Report: The presidential hopeful was among 17 Democratic Senators to vote in favor of an English-language amendment over a decade ago that would have reversed US President Bill Clinton’s executive order requiring federal agencies to provide materials in languages other than English. US Democratic presidential candidate and Senator from Minnesota, Amy Klobuchar, suggested on Friday that English should not be the national language of the United States, in contradiction to a prior “strong position against” the idea. The Senator’s shift comes one week ahead of the Democratic caucuses in Nevada, in a bid to gather support in a state where Latino Americans make up a significant percentage of voters.
Questions Mount over Her Record as DA. Klobuchar is also facing mounting scrutiny over her record as a district attorney in Minnesota. The Minneapolis NAACP, Black Lives Matter Twin Cities and other racial justice groups recently called on Klobuchar to suspend her presidential campaign following a shocking investigation by the Associated Press. The AP report centered on the case of Myon Burrell, an African-American teenager who was sentenced to life in prison over the 2002 murder of 11-year-old Tyesha Edwards. Klobuchar led the case against Myon Burrell when she was Hennepin County’s district attorney, but the AP report says she may have mishandled the case and that Burrell could be innocent. The Associated Press report shows how prosecutors had no DNA or fingerprints tying Burrell to the murder and that they relied on jailhouse informants, some of whom have since recanted their testimonies. Burrell has always maintained his innocence.
Amy Klobuchar ran a surprising and very respectable third last night, surpassing not just former Vice President Joe Biden, as I predicted at the close of Friday’s debate, but also Elizabeth Warren, whose vote she actually doubled. She also shone in what was effectively her introduction to the larger electorate last night in a speech that made her sound more grounded, empathetic and effective in going after President Trump than any of her fellow candidates. More than any other Democrat, she takes on Trump as a human being—the measure by which he’s weakest.
She introduced herself as a woman with working class roots, of apparently normal talents but exceptional grit.
She dealt with policy less than any of her Democratic rivals, alluding in one brief paragraph to dealing with climate change, making college and healthcare more affordable, and treating immigrants as human beings.
It was the human contrast with Trump that she stressed. When she became president, she vowed, she would take responsibility for errors, wouldn’t pick fights with everyone not singing her hosannas, wouldn’t tear the country apart. And on these rocks—responsibility and empathy—she pledged to build her campaign and provide the contrast to Donald Trump that would lead the Democrats to victory.
I am not an Amy Klobuchar fan as such; I fear that as president she won’t push for the transformative reforms our economy and society clearly need. That said, her pitch, her tone, her manner is more affecting than any that her rivals have exhibited, and ones that may be the most difficult for Trump to counter.
She also presents the Democratic establishment with a post-Biden option not named Buttigieg. My guess is that in coming days and weeks, more of that establishment will join Klobuchar’s column than Mayor Pete’s. Her electoral track record is far better than his, her resume reassuringly longer, and her manner all grown up.
That said, she doesn’t have time or resources to wage the kind of campaign she now needs to wage; doesn’t even have time to raise those resources. Moreover, as she and Buttigieg and Bloomberg combine to divide the non-Sanders vote, it will be Advantage, Bernie—as it was last night even in Bloomberg’s absence.
Before Amy Klobuchar was a United States senator and a Democratic presidential candidate, she was a prosecutor in Hennepin County, Minnesota. It was then, nearly two decades ago, that Klobuchar helped prosecute a teenager named Myon Burrell for murder. She hasn't forgotten the case. She's even touted it in the presidential debates to paint herself as a progressive who cares deeply for underserved communities.
But now an investigation by the Associated Press has cast serious doubt on Burrell's guilt, and criminal justice activists are calling for Klobuchar to suspend her campaign.
The case revolves around the death of 11-year-old Tyesha Edwards, who was killed in the crossfire during a Minneapolis shootout in 2002.
Investigators used jailhouse informants, including a rival gang member, to implicate Burrell as the third man. (One informant later said his 16-year sentence was cut down to three years in exchange for a testimony.) Burrell was eventually sentenced to life in prison, even though no physical evidence tied him to the case.
2020-01-27 The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund evaluated each candidate on four key environmental issue areas
The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund evaluated each candidate on four key environmental issue areas: saving wildlife, protecting public lands, ensuring environmental justice and ending the climate crisis.
Senator Amy Klobuchar Overall Grade = D Wildlife = F Public Lands = D Environmental Justice = D Climate = D+
If elected president Senator Amy Klobuchar would be an unmitigated disaster for the environment.
Since becoming a senator in 2007, Klobuchar has consistently taken positions that harm the environment. She has repeatedly introduced legislation that would prematurely remove protections for endangered gray wolves and supports mines that threaten waterways in her own home state. Klobuchar’s climate plan is the weakest of any major candidate running for president and mainly consists of developing market incentives and voluntary measures to achieve “net-zero” emissions by 2050, without a single interim benchmark as scientists recommend.
The first thing that is dangerous about Klobuchar is that she gets things done. She has co-sponsored 111 pieces of legislation as of 2018. She has voted for 56% of Donald Trump’s judicial nominees, despite explicit efforts by the President to abolish the rule of the courts themselves. She also sided with Mr. Trump on the United States-Mexico-Canada trade agreement. She was a non-vote on Trump’s highly dangerous repeal of EPA rules on emissions, and a no-show on Trump’s arm sales to Saudi Arabia and U.A.E. and humanitarian aid to the U.S.-Mexico border.
In 2014, Klobuchar sided with Obama’s farm bill that cut 8.7 billion in food stamps. Klobuchar supports copper mining in Minnesota’s greatest treasure—The Boundary Waters.
[Note: 2nd half of article is about Amy. It is not a pleasant picture! Let the author’s summation below suffice absent reading the details]
The Democratic Party goal is a contested convention. This would open the door for the Democrats to nominate Klobuchar themselves, throwing democracy to the wind. Donald Trump would coast to at least four more years and he wouldn’t even need to call on his militia to take out the liberals. The obscure Klobuchar would get her book deal and we would hear a sob story about the meanness of American politics and the danger of rising leftism.
But Amy would not be the one suffering. The working people of the world, the precious earth we call home and the disposable minority would feel the wrath of Trump once more. The ruling class will continue to use fascists as punishment until the working people of the world stand down from even their most reasonable demands.
In short, the danger of Amy Klobuchar is not her own dismal record that endangers people, planet and peace across the world. It is the fact that this record is so damn dismal that she will never get a chance to enact it. Continue to push Ms. Klobuchar down the people’s throats and the winner of 2020 will be cynicism, disengagement and alienation from the political games of the ruling class. This is of course exactly what the mainstream media wants. If they didn’t have a working class to blame, they’d have nothing to write about.
Progressive Scorn Follows New York Times Endorsement The timing—Monday is Martin Luther King Jr. Day— caught the eye of author and 350.org found Bill McKibben. "If I were going to go all weak-kneed like the New York Times," McKibben wrote on Twitter, "I'm not sure I would have picked the day devoted to our most clear-eyed moral leader to do it." It is "always worth remembering," he added, "that the NYT editorial board slammed MLK when he came out against the Vietnam War."
"The language of the NYT endorsement is so violent, just casually endorsing brutal wars and countless human deaths in the borderlands and more deaths at the hands of a ruthless healthcare industry—without even giving these things mention, all while claiming the mantle of civility," Lazare added in a separate tweet.
Other critics focused on the discrepancy between the urgent action scientists say is needed to address the climate crisis and the backing of Klobuchar, who supports the continued use of fracked gas. Biologist and climate activist Dr. Sandra Steingraber said the endorsement was an act of "climate denial."
New York Times Editorial Board endorsed two women for President. At first glance, it appears they are tacitly endorsing simply the idea of a woman president, without regard to a candidate's position on the issues. You don't have to be a supporter of either Warren or Klobuchar to know that there are stark differences between the two, when you're looking beyond gender.
Wanting a woman to be president for the sake of it is a child-like and shallow way to think about representation. You might say a woman represents me. What if we qualify that a little bit further? Does a rich white liberal woman who was a conservative until she was 47 years old represent me? What about one who potentially helped wrongly convict and sentence a black teenager to life in prison?
We've been sold the idea that as women we have a responsibility to tackle that glass ceiling together, to support each other unconditionally. But the truth is that the women in this race, like most politicians, are agents of the existing power structures.
What few people outside of Minnesota are aware of is Amy’s record on environmental issues. In 2009 she co-sponsored a bill with Republican Sen. John Thune to prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gas emission from man-made sources such as the livestock industry and factories.
In opposition to the science and what the Endangered Species Act says about wolf recovery, in 2010 she pushed to have gray wolves removed from the Endangered Species List, which she accomplished, and between 2012-2014 922 wolves were slaughtered. End of 2014 federal judge Beryl Howell placed wolves back under ESA protections. In 2012 at the Outdoor Heritage Alliance banquet she said she wanted to be the first to kill a wolf. That statement was made at a time nearly 80% of people surveyed in Minnesota said they did not want a wolf hunting or trapping season.
Between 2013-2017 she co-sponsored 3 bills with republican senator John Thune to prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating lead in ammunition and fishing tackle to protect wildlife. In 2013 she co-sponsored the Silviculture Regulatory Consistency Act which amended the Clean Water Act to prohibit the EPA from requiring permits for a discharge of stormwater runoff resulting from silverculture activities.
In 2017, to override the decision by the courts, she co-sponsored a bill with republican Sen. John Barrasso to not only delist wolves once again but this time she included stripping citizens of their legal right to judicial review.
In 2018, she co-sponsored a bill with Sen. Tina Smith to override four separate lawsuits brought by environmental groups against the U.S. Forest Service decision to transfer 6,500+ acres of Superior National Forest lands to PolyMet, a foreign mining corporation. That land exchange violates the Endangered Species Act, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and the Weeks Act.
She still refuses to stand with tribal leaders in Minnesota and reject the Enbridge Line 3 pipeline. Line 3 would contribute to global warming and pose a threat to clean water and indigenous lands used for hunting, fishing, and harvesting wild rice.
However bleak her polling among the wider population might be, the Minnesota senator can at any rate rest easy knowing she’s doing well within the Pundit Track — a kind of special electorate for which elections are almost entirely aesthetic and political appeal has nothing to do with a politician’s ability to attract votes from real people. In this respect, she is the quintessential Beltway phenomenon: a Highly Electable Candidate with virtually no popular support. Satire hasn’t been this obsolete since Henry Kissinger won the Nobel Peace Prize.
Nonetheless, there’s a bit more at work in Klobuchar’s narrow appeal than the superficial crushes she’s induced in a handful of pundits made giddy by her canned one-liners and tiresome, “aw-shucks” Midwesterner schtick. Run through the most effusive coverage her campaign has received, and you’ll repeatedly find something else in the mix: namely, that Klobuchar is a darling of the pundit class because her principal political message involves telling people wracked by angst and economic insecurity that they can’t and shouldn’t expect anything better.
Affordable health care for all is now at the center of the presidential debate. Two of the top three contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination — Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders — support Medicare for All. The third — Joe Biden — and those hoping to take his place as the leading centrist in the race — Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar — have attacked the plan to contrast their candidacies from Sanders and Warren.
Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar – who polls between one and two percent – faced stinging criticism from progressives for calling Israel “a beacon of democracy” during last week’s televised debate. Such unquestioning praise of Israel had until recent years been standard fare for ambitious politicians of either main party. But the leading Democrats are heading in the other direction.
Senator Elizabeth Warren said this week for the first time that reducing aid to Israel would be “on the table” if Israel did not stop building settlements on occupied Palestinian land – a war crime. Warren has for years been loath to make any commitment to holding Israel accountable.
On June 5, 16 heads of Jewish organizations joined 25 Democratic senators in a private meeting, which, according to the Times of Israel, is an annual event. All of the Jewish organizations but one were openly declared advocates for Israel and are supportive of its policies. Key groups present included the Council of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations, the Anti-Defamation League, and the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. A number of the groups have lobbied Congress and the White House in support of the use of force against Iran, a position that is basically identical to the demands being made by the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The senatorial delegation was headed by Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), currently Senate minority leader who has described himself as the “shomer” or guardian of Israel in the Senate. The 25 senators in attendance constitute one-quarter of the entire deliberative body and more than half of all Democrats serving in it. Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who has emphatically linked her campaign to become the Democratic presidential nominee in 2020 to Jewish and Israeli interests, chaired the gathering.
In 2016 Bernie rejected corporate PAC money. The move played well with working people concerned about corporate influence in politics, and many Democrats have found it politically prudent to follow suit, including Harris and Booker.
But this presidential cycle, it’s becoming clear that officially rejecting corporate PAC donations is not synonymous with holding industry elites at arms’ length. While the widespread adoption of the practice may lead to decreased influence of corporate PACs themselves in the Democratic Party, it also functions as a means of dissimulation, allowing pro-business Democrats to strike a progressive pose while quietly maintaining bonds with wealthy individual donors.
Senator Amy Klobuchar is also rumored to have been “particularly aggressive on the national donor circuit.” She has sworn off corporate PACs, which has helped her shore up a progressive reputation despite her business connections. Klobuchar’s campaign is a good example of the fragile balancing act Democrats are performing: in public she has been a harsh critic of tech giants, while in private she has maintained a close personal relationship with tech billionaire Sheryl Sandberg, and recently held an expensive fundraiser in San Francisco hosted by Silicon Valley angel investor Tom McInerney. Meanwhile, her social media presence is replete with references to her “homegrown” campaign.
Clearly Harris, Booker, Gillibrand, Klobuchar, and Buttigieg’s rejection of corporate PAC money is not a solid gesture of allegiance to the working class in the fight against capitalist power. It’s a compromise they have to make in the face of a credible challenge from the left. That challenge is posed chiefly by Bernie Sanders, who both refuses corporate PAC money and refuses to solicit donations from industry magnates — and has fared all the better for it. To her credit, Elizabeth Warren has refused to make that compromise.
Senator Klobuchar is the most unapologetic hawk of the senators in the race. She has voted for all but one, or 95%, of the military spending bills since 2013. She has only voted as requested by Peace Action 69% of the time, the lowest among senators running for president. Klobuchar supported the U.S-NATO-led regime change war in Libya in 2011, and her public statements suggest that her main condition for the U.S. use of military force anywhere is that U.S. allies also take part, as in Libya.
In January 2019, Klobuchar was the only presidential candidate who voted for S.1, a bill to reauthorize U.S. military aid to Israel that also included an anti-BDS provision to allow U.S. state and local governments to divest from companies that boycott Israel. She is the only Democratic presidential candidate in the Senate who did not cosponsor Sanders’ Yemen War Powers bill in 2018, but she did cosponsor and vote for it in 2019. Klobuchar received $17,704 in “defense” industry contributions for her 2018 reelection campaign.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s 2020 presidential bid has been beset by grim reporting on her treatment of staff members since the Minnesota Democrat declared her intent to run earlier this month. Reports of Klobuchar’s abuse of staff members have included allegations that she has thrown office supplies such as phones and binders in the direction of underlings in fits of anger, that she regularly berates her workers, and that she has attempted to sink job prospects for staffers departing her office as revenge for their leaving. Her reputation for ill treatment of those in her employ apparently made it difficult for her to put together a team to staff her presidential campaign.
The reports drew criticism of Klobuchar from most commentators. But some people weren’t convinced. In fact, as former staffers have continued to speak with reporters and allegations of Klobuchar’s office antics have continued to emerge, a specifically feminist line of defense has arisen regarding the senator’s methods of doing business. It’s clear, now, that being a woman isn’t a barrier to claiming the party’s nomination. And that means that there’s no need to defend female candidates who just aren’t principled enough to reliably lead. In Politico, Jennifer Palmieri, the former director of communications for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, argued that men with Klobuchar’s management habits would wear such reports as a “badge of honor,” and that “those who say that Klobuchar is getting the treatment she deserves also miss another, larger force at play: We still hold women in American politics to higher standards than men, which puts added pressure on female bosses.” And for Vox, editorial director Laura McGann mused: “It’s hard not to wonder, would a male candidate in the same position take the same heat?”
Sexism in our politics was one of the chief organizing narratives in the 2016 election, so it is not surprising to see it revived again ahead of 2020. But with at least four other women in the running in the upcoming Democratic primaries, it’s clear that Clinton’s 2016 jab at the “highest, hardest glass ceiling” changed something important in the party’s imagination: It’s clear, now, that being a woman isn’t a barrier to claiming the party’s nomination. And that means that there’s no need to defend female candidates who just aren’t principled enough to reliably lead. Klobuchar, in other words, needn’t be a hill to die on.
Senator Amy Klobuchar was hungry, forkless and losing patience. An aide, joining her on a trip to South Carolina in 2008, had procured a salad for his boss while hauling their bags through an airport terminal. But once onboard, he delivered the grim news: He had fumbled the plastic eating utensils before reaching the gate, and the crew did not have any forks on such a short flight.
What happened next was typical: Ms. Klobuchar berated her aide instantly for the slip-up. What happened after that was not: She pulled a comb from her bag and began eating the salad with it, according to four people familiar with the episode. Then she handed the comb to her staff member with a directive: Clean it.
"No, I am not for free four-year college for all," Klobuchar said. "If I was a magic genie and could give that to everyone and we could afford it, I would…I've gotta tell the truth. We have a mountain of debt that the Trump administration keeps making worse and worse, and I don't want to leave that on the shoulders of these kids too."
While supporting Medicare for All as "something we can look to in the future," Klobuchar said Monday that her preference would be to build on the Affordable Care Act by creating a new public option plan within Medicaid that individuals and families could buy into, either as a replacement for, or in addition to, the state-level insurance exchanges. On the Green New Deal, Klobuchar said some of the plan's goals were more aspirational than realistic—intended to "get this debate going," she said. "Do I think we can cross every 'T' and dot every 'I' in 10 years? Actually, I think that would be very difficult to do."
Senator Klobuchar’s Staff Mistreatment Reportedly Goes Back a Decade, Includes Throwing Binders According to emails seen by BuzzFeed News, Klobuchar consistently rebuked her staff in all caps, often over minor mistakes and at odd hours, frequently sending messages between 1 a.m. and 4 a.m. The senator would reportedly become angry if a staffer did not charge her iPad or if they used staples instead of paper clips. Her reputation as a demanding boss was so well known that, in 2015, retired Nevada Senator Harry Reid reportedly told her to reconsider her management tactics.
HuffPost also obtained an eight-page memo from Klobuchar’s 2006 Senate run, detailing the responsibilities and challenges of Klobuchar’s body person:
The Democrats who voted to confirm Pompeo were John Donnelly of Indiana, Dianne Feinstein of California, Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota, Tim Kaine of Virginia, Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Claire McCaskill of Missouri, Jack Reed of Rhode Island, Brian Schatz of Hawaii, Chuck Schumer of New York, Jeanne Shaheen of New Hampshire, Mark Warner of Virginia, and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.