How to Win the Allentown Water Privatization Ballot Initiative

The break-glass-in-case-of-emergency, last resort political tool of Allentown politics has to be a ballot initiative to repeal the English Only statute in the city charter. When that racist language was originally inserted in the charter, Latino voters were not nearly as numerous as they are today. Put the English Only repeal on the ballot in [...]

How Philly Politicians Are Unwittingly Adopting the Land Use Toolkit of Suburban Segregationists

Jake Blumgart already blogged Nikole Hannah-Jones’ ProPublica piece at KP on federal politicians’ failure to enforce the Fair Housing Act, and I have a new post up at Demos looking at the state and local policies that the FHA was supposed to combat. I argue that the main channel segregation works through is local government [...]

Republicans Have Zero Leverage in the Lame Duck Budget Debate

The basic fact about the post-election budget debate is that the Democrats and the Republicans both want to avoid the automatic austerity measures that start kicking in after January. The Bush tax cuts expire in full, the Republicans’ sequester cuts happen, and the payroll tax cut expires. Republicans have a strong incentive to pretend that [...]

#HD131: Simmons Hasn’t Locked It Up Yet

Emmaus Patch: Election night left state Rep. Justin Simmons looking like a winner but county officials today say the outcome of the 131st House race is not yet certain. Hundreds of ballots are still to be counted. It’s expected to take weeks to finalize the outcome. “I’d say there are between 750 and 1,000 ballots [...]

A Great Night for Progressives, Except for the House

Lots of awesome news for liberals to be psyched about this morning. President Obama won handily with a broad multi-ethnic coalition. Democrats kept their Senate majority despite facing down a very tough map. LGBT issues had a huge night with marriage equality ballot initiatives passing in Maine and Maryland so far, and the election of [...]