Flipping The Byrd: Democrats Demand The Firing Of The Senate Parliamentarian After The Minimum Wage Hike Is Deemed Out of Order

Democratic members this week attacked Senate parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough after she (correctly) ruled that the inclusion of the $15 minimum wage hike in a reconciliation bill violated Senate rules. The response from Democratic members and many in the blogosphere was withering.  Rep. Ilhan Omar called for MacDonough to be fired and others denounced her actions and called the Senate to simply overrule her — and the long-standing rules.  It is not just the effort to gut or flip the “Byrd Rule” but vicious attacks on this parliamentarian that are so disconcerting.

The use of a reconciliation bill was an effort to circumvent the filibuster and allow a majority vote on the hike. However, by using reconciliation, the Democrats triggered the ‘Byrd rule’ –  which limits the type of provisions in the reconciliation process to taxing and spending. The purpose is to limit an add-ons through reconciliation to measures designed to have a direct impact on the federal budget—barring the use of reconciliation to introduce “extraneous” measures.  Otherwise, reconciliations could circumvent the normal legislative process and the filibuster option for the minority. The rule allows a senator to object when a reconciliation bill is brought to the floor through a Point of Order on the bill. After the Byrd Rule is raised, the Senate Parliamentarian informs the Presiding Officer on how to rule and the Presiding office conveys that to the Senate.  Senators can then vote to overrule the Presiding Officer but the process protects the minority and the parliamentarian by requiring that a vote to overrule secure a three-fifths majority.

The Parliamentarian’s role is key to a system of orderly legislative process. To simply disregard such rules (and fire those who seek to maintain them) is yet another example of the rage that has replaced reason in our current politics. Byrd was famous for putting the interests of the Senate and the Constitution before his own party. This effort shows increasingly rare such institutional defenders have become in this age of rage.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was one of the first to balk at any rules standing in the way of reform: “I think the parliamentarian is verging on, you know, just really intruding in this legislative process in a very concerning way.” I am not really sure what that actually means. Parliamentary rules are the thing that defines the legislative process and guarantees a neutral and ordered process of deliberation and enactment.

Yet, she was joined by others who dismissed the notion that such rules should matter. Rep. Ro Khanna declared “I’m sorry – an unelected parliamentarian does not get to deprive 32 million Americans the raise they deserve.” Rep. Pramila Jayapal declared “Twenty-seven million Americans are not going to be much convinced when we go back in two years and say, ‘Sorry, the unelected parliamentarian told us we couldn’t raise the minimum wage.’”

It was a grossly unfair statement that made it sound like MacDonough is against Americans getting deserved wages. Her job is to rule on the procedural means for bringing matters to the floor. Statements like those of Khanna and Jayapall incite those who have attacked MacDonough on the Internet and trashed her reputation.

Omar was one of the first to seek action against MacDonough: “Replace the parliamentarian. What’s a Democratic majority if we can’t pass our priority bills? This is unacceptable.” It was a telling statement. Omar would fire this woman because she is standing in the way of letting Omar and others of having their way. That is the point of parliamentary rules. You do not simply have a right to do what you want in any way that you want to.

Yet, publications like Slate noted “Democrats could also fire MacDonough and replace her with someone who’s a little more go-with-the-flow on all these tedious ‘rules’ issues.”

To its credit, the Biden White House shot down calls for Vice President Kamala Harris to move to overrule the parliamentarian. White House chief of staff Ron Klain told MSNBC “Certainly, that’s not something we would do. We’re going to honor the rules of the Senate and work within that system to get this bill passed.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders insisted that the hike would have an impact on the federal budget and thus the Parliamentarian is wrong. However, his rationale could be used to gut the Byrd Rule by claiming that any bill would have positive impacts on the budget in the long term. All bills are defended on that basis. Sanders notes that the Congressional Budget Office found the $15 wage proposal would cost jobs but would also lift nearly one million out of poverty.  That finding however was mixed and the point of the rule is the force such important measures to go through the full legislative process, including being subject to the filibuster rule. This is a massive increase with enormous impacts on the economy.  It is the type of action that legislative process is designed address through deliberation and compromise. The filibuster forces such compromise. In this case, even Democratic senators like Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia have objected to the hike. In the past, Democrats have recognized the value of that process.  Hillary Clinton stated “I learned some valuable lessons about the legislative process, the importance of bipartisan cooperation and the wisdom of taking small steps to get a big job done.”

I will leave the merits of the hike to others. However, the attack on the Parliamentarian, including the call for her being fired, is reprehensible. In a prior column, I wrote how Democrats are adopting the rhetoric and tactics that they denounced in former President Trump.  It is also a type of “myside bias” where Democrats disregard any countervailing limits or rules. (They are not alone in such bias. Many of us were critical of former Majority Leader Trent Lott replacing Parliamentarian Robert Dove in 2001, a move that Democrats denounced).

It is not just the attacks on MacDonough that are so reprehensible but the failure of many Democratic senators to denounce those calls for her firing and the abusive comments being made against her in the popular press. When the rage of our politics turns on parliamentarians, you know that we have become entirely untethered from our core values.

222 thoughts on “Flipping The Byrd: Democrats Demand The Firing Of The Senate Parliamentarian After The Minimum Wage Hike Is Deemed Out of Order”

  1. Mr. Turley’s moral confusion and denial is on display as usual. The ‘pearl clutching’ is cute and as if on cue, no? How can I take seriously that he’s shocked AOC has no respect for the rule of law? Since when has AOC demonstrated respect for the rule of law, Jonnie? Were these not the same reps who rammed through an absurd impeachment that made a joke of our constitution and congress? The same congress that’s proposed the unconstitutional HR1? And they of course they knew the minimum wage add-on wouldn’t make it through – wake up. This is theater so they can virtue signal, count votes and name names and raise money. The entire exercise is theater – it was never going to make it into the bill.

    How can Turley maintain this naive pose for decades? He also tries to lay this callous “by any means necessary” politics as being a reaction to Trump’s strategies? Is he high? How can he not see that the truth is the exact opposite is true in congress? The Dems have become so radical and engage in brinksmanship nonstop to the point where we Congress doesn’t really function anymore with normal hearings on bills and budgeting processes and lots of transparency. Now it’s almost all back door deals and theater. And he wants to pretend to be offended? He’s about 40 years late.

    I come here as Turley’s legal analysis is always interesting and strives to set ideology aside. But it seems this is merely an plot to position apologia for the Dems and Left nonstop. At a certain point Turley, you need to get that this is how “your side” is, this is how immoral and bloodthirsty AOC and her pals are. Stop lying to yourself most of all, for the sake of your eternal soul if nothing else.

  2. I’m…Demicrap The 8th I am!
    Demicrap south in a garbage can.
    I got married to the widow next door.
    She’s been married seven times before.
    And…everyone had a republic crown…

  3. Where is President Joe Biden’s State Of The Union or his traditional Presidential Address to the Joint Session of Congress ???

    What’s the hold up, Joe? Where you at?

      1. How long can they keep this charade going? If only we had a real press corps doing its job.

      2. I feel your pain John. Remembering he cleaned Trump’s clock in both debates must especially hurt.

        1. “Trump’s clock in both debates must especially hurt.”

          Delusion or confusion? Either one leads JF to the wrong conclusion.

          1. Gainesville’s self-declared victories make for another amusing tick, especially when his interlocutor is Mespo.

    1. “If you’re not sure if you’re voting for me you ain’t black.” –

      “Poor kids are just as smart as white kids.” –

      “I don’t want my children growing up in a racial jungle.” –

      Joe Biden is a racist.

  4. What the —- are all you milquetoasts talking about?

    Private property is not subject to communist edict.

    Congress has no power or constitutional basis to exercise dominion over private property or to set wages.

    The inmates are trying to takeover the asylum.

    Don’t you communistic milquetoasts care?

  5. What a BS artist.

    NO, “Democrats” did not demand the firing of the Senate Parliamentarian, though some – a very few, and none of the party leaders including the President or Majority Leader – did. Might as well post “Republicans want to hang Speaker Pelosi”.

    Typical JT trick – not really clever enough to gain that description, but clever enough to get the usual right wing suspects here salivating – of highlighting something outrageous a back bencher or flat out crackpot advocates that let’s him T-off again – like every day – on Democrats or CNN or MSNBC. Why read this drivel?

    1. AOC, Omar and Khanna are “back bencher(s) or flat out crackpot advocates”? Sure you’re not a Republican?

      1. Speaking of Alhysteria O’crazio Corkheads and her motley crew of parasitic hyphenates, if illegal immigration is acceptable, illegal deportation is acceptable.

        Easy come, easy go!!!

        Whatever happened to the intent of the American Founders who required citizens to be “…free white person(s)…?”

        “Crazy Abe” Lincoln; that’s what happened.

        Without “Crazy Abe’s” unconstitutional “Reign of Terror” and resultant unconstitutional and still illegitimate “Reconstruction Amendments,” the Naturalization Act of 1802 would still carry full force and effect,

        which, at the time of “Crazy Abe,” required all freed slaves to be deported.

    2. But AnonJoeFriday is here everyday reading the drivel and commenting on almost every article. Why do you read the drivel Joe.? One must assume that Joe is here for his daily lashing. Hit me again master Turley. Hit me again JoeFriday begs.

      1. Sorry Thinkit, but mocking GOP mouthpieces like JT pretending to be a “concerned” non-partisan commentator is easy pickings and almost as much fun as mocking those readers who buy it.

        You’re not one of those, right?

    3. “NO, “Democrats” did not demand the firing of the Senate Parliamentarian, though some – a very few, and none of the party leaders including the President or Majority Leader – did.”

      But quite a few Democrats did, and therein lies the problem with your chosen tribe.

      It’s the same problem your enemy tribe the Republicans are experiencing.

      Both Parties are dying a slow, agonizing, protracted death. But thankfully, they are dying.

      George Washington statement about political Parties in his farewell address was prophetic.

  6. There is some mention of “flipping the bird”. The means “giving the finger”. The middle finger. As in ukFay you.
    There was a song out years ago titled The Bird Is The Word.
    “Everybody knows that the bird is the word!
    Bird? Bird! Bird is the word.”

  7. From WIKIPEDIA.COM page on MacDonough: Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA) said he had “no question about her ability to read the rules and make the right decisions.”[7]

    The site also reports that, when Senator Cruz’ demanded in 2015 that MacDonough be fired or ignored, Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), the senior senator from Texas, dismissed Cruz’s comments, saying ousting MacDonough would be “like firing the judge if you disagree with his ruling.”[10]

    BTW: MacDonough has been in the office of the Senate Parliamentarian since … 1999. I’ll hold my breath to see if the “Byrd Rule,” the creation of none other than that WVa D, is ignored — if and when harris has a say-so; I doubt that biden’s comment binds her.

  8. Democrats are using the pandemic to pile on as much pork and dream spending as possible, before they will grant financial relief. Taxpayers are on the hook for this. Businesses will hemorrhage more jobs, and close more often as the price of labor goes up.

    But it’s Republicans who want to “throw Grandma off a cliff?”

    Why is the Democrat Party not held accountable for the outcome of their policies?

    1. Thanks for calling it the “Democrat” Party. All too often, it is carelessly portrayed as a party that is a “democratic” one!

    2. Businesses will get more business if people at the lower end of the income range make more money.

      Taxpayers were also on the hook for the Trump tax cuts. This relief bill will do more for the economy than the tax cuts did.

      1. Anonymous writes: “Businesses will get more business if people at the lower end of the income range make more money.”

        That statement is similar to saying water is wet and tells almost nothing. People in the lower income range earn more money when the economy is good. When taxes go past a point, then who pays those taxes? The working class. If they don’t pay it in their taxes they pay it when they purchase goods at a higher price.

        “This relief bill will do more for the economy than the tax cuts did.”

        1,900,000,000,000 dollars /330,000,000 = how much per person. You do the math.

        That is $5757 per person or a family of 4 is $23,000.

        Somewhere along the line that family of 4 is going to have to help generate $23,000 in tax revenue for this piece of legislation. Their Covid check is going to look pretty small. Where is the generator of revenues shown in the bill?

        Then consider that half of the bill has nothing to do with Covid and much of the rest doesn’t help the family of 4.

        There is a bit of craziness in the left’s approach to economics and that is why one after another leftist nations have failed economically and nations that follow the dictums of good economic policy, hated by the left, do so much better. The left doesn’t engage in discussion of economic policies because they know their limits. They know very little and most of that is wrong.

      2. If “Anonymous” chose an avatar, there could be a continuous discussion.

        However, they said “Businesses will get more business if people at the lower end of the income range make more money.”

        Tell that to all the NY restaurants who went out of business when the minimum wage was increased.

        Here is what really happens:

        First, politicians declare that other people, in this case businesses, have to pay more for minimum wage. As taxpayers pay for politicians’ staff, how much it costs is of no concern.

        In response to this increase in labor costs, the businesses have these set responses; there are no others: Cut profits, increase costs to consumers, cut jobs and distribute out the unskilled labor to the rest of the employees, go out of business, or relocate in a lower cost area. That’s it. There are no other options.

        Once minimum wage gets increased, then those more skilled workers who were already making $15 need more, or they will be paid the same as unskilled. On up the ladder, wages increased, and more jobs get cut.

        This leads to increased costs to consumers, only now, there are more unemployed people. So, everything costs more, but there are less jobs. Sure, those who are still working are making more, but the cost of living just went up, too. So how are they better off?

        Would you be willing to take a 25% pay cut, decreed by politicians who don’t know anything about you? If you don’t have a tremendous profit margin already, then you can’t afford it. Most small business owners are just middle class. They aren’t rich. They can’t afford to pay each employee $6,240 more a year, just for the entry level staff, plus astronomically more for those who are skilled workers.

        What you are doing, is basically saying that it sounds great to pay people more money, and that it should all work out in the end. Of course businesses make more money if consumers have more to spend. That’s what happens when there is lower unemployment and a booming economy. But if you jack up the cost of labor, drive unemployment way up, and businesses become insolvent, then they do not make more money, obviously. That’s the bit that you don’t acknowledge.

        You are confusing a booming economy with politicians coming in and declaring you need to pay more, as if small business owners are some sort of robber baron misers sitting on piles of treasure, refusing to give anyone a raise.

        Small businesses are hanging on by a thread. Almost all the local restaurants where I live in CA have closed for good. The ones still hanging on are pizza delivery and fast food, which always relied on takeout or drive through. The traditional restaurants had to close, invest in outdoor heaters and plastic catering tents, then close again. They’re dropping like flies. You think they can come up with thousands more a year too?

        People say they care about others, but the proof is in their actions. Anyone who blows off the impoverishment and ruination of small businesses, and well documented job losses, just because it makes them feel good to claim they’re helping, does not care about anyone. You “help” people right out of a job.

        Here’s the simple truth. Almost all minimum wage earners get a raise within a year. It’s entry level, not a permanent career. As politicians drive more and more jobs out with their mismanagement, good jobs leave a state, like CA, leaving behind the unskilled jobs like fast food. In response, Democrats try even harder to make minimum wage jobs lead to a middle class life supporting a family, thus driving out even more jobs. They help and they help until, like CA, there are vast homeless encampments, it’s hard to find work, and it just costs way too much to try to run a business.

        CA is what you get with a Democrat supermajority. There is zero opposition to them. If you get a supermajority running the country, then where CA goes, the country follows. And those running it into the ground will always blame someone else. Amazingly, CA voters never seem to connect their own voting behavior with all the problems they complain about.

          1. Why do you think people pushing a broom would make the same today as in any arbitrary point in history, such as 1856?

            The answer isn’t to keep jacking up the cost of unskilled labor, but rather to provide more opportunities for them to move up. My first job was when I was 16, for a pittance. I earned higher and higher wages as the years passed. It’s not what you make your first day working, but how rapidly you can move up.

            Policies that destroy jobs also destroy opportunities, until you’re at the point that you can’t make it without government assistance, and you can never get off of it. What are you going to do, if there are no jobs?

              1. “There was no minimum wage in 1856.” Did I say there was? No. I said, “Why do you think people pushing a broom would make the same today as in any arbitrary point in history, such as 1856?”

                I am all for making workplaces safe, such as from toxins like asbestos.

                The goal should be how well people are living. It doesn’t matter if you make 5 cents a day if you can buy a house for $260, and buy plenty of fresh, wholesome food.

                It’s not about the dollar amount people make, but how much they can buy for it, how well they live, and if there are opportunities for advancement.

                Helping people out of jobs and raising the cost of goods on everyone isn’t helpful.

                1. If I recall Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle correctly, there was a collusion between landlords, banks, and factories.

                  Packingtown agents would sell immigrants little cheaply made houses for high interest. The strong men would make good money at first, but risks were high. As soon as they were injured, they were fired. They would have to congregate early every morning looking for work. Packing house bosses only picked the fittest. So the more injured you got on the job, the harder it was to find work. Then, when they couldn’t make the payments, the banks would foreclose, and the agents would sell the house to another newcomer immigrant.

                  There definitely was a dirty racket going in meat production. Upton Sinclair helped alert the public to disgusting dirt and worker abuse.

                  So there is no argument whatsoever that it’s possible to exploit workers or create unsafe working conditions.

                  But it’s also not 1905.

                  I get the arguments that we need to prevent wage slavery, in which unskilled workers get well and truly trapped. In fact, I regularly hear Californians of many skill levels say that they’ve drained all their money paying for the high rent, high taxes, and high cost of living, and can’t save up the cushion required to move out of state, and live on savings while looking for work in better job markets. This is especially true now that Covid and its subsequent closures has wiped out so many California businesses. Do they chuck it all, hitch hike, and stay in shelters or sleep in their car in other states? It’s scary to risk it all.

                  Ironically, this push to enable and allow maximum illegal immigration means that workers get paid under the table, less than minimum wage, and they don’t get the benefit of work comp. This means that they are at risk for some of the very abuses that Sinclar warned of. Interestingly, if you pay someone under the table less than minimum wage, they can actually end up taking home more pay than someone who pays taxes. Since they have no reportable income, and they have a child born in the US, they qualify for a variety of benefits, including housing, that the person who got paid more, paid taxes, and took home less money does not. Here in CA, illegal aliens are allowed to buy cheaper car insurance than anyone else. They can have less liability requirements, so they save money there, too.

            1. Market forces set prices and wages.

              It’s all about freedom, free enterprise and supply and demand.

              It’s called freedom not communist edict and dictatorship.

              Charity is industry conducted in the free markets of the private sector.

              1. As someone who trades markets everyday I can tell you this, at best, is a wildly incomplete statement.

                1. Trading markets doesn’t mean one knows anything about how markets function. No statement can ever be complete but some provide the essence of the subject matter. Do you have another point with the significance of “Market forces set prices and wages”? If you do let us hear it or tell us what you find to be the secondary statements that help complete the primary one.

                2. Please cite the Constitution wherein Congress is provided the power to set wages.

                  Could it be the 5th Amendment right to private property?

                  Could it be Article 1, Section 8 which restricts regulation to money, commerce and land and naval Forces?

                  Where in the Constitution is the power to set wages provided to Congress?

          2. They are being paid for the skills (or lack thereof) they have and the level of skill required by the job and the job market where they work. All that in current $$.

          3. Anon, I read your source concerning the minimum wage. Your Saturday Evening Post source said that the $7.28 minimum wage had lost 17% of its purchasing power since 2009. The difference is $1.24. It should follow then that we should add $1.24 to $7.28. The new minimum wage would then be $8.52. How then do we come to the conclusion that the new amount should be $15.00. You and your Democratic friends believe that the deplorables will never figure it out. We’ll be having these deplorables voting for us for the next two hundred years. Thank you for providing such a clarifying source. Duh.

            1. You can also see that 2009 was not the maximum purchasing power, but I’m sure you don’t want to admit that.

              1. Anon, I pointed out the logic based on your link but you have not addressed my suggestion that the lost purchasing power of 17% could be made up. I used your source. You have not addressed how an increase of over 100% makes any sense when the purchasing power of the minimum wage has only gone down by 17%. Under the Obama administration the minimum wage was increased by 70 cents per hour. Perhaps Obama’ advisors did not recommend more because they were knowledgeable about the effects of a minimum wage increase on the economy. Are you now going to tell us about your disagreement with Obama policy?

                1. And you haven’t addressed the fact that it’s gone down by more than 17% if you measure from the peak instead of from 2009.

                  Look, TiT, you’re a troll. In all of my interactions with you, you have never once tried to have a sincere conversation. You reap what you sow.

                  1. What you are discussing is near meaningless. What you need to consider is what creates prices and wages. That is the key.

                    Democrats are schizoid. They want to artificially raise salaries, but at the same time they want to bring in cheaper labor from south of the border while outsourcing.

                    They either want higher wages or not. It seems Democrats can’t make up their mind. But they have. The minimum wage is a ruse to convince people to vote Democrat, but with that vote comes job loss and lower salaries.

      3. “Taxpayers were also on the hook for the Trump tax cuts.”

        One school of thought is that the government is entitled to every dollar you earn. Every dollar you get to keep, “costs” the government. Taxes can be increased over and over, but if they are ever reduced back, it “costs” the government. It will never end until we’re like Venezuela, and our government generously gives us a stipend of $20 to live on. They’ll call that a “cost” to government, too.

      4. And your PhD in economics is from ??????? Or do you just spout the “progressive” D line of the best socialists among us?

      5. Whoa Big Boy….you lost me there…..how was I “on the hook” for the Trump Tax Cut….my taxes went down….not up as they. have or surely shall under the Democrat Party!

        So..explain to me how I “lost” on the Trump Tax Cut?

        I know how I gained on the Obama Health Care Plan….the one that he promised would see me a Two Thousand and Five Hundred Dollar cut in Premiums and let me keep my Plan and Doctor….none of which happened.

        1. Both the spending bill and the tax cuts cost the Treasury. Karen said that “Taxpayers are on the hook for this” for the former. Taxpayers are on the hook for both.

          1. “Taxpayers are on the hook for this” tax cut.

            If keeping more of my income means that I’m “on the hook,” please make my hook bigger.

      6. “Businesses will get more business if people at the lower end of the income range make more money.”

        So why not make it $50/hour?

        Someone doesn’t understand basic economics. If I spend more on X (e.g., labor), I have less to spend on Y (e.g., equipment). That means that the equipment companies have *less* business. See, for example, the “Broken Window” fallacy.

  9. There is no one size minimum wage that fits the entire country, and trying to create one will decimate jobs during a global pandemic. One wonders if the Democrat Party is trying to impoverish more people, as those on public assistance tend to vote Democrat.

    A middle class lifestyle on a single wage in San Francisco would require $28/hour, without any children, and it jumps to $56.11/hour if you have only one child. Two children would require $68.93, and three $90.62. A $15 minimum wage is still not going to achieve a middle class lifestyle based on a single wage earner, not even close. (https://livingwage.mit.edu/counties/06075)

    While it won’t allow a middle class life, raising the minimum wage again in San Francisco will increase the cost of living in that overpriced city even more. Minimum wage is entry level, low or non skilled labor. Almost all minimum wage earners receive a wage within a year of getting hired. Constantly increasing the cost of unskilled labor creates tremendous pressure to cut those jobs, automate them, increase prices, close the business, or relocate. You would be more willing to pay a teenager a small amount to push a broom around and get his first job experience, lessening your own workload, than you would if you had to pay him $15 to do something you could do yourself. My own husband learned his business by sweeping up, and doing the little jobs that made no sense for the skilled workers to take the time to do. He learned his trade very well, gained one of the strongest work ethics possible, kept getting more and more responsibility, and eventually went into business for himself.

    Now, compare and contrast San Francisco’s figures with those of El Dorado County, CA: Living wage with no children, one, two and three children require $16.99/hour, $37.56/hour, $46.78/hour, and $61.66/hour, respectively. Again, a $15 minimum wage is not going to provide a middle class lifestyle, although it will come close if you’re single without children. However, the community will be far less able to absorb the increased cost of labor. Prices are low in this area. Such an increase in labor costs is very difficult to pass on to customers. So the jobs for workers brand new to the employment arena, unskilled, or low skilled will be cut.

    Increasing the cost of labor increases prices paid by everyone, and cuts jobs. People are worst off. They have a higher risk of being unemployed, and now everything costs more. It also incentivizes businesses to hire illegal aliens under the table, for less than minimum wage. Further exacerbating the cost of labor is the fact that all other wage earners would demand a similar wage increase, to avoid earning the same as an unskilled worker. If minimum wage used to be $12, and a more skilled worker earned $15, increasing the minimum wage to $15 means that skilled worker now earns the same as someone without any skill at all. They would require an increase to differentiate their worth. And so on up the ladder.

    Think about it like this. If a house cost $1,000 but you earned $400, you are in the same boat as if a house costs $100,000 and you earned $40,000. In fact, you’d be worse off if that house cost $100,000 and you were unemployed without a hope of buying it.

    Loss of jobs following a minimum wage hike has been well documented, especially in slim margin businesses such as restaurants. Democrat politicians pushing the minimum wage hike must know this. They must know that people love to be told the government is giving them a “free” raise, and that it will result in more unemployment, just like they know that constantly promising free stuff appeals to those on public assistance. Therefore, this would net them more voters, never mind the fact that the politicians impoverished them.

    Where is the incentives for Democrats to increase prosperity, when that leads to more Republican votes? Paying taxes tends to make you care more about how much they cost than if you never pay taxes.

      1. Anonymous:

        I thought it was around $15.50 in SF? Has it gone up again? It makes more sense for San Francisco’s minimum wage to be higher than, say, Vacaville, get it? Hence why I said there is no one sized minimum wage that would work for the entire country.

        I’m talking about the disparity of effects of raising the minimum wage in an already expensive city compared with a lower cost of living one.

        I live in CA. I have relatives from San Francisco, so I know how incredibly expensive it is to live there, and all about the limits to building new apartments to preserve their precious skyline. And you would be shocked at the permit process and cost.


        ““At Least 60 Bay Area Restaurants Have Closed Since September,” read a January headline at the website SFist, which partly blamed “the especially high cost of doing business in SF, with a mandated, rising minimum wage that does not exempt tipped employees.” Another publication, Eater, described the rash of recent closures as a “death march.”

        Perhaps the highest-profile closure in San Francisco this year was AQ, which in 2012 was a James Beard Award finalist for the best new restaurant in America. Rising costs chipped away at the restaurant’s profitability, according to a report by Thrillist, driving down the profit margin from 8.5% in 2012 to 1.5% by 2015.

        When San Francisco added its own municipal minimum wage in 2004—one of the first in the country—the operating assumption was that tourists and techies would pay the higher prices necessary to offset the cost of the city’s generosity. Last year the San Francisco Chronicle looked at 20 years’ of menus from top restaurants and reported that prices had jumped 52% since 2005, twice the rate of inflation. But increasing prices isn’t a panacea for restaurant owners. “There’s only so much you can charge for tamales,” the owner of a small eatery said in 2015 to explain one reason he was closing.”

      2. From the same article:

        “If there’s a silver lining to San Francisco’s culinary struggles, it’s that other cities, even ones run by Democrats, are realizing the arguments for a $15 minimum wage don’t match reality. In March, Baltimore’s mayor, Catherine Pugh, vetoed a measure that would have raised the local mandate to $15 by 2022. “I want people to earn better wages,” she told this newspaper. “But I also want my city to survive.”

        California lawmakers have been less thoughtful in their approach. Under legislation passed last year the state will raise its wage floor to $15 an hour as soon as 2022. That mandate applies not only to the prosperous coast but also to the impoverished inland. California is already a net exporter of working-class residents. From 2000-15, the state lost a net 800,000 people living close to the poverty line, according to a Sacramento Bee analysis of Census Bureau data.

        These families understand something that the City Council in San Francisco and the Legislature in Sacramento do not: New wage mandates and government benefits don’t mean much if you can’t find a job.”

        The question is, Anonymous, will you change your opinion based on the facts, or will you continue to go with your feelings, voting to put people out of business, and out of work, because it feels good to make wages go up?

      3. And scores of small businesses and restaurants have shuttered forever. But the laid off workers can always get jobs shoveling poop and needles from the sidewalks and cleaning broken glass where cars and buildings have been burglarized. The new city song goes “I left my farrrt in Sannn Franciscooo.”

    1. KarenS, your points are just to logical. You give the lowest skilled worker $15.00 per hour and the skilled worker who is making $15.00 per hour is going to want to be paid more. The next thought in the progression is that businesses will raise their prices and the lowest paid workers will not be able to buy their products. Businesses will raise their prices in order to stay in business. The next logical step must be price controls. Why don’t the Democrats have the guts to also legislate price controls. It’s purely political. A $15.00 minimum wage is their touchy-feely political horse and they will ride it all the way to the glue factory. Somehow all the horses will still vote for Democrats.

      1. Think Baby….if the Democrats install Price Controls to keep Prices for going up to cover increased Costs for Labor…..isn’t that the perfect Recipe for destroying a business?

        Democrats think like Congress….when they run out of other people’s money to spend….they just let debt build up and ignore it until the day the house of cards comes tumbling down.

        Put Congress on a balanced budget requirement and see how quickly they would raise taxes….as there is no way they are going to cut spending.

        You grant Congress something you refuse to grant a business.

        Why is that?

        1. Ralph, I mention price controls because it has been tried and was a failure. I am saying that to maintain an equal value in the minimum wage an instrument would have to be installed to control the inflation caused by an increase in the minimum wage. The result would be massive business failure. The Democrats know the effect but they believe they have found a political policy that wins elections and to hell with the economy even if the policy hurts the poor more than any demographic.

  10. Once again, Democrats are proving that they have no regard for Constitutional rule and proper procedures. Yet educated people continue to support them. I wonder why.

    1. “Yet educated people continue to support them. I wonder why.”

      Yet brainwashed people continue to support them. That is why.

    2. Yet educated people continue to support them. I wonder why.

      It’s turned into a marker which delineates in-groups and out-groups.

  11. Turley: why don’t you just put a disclaimer on what you write that makes clear that your job is to ignore the outrages and faults of Trump and Republicans and find reasons to criticize Democrats?

    1. Tell us, where do Democrats like Biden, Harris, etc, get regularly criticized or called out?

      Have the MSM spent much time, or any time, on the Cuomo nursing home scandal? Or Cuomo’s sexual harassment allegations? For example.

      1. She knows full well that Professor Turley regularly criticizes Trump and the Republican Party on this blog. She only pretends he does not when Democrats are the subject of his criticism.

        1. Karen, that’s BS. Link me one JT column where the subject for criticism is Trump, the GOP, or Fox. It doesn’t exist.

          1. AnonJF – is this the part where you demand I spend time providing you with information you could easily access yourself, only for you to ignore it?

            I’ll spend 60 seconds on you only:



            Turley has criticized Trump myriad times over the past 4 years. Denying it is not honest. He just calls it like he sees it. He’s not going to ignore Democrat abuse of power just to stick it to Trump, however. And that’s the difference between a rational person and a true believer.

            1. To: Karen S.: You are a straight-shooter, and I applaud your thoughtful and reasoned replies. I would have just pressed the “Like” star, but it doesn’t seem to work here, and anyway, in appreciation of your effort to inject commonsense and grounded views into this blog, I don’t mind the extra effort.

      2. Cuomo’s scandal’s have gotten a lot of coverage. Do you need help finding examples of reporting from the NYT, CNN, etc.?

        1. “Cuomo’s scandal’s have gotten a lot of coverage. “

          Are you serious in your rebuttal? It was not until the decision was made that Cuomo was no longer to be a Democrat leader that the MSM (NYT CNN) started to cover Cuomo’s scandals. You are being disingenuous

          We can all remember, up to recently, Cuomo was regarded as a Saint when it came to managing the Covid crisis. There was unending praise for Cuomo and unending criticism of de Santis. That comparison was made despite Cuomo’s failures in managing the Covid crisis. De Santis of Florida did a great job. The MSM continued to praise Cuomo even after the memo was released which sent Covid positive patients back to the nursing homes. You joined the media in your praise of Cuomo and NY while belittling de Santis and Florida. Families went to the MSM and were not listened to. The death count was astounding yet Cuomo won an Emmy for his performance in the Covid crisis. You remained supportive of him.

          Finally, the left realized the problem of killing seniors was bad for their image and made an about-face. That is when the MSM suddenly started to write about the scandals in the Cuomo administration. That led you to say “Cuomo’s scandal’s have gotten a lot of coverage” That statement seems quite disingenuous. Where were you and the MSM earlier when the damage was being done?

    2. Natcha needs to go back to his basement and there pay homage to all elected Ds and those who support them (no matter what) while continuing to hate and fear President Trump, all Republicans and all Conservatives — and not read this website.

      1. Is NUTCHACHA a man now?

        Life is full of Sir-prises.

        NUTCHACHA says, “Unconstitutional generational welfare and affirmative action privilege; don’t leave home wiffout it!”

    3. Natacha – remember when CNN’s Chris Cuomo was using his prime time show to do his brother’s PR for him? Chris Cuomo was calling his brother “the Luv Guv”……hahaha…..how many female former staffers have come forward now? Two? Are there more coming for the “Luv Guv”?? Hahahaha. Cuomo deserves every bit of what’s coming for him….

        1. “Yep, both Cuomo and Trump deserve every bit of what’s coming for them.”

          You were very early for Trump and very late for Cuomo. What does that tell us?

    4. Nasty ; As the Great Ronald Reagan once said ” there you go again”. You deflect the issue at hand and toss partisan bunko. Which again proves you have no argument let alone any cogent opinion of the Parliamentarian procedures our congress must use. So please keep on exposing your low IQ grasp of the issues at hand, we need a good laugh in these times of senile corrupt leadership.

    5. Natacha, Professor Turley Has stated that he did not agree with Trumps speech. When he does criticize Trump you just tell yourself to skip over that part. Reality does not agree with your spin so you just succumb to an overpowering need to creatively vent. The operative word is “reality”.

  12. Will one of you constitutional scholars here please cite the Constitution wherein Congress is provided the power to set wages?

    Congress has no power to set wages.

    The inmates have taken over the asylum.

    Further discussion is futile and entirely bereft of rationale or purpose as the communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) are simply waiting and watching America expire.

    Constitution 101


    The Constitution and Bill of Rights are absolute and immutable.

    The rights, freedoms, privileges and immunities in the Constitution and Bill of Rights are provided, and NOT qualified, by the Constitution and Bill of Rights and are, therefore, absolute and immutable.

    Without hindrance, impediments or interference, Americans have the right to fully and absolutely enjoy the rights, freedoms, privileges and immunities provided by the Constitution and Bill of Rights over any concern or thesis of Congress and/or the Judicial Branch.

    The judicial branch, with emphasis on the Supreme Court, has NO power to legislate or modify legislation and enjoys as its sole duty and charge merely the power to assure that actions comport with law.*

    Fundamental law may not be modified by Congress or the Judicial Branch, including the Supreme Court, or by any State, but only through exercise of the constitutional amendment process.

    The freedoms of speech, press, religion and assembly are not qualified and are, therefore, immutable.

    The right to private property is absolute and immutable allowing only owners to “claim and/or exercise dominion” over private property, brooking no interference whatsoever by governmental entities.

    The right to keep and bear arms is absolute and immutable and shall not be infringed in any aspect or facet.

    What America is facing is conquest and extinction by its direct, mortal enemy, global communism and the emerging global hegemon, communist China, which, incidentally and importantly, made clear its intent to

    achieve dominion by releasing a biological weapon, “China Flu, 2020,” to improve its geopolitical position.

    The prime enemy is China and communists (liberals, progressives, socialists, democrats, RINOs) in America have for decades been committing actionable treason by “…adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid

    and Comfort.”

    The enemy is not at the gates, the enemy is inside the gates.

    The enemy is egregiously violating fundamental law and is irrefutably culpable.

    Listening further to the mad rantings of hysterical and incoherent zealots is no longer tenable.

    The enemy, as has been the case throughout history, must be neutralized, before said neutralization is no longer possible.

    America, including its Constitution and Bill of Rights, is in its final, mortal struggle for survival.

    “But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and

    to provide new Guards for their future security.”

    – Declaration of Independence, 1776

    “…courts…must…declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the Constitution void.”

    “… men [will] do…what their powers do not authorize, [and] what they forbid.”

    “[A] limited Constitution … can be preserved in practice no other way than through the medium of courts of justice, whose duty it must be to declare all acts contrary to the manifest tenor of the Constitution void. Without this, all the reservations of particular rights or privileges would amount to nothing … To deny this would be to affirm … that men acting by virtue of powers may do not only what their powers do not authorize, but what they forbid.”

    – Alexander Hamilton

    “[Private property is] that dominion which one man claims and exercises over the external things of the world, in exclusion of every other individual.”

    – James Madison

      1. Anon: DT did not hold a candlelight to JFK’s escapades and the media was just crickets. No wonder he was nearly in traction (back) dailey. The press has long covered for democrats. Like the Gov’t, the press tells you what they want you to know and lie about the balance.

        1. To: Lighteredknot: You are correct about JFK, but one must recall that in that era (until Clinton, actually), presidents’ non-public lives were generally given a free pass by journalists and reporters in the U.S. (at least, while they were alive or in office).

        2. Presidential extramarital affairs:

          JFK, Monster
          By Timothy Noah
          “I knew that John F. Kennedy was a compulsive, even pathological adulterer, given to taking outlandish risks after he entered the White House. I knew he treated women like whores. And I knew he had more than a few issues with his father about toughness and manliness and all that. But before I read in the newspaper that Mimi Alford’s just-released memoir, Once Upon A Secret: My Affair With President John F. Kennedy And Its Aftermath, described giving Dave Powers a blow job at JFK’s request and in his presence, I didn’t know that Kennedy had an appetite for subjecting those close to him to extreme humiliation.”

          “Clinton pays Paula Jones $850,000”
          Associated Press
          Wed 13 Jan 1999 13.15 EST
          “WASHINGTON (AP) – Paula Jones is awaiting the arrival of an $850,000 cheque from President Clinton, bringing an official end to the four-year saga spurred by her allegations of sexual harassment.”

          “FDR and His Women”
          “… she was deeply wounded to discover that Franklin had been having an affair with her secretary, Lucy Mercer.”

          Bill Clinton as enabled by Hillary Clinton
          1. Eileen Wellstone (1969) Allegation: Sexual assault
          2. Anonymous female student at Yale University (1972) Allegation: Sexual assault
          3. Anonymous female student at the University of Arkansas (1974) Allegation: Sexual assault
          4. Anonymous female lawyer (1977) Allegation: Sexual assault
          5. Juanita Broaddrick (1978) Allegation: Rape
          6. Carolyn Moffet (1979) Allegation: Sexual assault
          7. Elizabeth Ward (1983) Allegation: Unclear
          8. Sally Perdue (1983) Allegation: Unclear
          9. Paula Jones (1991) Allegation: Sexual harassment
          10. Sandra Allen James (1991) Allegation: Sexual assault
          11. Christy Zercher (1992) Allegation: Sexual assault
          12. Kathleen Willey (1993) Allegation: Sexual assault


  13. When Omar gets around to following the rules it will be some centuries in the future. Omar should stick to making tents or something useful. She has yet to take the mandatory Oath of Office and the term Squat makes one careful where they walk. But to soften the comment since when did the socialist (aka national, international, regressive liberals and now add violators of women ever follow the rules?

    1. Ditto, Michael. Omar is one of the most loathsome examples of what is horribly wrong with immigration policy.

        1. Yes, trolls, I know Tlaib isn’t an immigrant, but that’s the point. She’s second generation, and she’s still a jihadi. The Democrats aren’t assimilating immigrants anymore. The immigrants are assimilating the Democrats.

          1. Just like Melania Trump is assimilating the Republicans with “I really don’t care, do U?”

            1. Jeez , Seems Melania has her own business(s) , speaks English on top of four other langauges ( polyglot ) . Has a son doing extremely well assimilating. Yet you defend mental midgets that are immoral and corrupt like omar the immigrant , and dirka dirka talib. So yes “we ” really don’t care about people that refuse to assimilate to America. That is the point of coming to America, no ?.

          2. Actually, I have read that it is often the 2nd generation and on which become more radicalized than the original immigrant parents, who were directly aware of the situation they left to enter America.

      1. Omar is a signal of much more that is wrong. Despite witnesses and videos of rampant vote buying and fraud in her district the FBI and DOJ found nothing interesting enough to investigate.

        But the FBI could send 15 agents to investigate a door pull at a racetrack and it would be hilarious if not so outrageous [perhaps both] that they were thinking of investigating the theft of Lady Gaga’s dogs. The FBI has reduced itself to the level of dog catchers, although real dog catchers are probably more competent and successful.

        Their reason for investigating was that perhaps white supremacist factions took the dogs because Gaga sang at the inaugural that nobody watched.

        Is somebody pumping gaga gas into the J. Edgar Hoover/Richard Jewell building? They seem to have gone completely, bug-eyed nuts in there.

        1. Yep, the FBI isn’t doing real work, like investigating the hundreds of criminals from the Capitol insurrection.

          1. Yep, did you see they went and arrested a nice retired couple from Maryland? It’s amazing how many un-armed, hapless folks were part of this so-called “armed insurrection.” That FBI is really doing a bang up job, ain’t it?

        2. Surprise! Surprise! Lady Gag’s dogs were taken (and the paid dog walker shot) by … black man/men. Hardly supports FBI involvement, but then they owe their jobs now to the Ds in DC.

          1. Oh, that wounds me! Bigot? That’s your best shot?

            I have read the Koran. I doubt you have. If finding it objectionable makes me a bigot then bigotry, as you define it, is a good thing.

            1. I find parts of both the Koran and the Bible objectionable.

              Finding it objectionable doesn’t make you a bigot. Objecting to people using their chosen religious text for a ceremonial swearing in is what makes you a bigot.

              1. “I find parts of both the Koran and the Bible objectionable.”

                I find parts of being tortured and exercising on a treadmill objectionable. Such statements are meaningless.

                The parts of the Bible meant to hurt or injure others outside the faith are not generally seen in any significant group. Exceptions to the rule are noted. However a significant part of Islam especially those that believe in Sharia Law take those objectionable parts and incorporate them into their daily lives. That includes killing and many other things we would consider uncivilized. It places women as second class citizens under the rule of men and places all non believers into Dhimmi status.

                You talk about women’s rights, equality for all especially minorities and a whole host of other things but your statement leaves out the important distinctions that need to be discussed. It makes one wonder about the underlying principles and beliefs.

          2. One thing the Left hasn’t tumbled to yet is that much of the coumtry has become immune to the schoolyard taunts the left favors. We just don’t care. So go play in the swings. We don’t care what the midget fascists say anymore.

            1. LMAO. If you don’t see that you and your pals post a lot more “schoolyard taunts” here than those on the left do, you’re not paying attention.

          3. Hey analo…… Have you ever took the time to read that jihad filled mysoginistic screed called the Quran ?. Have you ?. You would not fling red flag words like bigot if you truly did. The parts that deal with how women are to be dealt with , how infidels are to be used , and they are down with slavery and young kids to marry in the name of allllaaahhh. A religion of peace that insists on madrassas that turn young boys into propaganda spouting jihadi robots…for what…oh yeah muslim crusades. You know stuff like stoning women and that kind of evil. Crawl back in your critical race theory laden world where you worship bigotry when it fits your narrative while you drink yellow dog brand koolaide by the gallon.

        1. Swearing on the holy book of a faith different than yours does not carry the same weight as swearing on your own faith. Of course, there are legitimate arguments concerning taquiyya, or the good old fashioned lying of anyone of any faith, but that’s a separate issue.

          I agree with you that there are parts in the Koran that are highly objectionable. As it is supposed to be written by Allah himself, it’s problematic to reconcile.

          Judge a religion, political party, or movement by its fruits to evaluate. But even then, any individual can ascribe to any religion, and still follow our laws. There are many moderate Muslims who basically ignore about 2/3 of the Koran and Hadith. They only follow the good parts, and there are some lovely passages in the Koran. Just ignore the sword verses and all the other darkness. So while the religion itself has some problematic trends in their own countries if you view Western equality, freedom, and tolerance the goal, there are a great many great individuals of the faith who live just fine under Western laws.

          The fact is that Muslim majority nations are not safe like the West. You can be killed for apostasy or criticizing the Prophet in Muslim majority nations, while Western Christian and Jewish majority nations do not consider leaving the majority faith a capital offense. There are entire workshops devoted to critiquing the Bible, working through problems, and obviously people in America freely criticize the Christian faith without any fear. Heck, someone even put a crucifix in a jar of urine and called it an art show. Could they do that to a Koran in a Muslim nation? If you would expect mass violence, then what does that tell you that your opinion is of the tolerance to insult is of Muslims compared with Christians, taken as a whole? That reminds me, has anyone ever noticed how Muslim shops tend not to be the targets of those who seek to destroy anyone who won’t custom make transgender or gay items like cakes? It tends to be Christians targeted. Why do you think that is? One should recall that homosexuality is a capital offense in most Muslim nations, so it’s not that the religion is more tolerant.

          For those who struggle to reconcile Old and New testament of the Bible, I highly recommend Dennis Prager’s bible series.

          1. Karen: “Heck, someone even put a crucifix in a jar of urine and called it an art show. Could they do that to a Koran in a Muslim nation?”

            I am not sure it can be done in this nation. The FBI would send 20 agents and make up some offense to nail you. They knew a Muslim killer was going to attack the Draw Mohammed contest and they did nothing. A few years ago some guy was going to barbecue Korans and the media and feds went berserk. I think he was charged with burning without a permit, or something silly like that. You can be sure the feds went through every contact he had with the federal government to find something on which they could impale him.

            I think federal donations helped fund the crucifix in urine obscenity. They won’t fund the same project using a Koran instead of a crucifix.

            Maybe the government would fund suspending realistic little dolls of The View ladies in urine. That could please everyone and it wouldn’t be blasphemous, maybe racist and anti-witch in some cases, but who cares.

      1. Who held the Koran while she took the oath? Her husband or her sex slave? Enquiring minds want to know.

  14. “Omar would fire this woman because she is standing in the way of letting Omar and others of having their way. That is the point of parliamentary rules. You do not simply have a right to do what you want in any way that you want to.”

    Really? Tell that to Biden, Pelosi, Schumer, et al. “You do not simply have a right to do what you want in any way that you want to.”

    Welcome to Democrat Rule. The ruthless ‘by any means necessary’ Totalitarians are now in power.

    1. Republicans are the ones who actually fired the Senate Parliamentarian who stood in their way in 2001, so don’t pretend that this is a Democrats-only issue.

      1. Did you forget the Democrats did that earlier?

        When it comes to rule of law or rule of rules it seems that most of the times it is the Democrats that start breaking the law and rules. The Republicans frequently remain silent.

        1. Hey, hullbobby, I’m not lying.

          MacDonough has been working for the Parliamentarian’s office since 1999, but several people work in that office. She wasn’t the Parliamentarian in 1999. According to Wikipedia, she was hired as an assistant parliamentarian in 1999, was promoted to senior assistant parliamentarian in 2002, and became Parliamentarian in 2012. Robert Dove was Parliamentarian from 1995 to 2001 and was fired by Republican Majority Leader Trent Lott. Alan Frumin was Parliamentarian from 2001 to 2012, and MacDonough became Parliamentarian when Frumin retired. Both Dove and Frumin had been Parliamentarian earlier as well.

  15. The liberal extremists apparently think that MOB RULE applies. The idiocy shown by these newbie extremist members of Congress—who happen all to be “progressives” is just another way for them to get air time, exposure and tear harder at the very FABRIC OF OUR CONSTITUTION. THE PROGRESSIVES WANT TO TAKE OVER LIKE FACIST LITTLE KINGS. You will see them swing hard way, way left like this for the PRODUCTION VALUE. Makes me ill…

    1. “these newbie extremist members of Congress—who happen all to be “progressives””

      Nah. Marjorie Taylor Greene is a newbie extremist member of Congress on the far right.

      1. Oh, yeah, the Constitution, that bastion of “right wingers.”

        You’re a wackjob in the wrong country.

        1. Marjorie Taylor Greene isn’t the Constitution, nor does she support it in full.

          She’s a nut job who believes in QAnon, promotes the Big Lie that the election was “stolen,” promotes other conspiracies like the claim that the Sandy Hook shooting was staged and forest fires were started by Jewish space lasers, considers mask requirements during a pandemic to be “tyrannical,” is a bigot who claims that Muslim members of Congress are part of “an Islamic invasion of our government,” supports extremist groups like the Oath Keepers, and makes extremist statements like like “The only way you get your freedoms back is it’s earned with the price of blood” and “It’s a crime punishable by death is what treason is. Nancy Pelosi is guilty of treason.”

          1. QAnon is a niche interest of liberals. Liberals promoted the destruction for ballot security for a reason.

      1. “Loser status” is in eyes of beholder. McCarthyism is never right, even if on the “winning” side.

  16. Dumb smokers… On suicide..
    Redundant… Two words mean the same.
    But nothing’s dumber than… Tobacco smoking fans.
    Guns are quicker…oh that’s for sure.
    Less costly… Than health manure.
    So give em each a gun…let em shoot themselves to be done!

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