Connect with us


Manka beats the bots, T-Mobile better off, fighting for DREAMers

Wednesday, November 8, 2017




► In today’s Seattle Times — Manka Dhingra leading in pivotal 45th LD Senate race — Holding a double-digit lead Tuesday night over her 45th District Senate opponent, Democrat Manka Dhingra appeared set to hand her party control of the Washington Senate — the last GOP-held legislative chamber on the West Coast.

► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Democrats take control of Washington State Senate

► From Geekwire — Exclusive: Bots spread propaganda to influence high-stakes Washington state race, researchers say — The report cites extensive evidence that suspicious Twitter accounts have been advancing attacks against Manka Dhingra, a Democrat running against Republican Jinyoung Englund in Washington’s 45th District. It’s a sign that online propaganda, a cloud hanging over elections nationally and worldwide, is also being wielded in an attempt to influence the outcome of state and local races. In their report about the 45th District, the researchers say that almost 10 percent of accounts tweeting about Englund and Dhingra over the past 30 days were classified as bots, accounts that use automation to spread messages on Twitter. “There is evidence of coordinated activity among the suspicious accounts tweeting aggressively against Manka,” the researchers write.

► In today’s Seattle Times — M. Lorena González and Teresa Mosqueda win Seattle City Council seats

► In today’s Seattle Times — Jenny Durkan defeats Cary Moon to become Seattle’s first woman mayor since the 1920s

► In today’s (Longview) Daily News — Longview’s $121.6M school bond fails to win supermajority — With thousands of ballots still left to count, the Longview School District’s $121.6 million school bond appeared headed for failure despite winning a simple majority Tuesday night.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Perhaps it’s time for the majority to rule when it comes to funding our education infrastructure.

► In today’s Washington Post — Northam victory in Va. gives Democrats first key win in Trump era — Ralph Northam will become Virginia’s 73rd governor, beating Republican Ed Gillespie on a night where Democrats swept statewide offices in what amounted to a rebuke of the figure who loomed over the race: President Trump.

► In today’s Washington Post — Tuesday was a stinging repudiation of Trump on the first anniversary of his election — Democrats had their best day politically since former president Barack Obama won reelection in 2012. In Virginia, 34 percent of voters said expressing opposition to Trump was a reason for their vote.

► In today’s NY Times — Maine voters approve Medicaid expansion, a rebuke of GOP Gov. LePage — Maine was the first state where voters, not governors or lawmakers, got to decide whether to expand Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act.

► From Vox — Virginia elects Danica Roem, the first openly transgender state legislator — She won a seat in the House of Delegates against a politician who embraced an anti-LGBTQ agenda.




► In today’s Seattle Times — T-Mobile is better off without Sprint — so are its employees and customers (by Jon Talton) — The only losers in the collapse of the T-Mobile and Sprint merger are the players on Wall Street who wanted a quick buck and a few other billionaires, such as Sprint’s Chairman Masayoshi Son. Otherwise, this development is good news for 5,500 T-Mobile headquarters workers in Bellevue, plus thousands more nationwide. The Communications Workers of America estimated that a merger would have killed 20,000 jobs.

► In today’s Seattle Times — New UW contract with Nike that allows inspections of overseas factories is first of its kind — The University of Washington has signed a contract with Nike that gives a watchdog group the right to inspect its overseas factories. The contract could become a model for other universities around the country. A student-led group, United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS), was behind the push to renegotiate the contract.

► In today’s Bellingham Herald — Immigrant rights workshop set for Thursday — Attorneys and staff from the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project in Seattle will host a “Know Your Rights” workshop at Aberdeen High School on Thursday night at 6:30 p.m.




► In the NY Times — Republican tax plan would raise taxes on millions — Nearly half of all middle-class families would pay more in taxes in 2026 than they would under current rules if the proposed House tax bill became law, and about one-third would pay more in 2018, according to a New York Times analysis, a striking finding for a bill promoted as a middle-class tax cut.

► From The Hill — GOP criticism of tax bill grows, but few ready to vote against it — Fresh criticisms of the GOP tax bill emerged Tuesday from centrist and conservative Republicans following reports that the legislation would hike taxes on the middle class, as well as some wealthy Americans.

EDITOR’S NOTE — Rep. Dave Reichert (R-8th), who announced he will not seek re-election next year, is the only member of Congress from Washington state on the House Ways and Means Committee that is marking up the bill and could vote on it very soon. So what about it, Dave? Are you going to vote to advance a bill that slashes taxes for corporations and the idle rich while raising taxes for many middle-class families?

► In today’s LA Times — Senate Republican tax plan may eliminate property tax deductions and delay corporate cut — As they prepare to unveil their own sweeping tax plan, Senate Republicans are revisiting key provisions of the GOP House proposal.

► From The Guardian — The seven Republican super-donors who keep money in tax havens — Seven Republican super-donors helped bankroll the conservative push for power in the 2016 election cycle, between them pumping more than $350m (£264m) into federal and state races. The Paradise Papers illuminate another aspect of these vastly wealthy men – their propensity to nurture offshore some of their combined fortunes, estimated by Forbes at $142 billion, largely beyond the reach of public scrutiny and tax authorities.

EDITOR’S NOTE — These are the same super-donors who are demanding passage of the House GOP tax cuts that will eliminate the estate tax, among other things, on their behalf.

► From The Guardian — From Harvey Weinstein to Shakira, the celebrities with offshore interests — They are some of the biggest names in entertainment, and all of them make an appearance in the Paradise Papers (outing corporations and individuals avoiding taxation by storing money in offshore tax havens): Justin Timberlake, Nicole Kidman, Martha Stewart, Madonna…




► From The Hill — We will fight for our DREAMers (by Reps. Luis V. Gutiérrez and 24 other House Democrats, including Rep. Pramila Jayapal) — The choice is for Speaker Paul Ryan to make. As a group, we are actively whipping among our colleagues to create a critical mass of Democratic votes that will not support a funding package (to keep the government open) that fails to include a clean DREAM Act… The hundreds of thousands of DREAMers who came forward to register with the government as part of the DACA program trusted the government to live up to its end of the bargain and we will fight to make sure the promise is kept. We believe that Speaker Ryan is proficient enough at math to understand that the path forward requires giving members of Congress the opportunity to pass the DREAM Act without harsh amendments that would diminish both the spirit of the bill and support for it.

► From Politico — Russia investigators probe 2016 GOP platform fight — U.S. investigators are focusing on an enduring mystery of the 2016 election: whether Trump campaign officials made the Republican Party platform more friendly to Russia as part of some broader effort to collude with the Kremlin.





► From Labor Notes — In Puerto Rico, unions lead in hurricane relief efforts — In the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, as Puerto Rico faces government neglect, unions’ relief efforts have been critical. Teachers and students across the island have cleared debris off the roads and delivered medical supplies. On the outskirts of San Juan, communications and transport workers cooked and distributed hot meals. Union volunteers on Isla Verde drove door to door with water and supplies. And these are just a handful of stories among hundreds.

► In today’s NY Times — Chinese auto-glass magnate faces union challenge in Ohio — Workers at the plant — owned by Cao Dewang’s company, Fuyao Glass — will vote on Wednesday and Thursday on whether to unionize. Officials at the United Automobile Workers union say that frustration with highhanded and arbitrary treatment by supervisors has generated support for a union.


The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.

CHECK OUT THE UNION DIFFERENCE in Washington: higher wages, affordable health and dental care, job and retirement security.

FIND OUT HOW TO JOIN TOGETHER with your co-workers to negotiate for better wages, benefits, and a voice at work. Or go ahead and contact a union organizer today!