Thursday, September 6, 2012

  • Sandra Fluke Takes Fight for Women’s Health to DNC After Being Insulted for Contraception Advocacy

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    Sandra Fluke became famous after Republicans barred her from testifying at a congressional hearing in favor of insurance coverage for contraception. Right-wing talk radio host Rush Limbaugh blasted Fluke on his program, calling her a "slut" and saying she should be required to post sex videos online. The episode prompted President Obama to personally call Fluke to offer words of encouragement. Six months later, Fluke took center stage Wednesday night at the Democratic National Convention with a prime-time address. Fluke joins us to discuss the fight for reproductive rights, her support for Obama’s re-election, and her future plans as a women’s health activist. [includes rush transcript]

  • Lilly Ledbetter, Namesake of Fair Pay Act: From Discrimination Victim to Champion of Wage Equality

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    The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act is named for a female employee of the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company who was paid 40 percent less than male colleagues doing the same job for 19 years. Ledbetter lost her gender pay discrimination lawsuit against Goodyear after the Supreme Court ruled she did not file a complaint on time. One day after addressing the Democratic National Convention, Ledbetter joins us to discuss her journey from victim of workplace discrimination to namesake of the first bill President Obama signed into law. [includes rush transcript]

  • NAACP’s Ben Jealous on the Voting Rights Battles That Could Roll Back Gains and Decide 2012 Election

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    NAACP President Ben Jealous joins us to discuss what some are calling the greatest wave of legislative assaults on voting rights in more than half a century. As shifting demographics give more weight to voters in the South, eight of 11 states in the former Confederacy have passed restrictive voting laws since the 2010 election. Republicans have led the effort, saying voter ID laws prevent fraud. But others call it a political ploy to suppress voters who may not have the proper identification, and typically vote Democrat. [includes rush transcript]

  • As DNC Pushes Through Jerusalem Vote, Critics Ask Why GOP is Dictating the Democrats’ Platform

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    Controversy erupted at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday when party leaders forced through a platform change to reinstate references to God and the view that Jerusalem is Israel’s undivided capital. The language in question was included in 2008, but was left out when delegates approved their 2012 platform earlier this week. At the reported behest of President Obama, DNC chair and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa presided over a voice vote to reinstate the references through a two-thirds majority. Villaraigosa appeared prepared to automatically accept the change, but those voting "no" were so loud that he ended up holding the vote three times. We’re joined by James Zogby, the president of the Arab American Institute and a superdelegate at the Democratic National Convention. We also hear from New York Rep. Jerrold Nadler; Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress; and Michigan Democratic delegate Ismael Ahmed. [includes rush transcript]

  • Democratic Donors Withhold Contributions over Absence of Climate Change from Obama Campaign Message

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    A group of Democratic donors have announced they will withhold some of their financial support from President Obama’s re-election campaign for not speaking out more about climate change. The group of roughly 100 political donors say Obama should directly address mocking by Republican rival Mitt Romney on climate change last week during his acceptance speech in Tampa. President Obama is also being urged to use his acceptance speech tonight to reaffirm his 2008 campaign promise to aggressively tackle climate change. We’re joined by Betsy Taylor, political consultant and president of Breakthrough Strategies & Solutions. She is working with the donors who are threatening to withhold support. [includes rush transcript]

  • MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry and Activist Kevin Alexander Gray on Obama’s Record and Re-Election

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    As President Obama prepares to accept the Democratic Party’s nomination, we’re joined by two guests: Melissa Harris-Perry, host of the show "Melissa Harris-Perry" on MSNBC, professor of political science at Tulane University, and founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Project on Gender, Race, and Politics in the South; and by Kevin Alexander Gray, a civil rights activist and community organizer in Columbia, South Carolina, and author of the book, "Waiting for Lightning to Strike: The Fundamentals of Black Politics." [includes rush transcript]