Midday open thread: Millions of electric cars in CA won't hurt grid; congressional insider trading

Assuming he isn’t ousted, Donald Trump has 893 days left in office

Today’s comic by Mark Fiore is The Leaning Tower of Trump

What’s coming up on Sunday Kos …

  • Vota Boricua: Getting out the Puerto Rican Vote, by Denise Oliver Velez
  • Swamps and perjury traps and Trumps, oh my, by Ian Reifowitz
  • In spite of advances, gender bias still exists, by Susan Grigsby
  • The Civil Social Justice War is engaged, do we have a strategy to win, by Frank Vyan Walton
  • ‘Club Gitmo’ is now for children too, by Jon Perr
  • Democrats’ mantra for 2018 election: No days off, by Sher Watts Spooner
  • The schizophrenia of politics: Cynthia Nixon and what we almost got right in 2016, by David Akadjian
  • The foundation of America’s economic system is now an inhumane fraud, by Egberto Willies
  • Explore presidential results by media market across ten different elections, by David Jarman
  • Is DIY home repair a class issue, by Mark E Andersen
  • ‘International Elections Digest: August edition,’ by Daily Kos Elections

Lawmakers seek to bar members of Congress from serving on corporate boards: In the wake of the arrest of Rep. Chris Collins for insider trading, two New York lawmakers—Democrat Kathleen Rice and Republican Tom Reed—announced Thursday that they will introduce a bill to change rules in the House of Representatives barring members from serving on the boards of publicly held companies. Collins has been charged with conspiracy, securities fraud, wire fraud, and making false statements to the FBI. Prosecutors say he engaged in insider trading of a company whose board of directors he sits on. Six other Republicans also have allegedly traded on inside information about the company. Rice and Reed said in a joint statement: “There should never be a doubt in the public’s mind to lead them to think their Representative could be corrupted or incriminated because of their stake or position in a private company.” The 2012 STOCK Act is meant to prevent members of Congress “from trading stocks based on nonpublic information they gleaned on Capitol Hill.” But Public Citizen reported three years after the law was signed that many senators “continue to be very active in the stock market and often trade stocks in businesses that they oversee in their official capacity.”

MIDDAY TWEET

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Report says putting 5 million electric cars on California roads won’t stress power grid: Currently, there are 369,000 licensed electric cars in the state, and Gov. Jerry Brown wants to see that number rise a dozenfold to around 5 million by 2030. Some critics have expressed fear that this would overwhelm the electric grid. But a study by Next 10, a San Francisco-based think thank that promotes a rapid transition to electric vehicles, shows that adding 3.9 million electric cars in the state would only consume about 5 percent of the state’s current power generation. Next 10 researchers noted that a Chevrolet Bolt being driven 50 miles a day consumes around as much electricity as an air conditioner cooling a three-bedroom home for three hours.

On this date in 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg was sworn in as an associate justice of the Supreme Court.

Black unemployment greatly exceeds that of whites in 14 states and D.C.: Although unemployment of African Americans has sharply fallen in the aftermath of the Great Recession, black people are still more likely to be unemployed than whites. Estimates for black unemployment are only available for 23 states and the District of Columbia. In 10 of those states, black unemployment rates exceed white unemployment rates by a ratio of 2-to-1 or higher. In the second quarter of 2018, the unemployment rate for African Americans was lowest in Indiana at 3.7 percent and highest in Illinois at 9.0 percent. In D.C., it was 12.4 percent. Rates for Latinos are available for 24 states. In none of these is the Latino unemployment rate lower than the white unemployment rate. The ratio of Latino to white unemployment was highest in Nebraska at 3.3-to-1, Connecticut at 2.8-to-1, and the District of Columbia at 2.8-to-1. Figures for Asians are only available in 12 states. The Asian unemployment rate was lowest in Georgia at 1.5 percent in Massachusetts at 4.8 percent. 

Democrats’ “red to blue” program puts Sharice Davids in its top tier: The program of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is designed specifically to help Democratic challengers take on Republican incumbents in red districts and states. The designation makes Davids—who won the Tuesday primary in the 3rd congressional district of Kansas—eligible for organizational and fundraising help, staff resources, and candidate training. The openly lesbian Davids, who is a lawyer, a professional mixed-martial arts fighter, and citizen of the Ho-Chunk Nation, could become the first American Indian woman to serve in Congress if she wins her race against Ken Yoder, the five-term Republican incumbent. But if she does, she’s likely to share that “first” with Deb Haaland, the Laguna Pueblo woman who won the primary in New Mexico’s 1st District. That seat was held by a Republican for 40 years, but Democrats have won it in the past five elections.

Study: Employers’ expectations of work email monitoring after hours harms workers and their families: Employees don’t actually need to do work in their off-hours to experience harmful effects. Mere expectations of availability is enough. These “increase strain for employees and their significant others—even when employees do not engage in actual work during nonwork time.”

On today’s Kagro in the Morning show: An all-new, pre-recorded show for a Friday in August! Indulging ourselves in the freedom of the format, we get a long-form backgrounder on just WTF may be driving agendas in the “new” Middle East. Is this how Rex “Everything” Tillerson got dumped?

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