Connie / Flickr good news express...
Connie / Flickr

The current Democratic party is the best party in the history of always and forever.  And this is a surprise.   We have been the better party for a long time (although that is a pretty low bar).  But we were often too hesitant to fight hard.  We valued being fair so much that we let the Republicans walk all over us.  We valued dissent so much that we couldn’t agree.  too often, we let our desire to not offend let us get pushed to the mushy middle.

I first realized this had changed last week when I heard reports that after his shutdown debacle, Trump complained to those around him how annoying it was that Democrats were so unified and that he wished Republicans were that good at sticking together.

And I laughed and laughed and laughed.

Our current party seems to be doing the most amazing job ever of balancing the goals of (a) sticking together and being unified with (b) getting great stuff done and (c) not putting up with crap.

As a lifelong Democrat, I can scarcely believe it.

So to conclude: the current Democratic Party is the best party in the history of always and forever.

And before you argue with me, please know that I am not basing this on a thorough knowledge of every party in the history of the world, or an understanding of what kinds of parties are still to come, or even any kind of deep understanding of how the party has changed over time.

So where does my completely unscientific (and yet very strongly held) opinion come from?  This:

10 Reasons Why Democrats Are The Most Amazing Party That Has Ever Been

1.  Nancy Pelosi kicks some serious ass

Pelosi responds to Trump tweets, affirms Democrats won’t agree to wall money

Pelosi was not surprised that Trump expects to circumvent Congress, but she laughed at the notion.

“Oh really, the president who wants the Congress to be completely irrelevant in how we meet the needs of the American people. No, come on,” she said shrugging her shoulders.

‘A whole lot of carrot’: Pelosi keeps young and restless caucus on the same page

As House Speaker Nancy Pelosi waged her high-profile shutdown standoff with President Trump, she was working behind the scenes on an even more delicate task — keeping her big, restless and inexperienced caucus on the same page.

During her first month leading the new Democratic majority, Pelosi (D-Calif.) has doled out a record number of subcommittee gavels to new members, while encouraging others to take leading roles on the political front lines. Meanwhile, she firmed up support among old stalwarts with choice committee assignments while moving quickly to calm jittery freshmen.

Together, according to interviews with more than a dozen Democratic lawmakers and aides, the fight to end the 35-day government shutdown and a meticulous effort to distribute power among the party’s various ideological and generational factions has kept internal peace for the time being as Democrats eye the rest of their governing agenda.

and Chuck is not so bad either:

Chuck and Nancy Have Only Just Begun Kicking Trump’s Behind

I’ve followed this stuff closely for many years, and I can’t count the number of times I’ve complained about the Democrats wilting during some congressional confrontation, not staying unified, and getting their hats handed to them by Republicans. Well—no more. The Democrats can play hardball now. They did it already on health care and tax reform, when they didn’t lose a single vote. And there’s no reason they shouldn’t do more of it going forward, on the upcoming debt ceiling fight, on budget stuff, and in the House on investigations and subpoenas of every kind. They have the leverage now to deny Trump a win on anything.

2.  Democrats are introducing huge amounts of cool legislation.

As Government Reopens, the New Congress Tries to Begin Again

The House, which spent weeks passing futile bills to reopen the government, will turn to legislation higher on the Democrats’ priority list, including a bill to raise pay for civilian federal employees. Leading Democrats also plan to reintroduce a marquee bill to close the pay gap between men and women that they have fought to enact for years.

House to hold first hearing on gun violence in nearly a decade

The House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on gun violence prevention for the first time in eight years, Rep. Mike Thompson (D-Calif.) said Thursday.

and those are just a few examples.  Our people are ON IT!!!

3. Democrats are taking on Trump’s Family where necessary

Reps. Beyer, Lieu ask Mulvaney to immediately revoke Kushner’s security clearance

Democratic Reps. Donald S. Beyer of Virginia and Ted Lieu of California sent a letter Thursday to acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaneyasking him to immediately strip senior advisor Jared Kushner of his security clearance.

Blumenthal questions truthfulness of Trump Jr.’s Senate testimony

Richard Blumenthal says there were “questions, serious issues” concerning the truthfulness of testimony from several witnesses who came before the Judiciary Committee and that Don Jr. in particular may have made false statements in his Senate testimony.

4.  Democrats are fighting hard for the rights of all Americans

New Jersey Governor Signs Bill Requiring LGBTQ-Inclusive Curriculum In Schools

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) signed into law new legislation Thursday that requires students be taught the societal contributions of notable LGBTQ people throughout history, a move civil rights groups say will further equality in schools across the state.

Congressman Alerts Ethics Committee Over Steve King’s Continued White Nationalism

Citing a HuffPost report, Rep. Tim Ryan warned the committee that King is using “government resources” to “promote and advance white nationalism.”

5.  Democrats Are Hilarious (well, at least Lieu):

and this:

6. Democrats are taking oversight VERY seriously

Dems ready first subpoena fight with Trump administration

House Democrats are gearing up for what’s likely to be their first subpoena fight with the Trump administration — targeting the Treasury Department’s decision to lift sanctions on companies tied to a billionaire Russian oligarch.

Newly empowered Democrats are expected to fire off subpoenas on a host of fronts if administration officials try to stonewall their investigations.

House chairman threatens Nielsen with subpoena if she doesn’t testify

A key Democratic House chairman is threatening to issue a subpoena to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen if she doesn’t appear before the House Homeland Security panel before the end of February.

“I hope she sees the value in talking to the committee of jurisdiction for her agency,” Chairman Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) said. “But if it comes to the fact that we can’t get [her testimony] any other way, it would not be a problem for me to do it.”

A House Democrat Is Targeting Steven Mnuchin’s Business Dealings In The Russian Sanctions Fight

Rep. Jackie Speier is seeking answers about Mnuchin’s reported business dealings with a Ukrainian-born billionaire with ties to Oleg Deripaska.

REP LIEU AND SEN MARKEY REINTRODUCE BILL TO LIMIT PRESIDENT’S ABILITY TO LAUNCH NUCLEAR FIRST STRIKE

Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) and Senator Ed Markey (D-Mass.) announced the reintroduction of legislation to prevent the president from launching a nuclear first strike without congressional approval

7.  Democrats are not afraid to take on the big guys

Chuck Schumer writes to DNI Coats, urging Coats, Wray, and Haspel “to insist on an immediate meeting with the President to educate him about the facts and raw intelligence underlying the Intelligence Community assessment.”

I can’t tell you how much I love that they named it that.

8.  Even the centrists (who are usually lame) are psyched up and have some cool ideas

New Democrats launch task forces to help craft the House majority’s policy agenda

The New Democrat Coalition is ready to help the House majority craft its policy agenda for the 116th Congress, launching eight issue-focused task forces to develop proposals on party priorities such as health care, infrastructure and climate change.

Michael Bloomberg’s Secret Plans to Take Down Trump

Michael Bloomberg has bigger plans for 2020 than running for president. The billionaire and former New York City mayor has been openly dreaming of the White House for 25 years, and spent huge amounts of time and money four times over the past 10 years trying to figure out a way to get himself there.

But he has hesitations about this race, too. He’s not sure there is a realistic space in the Democratic primaries for his centrist record. And he almost certainly won’t run if Joe Biden does, members of his team believe.

While no final decision has been made, his aides have been working on a fallback that only a man worth $40 billion can afford. Bloomberg is pouring hundreds of millions of dollars into a data-centric political operation designed to ensure one goal: crush Donald Trump.

Though a budget has not been set, this effort would almost certainly become the biggest and most powerful political organization in the country overnight. It would also be the only real counter to the operation that Trump’s campaign put together in 2016, which reached out to millions of voters in a more targeted, under-the-radar way, and helped deliver the election to Trump by shaping voters’ thinking for months and then activating them on Election Day.

9.  Democrats Are Fighting to Save the Planet

These governors are showing what happens when you campaign on climate action and win

Any day now, Oregon state legislators are expected to introduce the Clean Energy Jobs Bill, which would connect Oregon to California’s cap-and-trade system, committing it to statewide greenhouse gas reductions of 80 percent by 2050. It is widely considered likely to pass.

The cap represents only the first of eight ambitious goals in Governor Kate Brown’s comprehensive climate agenda. But she was reelected with a comfortable margin and Democrats control both houses of the legislature, so she’s in a strong position to shepherd the rest through as well.

On Tuesday, newly elected New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed an executive orderthat committed the state — the country’s third-largest producer of oil and gas — to cutting statewide greenhouse gas emissions 45 percent by 2030.

Something else Colorado now has: Democrats in control of both houses of the state legislature and a governor, Jared Polis, committed to 100 percent clean electricity by 2040. Earlier this month, at his first State of the State address, Polis reiterated his commitment to clean energy, voiced his support for the Colorado Energy Impact Assistance Act (which would help utilities shut down coal plantsand cushion communities during the transition), and promised to “take meaningful action to address the conflicts between oil and gas drilling operations and the neighborhoods they impact.”

10.  Democrats Have Amazing Candidates for 2020

The RS Politics 2020 Democratic Primary Leaderboard

Ranking a crowded field as nearly 30 contenders jockey to confront Trump

those are RS’s rankings and they aren’t bad (in my humble opinion) but what really strikes me is how many amazing candidates we have and how happy I would be with almost any of them.  It is so exciting that we are clearly the party for those who are engaged and smart and love America.

They are so great, I keep changing my mind.  I was all about Booker.  Then I was all about Beto.  Now I can’t get enough of Harris.  The options are just so great!  We rock!!!

So those are my ten reasons I am PSYCHED about our party.

But that is not the only good news.  Here is some more:

Everyone Hates Trump

TRUMP’S THIRD CHIEF OF STAFF IS ALREADY PLANNING HIS ESCAPE

In December, after struggling to find someone willing to take on a job that ranks somewhere between coal miner and pet-food tasterDonald Trump gave up and awarded the thankless role of White House chief of staff to Mick Mulvaney. Though the gig was supposed to be on an “acting” basis, one might have thought Mulvaney would have lasted longer than six weeks before plotting ways to flee the scene.

But, surprise!

Mick Mulvaney reportedly has his eyes on a new gig.

Ann Coulter: Trump Is ‘Lazy and Incompetent’

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter called President Trump “lazy and incompetent,” and said he could potentially face a Republican primary challenger in 2020 if he doesn’t build a wall along the southern border. “We put this lunatic in the White House for one reason,” Coulter told Yahoo News.

Trump’s Senate firewall is cracking

In short, Trump has even less leverage now than he did when he was forced to reopen the government. He can huff and puff, but not even Republicans in Congress think they can get away with demanding “a wall or else!” There is no “else,” and everyone but Trump seems to have gotten the message.

Senate Rebukes Trump Over Troop Withdrawals From Syria and Afghanistan

The Senate, in a bipartisan rebuke to President Trump’s foreign policy, voted overwhelmingly to advance legislation drafted by the majority leader to express strong opposition to the president’s withdrawal of United States military forces from Syria and Afghanistan.

The Truth is Coming on Collusion with Russia

Roger Stone warns Trump’s presidency is in peril

Roger Stone is known for hyperbole, but his latest graphic warning should worry Donald Trump.

The political trickster said Tuesday, a day he pleaded not guilty to seven charges laid by special counsel Robert Mueller, that Trump’s presidency is in mortal peril because the Russia investigation amounts to a “speeding bullet heading for his head.”

Mueller team signals to Stone associate another indictment may be in the works

A defense attorney for Andrew Miller, who’s fighting a subpoena from Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, learned Monday afternoon that the special counsel still wants witness testimony for a federal grand jury.

Paul Kamenar, the defense attorney, says the assertion from Mueller’s team made clear to him that Mueller and the Justice Department are considering an additional indictment of Roger Stone or have plans to charge others.

Judge Slaps Down Carter Page Lawsuit Against The DNC

In a brief but biting order, a federal judge in Oklahoma dismissed a defamation lawsuit Carter Page brought against the Democratic National Committee and its lawyers related to the involvement of the DNC’s law firm in funding the Trump-Russia dossier.

Chief Judge Joe Heaton of the Western District of Oklahoma is a George W. Bush appointee

Trump Will Bring Them All Down With Him

Republicans are trapped inside one of Trump’s biggest lies

One of the biggest lies that President Trump has told throughout the government shutdown battle — indeed it’s a lie that Trump has been telling since 2015 — is that the big, beautiful wall he envisions on our southern border is synonymous with “border security.” No lie is more foundational to Trumpism than this one is.

As a bipartisan conference committee gears up to negotiate a spending bill designed to avert another shutdown disaster in mid-February, the signs are increasing that Republicans are very worried that Trump will drag them into Trump Shutdown, The Sequel.

What’s particularly notable, however, is how gingerly Republicans are addressing this possibility in their public remarks. In essence, they are trapped inside Trump’s big lie about his wall, with no easy way out.

If you’re still working for Trump, his stink won’t ever wash off

A juicy tell-all can’t absolve you now, ex-Trumpers. You’ll be remembered as enablers.

There was a window of time during which giving Trump a chance was justifiable out of a sense of duty to country. You might have been vindicated for doing so if Trump had surprised us all and made good on his boast that, “with the exception of the late, great Abraham Lincoln, I can be more presidential than any president that’s ever held this office.” But that window closed. You had ample opportunity to see, up close, the capriciousness, vainglory and allergic reaction to facts that the rest of us saw from afar. If you’re just now disavowing Trump, or explaining away your support for him, don’t bother. You own it. Leaving 2016 to 2019 blank on your LinkedIn page won’t save you from disgrace.

So peddle your fictional nonfiction. Write your anonymous op-eds. It won’t matter. For a year, or two, or more, you stood athwart history yelling: “Thank you, sir! May I have another?” You served a man bent on division and distraction. You helped him make America grate again. Even after he leaves office, you won’t be able to live it down.

NRA shows signs of decline, even in Trump’s America

The influence of the National Rifle Association, the nation’s highest-profile Second Amendment-rights organization and a longtime powerhouse against gun-control laws, is showing signs of potential decline.

The NRA’s own tax forms show a dip in revenue.

The NRA has found itself ensnared in controversy in recent months, some of it stemming from the special counsel probe into foreign interference in the 2016 elections

Even though the NRA’s favored candidates, including Donald Trump, won big in the 2016 elections, the group didn’t have any landmark successes in the 115th Congress 

That is it for today!  Happy weekend everyone.

So proud and grateful to be in this with all of you ✊ ❤️

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