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New Philadelphia Times Reporter Newspaper Archives Aug 8 2015, Page 4

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New Philadelphia Times Reporter (Newspaper) - August 8, 2015, New Philadelphia, Ohio Saturday, Aug. 8.2015 www.TimesReporter.cO'm. Oüinion About Readers’ Viewpoints The Times-Reporter welcomes and encourages viewpoints from readers. Letters should be limited to 250 words or less. All letters should be signed by the writer and include the writer's address and telephone number. Telephone numbers are for verification only and will not be published. Handwritten letters should be legible. The T-R discourages "thank you" letters. The T-R reserves the right to edit for clarity and length. The T-R will not publish letters that are potentially libelous or go beyond the limits of good taste. READERS' VIEWPOINTS P.O. Box 667 New Philadelphia. OH 44663 Fax: 330-364-8416 Email: opinions #ttmesreporter.com COMMENT ON IT. SEND BY EMAIL TO OPINIONS@TIMESREPORTER.COM The Tlmes-Reporter A GateHouse Media Newspaper Dover/New Philadelphia, Ohio Founded as The Iron Valley Press, 1872, The Daily Times. 1903; The Daily Reporter, 1903 MELISSA GRIFFY SEETON .................................... Editor OUR OPINION Voting Rights Act turns 50 F ^ ift> years ago this week, and only months following the atrocious beatings of peaceful demonstrators on the Edm,ond Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., President Lvmdon B. Johnson, declared a moral and political victory over decades of discrimination by signing into law’ the Voting Rights Act of 1965. "This act flow s from a clear and simple WTong,” Johnson said with civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King Jr. at his side. “Its only purpose is to right that wxong.” The Voting Rights Act affirmed blacks’ right to vote — a right that came with the fall of slaverv' a centurv' earlier — and it struck dow n the use of literacy tests, provided federal oversight of elections where black voter registration was low and empowered the attorney general to investigate the use of poll taxes and other tactics that were central to the Jim Crow' law s of the South throughout much of that time. Ameri,can democrac}' w'as born anew. Almost overnight, black voter registration grew e.xponentially, most markedly in the South, and in the years to follow our political leadership — from city halls to state houses to the U.S. Capitol and the White House — grew diverse. Without question., the Voting Rights Act w as one of the most transformative laws in American history. But even with its passage, Johnson warned the battle would not be over, that it was. the cause of everv’one to carry the m.ovem,ent in Selma to every comer of America. There’s no doubt we’ve moved well past the days w hen blacks and other minorities faced violence and intimidation to gain access to the b.allot box. "Vet, efíbrts to infringe upon this most fundamental right remain. Subtle attempts to block minorities from voting now come by w ay of burdensome voter-ID law's and the blocking or rolling back of early voting hours that are aimed at preventing long lines on election day. Since 2010, 21 states have passed such laws, according to the Washington Post. On Wednesday, Texas’s 2011 voter-ID law was struck down by a federal appeals court for having a “discriminatory effect.” While these law s have been crafted in the name of preventing voter fraud, instances of this are e.\tremely rare. When Congress returns from its summer recess, it will be asked to strengthen portions of the Voting Rights Act, w’hich was last renewed in 2006 with large bipartisan support. One proposal would require states with 15 or more voting rights violations in the last 25 years to obtain federal approval before changing voting laws. The proposal is w orthy of consideration. Initially, 13 states could be subject to this requirement Ohio is not one of them, yet for years it has come under hre for its ever-changing rules and regulations for voters. Most recently, lawmakers renewed efforts to institute a strict photo-ID law’ in April. The same month, though, the state reached a settlement with the NA.ACP, the American Civil Liberties Union and the League of Women Voters over extended voting hours. The settlement could bring about the type of predictability needed in Ohio elections, it preserv’ed a ban on “Golden Week” that allowed voters to register and cast a ballot at the same time, but it guaranteed extended and Sunday voting hours in the weeks leading up to the election. These rules will be in effect for next year’s presidential election and through 2018 While we celebrate the 50th anniversarv' today of the Voting Rights Act and the great stndes w e ve taken as a nation since, w-e must not forget those who fought and even died to secure “the full blessings of American life” as President Johnson put it. It is in their honor that we must continue to defend this most sacred right. GATEHOUSE OHIO MEDIA30 SECONDS 1 didn’t vee one engineer or architect whose expertise was renovating schools on that panel in IXiver. Dover taxpayers, you might as well face up to it right now, they’re going to force you to build a new school, whether you want one or no't. IF POIWIOTW DEPATEl) ME M/ASHI WN„. VOl) CHOPPED DOWN THE CHERRY TREE YlltED 8U UNIVERSAL UCLfCK JEFF STAHLER Obamas ad man works to defeat Iran dea Dana MILBANK danamillMink f^washpostxom WASHINGTON Obama ad man Mark Putnam has a dexterous sense of loyalty. He is proud of his w'ork on the presidents 200'8 and 2012 campaigns. His website boasts that he wrote and produced Obama’s 30-minute infomercial in 2008, “the most-watched and highest-profile political ad in American history." The site further notes that he “continued his work on the Obama Media Team” in 2012, “creating many nationally aired television ads." There’s also a blurb from David Plouffe, former Obama campaign manager, calling Putnam “one of the best producers in our party." And now Putnam is repaving President Obama for the faith he placed in him, by working to defeat the signature foreign-policy achievement — and one of the top overall priorities — of Obama's presidency. Putnam was hired by Citizens for a Nuclear Free Iran, a front group created by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee for the purpose of undermining the Iran nuclear agreement in Congress. The Washington Post’s Steven Mufson reported that the group is expected to spend as much as $40 million, and Politico reports that the entity has already spent more than $11 million. Putnam’s spot, a classic attack ad, features ominous music, dark and scary shots of ayatollahs and the w’arn-ing: “Congress should reject a bad deal.” “I am more grateful to President Obama than I can ever express for being able to help him in two presidential campaigns,” Putnam told me via email. “I have strongly supported every other initiative he has undertaken. On this issue, however, 1, like other Democrats, have a heartfelt position against the agreement.” For Obama, it probably brings to mind the old adage; If you want a friend in W'ashington, get a dog. Obama is learning that truth anew as he tries to sell the Iran deal in Congress — or, more accurately, to shore up enough support to sustain his expected veto of the legislature’s anticipated disapproval of the deal. Republicans, naturally, have been in lockstep in opposing the Iran agreement, as they have against m,ost eve:r>thing O'bama has done. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, inserting himself ever deeper into American politics, lobbied American Jews against the deal on 'ñiesday, saying that “more people will die” because of it. A few key Democrats have come out against the agreement, and AlPAC is going all out to pressure more. The White House expresses confidence that it will have enough votes, at least in the House, to sustain a veto, and AIPAC’s millions have failed so far tO' beat a sufficient number of Democrats into submission. But Obama, wisely, has decided not to let opponents’ TV ads go unanswered while law’makers are home for their Au,gust recess. He countered cri tics of the deal in harsh terms in a speech at American University on Wednesday. He said critics of the deal are of the same “mindset” responsible for the Iraq war. “It’s easy to play on people’s fears,” he said, “to magnify threats, to compare any attempt at diplomacy to Munich, but none of these arguments hold up. They didn’t back in 2002, in 2003 — they shouldn’t now.” He claimed that Iran went from zero to several thousand centrifuges on the George W. Bush administration’s watch, ao;d he mocked critics’ claims that a “better deal” was achievable: “Walk away from this agreement, and you will get a better deal — for Iran," Obama ofiered a sharp' response to Netanyahu: “1 believe he is wrong.... As president of the United States it w’ould be an abrogation of my constitutional duty to act against my best judg-menl simply because it causes temporarv’ friction with a dear friend and ally." Obama claimed Iran’s death-to-America hard-liners are “making common cause with the Republican caucus,” and he argued: “Between now and the congressional vote in September, you’re going to hear a lot of argu-m,ente against this deal, backed by tens of millions of dollars in advertising. And if the rhetoric in these ads and the accompanying commentary sounds familiar, it should, for many of the same people w ho argued for the war in Iraq are now making the case against the Iran nuclear deal.” Hard-liners, Republicans — and Obama’s ow'n ad guy. The sunny, 30-minute infomercial Putnam made in 2008 included this promise from Obama: “I’ll renew the tough, direct diplomacy that can prevent Iran from obtaining' nuclear weapons.” Now' Obama says he has done that, and he calls this “the most consequential foreign-policy debate that our country' has had since the invasion of Iraq.” Bnt his ad man has a new' client. Follow Dana Milbank on Twitter. PMilbank. What a juke. A panel of four local construction experts are in favor of building a new nigh school? No kidding. They want the business. How about getting out-of-town opinions? I know there are more important things, but would someone please tell the women on television not to cniss their legs. It’s not pretty. 1 have an idea for the New Philadelphia Fire Department. Fill the basement with cement. Problem solved. In the business news Wednesday, it says that CEOs don’t want the public to know how' much money they make. That’s because in America, the situa-tio'H B unique. CEOs make so much more than the workers that they don’t want the public to know. In other in-dustrializerl nations, the CEOs really don’t make that much more than workers. It’s very interesting that those are the countries that are quick to publicize their difl'erent salarv' schedules. Have an opinion? An answering machine IS on duty 24 hours a day, Call 330-364 1939 or email opinions® timesreporter.com. Callers should speak clearly and slowly after the beep Personal attacks, obscenities, intolerant or biased m^essages are not acceptable.

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