Category Archives: stonewalling

Paliga: Burr and Tillis – “F” for FAIL

I am outraged that Senators Burr and Tillis’ votes for Education Secretary nominee Betsy DeVos have thrown North Carolina’s children under the bus – the school bus. Senator Tillis even served as PTA President for his daughter’s High School, but that didn’t stop him from putting in office an unqualified – but filthy rich – nominee who many believe is hostile to public education. And let it be made clear this is not proof of supporting women in leadership – both Tillis and Burr have blocked well qualified African-American nominees like Loretta Lynch, Jennifer May Parker and Patricia Timmons-Goodsen.

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DeVos has no personal experience in public education, not as student, parent, teacher or administration. In fact, she has worked to undermine public education, spending more than two decades promoting taxpayer-subsidized vouchers for private and parochial school tuition and promoting publicly funded but privately run charter schools. She also tried to strip teacher unions of their influence. 

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Newsletter available online – Oct/Nov 2016

NC NOW Newsletter for October/November 2016 is available online.  What are some of the topics covered in it?

What do we do now (after the election)?

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We celebrated NOW’s 50th anniversary and this historic time in US history of a woman running for president, and running as the candidate with the absolute most experience of the bunch. More on page 3.

We find seeing is believing—video of Senator Burr’s shocking comments made at a GOP event propel him into the spotlight. Note: be sure to mail any exposing videos to CNN! More on page 2.

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Senator Burr Blocks Another Black Female From 10 Year Judicial Vacancy

This is the full article NC NOW President Gailya Paliga had submitted to the News & Observer, 5/11/16, 1:10pm.  Part of it ran as an LTE on 5/18/16.

I was impressed to see that one of NC’s own extremely well qualified former (NC) Supreme Court Justices was nominated on April 28, 2016, to fill a long time vacancy on the federal court bench in Eastern North Carolina. Timmons-Goodson served as an Associate Justice on the Supreme Court of North Carolina from 2006 to 2012. She also served on the North Carolina Court of Appeals and as a District Court Judge.  In fact, Patricia Timmons-Goodson was a judge in North Carolina from 1997 through 2012!

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I was appalled to read that Senator Richard Burr vowed to block her the same day! According to “Burr vows to block Obama nomination to NC federal court seat,” 4/28/16, “The U.S. Eastern District of North Carolina has the longest-running vacancy, a post that has gone unfilled since Jan. 1, 2006 – the day after federal District Court Judge Malcolm Jones Howard semi-retired.”   

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#DoYourJob Senators Burr and Tillis!

NC’s US Senators Burr and Tillis are refusing to do their job – both are blocking President Obama’s US Supreme Court (SCOTUS) nominee – Merrick Garland. And Garland is not the first nominee they have blocked. Both Burr and Tillis blocked NC native Loretta Lynch when she was nominated for US Attorney General.

US Senate’s job of advice and consent Under the Constitution, presidential nominations for executive and judicial posts take effect only when confirmed by the Senate. Their job is to make sure the nominee is qualified, and if so, vote yes

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It is this job that Burr and Tillis are refusing to do.

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Intent vs. Impact, speech on anti-abortion language in JVTA and blocking qualified women

Trust Women Press Conference at Federal Building, 310 New Bern Ave,
8 Apr 15, Raleigh, NC

Intent versus Impact

My name is Gailya Paliga and I am the president of NC National Organization for Women.

I am glad to be here at this Trust Women Press Conference today to show that political games are hurting too many citizens, and way too many women and girls.  The best way to look at the situation is intent versus impact.

You are hearing about the anti-abortion wording that was added into what had been a broadly supported, bi-partisan bill that would help victims of trafficking, mostly women and girls, in the US Senate.  Senate Bill 178 is the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act (JVTA).

The anti-abortion wording in this bill goes beyond the ‘Hyde Amendment.’  The Hyde Amendment already prohibits federal dollars from funding abortion, mostly through Medicaid, but also through Medicare and from military women at home and abroad.  The Hyde Amendment has been attached to appropriations bills (bills that ‘must be passed’) as a rider since 1976.

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I think of the Hyde Amendment as a giant painful barnacle on the belly of Health and Human Services funding.

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Upcoming events for April 2015

Rally, Silent Sentinals, action at home, WAD, Signature Ad delivery

1. Trust Women Rally on Wednesday, April 8, 2pm

Join NC NOW and other women’s organizations at the Trust Women rally to tell our elected officials to TRUST WOMEN and stop playing politics with women’s reproductive health!  In this case, the sore point is anti-abortion language the conservatives stuffed into what had been a bi-partisan bill to fight human trafficking.

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We’re meeting in front of Senator Thom Tillis’ office (same place where Jesse Helms used to work), at 310 New Bern Avenue Raleigh, NC 27601.

Find the event on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/events/1580336125538857/

It is also listed on NC NOW’s facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/NC-NOW-National-Organization-for-Women/180024368705304

I plan to mention other obstruction our Senators have been doing.

2. Either way – take an easy action from home!

Whether or not you can make the rally, give our elected Senators an email on the same topic.

Take this easy action from wherever you are – home, work, stuck in traffic. It does 2 things for you – encourages voting for excellent US Atty General nominee Loretta Lynch and encourage congress to pass a clean bill against human trafficking – get the anti-abortion mess out of there.

https://northcarolinanow.wordpress.com/2015/03/30/this-easy-action-is-a-twofer/ 

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How to contact NC’s US Senators – Burr and Tillis

Looks like there are going to be many reasons to contact NC’s state senators, Richard Burr and Thom Tillis.

You can call or write them or email them.  Calling is faster, but writing leaves a permanent record.  Better yet – call and write!

Your calls won’t take but a minute each (unless you choose to talk to the person answering the phone for longer). Definitely leave your name and city with them and let the Senator’s office write you back.

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Tell our Senators to stop playing politics with our next US Attorney General

U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch has been waiting to be nominated for U.S. Attorney General for over 4 months, since last November.  Find out about the job, who she is, what is causing the delay, the part our own Senators are playing in the delay, and what you can do to move her nomination forward.

What does the US Attorney General do?

The US Attorney General leads the Dept of Justice (DOJ), and is in charge of enforcing the laws of the United States federal government.  DOJ includes many law enforcement agencies, like the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), US Marshals, and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).  The Attorney General is also the chief legal adviser to the President.  Many federal laws are the last defense on the legal rights and futures of women across our country.

How far has US Attorney General nomination gotten?

President Barack Obama nominated Loretta Lynch, a U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of NY, on Nov 8, 2014.  Since then, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved her with bipartisan agreement on Feb 26, 2015, with 9 Democrats and three Republican voting for her.  The nomination should have gone to the full Senate during the first or second week of March.  However, the Senate Majority Leader is refusing to hold the vote.

Many Senators, including North Carolina’s Sen. Richard Burr and Thom Tillis plan to vote against this extremely well qualified North Carolina native.  And we can do something about that.

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Press Conference: Why is Sen. Burr Blocking Federal Judge? 5/2/14

ABC 11 has their coverage of the press conference, “Activists asking why Sen. Burr seems to be blocking North Carolina’s first African-American female federal judge nomination,” at http://abclocal.go.com/wtvd/story?section=news%2Flocal&id=9524944. They ran it multiple times, as did the other 2 stations that covered us!

FB: Ironic response from Senator Burr’s office (4/10/14) – give him a call yourself!

Got a really ironic response to my letter and call on the blocking of the nomination of Jennifer May-Parker for the long standing vacancy in the Eastern District of NC by Senator Burr. As you may remember, Sen. Burr recommended May-Parker in 2009 (letter captured at Huffington Post, link found at “Richard Burr Blocks Judicial Nominee After Recommending Her To Obama,” (1/8/14). Then in 2013 when President Obama nominated May-Parker, Sen. Burr refused to sign the blue-slip to let the vetting of the nominee begin. He won’t sign it and he won’t say why he won’t, and his stonewalling is perpetuating the long term judicial vacancy and case backup and judge overload it causes.

There is so much irony in his response to my letter. He writes “There is no responsibility of office I take more seriously than my obligation under the Constitution to provide my advice and consent regarding presidential nominations.” He did advise the president, and mentions his 2009 letter, but IS WITHHOLDING HIS CONSENT EXACTLY.

He goes on to say “I am committed to seeing that our judicial vacancies are filled with qualified judges” But that is clearly not true as he continues to block Jennifer May-Parker’s nomination.

I am going to call about this irony – 202-224-3154. Please consider calling as well if you haven’t had a chance yet.

Update: July 15, 2014 – Senator Burr is still holding up the nomination. President Obama has nominated her twice in this time.

Update: 5/24/16: May-Parker was nominated twice and timed out both times (because Senator Burr refused to sign the Blue Slip to allow her to get a hearing). According to Ballotpedia, “May-Parker’s nomination was returned by the Senate on January 3, 2014 and she was renominated on January 6th by President Obama. On December 12, 2014, the Senate again returned the nomination to the President.” May-Parker was originally nominated on June 20, 2013.

Gulf Oil Spill Hearings Continue On Capitol Hill