Tag Archives: United States Assistant Attorney General

Gov’t offers $680 million for Indian farmers …as reported by AP – Reminder


WASHINGTON — The government is offering American Indian farmers who say they were denied farm loans a $680 million settlement.

Unlike a second round of the black farmers suit that is now pending in Congress, the American Indian money would not need legislative action to be awarded.

The two sides agreed on the deal after more than 10 months of negotiations. The government and the Indian plaintiffs met in federal court Tuesday to present the settlement to U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan.

The agreement also includes $80 million in farm debt forgiveness for the Indian plaintiffs and a series of initiatives to try and alleviate racism against American Indians and other minorities in rural farm loan offices. Individuals who can prove discrimination could receive up to $250,000.

A hearing on preliminary approval of the deal is set for Oct. 29. Sullivan indicated he was pleased with the agreement, calling it historic and coming down off his bench to shake hands with lawyers from both sides.

Assistant Attorney General Tony West and Joseph Sellers, lead attorney for the plaintiffs, both said they were encouraged by the judge’s positive reaction.

“Based on the court’s comments, we’re optimistic,” West said after the hearing adjourned.

The lawsuit filed in 1999 contends Indian farmers and ranchers lost hundreds of millions of dollars over several decades because they were denied USDA loans that instead went to their white neighbors. The government settled a similar lawsuit filed by black farmers more than a decade ago.

“Today’s settlement can never undo wrongs that Native Americans may have experienced in past decades, but combined with the actions we at USDA are taking to address such wrongs, the settlement will provide some measure of relief to those who have been discriminated against,” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a statement.

Claryca Mandan of North Dakota’s Three Affiliated Tribes, a plaintiff in the case, stopped ranching after she and her husband were denied loans in the early 1980s. She said she was pleased with the settlement.

“This is a culmination of 30 years of struggle,” she said

And Republicans continue to interfere and hurt POC who own land

what’s going on in Congress -the Republican led House -the Senate

The Senate Convenes at 10amET June 28, 2011

  • Following any Leader remarks, the Senate will proceed to Executive Session
    to consider the following nominations, en bloc:

  • There will be 2 hours for concurrent debate on the nominations equally
    divided in the usual form. Upon the use or yielding back of time (at
    approximately 12:00pm), the Senate will proceed to up to 3 roll call votes on
    the nominations in the order listed.  Senators should be aware a roll call vote
    is expected on confirmation of the Cole nomination.  While roll call votes are
    possible on confirmation of the Monaco and Seitz nominations, we are hopeful the
    nominations can be confirmed by voice vote.
  • Following disposition of the Cole, Monaco, and Seitz nominations, the Senate
    will recess until 2:15pm for the weekly caucus meetings.
  • At 2:15pm, the Senate will resume consideration of S.679, the Presidential
    Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act.  We are working on an agreement to
    complete action on S.679.  Additional roll call votes are expected during
    Tuesday’s session of the Senate.
  • At approximately 12:10pm today, the Senate will conduct up to 3 roll call
    votes on confirmation of the following nominations:
  • Senators should be aware a roll call vote is expected on confirmation of the
    Cole nomination.  While roll call votes are possible on confirmation of the
    Monaco and Seitz nominations, we are hopeful the nominations can be confirmed by
    voice vote.
  •  The Senate confirmed the following nominations by voice vote on Tuesday, June
    28, 2011:

    • Calendar #145 Lisa O. Monaco, of the District of Columbia, to be an
      Assistant Attorney General
    • Calendar #110 Virginia A. Seitz, of the District of Columbia, to be an
      Assistant Attorney General
    • At  12:07pm The Senate began a roll call vote on confirmation of Executive Calendar
      #62 James Michael Cole, of the District of Columbia, to be Deputy Attorney
      General; Confirmed: 55-42  
    • At  6:04pm The Senate began a roll call vote on the Reid motion to instruct the
      Sergeant at Arms to request the presence of absent Senators.     
      • The Senate has reached the following agreement with respect to S.679, the
        Presidential Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act.  As a result of this
        agreement, Senators should expect a series of up to 5 roll call votes (but more
        likely 3 roll call votes)  beginning at approximately 11am on Wednesday, June
        29, 2011.
      • The following pending amendments will be agreed to by unanimous consent:
        • Akaka #512, as modified with the changes that are at the desk (Commissioner
          of the Administration for Native Americans);
        • Carper #517 (GAO report); and
        • Paul #503 (Director of the Mint)
        • Managers’ amendment, which is at the desk
      • At 11am on Wednesday, June 29th, the Senate will proceed to vote in relation
        to the remaining amendments to S.679 in the following order:

        • DeMint #501 (IMF bailouts)(60-vote threshold);
        • Portman-Udall(NM)-Cornyn #509, as modified with the changes that are at the
          desk (Comptrollers of Navy, Army, Air Force; Controller of OMB and department
          CFOs)(expected voice vote);
        • DeMint #511 (legislative & public affairs);
        • Toomey #514(strikes the provision relating to the Governors and alternate
          governors of the IMF and the International Bank for Reconstruction and
          Development)(expected voice vote);
      • Further, that the Cornyn amendment #504, McCain #493 and the Paul amendment
        #502 will be withdrawn; no amendments will be in order to any of the amendments
        prior to the votes.  Upon disposition of the amendments, the bill will be read a
        third time and the Senate proceed to a roll call vote on passage of the bill, as
        amended (60-vote threshold). There will be no motions or points of order in
        order to the bill or any of the amendments other than budget points of order and
        the applicable motions to waive.
      • Following disposition of S.679, the Senate will proceed to the consideration
        of S.Res.116, under the previous order.
      •  Discharged Foreign Relations and Adopted S.Res.185, a resolution reaffirming the
        commitment of the United States to a negotiated settlement of the
        Israeli-Palestinian conflict through direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.


The next meeting is scheduled for 10:00 a.m. on June 28, 2011.

DAY OF JUNE 28, 2011

10:09 A.M. – The Speaker announced that the House do now adjourn. The next meeting is
scheduled for 10:00 a.m. on July 1, 2011.The House received a message from the Senate. The Senate passed H.R.
and agreed to S. Con. Res. 15.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE – The Chair lead the members in reciting the Pledge of
Allegiance to the Flag.

The Speaker announced approval of the Journal. Pursuant to clause 1, rule I,
the Journal stands approved.

10:07 A.M. – Today’s prayer was offered by the House Chaplain, Rev. Patrick J. Conroy.The Speaker designated the Honorable Andy Harris to act as Speaker pro
tempore for today.

10:00 A.M. – The House convened, starting a new legislative day

Palin steps into Wisconsin

Sarah Palin just endorsed David Prosser, the right-wing candidate in next week’s election for Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Prosser voted with Gov. Scott Walker 95% when they were in the legislature — and if he wins this election, he’ll be the deciding vote on the legality of Gov. Walker’s anti-worker bill that passed in the dark of night after Republicans bent the rules.

Can you join PCCC members across the nation who are calling Wisconsin voters – asking them to defeat the Palin/Walker candidate in Tuesday’s election?

Yes! Show me the shifts to sign up and volunteer from my home!http://act.boldprogressives.org/go/3564?rand_id=70376718&akid=3711.264653.pnUY5f&t=1

No, thanks — but I’ll join thousands of others in donating $3 to support the PCCC’s Wisconsin program.http://act.boldprogressives.org/go/3565?akid=3711.264653.pnUY5f&t=2

In just three days, volunteers made 27,000 calls to Wisconsin voters. We have momentum, and in a low-turnout election our calls can swing this race!

Prosser is running against progressive Assistant Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg. If we defeat Palin’s candidate, it will be a big victory for workers and a huge loss for Wisconsin Republicans just as they prepare to play defense in recall elections.

We hope you can spare an hour and volunteer from home for this important cause! Thanks for being a bold progressive.

— Stephanie Taylor, Adam Green, Matt Wall, Amanda Johnson, Michael Snook, Keauna Gregory, and the PCCC team.

Update: Shirvell dismissed from MI Attorney General’s office

CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) – An assistant Michigan attorney general has been fired for harassing the openly gay president of the University of Michigan student body, Attorney General Mike Cox said Monday. Andrew Shirvell “repeatedly violated office policies, engaged in borderline stalking behavior and inappropriately used state resources,” Cox said.

Related: Michigan employee with blog on gay student takes leave of absence

Earlier: Michigan attorney general defends employee’s right to blog

Earlier: Assistant attorney general blogs against gay student body president