Read today’s news from around the state and country. Each day in the Roundup we cover politics, always with a side of bold humor. We think politics should be fun, informative and encourage us all to take action.

Thursday, October 4th

Romney’s Lies: Last night Romney and Obama debated for the first time. Romney put on a good show, but the problem is not much that he said was true. For example, Romney said he does not have a $5 trillion tax cut plan. But the non-partisan Tax Policy Center found that the price of those cuts in the first year, $360 billion, will extrapolate to $5 trillion over the next decade. He also said he will not reduce the taxes paid by high income Americans, when in reality his policies will result in a net tax cut for the wealthiest Americans and a net tax increase for the middle class. Read more of Romney’s lies here  

Deb Plays Dirty: Two bills Deb Fischer sponsored in the State Legislature could have been conflicts of interest, State Dems say, because they had to do with a piece of land she and her husband had previously filed a lawsuit over. Deb Fischer sued her elderly neighbors back in 1995, over land that was owned by them and that they had been letting the Fischers use for years. The Fischers eventually lost the lawsuit. But it appears Deb never got over her unsuccessful landgrab, sponsoring legislation which could have been related to this tract of land. Fischer never disclosed her ties to her fellow legislators, which Democratic Chairman Vince Powers said was “the issue.” Read here and here

Great-grandmother Eleanor Fairchild has been arrested for “trespassing” on her own land. Joined by actress Daryl Hannah, Eleanor stood in the way of an excavator to try to prevent TransCanada from tearing up her farm in order to plant a toxic tar sands pipeline. She has been fighting TransCanada since she first found out it would cross her land, and has been an inspiration. Read here


Wednesday, October 3rd

Battling Enbridge: Landowners in Michigan have been winning battles against Enbridge, the major tar sands pipeline company that was responsible for the largest inland oil spill in American history. Now trying to rebuild and expand that line that spilled a million gallons of dilbit into the Talmadge Creek and Kalamazoo River, Enbridge is running into resistance from landowners. Although Enbridge officials say they have overwhelming support from landowners along the route, they have already had to condemn 80 people’s property in the first 50 miles. That’s not such a good record with landowners if you ask us. These landowners, like Nebraska landowners, do not appreciate the way they have been treated by the pipeline company, and they are also wary of another spill like that which happened in the Kalamazoo. Considering Enbridge was just asked today to do more cleanup on the Kalamazoo spill that happened two years ago, they have good reason to be concerned. These landowners have already won lawsuits against Enbridge, but there are more to come in the battle against this “Goliath.” Read here

Out-of-Touch: Remember the captured footage of Romney telling a group of wealthy donors that it is not his job to worry about 47% of Americans? (If not, here’s a quick re-cap) It turns out that his running mate has a pretty similar view of the American electorate. In a keynote address, Paul Ryan declared that 30% of Americans are completely dependent upon government and have no will or desire to make their lives better–according to Ryan, they are reliant and/or dependent upon government assistance because they want to be. This is just about as dim a view of the American people as Romney’s, and frankly, quite insulting. Watch here

“Nebraska’s Energy Future”: Last week, the Platte Institute hosted a conference on “Nebraska’s Energy Future” in Kearney. This op-ed in the Kearney Hub does a great job of summarizing the very direct message of the conference–that alternative energies have a lot of shortcomings and that we only need rely on fossil fuels like coal and oil–and illustrating why this can’t be the only answer. As the op-ed author notes, we cannot depend on these resources forever. While we are dependent upon them for the time being, it is necessary that we continue to develop renewable energy because the negative impacts of neglecting to do so, such as “climate change, regional instability and the inevitable rising costs of unlocking increasingly difficult petroleum reserves,” are what face us if we continue dependence. Read here


Tuesday, October 2nd

“Climate Change and Nebraska”: According to the High Plains Regional Climate Center (based at UNL), Nebraska, along with other states in the High Plains Region, will be seeing higher average temperatures of at least 8° over the next 75 years due to human induced climate change. This increase in temperature will be accompanied by a great strain on water resources, an increase in extreme events like flooding and extreme cold, and an increase in invasive species and pests.  In a nutshell: this is terrible news for Nebraskans. We are an Ag state, so changes like this will have a strong negative impact on our state’s economy, our livelihoods, and our security. This report brings to the forefront the importance of voting for New Energy candidates–and yesterday’s debate between Bob Kerrey and Deb Fischer highlights who it is that will stand for Nebraskans on this issue–it’s NOT climate change denier Deb Fischer. A presentation on the issues brought up in the report, Climate Change and Nebraska: What Does Our Future Hold?, will take place this Saturday from 9-12 at the Hardin Hall Auditorium on the University of Nebraska Lincoln East Campus–we encourage you Bold Nebraskans to attend.  

Victory for Voter ID Fighters: Today a Pennsylvania judge ordered that the voter ID law Pennsylvania had enacted earlier this year could not be implemented during this year’s general election. The type of voter fraud this law was trying to prevent is virtually non-existent, in fact, it has been shown that these types of laws would actually disenfranchise voters. The judgment was made on the grounds that there was no evidence to show that this law would not suppress voters. Read here

A Ruling Causes Uproar: This afternoon, a federal appeals court extended a temporary stay (issued last month) of an order by a district judge that barred the government from using the indefinite detention provision in the defense bill signed into law last year. During the time that the National Defense Authorization Act was being debated and eventually passed, there was uproar due to wording that many thought could lead to Americans’ liberties being infringed upon. For example, it was argued that it is feasible that an Occupy Wall Street or Tea Party protester could end up jailed indefinitely and without a lawyer, and that journalists’ free speech would be limited. That part of the law was blocked in May of this year, but now that ruling has been nullified. This has again raised concerns about infringement upon Americans’ freedoms. Read here


Monday, October 1st

Politics Over Facts: The Governor continues to play politics with Nebraskans’ health. A study by the University of Nebraska Medical Center concluded that taking part in the Affordable Care Act’s provision to expand Medicaid “would bring “significant returns” to the state by cutting the number of uninsured in Nebraska in half and generating $700 million in economic activity.” To say the least, Heineman was not happy with these results. He decided to bully university leaders and issue more threats to our state’s education system, writing multiple letters essentially warning that expanding Medicaid would result in cuts in funding to the university and K-12 education. This is a completely unacceptable response to the results of  study that was done to gather information–it’s just politically inconvenient for the Gov. that the results showed his reluctance to expand Medicaid is going to make Nebraskans pay. Read here

Time to Vote: Early voting began today, and the deadline to register to vote is fast approaching. Go to our New Energy Voter Guide to register, as well as check out the positions of candidates on issues relating to energy, the environment, and more. Tonight will also tally up the number of debates between Deb Fischer and Bob Kerrey to three, with the debate happening at 7 p.m. It will be broadcast live on NET Television and NET Radio. Read here

Check out the launch of the 2012 Ride for Renewables, Defend America Stop Keystone Tour, starting at the National Center for Atmospheric Research. Rider Tom Weis, the President of Climate Crisis Solutions will be delivering a letter signed by ranchers, farmers, and tribal leaders up and down the proposed KXL route to the campaign offices of Obama and Romney calling on them to not support the KXL. Watch here