Tag Archives: senate

Nuclear Family banner ad

Gotham Citizen to President Over Trump’s Second Impeachment Trial

A person who has spent some time in the fictional Gotham will be playing a major role in the second impeachment trial of former-President Donald Trump. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) will preside over the impeachment trial.

With Supreme Court Chief Justice Roberts declining to oversee the trial (Chief Justices preside over sitting Presidents), the duties fall to the Senate President Pro Tempore. That position has historically done that over impeachment trials for non-presidents.

Senator Leahy is a huge Batman fan and has appeared in some of the Batman movies and voiced characters. That was Senator Leahy standing up to Heath Ledger’s Joker in the Dark Knight. The Senator has appeared in five Batman films (Batman Forever, Batman & Robin, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice) as well as voiced a character in Batman: The Animated Series. He’s also credited with being in My Wife is a Vampire.

Leahy has taken on numerous roles, depending on the film, though usually a politician. He’s been credited as himself in two films, Territorial Governor in Batman: The Animated Series, Board Member #2 in The Dark Knight Rises, and Senator Purrington in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. While we can’t say 100% that the Senator’s characters live in Gotham, he does spend a lot of time there.

Yes, the President Pro Tempore has spent time in Gotham and faced the Joker. We have little doubt he’ll have trouble facing objections during the trial.

The position of Senate President Pro Tempore is one of those that’s rather obsucre. A member of the Senate they’re third in line of succession to the President. The position is bestowed upon the longest-serving senator of the majority party. It is now held by Patrick Leahy who was once again sworn into the role on January 20, 2021 when the Democrats became the majority party in the US Senate.

Senator Leahy debuted in this new role today overseeing the first steps in the trial which included the swearing in the rest of the Senate and taking his own special oath as “judge” of the trial. The official trial will take place in a few weeks.

After today’s initial proceedings ended Leahy was taken to a hospital after an abundance of caution due to discomfort. He’s expected to resume his duties on Wednesday.

President Pro Tempore, Third in Line of Presidential Succession, Batman Fan and Actor

patrick leahy dark knight

It seems the geeks have inherited the Earth, but when it comes to American politics, comic geeks (and geeks in general) seem to be the ones in charge. President Obama is an admitted comic book fan, having read and collected Spider-Man and Conan. former Congressman Grayson is a comic fan who has often quoted comics and used them in political speeches. Recently elected Senator Jon Ossoff has had thoughts on Star Wars and anime. And, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez regularly streams on Twitch and plays video games.

The Senate once again has a new number two, who also happens to be a Batman fan. The new President Pro Tempore (pro tem) of the United States Senate is Senator Patrick Leahy (D – Vermont). Leahy was sworn into the position on January 20, 2021, as the Democrats regained the Senate Majority. This is the second time he held the position. Leahy previously held the role starting in December 2021 after the passing of Senator Inouye. He held the position until January 2015.

The President Pro Tempore is a position created by the Constitution, and is the chamber’s second-highest-ranking official, after the Vice President. Basically, that person runs things when the VP isn’t around. By tradition, the Senate unanimously elects the most senior senator in the majority party to fill the position, which also makes the person third in the line of succession. While the position has played a bigger role in the past, its duties have lessened over the years.

Senator Leahy is a huge Batman fan and has appeared in some of the Batman movies and voiced characters. That was Senator Leahy standing up to Heath Ledger’s Joker in the Dark Knight. The Senator has appeared in five Batman films (Batman Forever, Batman & Robin, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, and Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice) as well as voiced a character in Batman: The Animated Series. He’s also credited with being in My Wife is a Vampire.

That fandom and those appearances have also raised some eyebrows. Senator Leahy has stood up for and fought for Hollywood when it comes to things like intellectual property protection. We’re sure being in movies and those policies are not related at all…

Nonetheless, it’s another example of comic fans dominating politics.

U.S. Senate Candidate Jaime Harrison Embraces Comics in His First Campaign Video

Jaime Harrison is running for the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate in South Carolina. In his first campaign video entitled “Character” Harrison talks about comics and uses panel visuals to tell his story.

In the 3 minute video, he recounts how comics were how he learned to read before going in to his “origin story.”

The video uses comic panels, and other visual styles, to tell his personal history and then go after his possible opponent Senator Lindsay Graham.

It’s an amazing use of comic visuals to tell a personal story.

Everything is Not Awesome for Sen. Ron Johnson

The_Lego_Movie_posterSen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) is definitely not a fan of The Lego Movie. The Senator spoke with WisPolitics after addressing members of the Milwaukee Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce.

At the meeting with the MMCC, he spoke on topics ranging from “Cuba to regulatory relief.” So, how did The Lego Movie come into this?

According to the United States Senator, the movie is an example of Hollywood propaganda that business is bad and government is good. That opinion was derived from a Wall Street Journal article written by Doug Haugh. Haugh is the President of Mansfield Oil Company.

Johnson said to WisPolitics:

He lamented what he called a “cultural attitude” that “government is good and business is bad,” giving as an example the animated “LEGO” movie, in which the villain is called “Lord Business.”

“That’s done for a reason,” Johnson said. “They’re starting that propaganda, and it’s insidious.”

This nothing new about how some viewed the movie. Many conservatives took to their platforms to blast the film for being ant-capitalist. It can also be argued that the film is about individuality, something conservatives also claim to champion…. so, yeah.

How far has this all gone? The Senator has responded on his official United States Senate website.

The strange thing isn’t that a kids’ movie was anti-business, it is that someone claiming to be a journalist never encountered the idea before.

The Senator faces a tough reelection campaign where he’ll face former Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold. Johnson defeated Feingold in 2010. I’m pretty sure he doesn’t have the vote of Lego fans after this.

 

Ben Affleck Confirms Senator Leahy will be in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice

Actor Ben Affleck, who will be donning the cape and cowl as Batman in next year’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, confirmed at a Senate hearing that Senator Patrick Leahy will indeed be in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

Affleck is a co-founder of the Eastern Cong Initiative and was testifying before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Diplomacy and National Security about the situation in the Congo (alongside Bill Gates) where he said:

To Senator Leahy, I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge my co-star in Batman. The role is marginally smaller than mine but I understand you’re quite good.

Senator Leahy is a diehard Batman fan, and has appeared in numerous films and voiced characters which led some to speculate if he’d be in the latest film to feature the Dark Knight. Leahy is also a vocal proponent for Hollywood (especially when it comes to intellectual property), often fighting their battles for them in the Hill, which calls into question his numerous appearances.

(via ABC News)

The Capitol Visitor Center Highlights Comic History

Comics CodeThere’s a new exhibition at the Capitol Visitor Center, the museum(ish) is highlighting Congressional Investigations. The display highlights 200 years of investigations and includes items on Nixon, JFK, MLK and more. One part has some importance to comic fans. In the 1950s, the United States Senate held hearings about whether juvenile delinquency was caused by comic books.

In addition to displaying the documents, the exhibit also explains how the investigations sparked new policies. During the 1950s, Congress investigated how comic books were affecting a “dramatic rise in juvenile delinquency” and conducted televised hearings on the subject. After the hearings, comic book publishers revamped their content standards, though likely to the disappointment of a 14-year-old from Pennsylvania, whose letter displayed in the exhibit argued that comic books deter crime.

“The person or persons committing the crime always gets caught. The fear of this stops crime and stops juvenile delinquency,” the teen wrote in his June 1954 letter to the Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency. “In fact there is not a sufficient number of the comic books on the book stands.”

 

The United States Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency was launched in 1953 and in 1954 its hearings took on the case with hearings. Seriously, the United States Senate debated about comic books.

While we might laugh today at how idiotic this all was, it had massive repercussions including the creation of the Comics Code Authority, which was a self-policing set of rules that laid down what could, and could not, be depicted in comic books. The Comics Code was in use until about 2011, and the impact was felt, resulting in the closing of some comic publishers.

The exhibit at the Capitol Visitor Center runs through September 12.

(via Roll Call)

There’s a Klingon Running for Senate

David-Waddell-jpgYou might remember politician David Waddell. He made national attention when he resigned from the Indian Trail town council, writing the letter in Klingon. For those who might not know, Klingon is a language (and alien race) from the science fiction series Star Trek.

Now Waddell is an official write-in candidate for U.S. Senate in North Carolina. It took him about four months to collect the 500 signatures needed to be recognized in the race. Candidates who aren’t able to collect the signatures have their votes not counted. There’s actually two other official write-in candidates so far.

Waddell is a former Repbulican and left the party due to the party’s nominating rules. He felt they were changed to keep candidates like Ron Paul from “having a chance.” Waddell is running as a constitutional conservative advocating for a shakeup of the status quo and advocating for limited intrusion from the federal government.

Fredric Wertham Debunked

CensorshipAlmost 60 years ago (1954), the United States Senate went about public hearings held by the U.S. Senate Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency. Much like with video games today, back then comic books were being blamed for delinquency, violence and homosexuality. The hearings were inspired in large part by the book Seduction of the Innocent, by psychiatrist Fredric Wertham.

Over the years, there’s been many questions as to Dr. Wertham’s claims. His books were poorly cited leaving the actual evidence he claimed as proof up for debate. With his papers released in 2010 by the Library Congress, a new article today shows the doctor was full of shit. Not only did he fudge data, he outright lied in his report and study. The article is written by Carol Tilley and published in a recent issue of Information and Culture: A Journal of History.

An article hit today covering the news. As an example Tilley found:

Tilley’s article also cites the case of Dorothy, a 13-year-old whose chronic truancy Wertham ascribed to her admiration for the comic book heroine Sheena and “crime comics,” omitting any mention of other factors listed in her case notes, such as her low intelligence, her reading disability, her gang membership, her sexual activity and her status as a runaway. Wertham also didn’t reveal that he never personally met or observed Dorothy; she was the patient of his associate, Dr. Hilde Mosse.

These hearings are often blamed as to part of the eventual decline of the comic book industry, putting it in a tailspin and shedding a light on it for which it never recovered. Even more important, today entertainment, especially video games are going through the same situation. Image 60 years from now when negative claims are also found out to be utter rubbish, just like this has.

President Pro Tempore, Batman Fan

patrick leahy dark knightIt seems the geeks have inherited the Earth, but when it comes to American politics, comic geeks (and geeks in general) seem to be the ones in charge. President Obama is an admitted comic book fan, having read and collected Spider-Man and Conan. Congressman Grayson who was re-elected to congress is a comic fan who has often quoted comics and used them in political speeches.

The Senate, now has a new number two man, who also happens to be a comic fan. The new President Pro Tempore (pro tem) of the United States Senate is Senator Patrick Leahy (D – Vermont). Leahy was sworn into the position on December 17, after the passing of Senator Daniel Inouye.

The President Pro Tempore is a position created by the Constitution, and is the chamber’s second-highest-ranking official, after the Vice President. Basically, that person runs things when the VP isn’t around. By tradition, the Senate unanimously elects the most senior senator in the majority party to fill the position, which also makes the person third in the line of succession.

Senator Leahy is a huge Batman fan and has appeared in some of the Batman movies and voiced characters. That was Senator Leahy standing up to Heath Ledger’s Joker in the Dark Knight.

That fandom and those appearances have also raised some eyebrows. Senator Leahy has stood up for and fought for Hollywood when it comes to things like intellectual property protection.

Nonetheless, it’s another example of comic fans dominating politics.

The Legion of Super Committee

Prolific comic book writer Chris Roberson talks about the Congressional super committee that’s been formed and compares it to various super hero teams of past and present.  The super committee is made of twelve members from both political parties and bother the House and Senate and are tasked with cutting $1.2 trillion from the federal budget.  The comparison is hilarious for a political geek such as myself and knowing a few of the committee members, they’d enjoy it as well.

When Roberson hear the word “super” he thinks of the heroes he grew up with reading and doesn’t think the committee is living up to it’s name:

It’s not faster than a speeding amendment or more powerful than a filibuster, and it doesn’t soar over gridlock. Instead, the super committee seems as helpless as Superman when he’s been rendered powerless by a blast of red sun radiation, or worse yet, kryptonite.

Listen to Roberson’s entire thoughts on “Marketplace“.

« Older Entries