Progressive news and notes, 8/5

Good news! Michigan is one step closer to becoming a democracy again, as a people-powered anti-gerrymandering ballot initiative survived a spurious challenge by corporate lobbyists and the GOP attorney general. The 4-3 decision so pissed off the GOP that it’s now threatening to no longer support the Republican judge who did the right thing. Classy.

I interviewed George Takei: You can listen to it here — we mostly spoke about social media, trolls, and politics. He’s got a good voice.

The left is the center: America prefers progressive policy. Like, real progressive policy, on issues like drug prices, federal job guarantee, public internet, taxing the rich, and more. Don’t let any mewling centrist tell you the Democratic Party is going too far to the left — they just don’t want to risk losing their corporate patrons.

Mainstreaming: On the positive, Medicare for All is increasingly becoming the default healthcare position for new Democratic candidates. From what I’ve seen on so many candidate sites, even the more centrist candidates allude to the idea, and almost apologize for not being fully there.

Not all Democrats are created equal: On the other hand, there are still corrupt Democrats like New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who are stopping major progressive policies from becoming reality. More on that next week!

Change in Ferguson: I’ve been doing some writing for the Working Families Party and my latest piece is a call-to-action in support of Wesley Bell, the progressive candidate for prosecuting attorney in St. Louis County. The long-time incumbent, entrenched in office for nearly 30 years, was the official who declined to prosecute the police that murdered Michael Brown in Ferguson back in 2014. This is a chance to unseat him with a city lawmaker devoted to criminal justice reform and helping people, not violent police officers.

Kobach the con-artist: Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, now a GOP candidate for governor, went around ripping off and ultimately bankrupting cities across the Midwest with his voter ID scams. The GOP is more of a grift than anything else.

Class warfare: You don’t need experts to tell you this, but wages for working people are not rising, even as corporations get record tax breaks.

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