GOP brags they only control the House because of gerrymandering

Of course, if Obama had filled all those federal bench openings with strong liberals using recess appointments… oh, never mind:

In a classic Kinsley gaffe, the Republican State Leadership Committee released a report boasting that the only reason the GOP controls the House of Representatives is because they gerrymandered congressional districts in blue states.

The RSLC’s admission came in a shockingly candid report entitled, “How a Strategy of Targeting State Legislative Races in 2010 Led to a Republican U.S. House Majority in 2013″. It details how the group spent $30 million in the 2010 election cycle to sweep up low-cost state legislature races in blue states like Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Their efforts were so successful, in fact, that Republicans went from controlling both legislative chambers in 14 states before Election Day to 25 states afterward.

In turn, the new Republican majorities would be tasked with redrawing congressional districts for the 2012 election. “The rationale was straightforward,” the report reads. “Controlling the redistricting process in these states would have the greatest impact on determining how both state legislative and congressional district boundaries would be drawn.”

This effort paid off in spades. As the RSLC’s report concedes (and ThinkProgress hasdocumented extensively), a majority of Americans voted for Democratic congressional candidates on Election Day, but only through the miracle of gerrymandering did Republicans wind up controlling the House.

Read the report.

The 2nd Amendment right to shoot some shit up

Hey, let’s get high, go out back and shoot some shit!

Two men were arrested in Ohio on Wednesday after their target practice with an AK-47 assault rifle accidentally shot up a woman’s home and nearly hit a officer who was responding to reports of gunfire.

Mary Kuruc told WEWS that her daughter discovered a bullet hole in the siding of their Montville Township home and other holes inside the house. After calling 911, Montville Police Sgt. Matt Neil began investigating and the home was hit again.

“We noticed a second bullet hole, followed the trajectory of it and noticed the bullet landed in the microwave,” Kuruc recalled.

Neil found himself in the line of fire as he tried to track down where the bullets were coming from.

“When I get about a half mile back in the field up on a hill, gunfire started again, and started hearing rounds go over my head,” the officer explained.

Neil called for backup and police discovered two men who thought they were safely shooting at paper targets, but the bullets were skipping off the ground and riddling the suburban neighborhood.

“They were drinking alcohol, they had some drugs on them and they were just outside, in their backyard shooting paper targets,” Neil said. “They felt because they were shooting at a downward angle, that it would have been OK.”

Police suspect that “dozens” of shots were fired and have asked other residents to come forward if their homes were hit.

Two men, 53-year-old Mark Bornino and 45-year-old R. Daniel Volpone, were arrested and are facing felony charges. Police seized an AK-47 with two high-capacity magazines, three handguns, over 700 rounds of ammunition and some marijuana.

My day so far

It’s the kind of day where you’re making oatmeal, you notice that the bag of brown sugar has hardened, you whack the bag on the counter to loosen it up, and the bag explodes, sending brown sugar all over your kitchen. Yeah, that kind of day.


Their plan to rig the 2016 election. If you live in Pennsylvania, this would be a good time to start making calls and writing letters. It’s a transparent attempt to make sure that a few thousand votes in Bumfuck are equal to the city of Philadelphia. Fair? Of course not. That’s not how Republicans roll.

Giant sinkhole

Don’t be silly! Mining never affects anything, everyone knows that:

Last spring, residents in Louisiana’s Assumption Parish noticed peculiar bubbles rising to the surface in some bayous. Soon after, small earthquakes shook the towns and raised some eyebrows. In August, i09 writes, the earth suddenly yawned open, swallowing several acres of swampy forest and forming a massive sinkhole full of water, brines, oil and natural gas. Geologists say nature did not cause the hole. Rather, mining activities conducted by the oil and gas service company Texas Brine opened up this apparent pit to hell.

The company, however, denies responsibility. The United States Geological Survey is investigating the incident and has determined that a salt cavern deep below the surface collapsed and caused the earthquake-like tremors, not the other way around. The collapse, they say, was likely brought about by extensive mining.

Since it first appeared, the sinkhole has reached 8 acres in size. Now known as the Bayou Corne Sinkhole, it’s caused the forced evacuation of 300 residents in the nearby town of Assumption, TreeHugger writes. Officials do not know when the evacuees might be allowed to return to their homes.

Despite efforts to contain the muck, nearby waterways already shows signs of contamination, including toxic hydrogen sulfide. Louisiana Commissioner of Conservation James Welsh fined Texas Brine $100,000 for failing to meet several deadlines for the cleanup effort, i09 writes.

At this point, officials are beginning to fear that the sinkhoke may have to become a “sacrifice zone,” joining the ranks of such uninhabitable, manmade disaster zones as the giant wormhole in Guatemala City and the spewing mudlake of Java.

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