Congresswoman faulted for $40 million abstinence vote

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman voted to spend $40 million on abstinence-only indoctrination, an ultra-conservative substitute for sex education

Lisa McCormick, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for Congress, says Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman should have abstained from funding abstinence in the Coronavirus stimulus package

On March 27, 2020, Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman voted for a $40 million appropriation to fund an abstinence education program, and her opponent in the upcoming Democratic primary election is letting people know it’s an affront to women, civil rights and truth.

“What makes this especially absurd is that public schools are mostly closed, with no end in sight,” said Lisa McCormick, the progressive Democrat challenging Watson Coleman in the primary election. “That is a waste of resources when our hospitals and brave medical personnel are without adequate personal protection equipment, adequate supply of ventilators and adequate number of coronavirus tests.”

McCormick calls it a “boondoggle” that panders to Trump’s evangelical base.

“Abstinence-only means anti-science and anti-reality,” said McCormick. “These programs don’t educate children, they attempt to keep them ignorant, which puts them at risk.”

“Ironically, the ‘ab-only’ crusaders help to cause the abortions they denounce because without comprehensive sex education and access to contraceptives, young people are vulnerable to unwanted pregnancies.”

“Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman and President Donald Trump need to stop appeasing the Religious Right and instead ensure that only fact-based education programs are being funded by tax dollars,” said McCormick.

“It is past time young people receive the accurate, inclusive, and empowering sex education and related care that they deserve,” said McCormick. “It is unfortunate that Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman does not have the courage to support such ideals and make it happen, instead of caving in to right-wing extremists who insist on wasting money lying to America’s children.”

Acknowledging that ultra-conservative forces have been chipping away at freedom by stacking the courts and relentlessly pushing bad laws and programs, McCormick said she will work in Congress to ensure safe, legal, and accessible abortion and reproductive care to promote health and justice for women.

“I am appalled that abstinence was funded as part of the coronavirus corporate welfare scheme known as the CARES Act,” said McCormick. “I am appalled that abstinence was funded at all, since the federal government should only provide evidence-based, comprehensive and age appropriate sex education for all young adults in America.”

As an example,she cited the Real Education for Healthy Youth Act, which was introduced in 2011, by Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA), who proposed to improve sex education by ensuring that all youth in the U.S. have medically accurate information to make informed, responsible and health decisions about sexual health.

Bonnie Watson Coleman has not bothered to co-sponsor that legislation, but McCormick said she will push to honor the unfinished legacy of New Jersey’s late Senator and enact the measure if she is elected.

Lisa McCormick argues with Bonnie Watson Coleman about jobs, wages & benefits

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman got into a word scuffle with Lisa McCormick on Twitter today over the federal minimum wage law and congressional inaction on measures to provide job security, paid sick time and other benefits.

The incumbent invited McCormick’s response after the politician posted complaints about Amazon’s decision to end hourly wage increases and double overtime pay for warehouse workers after May 31.

McCormick is challenging Watson Coleman for Congress in New Jersey’s 12th District in the Democratic primary election, which runs from Trenton, through Princeton, to Plainfield and Old Bridge.

The incumbent described a decision to end temporary bonuses for workers as “Atrocious greed” but the challenger called her to account for inaction by Congress, which has the power to set tax and minimum wage laws, as well as legislation requiring employers to provide sick time.

“Jeff Bezos is expected to become the 1st trillionaire as he consolidates the retail market during coronavirus,” tweeted Watson Coleman. “Now Amazon is telling its workers (who have faced significant risk) that it’ll be ending their hazard pay at the end of MAY!”

“@JeffBezos did not pass tax laws, minimum wage legislation or requiring employers to provide sick time,” replied McCormick, who added: “That’s Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman’s job.”

“@Amazon should do better for workers but government has power to compel business, so why complain about your own inaction?,” McCormick asked in her reply tweet.

“Entry level positions at Amazon pay $8 per hour over the federal minimum wage, so while it is understandable that workers are demanding more from the company, it is arrogance and hypocrisy for a member of Congress with power to do something about it level accusations like someone on the sidelines,” said McCormick, explaining her remarks to the complaining Congresswoman.

Although she wants Amazon employees and all U.S. workers to get a better deal, McCormick said, “There are some things that make Amazon an American success story. Jeff Bezos started the company in Washington State in 1994, operating out of the garage of his house. In 2011, Amazon had a full-time staff of 30,000 in the United States, and by the end of 2016, it had 180,000 employees.”

“Criticism from Senator Bernie Sanders and others prompted Amazon to raise its minimum wage for all U.S. and U.K. employees to $15 an hour beginning November 1, 2018,” said McCormick. “The federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour and it has not been increased since July 24, 2009, even though Bonnie Watson Coleman got elected to Congress in 2014.”

“Bonnie Watson Coleman has not increased our federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour and she has not created any jobs that pay $15 an hour, so I would like to know where she gets the nerve to accuse anyone of “Atrocious greed” while she collects a $174,000 paycheck and allows President Donald Trump to control a $6 trillion slush fund at taxpayer expense.”

“Meanwhile, my federal income tax bill was $137 million larger than that of Amazon, because the technology giant paid zero and got a big refund despite its billions of profit,” said McCormick. “That is not Jeff Bezos’ fault because Bonnie Watson Coleman is the one writing tax laws in Congress.”

Amazon actually got a federal tax refund of $129 million last year, despite the fact that the company made $11.2 billion in profit.

“If you paid the $119 annual fee to become an Amazon Prime member, you paid more to Amazon than it paid in taxes,: said Senator Bernie Sanders in a Feb 14, 2019 tweet. “Our job: Repeal all of the Trump tax breaks for the top 1% and large corporations and demand that they pay their fair share in taxes. “

McCormick supported Sanders in the 2016 and 2020 presidential nominating contests, while Watson Coleman was in line with the state’s political bosses backing Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden, respectively.

Congress gave Trump a $6 trillion slush fund

Democrat Lisa McCormick said she is more worthy of the Democratic nomination for Congress because her opponent, Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman, gave Republican President Donald Trump a $6 trillion slush fund that will benefit his re-election more than it will help the country recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

The CARES Act is 880 pages of outrage and corruption, that gave Republican President Donald Trump a $6 trillion slush fund without adequate oversight or guidance to prevent abuses,” said Lisa McCormick. “Instead of stabilizing the economy, it enriches the rich and insults the 99 percent of Americans who follow the rules.”

During the the federal government’s so-called small-business rescue program, states that supported Donald Trump got enough money to cover a majority of eligible payrolls. It was a different picture in blue states like New Jersey, New York and California, which got a significantly smaller share of payroll support from the loans. 

The cost of living in New Jersey is 22.2% more expensive than Georgia, but the states have comparable GDP ($645 billion vs. $616 billion) and population (9 million vs. 10.5 million). The 33,519 loans approved in New Jersey cover only 45.3 percent of payrolls while the 48,332 loans approved in Georgia cover 58.5 percent of payrolls.  New Jersey voted Democratic while Georgia helped put Trump in the White House.

“New Jersey reported 3,840 COVID deaths as of April 17, compared to the 650 victims on that date in Georgia, so the Garden State has a much greater need for financial assistance but Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman failed to make ‘need’ a condition for Trump’s $6 trillion slush fund,” said Democratic challenger Lisa McCormick, the progressive champion who stunned political observers in 2018 by capturing 38 percent of the primary election votes cast for U.S. Senate.

Thousands of small business owners across the U.S. have been left in the lurch as the federal government-backed loan program meant to save them and protect worker paychecks in the pandemic fallout officially ran out of money Thursday morning. 

The $350 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) was supposed to cover eight weeks of a business’ payroll expenses, so fewer workers would be unemployed, and the loans are forgivable provided that 75% of the total amount borrowed is used for payroll expenses. Borrowers were to be able to use the money to cover payroll and benefit costs, as well as overhead such as rent, mortgages, utilities, and interest on debt. 

The Small Business Administration said Thursday it was unable to accept new applications for the Paycheck Protection Program because the entire appropriation was spent less than three weeks into the program, which was plagued by reports about websites crashing or mom & pop shops and minority businesses shut out by big banks loaning to favored customers.

“The Paycheck Protection Program is one of the most deceptive parts of the CARES Act, but the program might as well have been administered by the Trump campaign organition instead of the Small Business Administration,” said Lisa McCormick, who produced a chart illustrating the unfairness of loan allocations, which clearly favored states that voted for Trump in the 2016 election. “The CARES Act is a $6 trillion slush fund that will benefit Republican President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign and it was approved almost unanimously by Democrats in Congress, even though it won’t help many people in Princeton or Plainfield.”

“States that got loans covering more than 65 percent of payroll costs gave Trump 124 electoral college votes and they awarded to Democrats only 20 electoral college votes,” said Lisa McCormick. “This is a clear case of President Donald Trump using taxpayer money to reward political supporters and punish Democrats but it was Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman and others in Congress who gave the Republican President a $6 trillion slush fund that will benefit his re-election campaign.”

“We need to outlaw bribery in all its forms, but the Congress should have know better than to entrust money in the hands of President Donald Trump,” said Lisa McCormick. “Just as they did when President George Bush rammed through TARP bailouts for Wall Street, Congress let 99 percent of Americans get steamrolled so the rich could collect free government money. This typifies the incompetence and cowardice that I am prepared to fight against.” 

“When people needed help, Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman gave Republican President Donald Trump a $6 trillion slush fund and she abandoned her responsibility to protect New Jersey taxpayers,” said Lisa McCormick. “The federal response to coronavirus has been a disaster on top of a disaster, because the people we elected are just not doing their jobs. American voters must take responsibility by firing Bonnie Watson Coleman and Donald Trump.”

Progressive champion Lisa McCormick is challenging incumbent Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman for the Democratic nomination for Congress in New Jersey’s 12th District, which includes parts of Mercer, Somerset, Middlesex and Union counties. McCormick earned 159,998 votes – or 38 percent — in the 2018 Democratic primary election for U.S. Senate.

McCormick marks decade since Deepwater Horizon

Since Monday, April 20th, will mark 10 years since the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, New Jersey Democrat Lisa McCormick participated in a conference call with a retired engineer who worked on the Deepwater Horizon for 5 years, Retired Army Lt. General Russel Honore’, two members of Congress and other leading environmental advocates.

The BP Deepwater Horizon disaster was the largest marine oil spill in U.S. history, lasting almost three months before the gushing well was finally capped.

“There are 15 rigs placed in deeper water today than the BP Deepwater Horizon was in ten years ago and there have been thousands of leaks, spills and ruptures on American pipelines, some killing people and many causing billions of dollars in damages,” said McCormick. “On land or sea, fossil fuels are dangerous and burning them is killing our planet.”

“Climate change is one of the most important issues of our time,” said McCormick. “The debate is over: Climate change is real, it’s caused by human activity and is already causing devastating damage to the entire planet.”

On the call with McCormick were:

  • Rep. Alan Lowenthal, who is currently serving California’s 47th district and is a member of the House of Natural Resources Committee
  • Rep. Darren Soto, who is currently serving Florida’s 9th district and is a member of the House of Natural Resources Committee
  • Leo Linder, retired rig worker on the Deepwater Horizon
  • Sam Sankar, Earthjustice Senior VP of Litigation and former deputy chief council of the Obama administration’s BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill commission
  • Cyn Sarthou, Executive Director at Healthy Gulf
  • Louis Skrmetta, Owner of Ship Island Excursions out of Gulfport, Mississippi
  • Lt. General Russel Honore’, Retired Army lieutenant general and Director of the Green Army

Linder recently pointed out that the Trump administration’s new proposed rules would save oil companies $1.3 billion by putting offshore oil rigs, and the people who work on them, at greater risk.

Lowenthal and Soto each lamented the fact the Senate Republicans have refused to take up legislation approved by the House of Representatives. Sarthou and Skrmetta recounted personal examples about the devastating impact on businesses and the communities that the spill had.

“We need to rejuvenate our voice as we come up on the commemoration of this great disaster,” said Honore’, who added: “They let BP off the hook… the fine was miniscule and it was written off as a tax deduction, so the America people are actually paying for it.”

McCormick said that now, 10 years later, she hopes the discussion with members of Congress, community representatives, offshore experts, an engineer who worked on the Deepwater Horizon, and a small business owner will stimulate discussion about the fallout of the tragedy.

“If we do not reflect on the mistakes that led to the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster, we will not be able to prevent another disaster like this from happening again,” said McCormick. “In simple terms, we must stop corporations from racing to to make a profit without thinking about the human cost or the price extracted from the environment.”

Lisa McCormick has endorsed the Earth Charter and she is proud to have taken the No Fossil Fuel Money pledge. 

Candidate demands answers on voter fraud in foe’s office

A Democratic candidate is demanding answers from her opponent about a high ranking public employee who appears to be engaging in ballot fraud, a third degree crime punishable by up to five years in prison.

Progressive Lisa McCormick sent a letter to County Surrogate James LaCorte saying that his appointed Deputy Surrogate is fraudulently registered to vote in Elizabeth while actually residing in Bloomfield.

Democratic voters will cast primary election ballos on June 4 to choose between McCormick and LaCorte, a 20-year incumbent whose father was the last Republican Mayor of Elizabeth.

The letter is available at:

The text of the letter follows.

County Surrogate James LaCorte
Union County Court House
Two Broad Street
Elizabeth NJ 07201

Dear Mr.  LaCorte:

I am writing to ask that you explain what appears to be a criminal act in which the Deputy Surrogate is fraudulently registered to vote in Elizabeth while actually residing in Bloomfield. I am particularly eager to learn if you have been aware of any act of voter fraud prior to the receipt of this letter.

I understand that Deputy Union County Surrogate Sharda Badri is a long time resident of Bloomfield, but she appears to be registered to vote at an address at 338 Chilton Street, in Elizabeth. Under voter registration number 106014029, records at the Union County Board of Elections show that the Deputy Union County Surrogate voted by mail in the 2018 general election, and she voted in person on 11/07/2017, 6/06/2017 & 11/08/2016.

I remind you that NJSA 19:34-1 False registration or transfer; states: “Any person who shall cause or procure his name to be registered in more than one election district, or shall cause or procure his name or that of any other person to be registered, knowing that he or such other person is not entitled to vote in the election district wherein such registry is made at the next election to be held therein, shall be punished for each such offense and shall be guilty of a crime of the third degree.”

While 338 Chilton Street, Elizabeth NJ, is owned by a relative of Ms. Badri, she and her children are in fact residents of Essex County and the Union County location is not her actual domicile.

Reliable records show that she owns and lives at a property in Essex County. Public records show that Deputy Surrogate Sharda Badri is the owner of a home at 215 Baldwin St, Bloomfield, NJ, 07003-3819. Her neighbors know her and there is ample evidence that she was and is currently residing in the home, which she purchased in July 2001.

It also appears that the Deputy Surrogate and her children have cast ballots from this bogus address in Union County, even though they are really Essex County residents.

Her son, whose voter registration number is 151264526 and was born on 11/13/1991, and daughter, whose voter registration number is 152230967 and was born on 03/06/1994, are registered voters in Elizabeth despite living in Bloomfield. When her son was arrested in Roselle Park on charges of drug possession, he told police his residence was in Bloomfield.  Her daughter’s Facebook page states that she lives in Bloomfield

Other proofs, such as addresses listed on drivers’ licenses and other documentation would be readily available to prosecutors if they choose to level criminal charges related to these acts but as the elected official who appointed this person to a position of public trust, you certainly owe the voters an explanation about this situation. A defendant convicted of a third degree crime faces a prison sentence of 3 to 5 years and a fine up to $15,000. Recent cases illustrate the seriousness of these crimes.

Andrea Palmucci-McGillicuddy, a former chief investigator of Mercer County elections, was charged with fraudulent voting, interference with elections and other related offenses, after officials learned she resides in Pennsylvania but had voted in New Jersey.

The Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office charged a former municipal court judge with two counts of third-degree voter fraud. Spencer Robbins had improperly used his Amboy Avenue legal office as his address and voted in 22 elections and Democratic primaries in Woodbridge since 1998, even though he maintained a home with his wife in Chatham Township since 1995.

Richard Molina, the mayor of Edinburg, in Hidalgo County, Texas, was arrested on charges that he orchestrated an illegal voting scheme in which he asked residents of nearby towns to change their addresses so that they could cast votes for him.

The federal Department of Justice Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices are responsible for enforcing the federal criminal laws that prohibit various forms of election fraud, such as submission of fraudulent ballots or registrations. The state Attorney General’s Corruption and Government Fraud Bureau is actively prosecuting cases involving official misconduct, election fraud and other offenses involving public officials and employees.

I leave it to you to account yourself to the voters, but by releasing this letter the appropriate law enforcement authorities shall be informed on the potential crimes manifested in these allegations.

Robert Reich endorses Lisa McCormick’s ‘Social Security rescue plan’

An economist who served under four presidents has endorsed a plan advocated by New Jersey progressive Democrat Lisa McCormick, who is collecting signatures in support of her concept to put Social Security on a solid financial foundation permanently, even if benefits are increased or the retirement age is lowered.

Economist Robert Reich has endorsed Lisa McCormick’s plan to save Social Security

Robert Reich, secretary of labor in the Clinton administration and one of the most outspoken critics of the Trump administration and its policies and actions, recently spoke to McCormick about her plan to save Social Security and issued an endorsement of her idea.

“As a former U.S. Secretary of Labor, I know that the American standard of living depends on the strength of our social safety nets,” said Reich. “This is why I’m impressed by Lisa McCormick’s proposal to save Social Security and insure long term solvency of the nation’s pension system.”

“While 94 percent of U.S. workers pay Social Security tax on every dollar in their paycheck, the very richest Americans avoid Social Security taxes on most of their money due to the program’s cap on taxable earnings,” said Reich. “To correct this, she recommends that we ‘scrap the cap’ so very wealthy Americans contribute to Social Security at the same tax rate as the rest of us. I completely agree.”

Reich is currently the Chancellor’s Professor of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley. He’s written 15 books and created two acclaimed documentaries: Inequality for All, and Saving Capitalism.

“I talked to Robert Reich about my plan to fix Social Security because there are a lot of misconceptions out there,” said McCormick. “While Republicans have been saying Social Security is ‘broke’ or ‘bankrupt’ the simple truth is, there are reserves of nearly $3 trillion sustaining Social Security and if all the money flowing into the system stopped, retirees could still collect full benefits for years to come. Social Security is not out of funding.”

“However, the system does need to be fixed in order to keep it solvent in perpetuity,” said McCormick. “Americans should never fear that this government will be unable to meet its obligations when they are depending on Social Security payments.”

“Americans work hard and pay in to Social Security, so we are counting on it to be there but if our leaders do not act, future retirees could lose up to $10,000 a year,” said McCormick.

“Social Security is funded through deductions to everyone’s paychecks. We pay in while we’re working, and then collect benefits when we retire or become disabled. But not everyone pays equally into the system,” said McCormick. “While 94% of American workers pay Social Security tax on every dollar in their paycheck, most of the earnings of the top 1 percent – and especially the top 0.1 percent – escape most Social Security taxes due to the program’s cap on taxable earnings, which is $132,900 in 2019.”

“In other words, the very richest Americans stop contributing but it does not have to be that way,” said McCormick. “By simply requiring upper-income Americans to pay the same tax rate as middle-class families, Social Security’s benefits could be expanded, and its funding would remain in balance for decades beyond the longest projections.”

“Americans are facing an unprecedented retirement security crisis. Retirement wealth has not grown fast enough to keep pace with an aging population and the growth in inequality has exacerbated existing economic, racial, ethnic and educational disparities,” said McCormick. “Single people and women face particular challenges. All these problems can be fixed by making the very richest members of society pay the same tax rate that ordinary working people pay now.”

McCormick urged citizens who agree that Americans must fix Social Security without cutting benefits or jeopardizing retirees to sign the petition at her website:

McCormick explains how to find trusted financial advice

Older Americans facing difficult decisions toward the end of their lives need all the help they can get, but so do their caregivers.

Money issues are often a concern. Physical and mental-capacity problems may emerge but before death, many people want to get our legal affairs in order as much as possible, according to Lisa McCormick, who is a Democratic candidate for surrogate, the elected county official responsible for assisting residents in the orderly process of settling estates.

Democrat Lisa McCormick

McCormick says you should find professional and trustworthy legal, medical and financial specialists before you are in the throes of a crisis and she offers these five steps to prevent your emotions from clouding your judgment.

“You might, for instance, need professional guidance when suddenly confronted with decisions on life-or-death medical treatment, end-of-life legal matters or estate planning that will affect your heirs for years to come,” McCormick says.

“It’s not always easy, but you can obtain trusted advice and get quality help in the middle of the storm,” says McCormick, who offfered five steps to get the assistance you need, when you need it most.

Ask for referrals from trusted individuals
To find professional help, start by asking friends, family and colleagues for recommendations. Experts you know, such as your accountant or banker, can also point you in the direction of, say, an estate-planning attorney or a health care advocate.

“Utilize your current network — personal and professional — to guide you to a person that’s right for you and that can handle your needs,” says McCormick.

Northwestern Mutual’s 2016 Planning and Progress Study found that the majority of Americans (54 percent) believe that the ideal solution combines a human relationship with technology.

When asked about how they prefer to receive financial advice, those 50 and older were, perhaps surprisingly, most likely to opt for “human relationship coupled with technology” (57 percent), compared with 51 percent of millennials (18-34) and 53 percent of Generation Xers (age 35-49).

Always interview multiple experts
Even if you need to move quickly to handle crucial legal or health care matters, resist the temptation to hire the first adviser you meet. Otherwise, you may sorely regret your choice.

“It’s important to interview several advisers,” says McCormick.

Be aware, too, that your emotions may be running high during the crisis and may cloud your judgment.

“The best thing you can do is to take the emotion out of the decision,” McCormick recommends.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pay attention to your gut instincts. You should. Rather, she says, you should try not to be guided by emotions such as fear and worry.

Look for professionalism, compassion and communication
When interviewing potential advisers, ask questions about the expert’s education, work history, compensation and more.

But perhaps even more important, especially when time is of the essence, home in on the person’s compassion, professional expertise, understanding of your needs, and ability to effectively communicate with you.

It’s that last area — communication — that experts say can be the most crucial determinant of how well you will click with an adviser. “A person who understands you well and communicates properly with you is vital,” says McCormick. “This may be the person you’re entrusting to manage your life savings … or to ensure that your estate plan or end-of-life care is carried out according to your wishes.”

It’s also a good idea to have a family member with you when you conduct interviews. If geography is an issue, a long-distance relative can join via Skype or a phone call.

You can later rehash the interview with that relative, who serves as an extra set of eyes and ears, in case you miss something or get overwhelmed.

In addition, remember to have a conversation about the type of communication you prefer, especially in terms of technology. Do you desire face-to-face meetings exclusively, or would you be comfortable conducting business via email or phone?

And would you consider a so-called robo-adviser, by which you receive financial advice or money management services online, with minimal human intervention?

“As people’s financial and personal lives become busier and more complex, they want expert guidance tailored to their needs and access anywhere at any time,” McCormick said.

Whatever your preferences, make your wishes known to an adviser.

Request and check references
Before hiring anyone, be sure to ask for references from satisfied clients. Kaiser offers this tip: Ask for a recent client and a long-term client who has been with the adviser for five or more years. The reason: You want to know that new clients are happy, as well as those who’ve had a longer time to evaluate an adviser’s performance, communication and responsiveness.

Make your selections while watching out for red flags
Finally, be cautious about anyone who rushes you to quickly sign documents or make payments before you can review paperwork or think things over.

“There may be some urgency of time,” McCormick says. “But there should be no undue pressure to move forward until all your questions have been answered.”

Just as it’s crucial to pick the right adviser, it’s also important to have trusted friends and family members you can count on to see that your wishes are followed.

Legal and medical documents often require you to name people to act on your behalf if you become incapacitated, and you want to be sure they will adhere to your wishes.

For instance, McCormick says, family members might balk at agreeing to a relative’s request for a “Do not resuscitate” medical order.

“Those are very sensitive and difficult decisions to make,” says McCormick. “You need to be confident the individuals named have the ability and fortitude to carry out whatever your wishes are.”

Consumer protection advisors wanted

To be sure that federal regulators hear from a variety of experts with diverse viewpoints, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) set up the Consumer Advisory Board, the Community Bank Advisory Council, the Credit Union Advisory Council, and the Academic Research Council. 

These advisory committees provide CFPB with information about emerging trends and practices in the consumer financial marketplace.  They also allow CFPB to hear directly from small financial institutions.

CFPB is now accepting applications for membership in all four of our advisory committees and inviting individuals to apply to provide advice as the agency carries out its work. Here’s what they’re looking for:

  • Experts in consumer protection, community development, consumer finance, fair lending, and civil rights
  • Experts in consumer financial products or services, including consumer reporting, debt collections, and debt relief
  • Representatives of banks and credit unions that primarily serve underserved communities
  • Representatives of communities that have been significantly impacted by higher priced mortgage loans
  • Current employees of credit unions and community banks
  • Academics (experienced economists with a strong research and publishing or practitioner background, and a record of involvement in research and public policy, including public or academic service)

How to apply

For more information on how to apply to serve on the Consumer Advisory Board, Community Bank Advisory Council, Credit Union Advisory Council, or the Academic Research Council, you can:

View the application . Applying online is highly encouraged. Only complete application packets received on or before May 5, 2019, will be given consideration for membership on the advisory committees.

The CFPB provides access to machine-readable application materials to members of the public that are visually impaired. Download our an application 

Lisa McCormick recommends help for financial caregivers

Democrat Lisa McCormcik, the progressive candidate for Union County Surrogate, announced that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Office of Financial Protection for Older Americans has released four easy-to-understand booklets to help financial caregivers.

Lisa McCormick

The Managing Someone Else’s Money guides are for agents under powers of attorney, court-appointed guardians, trustees and government-benefit fiduciaries (Social Security representative payees and Veterans Affairs fiduciaries).

The guides help those serving as fiduciaries in three ways:

  • They walk them through their duties.
  • They tell them how to watch out for scams and financial exploitation and what to do if their loved one is a victim.
  • They tell them where to go for help.

The guides may be downloaded here:

“The best way we can protect consumers from unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices and take action against companies that break the law is by arming people with the information, steps, and tools that they need to make smart financial decisions,” said McCormick, who cited this as a primary purpose for creating the CFPB.

“Senator Elizabeth Warren help create the CFPB to provide a single point of accountability for enforcing federal consumer financial laws and protecting consumers in the financial marketplace,” said McCormick.

McCormick, who became one of the nine New Jersey Democrats to earn the greatest number of primary election votes when she ran for US Senator last year, is now competing against a 20-year incumbent, who is the son of the last Republican mayor of Elizabeth, for the Democratic nomination on June 4.

McCormick said most paperwork problems encountered by grieving families can be resolved before they start by understanding the rules and procedures for settling an estate.

These federal guides fill a key part of the knowledge gap that contributes to frustration at a time when mourners do not need the aggravation, so a little foresight has big payoffs.

Lisa McCormick response to Sacramento police killing

Democrat Lisa McCormick made this response to the decision not to prosecute Sacramento police officers Jared Robinet and Terrence Mercadal, who were pursuing a vandalism suspect on March 18, 2018, when they fired 20 shots at Stephon Clark, killing the a 22-year-old unarmed black man who was in his grandmother’s backyard at the time.

I believe the standard for police use of force must be changed to require more prudence among those charged with protecting and serving society.

Since Tennessee v. Garner and Graham v. Connor, police are allowed to use lethal force based on what they ‘believe’ regardless of the actual facts of the case, a right not afforded to ordinary citizens.

Officers aren’t required to use the least amount of force but they should be. Whether their life is actually threatened or if they express an imaginary fear for their life, they can escalate right to the top with deadly force.”

Graham v. Connor excused an officer for using excessive force with a man who was diabetic and suffering from an insulin reaction, depsite the fact that the victim did nothing wrong. The officer had no business interfering with the innocent person while he was seeking to correct a medical problem, but judges ruled it was okay for police to break his foot and inflict other multiple injuries.

I have seen inumerable police brutality cases as well as evidence the government was illegally spying on citizens, that strongly suggest that it is time to reasset the rights enshrined in the Fourth Amendment, which says “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

This is particularly important in light of the Eighth Amendment, which says “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted” and the Fourteenth Amendment, part of which says, “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Nobody is secure against unreasonable searches and seizures, and it is the least to say that cruel and unusual punishment is inflicted when some of our brothers and sisters are deprived of life without due process of law because police are allowed to justify murder with an active imagination.

America must demand justice for all.