to every single American. In other words, we would finally have guaranteed, universal healthcare. I’m proud that we currently have 118 House Democrats who cosponsored the legislation – a majority of the Democratic Caucus.

“I applaud Senator Bernie Sanders’ introduction of the Senate companion to my Medicare for All bill and all of the momentum he has garnered in support of a universal single-payer healthcare system. 

“Healthcare should be a right, not a privilege for those who can afford it.  It deserves to be an essential service provided by the government, no different than fire departments, public schools, and military protection.

“Poll after poll shows that Americans agree that we have a collective obligation to guarantee healthcare coverage to everyone through a government financed healthcare system. It’s time for a real debate, including hearings, independent analysis, and input from doctors, patients, and hospitals.

“As I’ve said many times before, it took a nationwide movement to achieve civil rights. I introduced legislation to make Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s birthday a federal holiday and it took nearly two decades for it to become a reality. In that same vein, we are creating a movement to make Medicare for All the law of the land.”

Background: In January 2017, Congressman John Conyers, Jr. reintroduced H.R. 676, “The Expanded And Improved Medicare For All Act.” H.R. 676 would expand and improve the highly popular Medicare program and provide universal access to care to all Americans. Rep. Conyers has introduced H.R.676 every year since 2003. 

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CONYERS: House Judiciary Committee Democrats Walk Out On Markup Sabotage Of Comey Firing Inquiry

House Judiciary Committee Republicans doubled down on their neglect of conducting oversight of the Trump Administration by sabotaging a markup of Representatives David Cicilline (RI-01) and Pramila Jayapal’s (WA-07) resolution of inquiry that requested the Trump Administration to release information pertaining to the firing of FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Sessions’ involvement in that decision.

 Early into the debate, Chairman Bob Goodlatte “called the previous question” — a procedural move that shut down debate in its entirety and denied Democrats an opportunity to discuss the bill further. In protest, Democrats walked out of the committee room and took to Facebook Live to share their thoughts.

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

CONYERS: Members Hold Forum On Affirmative Action, Racial Climate On College Campuses

Image may contain: 1 person, sittingWASHINGTON – On FRIDAYSeptember 8th, Members of the U.S. House of Representatives held a forum entitled “Affirmative Action, Inclusion, and Racial Climate on America’s Campuses.” Amidst national conversations on white supremacy, xenophobia, and racial inequality, reports surfaced suggesting that the Trump Administration has plans to reexamine the values of racial diversity on campuses.

Image may contain: 3 peopleThis forum convened student officers, representatives from institutions of higher education, and key legal experts to discuss the role of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act in ensuring that students are welcomed to a safe, inclusive learning environment free of harassment and intimidation on the basis of race, color, or national origin.
    Image may contain: 4 people, people sitting

  • Congressman John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13), Ranking Member. Committee on the Judiciary
  • Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03), Ranking Member, Committee on Education & the Workforce
  • Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18)
  • Congressman Hank Johnson, Jr. (GA-04)
  • Additional Members of Congress
  • Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel, NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund
  • Richard Cohen, Executive Director, Southern Poverty Law Center
  • Theresa Sullivan, President, University of Virginia
  • Dr. Benjamin Reese, Vice President of the Office for Institutional Equity, Duke University
  • Roger Worthington, Chief Diversity Officer, University of Maryland
  • Taylor Dumpson, Student President, American University
  • Weston “Wes” Gobar, President, Black Student Alliance, University of Virginia
  • Payton Head, Former Student Body President, University of Missouri

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CONYERS: House Judiciary Republicans Double Down On Refusal To Conduct Trump Oversight; Silence Dem Voices During Markup Before Dems Walk Out

Washington, D.C. – September 7, 2017, House Judiciary Committee Republicans doubled down on their neglect of conducting oversight of the Trump Administration by sabotaging a markup of Representatives David Cicilline (RI-01) and Pramila Jayapal’s (WA-07)  resolution of inquiry, below, that requested the Trump Administration to release information pertaining to the firing of FBI Director James Comey and Attorney General Sessions’ involvement in that decision.

Early into the debate, Chairman Bob Goodlatte “called the previous question” – a procedural move that shut down debate in its entirety and denied Democrats an opportunity to discuss the bill further.

In protest, Democrats walked out of the committee room and took to Facebook Live to share their thoughts.

When the original version of the resolution was considered in July, Judiciary Republicans hijacked the markup using a similar tactic by replacing the content of the bill with Hillary Clinton conspiracies sourced from a pro-Trump forum hosted by Reddit.

House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) today released the following statement:

Dean of the U.S. House
of Representatives
John Conyers, Jr.
“Today, the Majority denied us one of the most fundamental rights—not only of the Minority, but of democracy itself—the right to debate. Just as we had begun our consideration of H. Res. 488, the Cicilline-Jayapal resolution of inquiry, the Majority took the draconian step of calling the previous question—blocking discussion of amendments we had planned to offer, and cutting off all further debate.

“This is not how our Committee has operated in the past.  This is not how our Committee should operate ever. A resolution of inquiry is one of the few avenues available to the Minority to attempt to obtain information from this Administration.  We have only turned to these resolutions out of necessity. 

“Since President Trump took office, my colleagues and I have written to the Administration more than 20 times.  To date, we have not received a single meaningful response.  We have written to Chairman Goodlatte six times, asking for oversight hearings with Administration personnel.  We have not received a response to these requests either.  The Committee has not yet held a single substantive oversight hearing of the Trump Administration.

“The resolution before us today asked for information related to the firing of James Comey, the scope and application of the Attorney General’s recusal, and a meeting at Trump Tower between Russian officials and senior campaign personnel, among other pressing matters within our immediate jurisdiction.  We require this information to do our jobs, plain and simple.

“Today was a sad day for our Committee and a sad day for democracy—but we will not surrender to these heavy-handed tactics.  We have a responsibility to continue to ask questions and conduct oversight, whether or not the Majority will join us in that effort. In short, until the Trump Administration answers our questions, and until the Majority calls them here to do so, my colleagues and I will continue to do everything in our power to hold both the Administration and the Majority accountable.”

BACKGROUND:   House Judiciary Committee Democrats have long been calling for House Judiciary Republicans to provide proper oversight of Trump and his Administration. Democrats have written to Chairman Goodlatte six times to request hearings and have also sent several letters to Speaker Paul Ryan, the Department of Justice and the White House requesting related information. These letters have gone unanswered and House Judiciary Republicans have so far blocked Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s (D-NY) resolution of inquiryReps. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) and Ted Lieu’s (D-CA) resolution of inquiryand the original Jayapal/Cicilline resolution, from reaching the House floor.  Instead, Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee continue to do Trump’s bidding. Committee Republican Rep. Ron Desantis (R-FL) has even introduced an amendment to end Robert Mueller’s investigation.

A resolution of inquiry is a legislative tool that has privileged parliamentary status, meaning it can be brought to the floor if the relevant committee hasn’t reported it within 14 legislative days, even if the Majority leadership has not scheduled it for a vote.

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