Morning Fizz

Twitter Must Be a White Man

By Morning Fizz June 21, 2011

1. Pointing to President Obama's recent timid regulatory record, the Wall Street Journal razzed the Obama Administration last week for taking a 2012-minded "hiatus from liberalism"—putting off EPA regulations on carbon and coal; granting more than 1000 waivers to health care reform price control mandates; and most importantly, delaying Wall Street reform rules that were supposed to hit this month governing derivative trading.

Ha! the Journal gloats. Obama, having learned his lesson in 2010, is backing off big business so he can win reelection with WSJ-friendly policies that will jump start the economy.
The White House is more or less conceding that it doesn't have a chance of winning a second term unless his major policies go on hiatus. ... The economy may benefit from Mr. Obama's temporary amnesty, but the real lesson of this hiatus from liberalism is that it should be shut down permanently.

Enter U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell, the one who fought to put the derivative regulations in the Wall Street reform bill in the first place. Unlike Obama, she's not backing off. [pullquote]Enter U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell, the one who fought to put the derivative regulations in the Wall Street reform bill in the first place.[/pullquote]

Cantwell has, in fact, been using this season's rising gas prices to call attention to speculative trading in the oil markets—which was supposed to be heavily regulated as part of the new derivative regs.

Cantwell has been calling for action and despite the Federal Trade Commission's 5-0 vote last week to put off the derivative regulations, Cantwell got a big win yesterday when the FTC ceded to her demands.

In a letter and phone call to Sen. Cantwell yesterday, FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz announced an investigation into the oil markets to see if crafty speculators—as Cantwell claims—are responsible for high prices at the pump.

Read Leibowitz's letter to Cantwell here. Sen. Cantwell says:
Americans deserve to know what’s really behind the rapid increase in gas prices burdening families and businesses. Bad actors who are artificially driving up gas prices ought to be brought to justice and face stiff punishment. I am pleased the FTC is using this new authority to protect consumers. The American public deserves to have aggressive policing of these markets and for the FTC to enforce these new laws.

2. It wasn't as embarrassing as an Anthony Weiner tweet, but the auto-correct on City Council candidate Michael Taylor-Judd's phone has given us the Twitter goof (at least in p.c. Seattle) of the campaign season so far.

Like all diligent candidates, Taylor-Judd, the lefty transportation activist who's in the pack taking on incumbent Jean Goodden, attended last Saturday's Families and Education Levy kickoff at Seattle's flagship Latino advocacy headquarters, El Centro de la Raza.

However, Twitter must be a white man, and took the liberty of announcing clumsily that he was at "El Center de la Raza."

"I think people must have thought, 'That stupid white boy doesn't know how to spell 'El Centro,'" says Taylor-Judd, who speaks Spanish.

3. State Rep. Jim Kastama (D-25, Puyallup) says he's running for Secretary of State, the position that overseas the state's elections, if incumbent Sam Reed, who's held the office since 2000, doesn't run again in 2012.

Kastama is a core member of the 2011 session's "Roadkill Caucus," a coalition of moderate and conservative Democrats who pushed the legislature in conservative directions this year on workers' comp and unemployment insurance.

In his announcement, he touted another Roadkill battle: his fight to prevent liberal freshman Sen. Nick Harper (D-38, Everett) from being seated earlier this year due to the Moxie Media scandal surrounding his campaign.

From Kastama's press release:
Kastama, known for his fierce independence, stood against his own party to unseat Nick Harper in the Moxie Media election scandal earlier this year; a scandal which was so egregious that the Public Disclosure Commission recommended criminal prosecution. “The fair and efficient administration of elections is a vital function of the office of Secretary of State. Voters can rest assured that I will fight for their interests,” said Kastama.

As chair of the Government Operations and Elections Committee in the wake of the Gregoire/Rossi election in 2004, Kastama boasts that he's responsible for election law reforms, including routine audits of county elections, purging ineligible voters from the rolls, and "moving the primary forward to allow overseas military personnel more time to return their ballots."

4. The Washington Bus, the campaign group that activates young liberals to get involved in the political process, held its Summer Fellow kickoff yesterday evening in an alley off Occidental Park in Pioneer Square.

In addition to the Thai-Hawaiian food truck, the alley was jam-packed with politicians, including Democratic state Reps. Joe Fitzgibbon (D-34) and Eric Pettigrew (D-37), as the Bus' new crew geared up for their summer plan.

One Bus Summer Fellow said she was heading back home to Yakima County to head up a campaign for district elections so that Latinos (45 percent of the population) can have someone on her city council rather than zero representation, as it stands now.
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