Pete's Prep: Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018

Did Manchin get Schumer to cave on the shutdown?

It's hard to read this New York Times piece as anything other than that.  Link

Senator Joe Manchin III of West Virginia told colleagues on Tuesday that he intended to run for re-election this year after all, ending an anxiety-making flirtation with retirement and easing Democratic fears that the most conservative Democrat in the Senate was about to effectively hand his seat to a Republican.

In an interview, Mr. Manchin said he repeatedly expressed his frustration to Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, the Democratic leader, and other colleagues, telling them that “this place sucks,” before finally signaling Tuesday morning to Mr. Schumer’s aides that he would file his re-election paperwork before West Virginia’s deadline on Saturday.

“I was very vocal,” Mr. Manchin said, adding, “they read between the lines.”

Even as Democrats won a reprieve, Mr. Manchin’s discontent illustrated the divisions in their party between those from states that President Trump easily carried and the more liberal bloc of senators, at least a half-dozen of whom are positioning themselves for possible White House runs. The rift contributed to the government shutdown over the weekend and the Monday decision by a group of moderates to force the government’s reopening.

Meanwhile, DACA protesters blocked the gates to Disneyland - demanding Democrats continue the shutdown until Republicans include a DACA law into the spending bill.


Proposed Census 2020 question could benefit the GOP

According to a report in the Washington Post, the Justice Department wants to add a question to the upcoming census about whether the respondent is a US citizen. 

"Population  numbers produced by the census are used in many ways, notably to draw  political districts and distribute government funds across the country.  Adding questions to the decennial survey is usually a controversial and  difficult process because of the potential to affect both of those  functions — either by suppressing census participation or by creating  new ways to define populations."

Currently, non-citizens cannot vote, but they are counted for purposes of apportioning Representatives. Which doesn't really make a lot of sense to me.

A majority of the nation’s undocumented immigrants live in just 20 metropolitan areas, according to a 2014 Pew Research Center study of Census Bureau data, numbering about 1 million in the New York and Los Angeles areas, 575,000 in Houston and 475,000 in Dallas.

That makes urban leaders, mostly Democrats, alarmed by the possibility of the citizenship question — primarily because census data help guide the distribution of more than $675 billion a year in federal funding.

The Census stopped asking about citizenship after 1950. Link

NFL says no to "Please Stand" ad from vets group

The NFL has rejected a Super Bowl ad from AmVets - a military veterans group. Link

Amvets had wanted to pay $30,000 for the single page ad with a simple message that read "Please Stand," a reference to all players in the game stand for the National Anthem. The military veterans group has fired back at the NFL, calling the ad denial "corporate censorship" and said similar ads were accepted by both the NHL and NBA for their respective all-star game programs. 

An NFL spokesman said in a statement to USA Today, "The Super Bowl game program is designed for fans to commemorate and celebrate the game, players, teams and the Super Bowl. It's never been a place for advertising that could be considered by some as a political statement."

North Carolina's number one AirBnB city won't be for much longer

Asheville residents brought in more than $19 million last year by renting out their homes through AirBnB, according to the company. Link

The company said Tuesday that Asheville  short-term rental hosts earned $19.8 million in 2017, hosting more than  160,000 travelers. Asheville more than doubled the amount travelers  recorded in the state's second-highest earning city, Charlotte. It  represents a more than 10 percent increase from income by Asheville hosts from 2016 and is collectively more income than the next four cities combined on Airbnb's list. 

In  North Carolina, Airbnb hosts earned $96.8 million last year from a  total of 778,000 guests across the state, according to data provided by  the company.

The news comes just a week after the Asheville City Council fast-tracked a vote to "severely restrict" these kinds of rentals. Link

The change Tuesday means owners of condominiums,  apartments or other downtown homes now being rented for periods of less  than 30 days can continue to do so, but only if they are already  registered with the city.

Property  owners without permits could come before the council and ask for  conditional zoning to do the rentals, said newly elected council member  Vijay Kapoor.

Kapoor noted the rule change made downtown like almost everywhere else in the city where the rentals are banned "by right."

The vote Tuesday means there is only one zoning district — "Resort" — where the rentals are allowed.

So, be grateful simple citizens! Your rulers will entertain requests that you be allowed to do what you want with your property.

FOX News' Guy Benson: I'm a gay conservative. So what?


And finally...

Reason number 3 bajillion why I'd never live in Australia

Pete Kaliner

Pete Kaliner

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