What will the next US president do for women and gender non-conforming people?

And why isn’t anybody asking the candidates about it?

With Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump set to debate three times in the next month, we think it’s time to #AskAboutWomen. What do you want to know?

Tweet your questions at with @womenslives using #AskAboutWomen, and share this video with everyone you know who cares about gender equality around the world.

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Brevic Has No Chill

Act III: 500 Kelvin (And then some)

Featuring: The Mysterious B.I.G. (Again)

anonymous asked:

Could trump very well be the first privatized President? What I mean is, he's stated numerous times the sources of Intel he receives as presumptive GOP, such on his recent security briefings, that he does not trust his sources or staff. He has said he will continue to fly on his airline as opposed to Air Force One and has employed additional security aside from SS (no pun intended). As president, is it legal to have your own private council and work from private grounds such as Trump Tower(s)?

Trump would have a big problem with all the transparency requirements of government officials. He couldn’t just finance his own private security team like Qaddafi did and it would be stupid of him to fight to use his own plane when it doesn’t have the flight, communication, and security capabilities of Air Force One. That would actually be a pretty significant national security problem if the President just flew around in his own plane because it had a gold toilet instead of a plane that he could command a nuclear war from. All of the things that Trump says he wants to do as President (and I don’t mean policy because it’s Trump, so policy doesn’t exist) are the types of things that two-bit military dictators try to in order to further their personality cults. And that’s smart for him because if Trump is elected, it will be because he’s built himself a following through a cult of personality. However, it’s dangerous for us because those type of leaders tend to take any sort of criticism or check on their power very, very personally – and they should, because their power stems largely from that cult of personality.

smallswingshoes  asked:

Can you maybe NOT use the Holocaust to insult Trump? Maybe respect the numerous Jews like me and Romani people who keep asking y'all to cut it out? It's really not that hard. Seriously.

No, I won’t, because Trump’s behavior, beliefs, and policies are terrifyingly similar to Adolph Hitler’s, and because I care about my country and my fellow Americans, I will do everything I can to prevent him from becoming president.

I’m not using something for a petty insult. I’m looking at history and seeing what can happen when someone like Donald Trump is given presidential power.



#BernieSanders campaign kickoff and block party in Brooklyn, NY. #feelthebern #birdiesanders #WFP4Bernie

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Despite all of the power and trappings of the American Presidency, this simple letter to the Secretary of State is all that the law requires for the President of the United States to resign his office. Richard Nixon became the first and, to date, only President to give up his office when he submitted his resignation letter to Secretary of State Henry Kissinger exactly 41 years ago today.

attention alfred has decided to run for president in 2020 against kanye west


You know, as much as I want Hillary Clinton to become president, it’s really hard to imagine there being a female president. I can’t even describe how I would feel if she wins. It makes me emotional to tell you the truth! I love politics and want to run for office someday. Everyone always asks me “Do you want to be the first female president?” and I always say no. Not because I don’t want to be president some day, but because it would break my heart if it took that long for us to have our first female president! If Hillary does win, and I plan on making it my mission to make sure she does, I can’t imagine how the world would change. There have been a lot of really amazing things in my lifetime and a lot of things I’ve been around for that will be in the history books someday. But if Hillary wins, I have to say, that will honestly be the best thing that I’ve ever been around for. I really am having a hard time putting in to words how amazing I would feel and how proud I’d be if she won. I am counting down the days till Election Day!

The nuclear “football” is definitely fascinating – it might be the most interesting piece of luggage in the world.  That’s partly because of its importance, partly because it goes everywhere that the President goes, and mostly because it has a mystique to it which can lead people with wild imaginations into believing that it contains just about anything.

For those who don’t know, the nuclear “football” is a briefcase carried by a military aide who travels everywhere with the President.  It’s not a bad job for the military aide who gets to fly on Air Force One and see the world from within shouting distance of the President, but the aide does have to lug this 50-pound bag every step of the way:

From what past military aides have told us, the football contains communications equipment, instructions for activating the Emergency Broadcast System, and information and options on potential target sites for our nuclear weapons.  The procedures and authentication codes for launching nuclear weapons are also included in the football.  If I remember correctly, the President also carries authentication codes on something like a credit card that he keeps on his person, as well.  During the Cold War, at least, I believe the President received new authentication codes every morning and those were supposed to match up with the codes inside the football in order to launch nuclear weapons.  Many Presidents carry the card of authentication codes in their wallet or in the pocket of their shirt or suit jacket.  Also, there is most likely a book in the football filled with other classified information in case of a doomsday attack, such as continuity of government procedures, evacuation sites (for the President, his family, his staff, Congress, and top military leaders), and emergency contact information.

There is more than one football.  The President, of course, travels with one, but the Vice President travels with a nuclear football, as well.  I’m sure there is a foolproof system that prevents the Vice President from launching nuclear weapons on his own, but the VP needs a football with him in case, for example, the President dies in a nuclear strike and the nation (and new President) needs to retaliate immediately.  There are probably spare nuclear footballs stashed at undisclosed locations, continuity of government sites, and air force bases around the country.  There is a backup football at the White House that can be dispatched to the President or Vice President, if necessary.  When he’s at home, obviously, the President doesn’t need to have the military aide following him around with the football because he has the capability to launch nuclear strikes and access the necessary communication systems from within the White House.

As for your question, the answer is actually much simpler than you would think, especially when it comes to our wonderful federal government, which seems to love making things more difficult.

On Inauguration Day, when there is a transition between Presidents like we saw in 2009 when the Presidency passed from George W. Bush to Barack Obama, there are two military aides carrying nuclear footballs – one assigned to the outgoing President and one assigned to the President-elect.

If I were to take a guess on the logistics, I would imagine that the President would receive his authentication codes as usual and be matched up with his military aide and that the President-elect (who has been briefed throughout the transition on logistical issues such as the nuclear football) would also receive authentication codes that morning and be matched up with a military aide.  I would think that the authentication codes given to the outgoing President (in this case, George W. Bush) and his military aide would expire upon 12:00 PM when Obama officially became President and Obama’s authentication codes and his military aide would become active from that moment on.  I don’t know all of this for a fact, but I believe that’s the way it goes.  Basically, President Bush would arrive at the Capitol as President with his military aide and the football nearby and still in control of the nuclear arsenal, but he would leave the Capitol with only his wife at his side.  I’m guessing that there aren’t very many feelings in life that measure up to the relief of the “I’m no longer responsible for having to launch retaliatory nuclear strikes that will probably destroy the planet” feeling.  

By the way, if I were President, I would immediately get rid of the nuclear football and replace it with this:

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Few may invoke his name over the next few months outside of talk about the  Broadway show. But it was Hamilton’s early vision for what role politics ought to properly play in presidential appointments that is being trashed, quite awfully, in the early rounds of the fight over Scalia’s seat.

With Republicans saying, essentially, that the last 12 months of Barack Obama’s presidency invoke some kind of sunset on his appointive power to the Supreme Court, we’ve moved beyond the politics envisioned by the founders to more overt recasting of the checks and balances established by the Constitution itself.

There’s no time-limited restriction on presidential power. And there was no contemplation, when senatorial consent for presidential appointees was debated, that the Senate might invent that kind of restriction more than 200 years later.

Hamilton was clear about that — and he even contemplated other systems, with a stronger Senate role, but ruled them out, as the Constitution ultimately did.

Hamilton envisioned the Senate consent function as a way to check against inappropriate nominees or corruption (a president nominating a relative or funder), but not as a stall against the exercise of that power.

And he understood that politics would play a role in the nomination process precisely because the Senate — a body with a wide set of views — would be involved.

But he saw a practical limit to the usefulness of the Senate’s political nature — which is why he advocated against handing the power of nomination to the legislative branch.

“In every exercise of the power of appointing to offices, by an assembly of men, we must expect to see a full display of all the private and party likings and dislikes, partialities and antipathies, attachments and animosities, which are felt by those who compose the assembly,” Hamilton wrote in Federalist 76. “And it will rarely happen that the advancement of the public service will be the primary object either of party victories or of party negotiations.”

But even in his advocacy for including the Senate in the nomination process, Hamilton saw a practical limit.

He believed the Senate would essentially be a “silent” check against cronyism; the knowledge that a nominee had to face the legislature would warn a president of sending hacks over for confirmation. “The possibility of rejection would be a strong motive to care in proposing,” Hamilton wrote.

Importantly, Hamilton believed the system allowed for rejection of presidential nominees – for either partisan or more genuine reasons. But preemptive refusal to confirm, under any circumstances? That wasn’t in his mind. Indeed, he believed the presidential appointive power would discourage exactly the maneuver Republicans are contemplating, because, eventually, someone needs to be confirmed.

The only point of including the Senate, Hamilton wrote, was to provide for high-quality nominations and stability in government.

It’s hard to see how a blanket denial to hear the nominees of a president lawfully elected twice is either about stability or quality. It’s about exactly what Hamilton warned of: zealous self-interest overwhelming the proper administration of government.

Of course, anyone familiar with Hamilton’s personal life might find it odd to invoke him as the standard for extracting extreme partisanship from the political process.

So a panel operating out of the White House — that meets in total secrecy, with no law or rules governing what it can do or how it operates — is empowered to place American citizens on a list to be killed, which (by some process nobody knows) eventually makes its way to the President, who is the final Decider. It is difficult to describe the levels of warped authoritarianism necessary to cause someone to lend their support to a twisted Star Chamber like that; I genuinely wonder whether the Good Democrats doing so actually first convince themselves that if this were the Bush White House’s hit list, or if it becomes Rick Perry’s, they would be supportive just the same. Seriously: if you’re willing to endorse having White House functionaries meet in secret — with no guidelines, no oversight, no transparency — and compile lists of American citizens to be killed without due process, what aren’t you willing to support?

Execution by Secret White House Committee
Glenn Greenwald

[emphasis added]

thepoliticalpolypod  asked:

How many times has America been without a president at the helm? I can think of several times where there was no sworn in president because of a death or assassination (for example, from the moment JFK was shot to hours later on the plan on the tarmac in Dallas, LBJ was not technically president... Is the vice president automatically president? And what if the president has not been declared dead? Sorry for such a dense question

This is one of those weird areas where there is a lot of confusion because the Constitution requires the President to take the oath of office before discharging the duties of the office, but in reality, we’ve never been without a President. In the eyes of the government and the military and the Secret Service, there is never an interregnum, even if the oath hasn’t been taken. While it might not be exactly what the Constitution sets forth, the powers of the Presidency instantly changes hands when a President dies or resigns.

Using the Kennedy Assassination for example, the powers of the Presidency passed to LBJ as soon as President Kennedy was pronounced dead. And, even as JFK was being worked on in the trauma room at Parkland Hospital in Dallas, the Secret Service recognized that he wasn’t going to survive and immediately began switching protection to LBJ. Some Secret Service agents regularly on JFK’s detail didn’t even know what to do at the time because there was no precedent for the protection of a deceased President’s family. They questioned who would go with LBJ from Parkland to Love Field – LBJ’s regular Secret Service detail, or the regular Presidential detail (since, to them, LBJ was now President – even if he hadn’t yet been sworn in). Even when people addressed LBJ at Parkland Hospital, minutes after President Kennedy was officially pronounced dead, they addressed him as “Mr. President”. Technically, he hadn’t raised his right hand and taken the Presidential oath, but he was President – and that’s how it’s been with every other transition.

There is never an instant where we don’t have a President because it’s potentially dangerous, and continuity-of-government is an extraordinarily important part of maintaining a democratic republic. The people need to know that somebody is always in charge, and our enemies always need to know that we will never be caught sleeping. That’s why we have “designated survivors” – individual officers in the Presidential line of succession that are taken to a safe place or undisclosed location during events like the State of the Union Address when most of the rest of the people in the line of succession are gathered in one place. That’s also why a nuclear football travels everywhere the Vice President goes, too. If there was a sudden nuclear attack on Washington, D.C. that took out the President and most of Congress while the Vice President was out of town, we wouldn’t wait for the VP to be sworn in as President. The VP has the same type of military aide as the President and the same authentication card for launching nuclear weapons as the President, so if something happens to the POTUS, the VP can take charge as Commander-in-Chief and launch retaliatory strikes, if necessary. 

You asked about what would happen if the President hadn’t been declared dead. In that case, there are contingency plans under the 25th Amendment, but it depends on the situation. If there is the possibility of recovery, power can be transferred to the Vice President (or whomever is next in the line of succession) while an injured or ailing President is recovering. The President can transfer power to the VP himself with a letter to the Speaker of the House and President pro tempore of the Senate, and the VP would be Acting President until the President notifies the same two leaders that he is able to reclaim his office and discharge the duties.

But if the President is incapacitated and unable to transfer power to the VP by letter, there is another way to enact the 25th Amendment – and this would also be something necessary if a President was incapacitated and refusing to transfer power (an example of this is Woodrow Wilson clinging to office after his debilitating stroke, or if a President was clearly declining due to Alzheimer’s disease but wouldn’t resign). In that case, the Vice President and either a majority of “the principal officers of the executive department” (the Cabinet secretaries) or a majority of Congress could notify (by writing) the Speaker of the House and President pro tempore of the Senate of the President’s irreparable incapacitation. Then, it would require a 2/3rds majority from both the House of Representatives and the Senate to transfer power to the Vice President or next in the line of succession as Acting President. 

The Constitution does specifically require that the President take the oath (or “affirmation) of office "Before he enter upon the Execution of his Office…” and that tends to be the first thing that a President actually does, but a President becomes President at the moment their predecessor’s term ends. Fortunately, we haven’t had any sort of Constitutional crisis where a new President who has not yet taken the oath has issued an order and been rebuffed by someone who says, “Ummm…you didn’t say the magic 35 words." 


The Story of Spending