Politics

Friday, March 24, 2017

Huffman Celebrates Failure of TrumpCare

Posted By on Fri, Mar 24, 2017 at 3:41 PM

Huffman - FILE
  • File
  • Huffman
Rep. Jared Huffman issued a press release this afternoon in response to the failure of Republicans to bring the so-called "TrumpCare" bill to a vote. President Donald Trump, who ran on a platform of repealing the Affordable Care Act, indicated today that he would consider drafting a new bill once the ACA "explodes." The Republican healthcare replacement plan was predicted to cost millions of people their health insurance. Huffman, a vocal and vigorous critic of the Trump administration, said the collapse of the plan represented a "tremendous victory." Read his full statement below.


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Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Political Climate With Jill Stein at HSU

Posted By on Thu, Mar 9, 2017 at 2:33 PM

Jill Stein speaking at the Kate Buchanan Room at Humboldt State University on March 8 at 6 p.m. - SAM ARMANINO
  • Sam Armanino
  • Jill Stein speaking at the Kate Buchanan Room at Humboldt State University on March 8 at 6 p.m.

Jill Stein stepped on stage as a welcoming crowd of more than 300 community members clapped and cheered. She raised a peace sign in the air, which brought people in the Humboldt State University lecture hall to their feet.


Stein, the Green Party presidential nominee, came to campus to discuss a wide array of political topics yesterday. Although subjects ranged from vaccinations to Russian agents, there seemed to be a few general themes throughout the night.


Indigenous rights and solidarity, environmental activism, political establishment and the future of the American people were recurring themes that dominated questions and discussion more than over three hours. The discussion was followed with questions and praise from community members and students.


“Bernie Sanders could have beaten Donald Trump,” Stein said. “Hands down, if he wasn’t sabotaged by the DNC.”



Just before Stein came on stage, she was introduced and welcomed by a handful of students and community members. Nicola Walters said she was honored to have put her body on the line at Standing Rock and Stein won her vote by doing the same.


“I was honored to stand alongside Indigenous elders, Veterans for Peace, activists from the American Indian movement and water protectors from across the country for something that was bigger than myself,” Walters said.


Walters is a student in the middle of her thesis in Southern Humboldt focusing on environment and communities. She said the only reason she picked up a ballot this year was to vote on local races and measures, but she ended up filling the bubble for the Green Party as a vote for the environment.

Another community member welcomed Stein by playing a song she wrote and composed titled, “Water is Life,” which was inspired by Standing Rock before the election.


Sarah Torres, one of the people who introduced Stein, began by saying she wanted to acknowledge that everyone present for the event was on Wiyot land. “You took my land from so long ago,” she sang to the slow acoustic sound of her guitar.




According to the Humboldt County Election's Office, Stein received a little more than 3,000 votes in the county, which saw a 73 percent voter turnout. In comparison, Hillary Clinton took more than 33,000 votes in Humboldt and Donald Trump took about 18,300, while Gary Johnson finished with with about 1,200 local votes. But nationally, Stein has been criticized for siphoning votes away from Clinton in what proved to be crucial battle ground states, like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, where she received more than 1 percent of the vote, according to CNN.


Stein's low Humboldt County vote total didn't seem to diminish her enthusiasm for the county. “For me,” she said, “this is where I get my batteries recharged.”

Erik Rydberg wearing a jacket that reads "#NoDAPL" at the Jill Stein discussion held at Humboldt State University on March 8. - SAM ARMANINO
  • Sam Armanino
  • Erik Rydberg wearing a jacket that reads "#NoDAPL" at the Jill Stein discussion held at Humboldt State University on March 8.

A long line of people lined up to ask questions of Stein during the event and when time started to run short, organizers instituted two lightning rounds were people got only a minute to ask Stein whatever was on their minds.

Questions ranged from her view on vaccinations, indigenous rights and our present political climate took up the last hour and a half. Responding to a handful of community members, Stein said she was never anti-vaccination, though she said she questioned big pharmacy companies and their research on vaccinations.


In a little more than three and a half hours, Stein and the gathering discussed topics that ranged all over the political spectrum. She spoke of climate change, the democratic party, Bernie Sanders supporters, DAPL and urged the younger generations to get involved.


“No pressure,” Stein said. “But it’s always the younger generation to make the transformative change.”

The event was organized by Climate Crisis and HSU's Green club. Banners were displayed inside the KBR while Jill Stein discussed politics on March 8. - SAM ARMANINO
  • Sam Armanino
  • The event was organized by Climate Crisis and HSU's Green club. Banners were displayed inside the KBR while Jill Stein discussed politics on March 8.


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Monday, February 13, 2017

Eureka Rallies Behind Planned Parenthood

Posted By on Mon, Feb 13, 2017 at 1:37 PM

A crowd of more than 200 pro-choice and pro-Planned Parenthood supporters carry signs, chant and wave to passing drivers on Fifth Street outside the Humboldt County Courthouse on Saturday afternoon. - MARK LARSON
  • Mark Larson
  • A crowd of more than 200 pro-choice and pro-Planned Parenthood supporters carry signs, chant and wave to passing drivers on Fifth Street outside the Humboldt County Courthouse on Saturday afternoon.

The Humboldt County Courthouse lawn was filled Saturday with more than 200 people waving signs and chanting in a show of support for Planned Parenthood, which has come under threat with the new administration and Congress. Many passing motorists honked and waved in shows of support, though some offered a thumbs-down condemnation. Local photographer Mark Larson was there and shared the following slideshow.


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Friday, February 3, 2017

T-shirts, Get Your T-shirts!

Posted By on Fri, Feb 3, 2017 at 3:23 PM

tshirt_fb.gif

Did the Eureka Women’s March leave you feeling empowered? Want to hold onto that feeling and commemorate it? Want to support a local artist and a good cause at the same time? If so, you’re in luck.

In the wake of the march that organizers billed as the largest in Eureka’s history — with some estimating as many as 8,000 people in the streets Jan. 21 — Journal cartoonist Terry Torgerson penned a drawing of the Carson Mansion festooned with a pink “pussy ears” hat emanating rays of light. The cartoon has been so popular that we here at the Journal thought some might want one of their own. So we’ve reached out to a local T-shirt maker and mocked up the above design.

We’re going to be selling the shirts for $15 — a $6 markup from the cost of making them, some of which will go to Torgerson, as artists need all the help they can get these days, and the rest goes to the North Coast Rape Crisis Team, which offers comprehensive services — including prevention education, outreach and a 24-hour hotline (445-2881) — to victims of sexualized violence, because, you know, regardless of politics, that should be a cause and a service we can all stand behind.

If you’d like to get your hands on one of these shirts, it’s easy. Just call Sarah at 442-1400, extension 312, before Feb. 15 and she’ll take down your order, credit card number and contact info. Or, stop by the office (310 F St. in Eureka) and ask for Sarah. Then, we’ll let you know when the shirts are ready for pickup.
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Saturday, January 28, 2017

Huff on Fire: Congressman Facebook Vents About Trump's 'Hearsay and Hooey'

Posted By on Sat, Jan 28, 2017 at 2:18 PM

We're not sure what Huffman looked like while Facebooking, but we like to imagine it was something like this. - FILE
  • File
  • We're not sure what Huffman looked like while Facebooking, but we like to imagine it was something like this.
Though still in its infancy, the presidency of Donald J. Trump has turned North Coast Congressman Jared Huffman’s Facebook page into straight fire.

The Huff, who is entering his third congressional term riding high after taking 76 percent of the vote in November, has unleashed a scathing post daily since Thursday.

First, Huffman shared an op-ed in the Washington Post written by one of the lawyers representing a liberal nonprofit that recently brought suit against Trump, alleging he is in violation of the emolument clause in the U.S. Constitution, which bars federal elected officials from taking gifts or payments from foreign governments. In his post, Huffman, a lawyer himself, says the suit could “shed light on what seems like an obvious constitutional violation by Pres. Trump. But regardless of litigation, Congress must use its oversight authority to get to the bottom of this — and disclosure of Trump’s tax returns is essential to that.”

“Mr. Trump is hiding something that could be grounds for impeachment,” Huffman continued. “Congress must not let him get away with it.”

The linked op-ed is an interesting read for its history lesson alone. For his part, Trump said the emolument lawsuit is "without merit."

Then, Friday morning, Huffman again took to Facebook to vent on “Trump’s latest whopper,” linking to a bizarre story about a German golfer and the president's unfounded claim that millions of fraudulently cast ballots cost him the popular vote. Huff says Trump’s illegal vote allegations — and I’m pretty sure these are both legal terms — are based “entirely on hearsay and hooey.”

“POTUS saying something this fantastical, and then hinting at a ‘major investigation’ on the subject, can only mean: 1) he’s once again trying to distract the press and the public; or 2) he’s getting ready to launch a major voter suppression initiative with Suppressor-in-Chief Jeff Sessions and will use this as a pretext. Either way, it’s shameful.”

Sessions, of course, is Trump’s pick to lead the U.S. Justice Department as the nation’s next attorney general, and a man whose nomination for a federal judgeship in 1986 was torpedoed by allegations of racism and voter suppression, which caused the Senate Judiciary Committee — then chaired by Strom Thurmond — to reject his nomination.

On Friday evening, Huffman again took aim at the president, saying his "cynical sabotaging of insurance coverage for real people, under current law, is not OK," and urging folks to spread the word that Covered California — the state's health insurance exchange under Obamacare — has an open enrollment period that runs through the end of today.

That's a lot of fire for one week, but the Huff wasn't done, as he weighed in this morning, lamenting that "it seems each day brings a new outrageous executive order from Pres. Trump" and reassuring his constituents that he will be doing all he can to oppose "many of these overreaching, arbitrary and probably unconstitutional actions," specifically noting Trump's order barring the admission of refugees and immigrants from some Muslim countries into the United States.

"If these actions can be stopped in Congress, I'll fight to do that," Huffman continued. "If they can be stopped in the courts, I'll support and even join litigation to do that."

While the merits of Trump's first week on the job are certainly up for debate, there's no question it has made one North Coast congressman's Facebook page a more dynamic read.
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Friday, January 27, 2017

Scenes from the D.C. Women's March

Posted By on Fri, Jan 27, 2017 at 1:45 PM

The Women's March on Washington D.C. was huge. - R. ARROYO
  • R. Arroyo
  • The Women's March on Washington D.C. was huge.
Local photographer R. Arroyo was in Washington D.C. last Saturday, Jan. 21, when Women's March protesters filled the streets with signs, songs and pink "pussy ear" hats to voice their opposition to newly inaugurated President Donald Trump. The crowd (because crowd size is evidently everything) has been estimated at 470,000 people, according to the New York Times. On the same day, Eureka held a "sister" Women's March with some 5,000 attendees according to the Eureka Police Department.

Flip through the slideshow below for a look at what it was like in the historic throng in the nation's capital. You can also find an account of three generations of Humboldt women marching in D.C. here.


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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Planning Commission Vote: Ulansey Out, Mitchell In

Posted By on Tue, Jan 24, 2017 at 12:19 PM

Screenshot of Lee Ulansey addressing the Board of Supervisors at a past meeting.
  • Screenshot of Lee Ulansey addressing the Board of Supervisors at a past meeting.
The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 today, with Third District Supervisor Mike Wilson dissenting, to appoint McKinleyville resident and accountant Brian Mitchell to the at-large planning commission seat currently held by Lee Ulansey.

Mitchell, a former McKinleyville school board member and current member of the county’s Assessment Appeals Board, addressed the supervisors, saying he would “listen to everyone who comes to the lectern” and do his best “to forge consensus opinions.”

He also pledged “to play well with others” and said that while it is important to support infrastructure and job growth, the county’s natural environment needs to be safeguarded.

Ulansey, who was described as a “divisive” figure by some public speakers, was among the 16 candidates under consideration for the position. A recommendation to reappoint the Kneeland resident — brought forward Jan. 17 by First District Supervisor Rex Bohn — was pushed back to this week, with the board majority saying they wanted to look at other nominees.

Second District Supervisor Estelle Fennell, who worked with Ulansey at the Humboldt Coalition for Property Rights before being elected, commented today that this was a very difficult decision for her.

“Under normal circumstances, it would be fairly straight forward,” she said. “But this is neither normal nor straight forward.”

She noted the work Ulansey has done on the commission and as the founder of HumCPR, saying he was qualified to continue in the role and has been a strong advocate for rural residents and timber land property owners.

“For that he has my great appreciation,” Fennell said.

She also spoke out against many of the public comments made at the last meeting and in letters and emails to the board, calling them “fake news” and “personal attacks.”

Those comments included claims that Ulansey’s donations to the political campaigns of several supervisors amounted to conflicts of interest.

“Anyone who knows me, knows I cannot be bought,” Fennell said.

Bohn and Fourth District Supervisor Virginia Bass also recognized Ulansey as a commissioner who did his homework and asked the tough questions while expressing similar sentiments about some of the correspondence they received, which they said included statements like, “We’re going to be watching you.”

“It does feel threatening and it’s not a good feeling, whichever side it’s coming from,” Bass said.

She noted that there is a long history of commissioners donating to political campaigns — all of which are public record. Bass went on to say she was “looking for a consensus candidate as well” and representation of the McKinleyville area has been lacking on the commission.

Fifth District Supervisor Ryan Sundberg, the catalyst for examining other candidates for the planning commission post whose constituency includes the McKinleyville area, did not comment other than to put forward his top two choices: Mitchell and Big Lagoon Rancheria General Manager Virgil Moorehead.

Wilson put his support behind Nicole Sager, the Yurok Tribe's assistant planning director, saying the commission needed more diversity. Though he voted against Mitchell's appointment, he said he has nothing against him personally and looks forward to working with him.

Ulansey’s term expires on Jan. 31.

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Saturday, January 21, 2017

Largest March in Eureka History

Posted By on Sat, Jan 21, 2017 at 4:44 PM

Marchers turn onto Third Street. - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • Marchers turn onto Third Street.

UPDATE: Organizers report that the official tally for Saturday's march was between 7,000 and 8,000 people, which is roughly six percent of Humboldt County's total population.

Previously:

Thousands of people turned out to Eureka's waterfront this afternoon in what event organizer Nancy Stephenson has said was the largest march in the city's history. The Eureka Women's March, held in solidarity with other Women's Marches around the world, began at Fisherman's Plaza at First and C. Due to start at 1 p.m., by noon the plaza had already filled, and Old Town sidewalks were packed with hundreds protesters waving signs, many wearing the signature pink "pussy ear" knit caps that have become a symbol of protest against President Donald Trump's admission to grabbing women's genitals without their consent.

The signs in the crowd reflected a diverse spectrum of concerns regarding Trump's platform. Many reiterated their solidarity with women and advocated for reproductive rights. Others expressed their support for LGBTQ, immigrant and environmental rights.

"Hey, ho, the pussy-grabber must go," chanted one contingent.

"Donald Trump eats pizza with a fork," read another sign.

Protesters found creative ways to resist the elements. - LINDA STANSBERRY
  • Linda Stansberry
  • Protesters found creative ways to resist the elements.
Peggy and Rachel Grossman, a mother and daughter, waited in a line that spilled out the door of Ramone's Cafe before the march, holding umbrellas and protest signs. Rachel, a College of the Redwoods student who voted for the first time in this election, said she came out to support other women and to be with her mother.

"We're standing in solidarity and supporting women," said Peggy Grossman. "We are standing up for other minority groups as well."

"It's important to show that there are people who have respect and kindness," added their friend Lu Hicks.

A driving rain sent some people under tents at the plaza, but it had ceased by the time the speakers began. A diverse group of men and women spoke briefly about their concerns for the administration, calling for unity and offering suggestions on how to organize under the new administration.

Cheryl Seidner of the Wiyot Tribe led the crowd in a moment of silence and prayer.

Dr. Wendy Ring encouraged people to take action and ask their local governments to become sanctuary cities and to implement strong climate action plans.

Terry Uyeki, one of the march's organizers, recalled her grandparents' experiences in Japanese internment camps and called for attendees to stand in solidarity with Muslims and immigrants.

Songs performed by Joanne Rand and the Arcata Interfaith Gospel Choir earned loud applause, as did a poem read by Sue Lee Mossman, inviting people to "come walk in the rain with me."

A large crowd at Fisherman's Plaza. - LINDA STANSBERRY
  • Linda Stansberry
  • A large crowd at Fisherman's Plaza.

The crowd was so large that, once the march began it bottlenecked as people followed a marching band along the waterfront. A large section of the crowd split off and went down First street, where they reunited and filled F Street, turning north on Third, turning around to return to the plaza. The mood was largely positive and the crowd was filled with families, couples and dogs.

An hour after the Women's March ended a separate splinter protest by a local anarchist group blocked traffic at Fourth and H Streets. Four arrests were made.

Protesters stand their ground. - MARK MCKENNA
  • Mark McKenna
  • Protesters stand their ground.

Editor's Note: This post was updated to correct the names of Dr. Wendy Ring and Sue Lee Mossman, as well as to reflect an accurate number of arrests.
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Friday, January 20, 2017

Silent People in Black Protest on Arcata Plaza

Posted By and on Fri, Jan 20, 2017 at 2:32 PM

MARK LARSON
  • Mark Larson
Several dozen protesters joined the People in Black Inaugural Day Vigil on the Arcata Plaza this morning. They held signs or simply expressed their First Amendment rights with their silent presence as they gathered at the same time as the inauguration. Their goal was to share their concerns about and objections to the incoming administration.

Another, noisier, protest was held in front of the Humboldt County Courthouse in Eureka, with protesters making speeches and knocking down a symbolic wall.


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Saturday, January 7, 2017

Huffman to Skip Trump's Inauguration

Posted By on Sat, Jan 7, 2017 at 3:34 PM

Huffman
  • Huffman
The Huff has decided to sit this one out.

North Coast Congressman Jared Huffman announced on his Facebook page this afternoon that after much consideration, he’s going to break with precedent and spend inauguration day in his district volunteering.

“Ordinarily, on Inauguration Day, I would take my place above the west steps of the Capitol and join colleagues and dignitaries in honoring a great and solemn American tradition: the peaceful transfer of power which must always transcend partisan differences,” Huffman wrote. “However, there is nothing ordinary about this inauguration or the man that will be sworn-in as our next president. I do accept the election results and support the peaceful transfer of power, but it is abundantly clear to me that with Donald Trump as our president, the United States is entering a dark and very dangerous political chapter. … I will not sit passively and politely applaud as it begins."

Instead, Huffman has decided to spend Jan. 20 in his Second Congressional District doing yet-to-be specified “positive things,” including some volunteer efforts that constituents can join him in.

Huffman's decision has thus far proved popular with his constituents. Within a couple of hours, the post had garnered more than 160 comments, almost all of which were positive and supportive. Stay tuned to Huffman’s Facebook page to get more details as they’re announced and check out his full post copied below.

The full post from Huffman’s Facebook page:

I have struggled with the issue of whether to attend the Presidential Inauguration on January 20th and here is my decision.
Ordinarily, on Inauguration Day I would take my place above the west steps of the Capitol and join colleagues and dignitaries in honoring a great and solemn American tradition: the peaceful transfer of power which must always transcend partisan differences.
Ordinarily, I would do that without hesitation for any President, regardless of their politics or personality, as a show of respect for the institution and the will of the voters — and as a gesture of goodwill to foster reconciliation and collaboration as we put the election behind us and prepare to work with the new administration.
However, there is nothing ordinary about this inauguration or the man that will be sworn-in as our next President. I do accept the election results and support the peaceful transfer of power, but it is abundantly clear to me that with Donald Trump as our President, the United States is entering a dark and very dangerous political chapter. I will do everything I can to limit the damage and the duration of this chapter, and I believe we can get through it. But I will not sit passively and politely applaud as it begins.
As much as we all hope for the best, we should be clear-eyed about the warning signs of exactly who Donald Trump is and what he will attempt to do as our President. We know, or at least should know, what is coming. The question is, what to do about it?
I believe the antidote to Donald Trump is kindness, thoughtfulness, tolerance and inclusion — and the way to defeat his dark political agenda is not to sit around complaining and criticizing; it is through active citizenship, principled resistance and positive counteraction.
Toward that end, I'll be spending Inauguration Day here in my district doing positive things. I invite you to join me. I will announce my specific plans and agenda in a few days, including some volunteer activities that you can participate in if you wish. Stay tuned for the details, and thanks for reading all the way to the end of this long Facebook post!


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