Slow and Steady

Minnesota has just passed a law legalizing gay marriage! We now have 12 states plus the District of Columbia -that are embracing marriage equality for all of it’s citizens. It has taken a long time to get this much momentum but now it feels like a wave of hopefulness that can not be stopped. Slow and steady progress. Nevada may be next!


Why No Vermont Women in Leadership Positions?

This may seem a strange time to bring this up as there is no election looming, but for better or worse now is when it is hitting me.

Our New England neighbor, New Hampshire has an all woman congressional delegation – Senators Shaheen and Ayotte and Congresswomen Shea-Porter and Kuster, plus Governor Maggie Hassan. Vermont has never its whole history put a woman in one of those seats.


Sanders: Earth Day

BURLINGTON, Vt., April 21 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a member of the Senate environment and energy committees and the sponsor of legislation to curb greenhouse gas emissions that cause global warming, issued the following statement on Monday’s observation of Earth Day:

“Unless we take bold action to reverse climate change, our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren are going to look back on this period in history and ask a very simple question: ‘Where were they? Why didn’t the United States of America lead the international community in cutting greenhouse gas emissions and preventing the devastating damage that the scientific community was sure would come?’


Sanders Votes for Background Checks, Assault Weapons Ban

WASHINGTON, April 17 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today voted for expanded background checks on gun buyers and for a ban on assault weapons but the Senate rejected those central planks of legislation inspired by the shootings of 20 first-grade students and six teachers in Newtown, Conn.

“Nobody believes that gun control by itself is going to end the horrors we have seen in Newtown, Conn., Aurora, Colo., Blacksburg, Va., Tucson, Ariz. and other American communities,” Sanders said. “There is a growing consensus, however, in Vermont and across America that we have got to do as much as we can to end the cold-blooded, mass murders of innocent people. I believe very strongly that we also have got to address the mental health crisis in our country and make certain that help is available for people who may be a danger to themselves and others,” Sanders added.  


Sanders Statement on Obama Budget

WASHINGTON, April 10 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) – chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, a member of the Senate Budget Committee and the founder of the Senate Defending Social Security Caucus – issued the following statement today on President Barack Obama’s proposed 2014 budget:

“While the president’s budget has some positive elements, like an increase in the minimum wage and increased revenue from people who make more than $250,000 a year, it is a document which does not effectively address the economic crisis facing our nation.


Sanders, Sherman Introduce Legislation to Break Up Big Banks

WASHINGTON, April 9 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today introduced  to break up banks that have grown so big that the Justice Department fears the financial system would be put at risk if criminal charges were filed. Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) proposed a companion bill in the House.

The 10 largest banks in the United States are bigger now than before a taxpayer bailout following the 2008 financial crisis when the Federal Reserve propped up financial institutions with $16 trillion in near zero-interest loans and Congress approved a $700 billion rescue for banks that some considered “too big to fail.” Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. now says the Justice Department may not pursue criminal cases against big banks because filing charges could “have a negative impact on the national economy, perhaps even the world economy.”


Sanders, Sherman to Introduce Bills to Break Up ‘Too Big to Jail” Banks

WASHINGTON, April 8 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) will hold a news conference on Tuesday to announce legislation to break up big banks.

The 10 largest banks in the United States are bigger now than before a taxpayer bailout following the 2008 financial crisis. Financial institutions have grown so big that the Justice Department has not pursued prosecutions for fear an indictment would harm the financial system.


Sanders Statement on Obama Cuts in Social Security, Veterans Benefits

LOS ANGELES, April 5 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today issued the following statement on President Obama’s proposal to cut benefits for Social Security recipients, disabled veterans and others:

“I am terribly disappointed and will do everything in my power to block President Obama’s proposal to cut benefits for Social Security recipients through a chained consumer price index. As chairman of the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, I also am especially concerned about the impact this change would have on disabled veterans and their survivors.


Can Selectboard Members Be Voting Members of Committees? Brattleboro Charter Appears to Say No

At Tuesday’s meeting, the Brattleboro Selectboard appointed John Allen to the PFFP (Police Fire Facility Project) Oversight Committee.

To keep the number of votes on the committee an odd number and to prevent tie votes, the Selectboard authorized Mr. Allen to be the 9th voting member of that committee.  Did they make a mistake?


Sanders Bill Would Break Up Big Banks

BURLINGTON, Vt., March 27 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said today he will introduce legislation to break up banks that have grown so big that the Justice Department has not pursued prosecutions for fear an indictment would harm the financial system.

The 10 largest banks in the United States are bigger now than before a taxpayer bailout following the 2008 financial crisis. At the time Congress, over Sanders’ objection, approved a $700 billion bank rescue because of concerns by some that the financial institutions were too big to fail. Another $16 trillion from the Federal Reserve propped up financial institutions.


Sanders to Postmaster General: Postal Service Must Keep Saturday Mail

BURLINGTON, Vt., March 26 – Citing a legal opinion by the Government Accountability Office, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today called on Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe to withdraw his plan to stop Saturday mail delivery.

Sanders said the opinion by the non-partisan GAO unambiguously declared that the Postal Service has no legal authority to end Saturday mail without the approval of Congress. In fact, Congress just last week passed a bill that restated the requirement for the Postal Service to maintain Saturday mail delivery.


Senate Sends Clear Message: Don’t Cut Social Security, Veterans’ Benefits

BURLINGTON, Vt., March 25 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) said today that a Senate vote showed overwhelming opposition to President Barack Obama’s proposal to cut benefits for Social Security recipients and disabled veterans.

The Senate early Saturday passed a budget resolution that included Sanders’ amendment against switching to a so-called chained consumer price index which would cut cost-of-living adjustments by changing how inflation is measured.

“This is a strong signal that when push comes to shove the Senate is going to oppose any effort to balance the budget on the backs of seniors, disabled veterans and their survivors,” Sanders said after the vote.


Representative Welch Introduces Two Bills to Boost Vermont Maple Industry

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Mar. 19, 2013) – With maple season in full swing, Rep. Peter Welch is pushing two bills to promote Vermont’s maple industry and make sugaring operations more energy efficient.

“Maple syrup and those who produce it are part of the fabric of Vermont,” Welch said. “Their trade goes back generations and is an important part of our economy as well as a key defining characteristic of our state brand. These investments in the maple industry will ensure it remains a strong part of Vermont’s economy and identity for generations to come.”


District 1 Caucuses Coming

TO ALL DISTRICT I REPS AND VOTERS:

Thanks to 5 new folks – Steve Cormier, Peter Diamondstone, Paula Melton, Lynn Russell, and Eric Strickland — who showed up last night to volunteer their services as Town Meeting Members for I year, and to 10 sitting reps who showed up to appoint them, District 1 now is only 4 slots away instead of 9 from its allotted representation. To remedy that shortfall [and contrary to last night’s announcement], District 1 will
again caucus at Academy School at 6:15 pm, Wednesday, March 20 – and if need be, at 8 a.m., March 23, in the BUHS gym, NE corner [enter gym, turn right], before TM begins at 8.30.

Spread the word, recruit your friends and show up to send our district into the meeting with its full representation.


Brattleboro Representative Town Meeting Member Recruitment

Brattleboro Town Meeting Members of Districts 1, 2 and 3 will meet on Wednesday, March 20 to accept nominations to fill town meeting member vacancies. Appointments are for one year. District 1has four vacancies, District 2 has two vacancies and District 3 has three vacancies. Anyone interested in being considered for these positions should be present at Academy School on Wednesday, March 20, at 6:15PM to meet with their district prior to the Town School District’s 6:30 p.m. pre-town meeting information session at the same location. If you are not able to attend but wish to be considered for a position, call the town clerk’s office at 251-8129, prior to the meeting.


Sanders Statement on VA Claims Backlog

WASHINGTON, March 13 – Here is the prepared opening statement by Chairman Bernie Sanders at a Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs hearing today into the claims backlog at the Department of Veterans Affairs:

During the last several weeks, the Veterans’ Affairs Committees in the House and the Senate held four hearings with veterans’ organizations. During their testimony, the leaders of the veterans’ organizations raised a number of concerns, but I think it’s fair to say that the No. 1 issue they raised is the very significant backlog that we have in processing claims for our veterans. I believe that is the No. 1 issue and that is why the first hearing the committee is holding under my leadership is addressing this issue.


Constitutional Amendment Sponsors Renew Push to Undo Citizens United

WASHINGTON, March 12 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today introduced a constitutional amendment to overturn a Supreme Court ruling that allowed unrestricted, secret campaign spending by corporations and billionaires. Rep. Ted Deutch (D-Fla.) filed the “Democracy is for People” amendment in the House.

The 2010 Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission undermined democracy by opening the campaign spending floodgates. Already nine states including Vermont and more than 300 cities and towns have passed resolutions calling for the ruling to be overturned.


Sanders: Budget Cuts Hurting Vermonters

BURLINGTON, Vt., March 11 – U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a member of the Senate Budget Committee, held a news conference today to discuss the impact of federal budget cuts on Vermont.

Sanders was joined by Steve Geller, executive director of Southeastern Vermont Community Action, and Marianne Miller, Head Start director at Central Vermont Community Action Council. They spoke about the impact of across-the-board spending cuts that kicked in on March 1 and will total more than $1 trillion over the next decade, including $85 billion by this Sept. 30.


Peter Shumlin (D) for President 2016 or Rand Paul (R) for President 2016?

It’s  time for Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin (Democrat) and Rand Paul (Republican) to start facing off for the 2016 Presidential Race!

Both Rand Paul and Peter Shumlin have each spoken to some extent about marijuana legalization.

The problem is that the First Drone Strikes in the United States could  be from the United Nations attacking marijuana fields.

United Nations thinks it can stop Marijuana Legalization in the USA by the same means they use to control Afghanistan.