Category Archives: Immigration

A Pall is Cast over McSally Senate Bid by Election Result in Pennsylvania

A blue wave is cresting in American politics.

A blue wave is cresting in American politics.

There is definitely a blue wave cresting in American politics. When it hits Arizona, it will spell doom for the Martha McSally campaign for US Senate.

As of last December, Democrats won a U.S. Senate seat in Alabama, won the governorship in New Jersey, took full control of the Washington state government, and swept elective offices statewide in Virginia. Now voters in Pennsylvania elected a Democratic Congressmen in a deep-red district.

Even though the Democrats had less in campaign funds, were outspent by out-of-state PACs and ran in districts carried by the president, they are still finding a way to win.

Congresswoman Martha McSally snuggles up to President Donald Trump.

Congresswoman Martha McSally snuggles up to President Donald Trump.

Trump is poison. Even in conservative districts, Trump is unpopular. Democrat Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania won a stunning upset against a Republican who was chiefly a stand-in for Trump and who endorsed Trump’s tawdry agenda. Trump energizes Democrats, and his two appearances drove independents to vote for the Democrat.

McSally, a nondescript Republican, votes in line with Trump 97.1%. She defended Trump from criticism by Sen. Jeff Flake. McSally has sent out photos of herself with the president and with first daughter Ivanka Trump. McSally appeared on Fox News to sing the president’s praises. Her announcement video features Trump saying, “Martha McSally, she’s the real deal.”

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Judge repeatedly attacked by Trump rules in favor of his ‘big beautiful wall’

Presidential comments on pending cases in court can have an improper influence on the tribunal. This is most acute in military courts where the commander-in-chief can be seen as placing his thumb on the scales of justice. See, Military Judge: Obama’s Comments On Military Sex Abuse An “Undue Command Influence; Trump’s comments about Bergdahl ‘disturbing,’ judge says.

This improper influence on the tribunal can also extend to cases pending in the federal courts. Presidential comments on pending Supreme Court decisions.

Which brings me to this incident from the 2016 election. Trump Attacks a ‘Mexican’ U.S. Federal Judge:

The presumptive Republican nominee for president devoted almost a quarter of his hour-long rally in San Diego on Friday night to criticizing Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who is currently presiding over a class-action lawsuit against the real-estate businessman for his role in Trump University.

During his disjointed remarks at the rally, Trump invoked Curiel’s ethnicity, said the judge should recuse himself from the trial, called for an investigation into him, described him as “negative” and a “hater,” insisted on a summary dismissal of the case, complained about being “railroaded by a legal system,” and asserted he would win the trial.

* * *

Mr. Trump also told the audience, which had previously chanted the Republican standard-bearer’s signature “build that wall” mantra in reference to Mr. Trump’s proposed wall along the Mexican border, that Judge Curiel is “Mexican.”

Judge Curiel’s parents were immigrants from Mexico, but he was born in Indiana. He is a U.S. citizen. Trump’s comments led to accusations of racism, including from Republicans.

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DACA program is in limbo in the courts after Congress fails to act, Supreme Court declines review

President Trump gave Congress until March 5, 2018 – next Monday – to enact legislation pertaining to the legal status of DREAMers after he ended President Obama’s DACA program by executive order last September.

Dara Lind at explains, The Senate failed on immigration. Now a deadline looms for DACA.

The date March 5 looms over the immigration debate.

That’s the deadline that President Trump set last September when he announced that his administration was winding down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which protected young unauthorized immigrants from deportation and allowed them to work legally in the United States.

Politicians and the press have repeatedly cited March 5 as an “expiration date” of sorts to force Congress to finally find a solution for the 690,000 undocumented immigrants covered by the program.

But DACA recipients’ work permits don’t expire en masse on March 5.

The way the program actually works is far more complicated — and with it looking vanishingly unlikely that Congress will pass a bill before the March 5 “deadline,” understanding what DACA will look like after that date is more important than ever.

What March 5 means

The short answer is: not a ton.

The way some people talk about the March 5 “expiration,” you’d be forgiven for thinking that the hundreds of thousands of unauthorized immigrants protected under DACA will all lose their protections after that date — or, worse, that they’ll all be rounded up for deportation. But that’s not the case.

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Ann Kirkpatrick is Front Runner at Candidates Forum for Tucson’s Congressman

Tucson congressional candidates Mary Matiella, Matt Heinz, Barbara Sherry, Bruce Wheeler, Ann Kirkpatrick and Bill Kovacs unanimously raise their hands in favor of supporting renewable energy.

Former Congressman Ann Kirkpatrick emerged as the Democratic candidate with the best chance to be elected to Congress in Tucson at a candidates forum watched by 300 people Sunday in Green Valley.

I’ve studied and met all the candidates and heard them three times at previous candidate forums. My conclusion is that Kirkpatrick has the Congressional experience, common-sense positions, and key political backing to beat the upcoming river of poisonous money from the Koch brothers during this year’s elections.

The Democrat who wins the August 28 primary will likely oppose Lea Márquez-Peterson, a Republican who is closely linked to Kochbot Gov. Doug Ducey. She operates several Hispanic chambers of commerce and is noted for her business bankruptcies.

Knows the job & has support

Kirkpatrick knows the job, having served in Congress from 2013 to 2017 in northern Arizona. Impressively, she has raised a record $750,000 in the campaign’s first five months, with $465,000 cash on hand. She has the endorsement of former Congress members Gabby Giffords and Ron Barber, and she has the backing of the national Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

She disagreed with all the other candidates on the subject of Medicare for All, an idea that Progressives cheer but which has no known funding source. “I don’t support Medicare for all in a single-payer system because I don’t see a way to pay for it all,” she said, noting that 140 million people already get health insurance from their employers. However, she said people should be able to buy into Medicare especially when there is no reasonable option to get health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

Regarding gun safety, Kirkpatrick says she has changed her position. Nine years ago she had an “A” rating from the NRA, but in 2016 she was given a “D” rating by the gun lobby. Continue reading

Breaking: Senate rejects all DACA bills – Epic Fail

Just as I predicted, the U.S. Senate has rejected all the proposed DACA bills in an epic fail. The New York Times reports, Senate Rejects Trump’s Immigration Plan (with additional reporting from The Hill):

In a stern rebuke to President Trump, the Senate on Thursday decisively rejected a White House rewrite of the nation’s immigration laws that would have bolstered border security, placed strict new limits on legal migration and resolved the fate of the so-called Dreamers.

The measure by Senator Charles E. Grassley, Republican of Iowa, was patterned after one that the White House proposed, but the 39-60 vote was 21 votes short of the 60 votes required for the Senate to consider it. Mr. Trump had threatened to veto any other approach.

But the rejection of the president’s plan was bipartisan: Democrats refused its get-tough approach to legal immigration, while many conservative Republicans opposed its pathway to citizenship for 1.8 million young immigrants brought to the country illegally as children.

What happens now in the Senate immigration debate is unclear. Before the vote on the White House plan, senators turned away two more modest measures to protect young immigrants known as Dreamers. Neither the plan drafted by a broad group of centrists nor one written by Senators John McCain, Republican of Arizona, and Chris Coons, Democrat of Delaware, secured 60 votes.

The “Common Sense” bipartisan centrist measure, backed by Sens. Susan Collins (ME), Jeff Flake (AZ) and Lindsey Graham (SC) and other Republicans, won 54 votes.

Two other amendments were rejected before the vote. The first, a bipartisan proposal from Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Chris Coons (D-DE) , fell in a 52-47 vote. The second measure [from Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA)], which would have cracked down on sanctuary cities that don’t comply with federal immigration laws, also fell in a 55-44 vote.

The Senate’s failure leaves Congress with an uncertain path on immigration ahead of a March 5 deadline set by the president.

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Breaking: Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rules Trump Muslim travel ban is unconstitutional

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, sitting en banc, ruled on Thursday in a 9-4 decision that the latest iteration of President Trump’s travel ban is unconstitutional, citing that it unlawfully discriminates against Muslims. Opinion (.pdf).

The Hill reports, Appeals court rules latest Trump travel ban is unconstitutional:

A Virginia-based federal court of appeals on Thursday ruled the latest version of President Trump’s travel ban unconstitutional, citing that it unlawfully discriminates against Muslims.

In a 9-4 decision, a majority of the judges on the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals said it examined official statements from Trump and other executive branch officials, along with the proclamation itself, and found it “unconstitutionally tainted with animus toward Islam.”

The court is the second federal appeals court to rule against the travel ban.

The most recent iteration of the ban bars people from eight countries — six of which are predominantly Muslim — from coming to the U.S.

The Supreme Court had decided in December that it would allow the latest travel ban to take effect while litigation ran its course [in this case].

It has now run its course. You can rest assured that Confederate Attorney General Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III will file an appeal back to the U.S. Supreme Court from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals decision.

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