Pennsylvania: State Rep. Brian Sims Announces Run For Congress

The very smart (and let’s face – seriously woofy) Pennsylvania State Rep. Brian Sims has announced he will seek run for Pennsylvania’s 2nd Congressional District.

The 37 year old currently represents Philadelphia’s City Center.

From his announcement today:

When I was 16, I decided I wanted to be a civil rights lawyer. I saw injustice and discrimination around me, and I wanted to stop it.

I’ve spent my life fighting for equality. Whether tackling gender and pay equity as a civil rights attorney, or standing up for justice reform in Harrisburg, I’ve never backed down from the big fights. And I never will.

And that’s why—I wanted you to be one of the first to know—today I’m announcing my candidacy for Pennsylvania’s 2nd Congressional District.

Now I’ve just got one question: Are you with me?

Working side by side, I know we can create real economic fairness and opportunity. I will fight to strengthen education so all of our kids can get a fair shot. And I will stand up to the NRA to get the guns off our streets.

The Congressional seat Sims is running for is currently occupied by Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.), who was indicted in July as a result of alleged roles in a racketeering conspiracy.

He was the first openly gay person elected to the Pennsylvania Legislature.

Congressional Democrats To Release Full Transcripts of Benghazi Investigation Interviews

Congressional Democrats have finally decided to push back against what they call “misleading” edited leaks of testimony from the committee investigating the attack of the American consulate in Benghazi.

From The Daily Beast:

Democrats are announcing their intention to unilaterally release full transcripts of private interviews that the committee has conducted, starting with the testimony of Hillary Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills. It’s a dramatic move from the five Democrats on the committee, which under the direction of Rep. Elijah Cummings has so far insisted that it won’t leak information to journalists while the investigation is underway.


Democratic efforts to press back against the committee have reached an apex in the past week, as they attempt to capitalize on a misstep by House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who linked the committee’s efforts to a political effort to hobble Hillary Clinton’s bid for the White House.

“Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee. A select committee,” McCarthy said on Fox. “What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she’s untrustable. But no one would have known that any of that had happened had we not fought to make that happen.”

The Benghazi inquiry is now the longest special Congressional inquiry in the history of the United States. Longer than Watergate, longer than Iran/Contra, longer than the investigation into the shooting death of President Kennedy.

After eight Congressional investigation into the attack in Benghazi, at a cost of over $4 million to American taxpayers, no evidence of wrongdoing has been found.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz Caught Attempting To Present False Information At Planned Parenthood Hearing

Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz tried to get away with false information during Congressional hearings regarding Planned Parenthood.

He presented a chart he had made based on what he SAID was info from Planned Parenthood.

It turns out the info came from Americans United for Life, an anti-abortion group.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz: I pulled those numbers directly out of your corp. reports

Richards: Excuse me. My lawyers have informed me that the source of this is Americans United for Life which is an anti-abortion group so I would check your source.

How very embarrassing for Chaffetz. Caught attempting to pass off false information in full view of America.

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Chris Hayes explains how that misleading graph Rep. Jason Chaffetz showed at today’s Planned Parenthood hearing SHOULD look
Posted by All In with Chris Hayes on Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Rachel Maddow Profiles The Rise And Fall Of Rep. Aaron Schock

Rachel Maddow goes in-depth on the resignation of Illinois Congressman Aaron Schock.

One of the more interesting things about Schock’s time in Congress seems to be that while he was one of the youngest members of Congress, it appears he didn’t actually DO much of substance while on the Hill. He’s been described, more than once, as a “show horse” rather than a “work horse.”

I also recommend the reporting today from the Washington Post on Schock’s early successes that had hints of the scandals that seemed to bring him down today.

Erick Erickson Goes After Rep. Aaron Schock On Spending Public Funds

Congressman Aaron Schock of Illinois on one of “those” trips

Erick Erickson of Red State demands a resignation after “totally not gay” GOP Congressman Aaron Schock as more stories come to light about seemingly inappropriate spending habits.

I will not belabor the point.

Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL) Rep. Aaron Schock has proven himself incapable of handling his own money, the money of his donors, and taxpayer money. He has lived excessively off the backs of taxpayers who must be reimbursed and off of donors to whom he is now a servant.

His excuses are now met with revised excuses, further apologies, and corrections to corrected records of expenditures and campaign finance reports. He has lived a life as a celebrity in a city that more and more craves celebrity over competence in office.

His lack of responsibility with the funds of others shows him to lack the necessary integrity to handle the power of the purse in the House of Representatives, which remains the chief power of the House.

He should resign. Perhaps Downton Abbey needs someone else to fill the role of an American playboy chasing a Crawley. He can go spend time on the real set instead of trying to dress up his office at our expense or that of his donors.

Erickson also embeds in his post a link that shows Schock’s “Heritage Actions Scorecard” at 45%, while the House Republican average is 61%.

Whatever that means…

Rep. Aaron Schock’s Week Gets Worse As Top Aide Resigns Over Racist Comments

Rep. Aaron Schock and ABC News’ Jeff Zeleny talk office decorating

In the wake of his current Congressional decorating woes, Rep. Aaron Schock now has to deal with a PR debacle as news comes to light that his policy and communiciations adviser, Benjamin Cole, had taken to social media in the past to compare African-Americans to zoo animals.

The posts appear to have been removed this week in light of “OfficeGate.”

In a series of Facebook posts obtained by ThinkProgress, the senior adviser for policy and communications to Rep. Aaron Schock (R-IL) posted racial comments and endorsed gentrification of his neighborhood.

Benjamin Cole, a former Baptist pastor and energy industry spokesman, posted a series of videos and comments on October 13, 2013 mocking two African Americans outside his DC apartment. In the first, he compared them to animals escaping from the National Zoo engaged in “mating rituals.” That message included a video of a woman, shouting and seemingly engaged in an argument with someone not visible as she walked. In each of his posts, he used the hashtag “#gentrifytoday.”

To be honest, Cole brought this on himself not only by posting his hideous remarks but also by making himself news this week with his knee-jerk reaction to the “Downton Abbey” inspired office story. Had he handled the issue with a fairer hand, his name wouldn’t have sparked interest in the national media.

You can see the screen capture of one of the posts (before it was deleted) below:

Cole’s resignation was announced today with Schock issuing this statement:

“I am extremely disappointed by the inexcusable and offensive online comments made by a member of my staff,” Schock said in a statement to the Peoria Journal Star. “I would expect better from any member of my team. Upon learning about them I met with Mr. Cole and he offered his resignation which I have accepted.”

Glad to see Schock take the only real.