Dems Grill Trump Judicial Pick Rao on Past Sexual Assault Victim Blaming

FEB 06, 2019

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Senators held a confirmation hearing Tuesday for Neomi Rao, President Trump’s nominee to replace Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. California Senator Kamala Harris asked Rao about articles she wrote while in college in the mid-1990s, including a piece in which she blamed women for putting themselves at risk for sexual assault by drinking too much. Rao said she regrets her past views on sexual assault. This is Senator Harris questioning Rao.

Sen. Kamala Harris: “You said, quote, ‘Women should take certain steps to avoid becoming a victim.’ What steps do you have in mind that women should take to avoid becoming a victim of sexual assault?”

Neomi Rao: “Senator, it’s just sort of a commonsense idea about, for instance, excessive drinking. You know, that was advice that was given to me by my mother.”

Sen. Kamala Harris: “So that’s one step you believe women should take to avoid becoming a victim of sexual assault?”

Neomi Rao: “Well, it is—it is just a way to make it less likely.”

Neomi Rao—who has never tried a case in court—also wrote in past articles that affirmative action is the “anointed dragon of liberal excess,” said welfare was “for the indigent and lazy,” and called LGBT issues a “trendy” political movement.

 

(Susan Collins must love this weak-willed human.)

Collins on shutdown: Trump’s plan “is by no means ideal but it would result in the reopening of government, my priority.”

Collins cited a litany of problems caused by the shutdown in a Senate floor speech Wednesday. She said Trump’s plan “is by no means ideal but it would result in the reopening of government, my priority.”

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WASHINGTON — Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine is coming out in support of President Donald Trump’s proposal for ending the government shutdown. Her spokeswoman says she also intends to vote for a Democratic alternative to reopen the government.

Collins cited a litany of problems caused by the shutdown in a Senate floor speech Wednesday. She said Trump’s plan “is by no means ideal but it would result in the reopening of government, my priority.”

The Senate will vote Thursday on the proposals, both of which face likely defeat. But Collins said, “the outlines of a compromise are before us.”

One bill reflects Trump’s demand for border wall funding in exchange for temporary protections for some immigrants. The Democratic proposal calls for short-term funding while a compromise is hashed out.

 

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Protestors call on Sen. Collins to end the shutdown. Furloughed workers, others rallied and marched to Sen. Susan Collins’ Portland, Maine office to deliver letter

PORTLAND, Maine — Protestors in Maine are calling on Sen. Susan Collins to end the partial federal government shutdown. Organizers rallied and then marched to her office in Portland to deliver a large letter with demands that she publicly call for a vote and stand with Maine workers who are currently furloughed.

Some in attendance are working without a paycheck, including TSA employees in Maine. Bill Reiley is a TSA worker from Alfred, Maine and the vice president of the American Federation of Government Employees. Reiley said his co-workers couldn’t join him at the rally because they were on the clock.

“They are at the Jetport,” said Reiley. “They’re protecting the flights and protecting our national security. They are doing it as an indentured servant because they are not being paid.”

The rally was held prior to Sen. Collins speech on the Senate floor Wednesday. Collins spoke in favor of President Trump’s proposed plan to end the government shutdown. The president’s plan includes three years of temporary protective status for dreamers and funding for the border wall.

Senator Collins also talked about the Dreamers part of the plan saying she would rather their protective status to be permanent, rather than for just three years.

The Senate will vote on President Trump’s plan to end the government shut down tomorrow.

Another protest rally is planned Thursday in Portland and Bangor at 1:00 p.m.

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Maine Senator Susan Collins continues her attempt at making voters forget her legacy.

Maine Senator Collins called the White House on Friday afternoon and urged them to make an immediate fix to the payroll system issue that would have prevented 42,000 Coast Guard members from being paid for pre-shutdown work.

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MAINE, USA — In a statement released Friday evening, Senator Susan Collins says that Coast Guard members will receive their pay on Monday, December 31st.

Sen. Susan Collins

@SenatorCollins

Good news for the Coast Guard! White House staff called to tell me CG members will receive their paychecks as did other federal employees. I continue to work to end the shutdown, but this will provide immediate relief to CG members & their families.

Sen. Susan Collins

@SenatorCollins

Most federal employees will receive their scheduled paychecks today, but that is not the case for 42,000 Coast Guard members, who will not be paid for pre-shutdown work because they are under a different pay system. This is not fair. I called the WH to urge an immediate fix.

Senator Collins called the White House on Friday afternoon and urged them to make an immediate fix to the payroll system issue that would have prevented 42,000 Coast Guard members from being paid for pre-shutdown work.

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Sen. Susan Collins was a backer of the Parity in Animal Cruelty Enforcement Act, which is part of the 2018 Farm Bill. The legislation passed both houses of Congress and has been signed into law.

Collins says the act is designed to protect animals from cruelty and crack down on criminal activities that are linked to animal fighting, such as drug trafficking and gang violence.

[If you’re a woman, though, you’re on your own.]

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Education Secretary / Rape Apologist Betsy DeVos Forced to Fulfill Obama-Era Rule, Cancelling $150 Million in Student Debt!

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Education Secretary Betsy DeVos will cancel $150 million in student debt after being forced to abandon efforts to block a rule that created protections for students whose for-profit college defrauded them or shut down. In October, a judge sided with attorneys general from 18 states and the District of Columbia who sued DeVos for delaying the Obama-era rule. The policy allows for students to automatically have their debt canceled without formally applying for the benefit.

Your Education Secretary, Rape-Apologist Betsy DeVos proposes overhaul to college campus sexual misconduct rules.

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos (2nd L) attends an East Room event at the White House October 24, 2018 in Washington, DC.
The new guidelines aim to give greater protections to accused students while giving schools flexibility to support victims who don’t file formal complaints.

 

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Friday proposed a major overhaul to the way colleges and universities handle complaints of sexual misconduct, adding protections for students accused of assault and harassment, and narrowing the types of cases schools would be required to investigate.

Under the plan, schools would be required to investigate complaints only if they occurred on campus or other areas overseen by the school, and only if they were reported to certain campus officials with the authority to take action.

The Education Department says the proposal ensures fairness for students on both sides of accusations, while offering schools greater flexibility to help victims who don’t want to file formal complaints that could trigger an investigation.

“Throughout this process, my focus was, is, and always will be on ensuring that every student can learn in a safe and nurturing environment,” DeVos said in a statement. “That starts with having clear policies and fair processes that every student can rely on. Every survivor of sexual violence must be taken seriously, and every student accused of sexual misconduct must know that guilt is not predetermined.”

DeVos previously said the existing rules were too prescriptive, pressuring schools to take heavy action against students accused of misconduct without giving them a fair chance to defend themselves.

The new proposal adds protections for accused students, giving them a presumption of innocence throughout the disciplinary process and the right to review all evidence a school collects. They would also be able to cross-examine their accusers, although it would be done indirectly through a representative to avoid personal confrontation.

If finalized, it will tell schools how to apply the 1972 law known as Title IX, which forbids discrimination based on sex in schools that receive federal funding.

In September 2017, DeVos rescinded a set of 2011 rules that were created under the Obama administration and guided schools on how to handle complaints.

Advocacy groups for victims say the Obama rules forced schools to stop brushing the issue under the rug, while advocates for accused students say it tipped the scales in favor of accusers. Some college leaders complained that the rules were too complex and could be overly burdensome.

Among other changes, DeVos’s proposal narrows the definition of what constitutes sexual harassment. It would be defined as unwelcome sexual conduct that’s “so severe, pervasive and objectively offensive that it effectively denies a person equal access to the school’s education program or activity.”

It also allows schools to use a higher standard of proof to determine if a student should be found responsible for misconduct. While the Obama guidance told schools to use a “preponderance of the evidence” standard, meaning the allegation is “more likely than not” true, the new proposal would allow a “clear and convincing” standard, meaning the claim is highly probable.

The department will collect public input on the rules before they can be finalized.