Friday, September 19, 2008

For Emily

This post is mainly for Emily since she asked the question in her comment a few posts down but the response is just too long to leave back in the comment section. I did not do the research all myself - I had some help but here it is. For everyone else - if you don't want to read through all this data, scroll down and see the new scrapbook page I did. :)

But wait - there's more: If you are one of my readers who are leaning toward the conservative side, please read this. Just some food for thought. Thanks!
Whoever told you Obama hasn't passed any legislation lied to you. But good for you for researching and finding out the truth for yourself! Here are some facts for you.

P.S. If you're worried about corruption and lobbyists (especially considering what happened in the financial markets this week) you should read up on the Savings & Loan Scandal of the 80's and the five senators involved. They were called the "Keating 5" and McCain was 1 of the 5. Anyway, here are the facts on Obama's accomplishments:

Highlights of Obama's Strong Record of Accomplishment in the U.S. and Illinois Senate

- The Obama/Feingold bill. Obama Was A Key Player In Assembling And Passing The 2007 Ethics Reform Law, Which Curbed The Influence Of Lobbyists And Was Described As The "Most Sweeping Since Watergate."

- In 2006, Obama was an original cosponsor of a bill to create a "Google-like" database of information on federal spending. So Americans can see where their money goes. He got it passed. The database is here.

- Obama Passed Into Law Legislation Requiring Lobbyists To Disclose Their Bundling Activity, Making Him Unpopular Even Among Other Democrats. Obama sponsored an amendment to require lobbyists to disclose the candidates, leadership PACs, or political parties for whom they collect or arrange contributions, and the aggregate amount of the contributions collected or arranged. Obama's amendment was passed by unanimous consent and attached to the Senate ethics bill, which was signed into law on September 15, 2007.

- Obama Passed Illinois Campaign Finance Reform, "Heralded As the Most Sweeping Good-Government Legislation in Decades." In 1998, Obama passed the Illinois Gift Ban that prohibited legislators, state officers and employees, and judges from soliciting or receiving gifts from a person or entity with interests affected by government.

- Obama Passed Law Requiring Comprehensive Nuclear Threat Reduction Strategy To Secure Weapons And Usable Nuclear Material. Senator Obama worked with Republican Senator Hagel on this law. The Obama-Hagel provision is aimed at preventing nuclear terrorism.

- Obama Passed Legislation To Keep Weapons Of Mass Destruction Out Of The Hands Of Terrorists. In 2006, Obama was an original co-sponsor of legislation to expand U.S. cooperation to destroy conventional weapons. It also expands the State Department's ability to detect and interdict weapons and materials of mass destruction. The legislation was included in an appropriations bill that was later signed into law by the president.

- Obama Passed Law to Promote Relief, Security, and Democracy in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

- Obama Passed Bipartisan Legislation That Expanded Health Care Coverage To 154,000 Residents, Including 70,000 Children. In 2004, Obama sponsored and helped pass legislation that expanded and made permanent Illinois' KidCare program so that all children in Illinois have healthcare.

- Obama Passed A Bill To Create Hospital Report Cards To Assist Consumers; The Bill Was Sponsored By Members Of Both Parties. Obama was the chief sponsor of Hospital Report Card Act.

- Obama Passed An Amendment Into Law That Pressured The EPA to Comply With New Lead-Paint Regulations After Seven Years of Delay. In 2005, Obama passed an amendment, which became law, to the FY 2006 Department of Interior Appropriations Act prohibiting the use of funds in the bill to delay or contravene implementation of an existing but unmet statutory requirement passed by Congress in 1992 that the EPA rewrite regulations on dispersal of lead paint by home remodeling contractors by October 1996. This law protects children!

- Obama Passed A Law Requiring The Defense Secretary To Report On The Pentagon's Efforts To Prepare For Military And Civilian Personnel For A Possible Influenza Outbreak.

- Obama Passed Legislation Providing $25 Million In Funding For Avian Flu Research And Containment Efforts. Obama's amendment called for a stockpile of antiviral drugs and necessary medical supplies to combat and contain an outbreak.

- Obama Passed Health Care Justice Act. In 2004, Obama was chief sponsor of bill creating the Health Care Justice Act, providing that the State of Illinois shall implement a health care access plan that provides uniform benefits for all Illinois residents.

- Obama Passed Legislation Creating A Tax Credit For The Installation Of E-85 Fuel Pumps. Under Obama's legislation, gas stations would get a tax credit to install equipment accommodating E-85 - an ethanol-based fuel alternative that its promoters say is up to 50 cents cheaper per gallon than unleaded gasoline.

- Obama Passed An Amendment Into Law To Fund Research For Hybrid/Flex Fuel Vehicles.

- Obama Passed Into Law An Amendment Establishing A Grant Program To Support Summer Curricula That Emphasize Math And Problem Solving. In 2007, Obama sponsored an amendment, which became law, to the America Competes Act that established a competitive state grant program to support summer learning opportunities with curricula that emphasize mathematics and problem solving.

- Obama Passed An Amendment, Which Became Law, Preventing The VA From Conducting A Review Of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Cases Aimed At Reducing Benefits.

- Obama Passed Legislation, Which Became Law, Improving And Increasing Services For Homeless Veterans. Obama's SAVE Act and Homes for Heroes Act.

- Obama Passed Legislation Extending Tax Credits For Military Families By Allowing Service Members Deployed In War Zones To Apply Non-Taxable Combat Pay To The EITC.

- Obama Passed An Amendment, Which Became Law, To Require The VA To Conduct A Campaign To Inform Disabled Vets Of Disparities In Compensation And Explaining Their Rights To Seek Review.

- Obama Passed Death Penalty Overhaul Package. Obama was the chief co-sponsor of the Capital Punishment Reform Study Committee Act, which would let judges rule out a death sentence for someone convicted solely on the testimony of a jailhouse informant, accomplice or single witness.

- Obama Passed Law To Require Videotaped Interrogations In Capital Cases. This law helps prosecutors prove that confessions were not coerced.

- Obama Passed Law Creating $100 Million Earned Income Tax Credit, Formed A Political Alliance Of Republicans And Democrats To Pass The EITC. Obama sponsored and passed a bill that amended the Illinois Income Tax Act to create the earned income tax credit.

- Obama Passed Law Creating The Illinois Temporary Assistance For Needy Families Program. Obama was a chief co-sponsor of the bill, which created flexibility for victims of domestic violence, set a five-year limit for receiving public assistance, banned anyone convicted of a serious drug-related Class X or Class 1 felony from ever receiving assistance, required that all recipients develop a personal plan for self-sufficiency, and listing the steps they will take to move from welfare to work.

- Obama Passed A Bill Requiring Advance Notice Of Mass Layoff And Plant Closings. Obama was the chief sponsor of the bill requiring employers to give 60 days advance notice of mass layoffs or plant closings to state officials to ensure timely unemployment assistance for workers.

- Obama Passed Whistle-Blower Protection Law. Obama was the chief co-sponsor of the bill, which prevents employers from prohibiting an employee from disclosing information to a government or law enforcement agency if the employee has reasonable cause to believe that the information discloses a violation of State or federal law.

- Obama Sponsored Law To Protect Overtime Pay To Counter Bush Restrictions. Obama was the chief sponsor of a new law that exempted Illinois from the new federal overtime rules and protected overtime pay for thousands of our state's workers.

- Obama Passed Legislation Prohibiting the Department of Homeland Security From Entering Into Open-Ended, No-Bid Contracts For Emergency Response Activities. Senator Obama worked with Republican Senator Coburn on this legislation, which will stop the abuse of no-bid contracting in the aftermath of a disaster.

- Obama Passed An Amendment Into Law Creating A National Family Locator System. In 2006, Obama passed an amendment to the Fiscal Year 2007 Homeland Security Appropriations Act that required the Department of Homeland Security to create a centralized family locator system through which family members can contact their lost loved ones during disasters. The amendment, which was signed into law as part of the final version of the bill, was based on legislation Obama introduced immediately after Hurricane Katrina.

For even more information, check this out.


Lynilu said...

Just so you know, I'm reflecting a lot of this info on my blog, too. Please don't go after me for plagiarism, OK? ;)

Casey said...

LOL! You're safe from me. :)

Pass it along - in fact, everyone should feel free to pass it along.

Monogram Queen said...

I agree- pass it along and spread the word! I don't do much beyond fluffy stuff on my blog. I should do better!

A Jersey Girl said...

Thank you Casey, but I think you misunderstood what I was saying. Senator Obama has NEVER authored a Bill that has been passed through Congress. Yes, he has co-sponsored or added on to existing legislation, but has not authored a single piece of Stand-Alone legislation.

And that may not matter to most, but having lived in the DC metro area for the last 12 years and being involved with Congress for the better part of that time(my husband worked for a member from IL), Stand- Alone legislation mens something.

I would also like to make it clear that, because my husband worked for a member from IL, I have been familiar with Sen. Obama for quite a while an have always admired him and been a fan. And 4 years ago, I watched the Democratic Convention just to here him speak.

I really am undecided for November and trust me I am well aware of Sen. McCain's long list of faults:)


A Jersey Girl said...

I forgot to say thanks again for the information and for hearing me out. I just cannot pass-up a political debate when I find someone smart and interested enough to have one.

So, I hope I have not offended you because I do not mean to, I am enjoying the conversation, and seeing my name on the Blog made me so excited:)


Casey said...

Emily: You have not offended me in any way. No worries. :)

I'll be mostly quiet throughout the weekend but I'll be back on-line next week. I'm wondering, and trying to look into, what the ratio of Sen. who author legislation vs those who never do to see what that looks like. My guess is, many, many never do but I don't know so I want to see what I can find.

More next week - have a great weekend!

Casey said...

Emily: I am not having a huge amount of success locating the data I would like to have but again, I am going to assume that it isn't all that uncommon for a single senator (no matter who they are) to author and push through a bill on their own - and especially many times over. And honestly, if they were having that much success over and over, I would probably question who was the actual driving force behind a bill. We all know how Washington works. :)

I have no faith in the Republican party. None. From start to finish, inside out and upside down. They can dress up any way they want but at the end of the day, they are still a republican. Still conservative and still not looking out for, what I consider to be, MY best interest.

For all those who say "McCain isn't Bush" I call bullshit. Open your eyes. Time after time after time republicans stand for the same things, push the same agenda and screw the little people. I'm a little person and I'm tired of being screwed. I've been screwed for 8 years now and I say ENOUGH!

That's me. And that's why I never, ever, ever vote republican. Never.

So I don't know what to tell you. What we all should do is figure out the issues that are paramount to us as individuals and see who lines up the best with our visions. I'm against war and I think we are spending far too much money over there when out own nation is struggling. I'm against China being all up in our business (and don't get me started on that issue because honestly, I feel they are out to get us with all the crap they have been pulling - especially in regards to poisoning our children). I am against what is happening in the economy and I am terrified as to what that means for the average family who is struggling to keep it all together. I am against someone telling me that I would absolutely have to carry a baby to term if I was violently raped. I am against the lack of gun-control. I am against the very fundemental base of what the republicans stand for.

So that's how I know who I will vote for.

I hope you are able to sort out who you will support.

Good luck to us all. We are seriously going to need it to turn this country around.

Ree said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ree said...

Casey--You are a woman after my own heart, opinions, feelings...
I, as well, would LOVE to share ALL of your info. It is -actually- exactly what I have been seeking and I know of many who NEED to hear it!! Thanks again for getting it out there!!!