Posts Tagged ‘Illegal immigration’

Days after the GOP is licking its wounds from a devastating loss, pundits like Sean Hannity are flip-flopping like a fish out of water.  I saw this on Yahoo and could not pass it up.  I guess that it is difficult to defeat a President whom was labeled as a liar by the GOP, who in turn, have a candidate with a conflicting political past – especially on immigration.  Hannity had this to say:

We’ve gotta get rid of the immigration issue altogether. It’s simple for me to fix it. I think you control the border first, you create a pathway for those people that are here, you don’t say you gotta go home. And that is a position that I’ve evolved on. Because you know what—it just—it’s gotta be resolved. The majority of people here—if some people have criminal records you can send ’em home—but if people are here, law-abiding, participating, four years, their kids are born here … first secure the border, pathway to citizenship … then it’s done. But you can’t let the problem continue. It’s gotta stop.

John Boehner had this to say:

“This issue has been around far too long,” Boehner said. “A comprehensive approach is long overdue, and I’m confident that the president, myself, others can find the common ground to take care of this issue once and for all.”

How convenient?  In my opinion, the GOP alienated themselves from the White House, their Democratic counterparts, and the American people when they became the “party of NO”!  Here’s the video to Hannity’s comments if you have time to spare.

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You know, the political spectrum reaches the bottom of the gutter when wolves in sheep’s clothing in the likes of Mitt Romney and Rick Perry are able to steal the mainstream media limelight.  What do the Republicans have against Ron Paul, a candidate for freedom?  And how is it Herman Cain is able to galvanize his popularity by a single “tax plan”?  Turn that 9-9-9 right side up and you get 6-6-6.

I didn’t see that part of the debate where Romney and Perry got into a cat fight, though I read about it; that was enough.  If I was on the stage, I would have characterized this as “Atrocious”.

We live in a country in post 9/11 where the guv’ment has eavesdropped in on our phone calls, e-mails, and even put Americans on watchlists.  Senators like Joe Lieberman and John McCain have sponsored bills to have Americans stripped of their rights and citizenship, held indefinately and interrogated, all in the name of “enemy combatant”.  Legislation for I.D. card has been passed.  Habeous Corpus and Posse Comatatous have been obliterated.

Arizona wants to know who is documented and who isn’t and everyone gets in a frazzle.  To say that border jumpers have rights is to say that we don’t have rights.  I’ve got news for border jumpers:  The only right that you have is to get out of my country,  You know, the one that I pay taxes to.

PHOENIX (Reuters) – Nicaraguan mother Lorena Aguilar hawks a television set and a few clothes on the baking sidewalk outside her west Phoenix apartment block.

A few paces up the street, her undocumented Mexican neighbor Wendi Villasenor touts a kitchen table, some chairs and a few dishes as her family scrambles to get out of Arizona ahead of a looming crackdown on illegal immigrants.

“Everyone is selling up the little they have and leaving,” said Villasenor, 31, who is headed for Pennsylvania. “We have no alternative. They have us cornered.”

The two women are among scores of illegal immigrant families across Phoenix hauling the contents of their homes into the yard this weekend as they rush to sell up and get out before the state law takes effect on Thursday.

The law, the toughest imposed by any U.S. state to curb illegal immigration, seeks to drive more than 400,000 undocumented day laborers, landscapers, house cleaners, chambermaids and other workers out of Arizona, which borders Mexico.

It makes being an illegal immigrant a state crime and requires state and local police, during lawful contact, to investigate the status of anyone they reasonably suspect of being an illegal immigrant.

The U.S. government estimates 100,000 unauthorized migrants left Arizona after the state passed an employer sanctions law three years ago requiring companies to verify workers’ status using a federal computer system. There are no figures for the number who have left since the new law passed in April.

Some are heading back to Mexico or to neighboring states. Others are staying put and taking their chances.

In a sign of a gathering exodus, Mexican businesses from grocers and butcher shops to diners and beauty salons have shut their doors in recent weeks as their owners and clients leave.

On Saturday and Sunday, Reuters counted dozens of impromptu yard sales in Latino neighborhoods in central and west Phoenix/

“They wanted to drive Hispanics out of Arizona and they have succeeded even before the law even comes into effect,” said Aguilar, 28, a mother of three young children who was also offering a few cherished pictures and a stereo at one of five sales on the same block.

She said she had taken in just $20 as “everyone is selling and nobody wants to buy.”

LEGAL RESIDENTS FLEE

Arizona straddles the principal highway for human and drug smugglers heading into the United States from Mexico.

The state’s Republican governor, Jan Brewer, signed the law in April in a bid to curb violence and cut crime stemming from illegal immigration.

Polls show the measure is backed by a solid majority of Americans and by 65 percent of Arizona voters in this election year for some state governors, all of the U.S. House of Representatives and about a third of the 100-seat Senate.

Opponents say the law is unconstitutional and a recipe for racial profiling. It is being challenged in seven lawsuits, including one filed by President Barack Obama’s administration, which wants a preliminary injunction to block the law.

A federal judge heard arguments from the lawyers for the Justice Department and Arizona on Thursday and could rule at any time.

The fight over the Arizona law has complicated the White House’s effort to break the deadlock with Republicans in Congress to pass a comprehensive immigration law, an already difficult task before November’s elections.

While the law targets undocumented migrants, legal residents and their U.S.-born children are getting caught up in the rush to leave Arizona.

Mexican housewife Gabriela Jaquez, 37, said she is selling up and leaving for New Mexico with her husband, who is a legal resident, and two children born in Phoenix.

“Under the law, if you transport an illegal immigrant, you are committing a crime,” she said as she sold children’s clothes at a yard sale with three other families. “They could arrest him for driving me to the shops.”

Lunaly Bustillos, a legal resident from Mexico, hoped to sell some clothes, dumbbells and an ornamental statue on Sunday before her family heads for Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Monday.

“It makes me sad and angry too because I feel I have the right to be here,” said Bustillos, 17, who recently graduated from high school in Phoenix.

A secure border is vital to preserving a nations future, not only for national security, but also soveriegnty.  When the fourteen year Mexican border jumper was shot and killed, Attorney General Eric Holder called it “regrettable”.  But when U.S. border patrol agent Luis Aguilar is killed, nothing is said.

Lord, please don’t let this guy get reelected!

Amid crises, Obama declares war – On Arizona

Byron York
Washington Examiner
Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Obama administration has a lot of fights on its hands. Putting aside real wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, there’s the battle against leaking oil in the Gulf, the struggle against 9.7 percent unemployment across the country, and clashes over the president’s agenda on Capitol Hill. Despite all that, the White House has found time to issue a new declaration of war, this time against an unlikely enemy: the state of Arizona.

The Justice Department is preparing to sue Arizona over its new immigration law. The president has stiffed Gov. Jan Brewer’s call for meaningful assistance in efforts to secure the border. And the White House has accused Arizona’s junior senator, Republican Jon Kyl, of lying about an Oval Office discussion with the president over comprehensive immigration reform. Put them all together, and you have an ugly state of affairs that’s getting uglier by the day.

First, the lawsuit. Last week, Brewer was appalled to learn the Justice Department’s intentions not from the Justice Department but from an interview done by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with an Ecuadorian TV outlet. “It would seem to me that if they were going to file suit against us,” Brewer told Fox News’ Greta van Susteren last week, “they definitely would have contacted us first and informed us before they informed citizens … of another nation.”

But they didn’t.

“There certainly seems to be an underlying disrespect for the state of Arizona,” says Kris Kobach, the law professor and former Bush administration Justice Department official who helped draft the Arizona law. Kobach points out that during the Bush years, several states openly flouted federal immigration law on issues like sanctuary cities and in-state tuition for illegal immigrants. Respecting the doctrines of comity and federalism, the Bush administration didn’t sue. Now, when Arizona passes a measure that is fully consistent with federal law, the Obama administration, says Kobach, “goes sprinting to the courthouse door.”

Then there is the matter of the White House’s assistance, or nonassistance, in Arizona’s border-security efforts. On June 3, the president, under criticism for refusing to meet or even talk to Brewer, reluctantly granted her an audience in the Oval Office. After the meeting, Brewer told reporters Obama pledged that administration officials would come to Arizona within two weeks with details of plans to secure the border.

June 17 marked two weeks, and there were no administration officials and no plans. There still aren’t. “What a disappointment,” Brewer told van Susteren. “You know, when you hear from the president of the United States and he gives you a commitment, you would think that they would stand up and stand by their word. It is totally disappointing.”

And now, there’s the Kyl controversy. On June 18, Kyl told a town meeting in North Phoenix that Obama personally told him the administration will not secure the U.S.-Mexico border because doing so would make it politically difficult to pass comprehensive immigration reform. “I met with the president in the Oval Office, just the two of us,” Kyl said. “Here’s what the president said. The problem is, he said, if we secure the border, then you all won’t have any reason to support comprehensive immigration reform.”

“In other words,” Kyl continued, “they’re holding it hostage. They don’t want to secure the border unless and until it is combined with comprehensive immigration reform.”

After Kyl’s statement went viral on the Internet, the White House issued a sharp denial. “The president didn’t say that and Senator Kyl knows it,” communications director Dan Pfeiffer wrote on the White House blog. “There are more resources dedicated toward border security today than ever before, but, as the president has made clear, truly securing the border will require a comprehensive solution to our broken immigration system.”

Kyl is not backing down. “What I said occurred, did occur,” he told an Arizona radio station. “Some spokesman down at the White House said no, that isn’t what happened at all, and then proceeded to say we need comprehensive immigration reform to secure the border. That is their position, and all I was doing was explaining why, from a conversation with the president, why it appears that that’s their position.”

Even if it didn’t have so many other fights on its hands, it would be unusual for an administration to align itself against an American state. But that’s precisely what has happened. Soon it will be up to the courts and voters to decide whether Obama’s campaign against Arizona will succeed or fail.

When I saw this article I thought, I’m not going to like this.  And sure enough, I didn’t.  Its easy for a liberal to criticize a Border Patrol agent when they know only idealogical philosophies of immigration, integration, and border security.  Likewise, it is just as easy for a neoconservative to condone invading a country a world away and they have nothing in the way of military experience.  But whose side should we be on?

The border patrol agent who did what he thought was best for his team and himself?  Or the border-jumper, who by even setting foot on U.S. soil, was breaking the law?  Call me indifferent, backwards, or maybe obtuse, but this is the United States of America, the land of the free, not the land of the lawbreakers.

Last year Robert Rosas, a husband and father of two children, was shot in the head.  He died.  Responding to an incursion, Rosas was involved in a gunfire exchange.  A Border Patrol agent was murdered and no one says a word.  An illegal immigrant gets killed and everyone loses their minds.  From now on scrutiny will come harsher on border patrol.  Even if border patrol agents are slain in an attack.

Border killing a symbol of failed border policy

Tony Payan

El Paso, Texas (CNN) — On Monday, a U.S. Border Patrol officer shot and killed a 14-year-old boy, Sergio Adrian Hernandez Guereca, under one of the international bridges that connects or, these days, divides, El Paso, Texas, from Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua.

The boy lay dead on the Mexican side and the Border Patrol agent was removed from the scene by U.S. officials. American officials say it was a case of self-defense. Mexican authorities condemned the killing as the use of excessive force.

The facts are still coming out, but based on the English and the Spanish news reports, it is easy to see that the two sides do not agree on the particulars, much less on their interpretation.

To people across the two nations who see reports of the death on TV or in the papers, it’s a dramatic news story — a boy with a bullet in his head and an agent under investigation. But here at the border, the scene, the actors, the act — as if carefully choreographed, chosen and scripted — read like an up-close metaphor for everything that is broken with our border and with immigration.

At a basic level, the incident at the Black Bridge seems to reveal two nations moving ever further from acknowledging our inevitable common destiny. As the two countries face the economic call-and-response of illegal immigration and the drug trade, we seem to cast each other increasingly as enemies. In this context it becomes justified to deal with each other with violence: throwing rocks and shooting bullets.

One could say that that boy represents the aspirations of many Mexican people because — whether, as some reports have suggested, he intended to cross the border or as others have said, was being used as a decoy for others to make a run — the spot where he died is known as a place where people try to cross illegally in search of work and a better life.

At the same time, a dehumanization plays out at the border, where some lives are worth more than others — a calculus that usually runs along wealth lines, as those with money can afford visas to cross over the bridge and the poor have to stay out or risk their lives by crossing under it.

Additionally, the episode highlights the blunt instrument — barriers and increased militarization — that the United States has chosen to deal with the countries’ 2,000-mile border.

Thousands of Border Patrol agents have been added in the past few years alone, and last month President Obama promised to send an additional 1,200 National Guard troops. An ineffectual fence stretches in fits and starts along about 30 percent of the border; it has been breached thousands of times, according to the Government Accountability Office, and costs thousands more to patch.

More fences, more walls, more armored vehicles and the National Guard, more helicopters and drones, more sensors and infrared goggles, more cameras and guns, and thousands of increasingly armed agents are all part of the border’s choreography. From October 1 through May 31, Custom and Border Protection agents have used their firearms 31 times, a spokesman told CNN. In these circumstances, it is only a matter of time before more deaths occur.

In this incident lies the inability of the Mexican authorities to protect their people and the apparently questionable practices of our own Border Patrol, which, for one thing, sends bike-patrol officers to a well-known trouble spot and for another seems unclear about whether they can or cannot shoot across the borderline.

Neither side seems to believe that we deserve much more than these poorly pieced-together strategies, which reflect failures of both the Obama and the Calderón administrations. Mr. Calderón has been unable to face squarely the inequalities of his people: More than one in three Mexicans would leave the country and move in search of a better life, according to data collected for a Pew Global Attitudes Project report.

And the event speaks to the political inability of President Obama to coax Congress toward immigration reform — to include an orderly flow of low-skilled workers, easing the pressure on the border itself and thereby acknowledging the continued integration of the two countries’ labor markets.

Now a Border Patrol officer will have to live with the idea of having cut short the life of a young boy whose death, regardless of what he was doing at the bridge, means pain and sorrow for a family likely under the stress of 30 months of outrageous drug-related violence in Ciudad Juárez.

It is mindboggling to think that $50 billion a year in trade makes its way back and forth over the bridges that divide El Paso and Juárez, but bullets and rocks are now traded right under them.

So, we have to ask: Is that what we want the future of our border to be? An incident such as this should not spur us to finger pointing but to acknowledging that we have a problem; that we desperately need to sit down to order and shape our interactions and take joint control of our future.

If we forget or justify this incident, we will be condemning ourselves to many more like it.

Again, this should come as no surpise that politicians vote, or in this case, criticize legislation that they have not read.  Such morons!  Can’t we get rid of all of them?

Holder hasn’t read Arizona law he criticized

By Steven Dinan

Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., who has been critical of Arizona’s new immigration law, said Thursday he hasn’t yet read the law and is going by what he’s read in newspapers or seen on television.

Mr. Holder is conducting a review of the law, at President Obama’s request, to see if the federal government should challenge it in court. He said he expects he will read the law by the time his staff briefs him on their conclusions.

“I’ve just expressed concerns on the basis of what I’ve heard about the law. But I’m not in a position to say at this point, not having read the law, not having had the chance to interact with people are doing the review, exactly what my position is,” Mr. Holder told the House Judiciary Committee.

This weekend Mr. Holder told NBC’s “Meet the Press” program that the Arizona law “has the possibility of leading to racial profiling.” He had earlier called the law’s passage “unfortunate,” and questioned whether the law was unconstitutional because it tried to assume powers that may be reserved for the federal government.

Rep. Ted Poe, who had questioned Mr. Holder about the law, wondered how he could have those opinions if he hadn’t yet read the legislation.

“It’s hard for me to understand how you would have concerns about something being unconstitutional if you haven’t even read the law,” the Texas Republican told the attorney general.

The Arizona law’s backers argue that it doesn’t go beyond what federal law already allows, and they say press reports have distorted the legislation. They point to provisions in the law that specifically rule out racial profiling as proof that it can be implemented without conflicting with civil rights.

But critics said giving police the power to stop those they suspect are in the country illegally is bound to lead to profiling.

Mr. Holder said he expects the Justice and Homeland Security departments will finish their review of the Arizona law soon.

The resolution proposed by the city council of Los Angeles to boycott Arizona over it’s recent immigration reform law has passed.  The resolution would cut business ties with the state of Arizona.  This is just too rediculious.

America has laws, and as Americans to be able to live in a civil society we have to obey those said laws.  But starting an immigrants citizenship with immunity from a law they just broke is too dubious.

Where is it right for the United States government wanting to require every American citizen to carry an identification card with retinal scan and a magnetic strip on the back with an RFID chip, and the moment that a law in a state is passed that will enforce a crackdown on illegal immigration requiring immigrants to carry their authorization for legal right to be here is wrong?  Where on God’s green earth is this double standard right?

You know what, why don’t we just give the whole southwest back to Mexico?  Not really.

L.A. votes in favor of Arizona boycott

nbclosangeles.com

The Los Angeles City Council passed a resolution Wednesday that calls for cutting some of its business ties to Arizona.

The council’s move comes amid controversy over Arizona’s tough immigration law — SB 1070. Thirteen of the council’s members approved the resolution.

That makes LA the nation’s largest city to boycott Arizona over SB 1070.

“Los Angeles the second-largest city in this country, an immigrant city, an international city. It needs to have its voice heard,” said Councilman Ed Reyes. “As an American, I cannot go to Arizona today without a passport. If I come across an officer who’s having a bad day and feels that the picture on my ID is not me, I can be… deported, no questions asked. That is not American.”

LA Councilman Greig Smith cast the only dissenting vote.

The Arizona law takes effect July 23. A Pew Research Center for the People and the Press national survey released Wednesday shows 59 percent of adults polled supported the Arizona law.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer called the boycotts — several cities have proposed or approved plans — unfortunate and misguided.

“It’s already the law in the United States, and I have a responsibility to stand up and protect the people of Arizona and we will do that,” Brewer told the Associated Press. “I find it really interesting that we have people out there that are attempting a boycott in favor of illegal actions in Arizona. That to me is just unbelievable.”

A professor who helped write the law told the LA Times it actually discourages racial profiling. He said the law only applies when someone violates another law.

“If they are running down the street with a pistol in one hand and a bag of money in the other and someone screaming, ‘Bring back my money,’ then the police officer can stop them,” law professor Kris Kobach told the Times. “But just walking down the street, of course not.”

Details of Boycott to Be Decided

The resolution approved by LA’s council called for the city to “refrain from conducting business with the state of Arizona including participating in any conventions or other business that requires city resources, unless SB 1070 (Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhood Acts”) is repealed.” The resolution was introduced by councilmembers Reyes and Janice Hahn.

LA’s top policy analyst Tuesday identfied $56 million in Arizona-related investments. The analyst recommended that the council suspend travel to Arizona, refrain from entering new contracts and review current contracts.

The city must now decide which of those contracts can be broken without risking a lawsuit.

According to the city controller’s office, the city has 15 contracts  with Arizona-based companies that are worth a combined total of $7.7 million.   

The city’s proprietary departments — namely, the Water and Power and  Harbor departments and Los Angeles World Airports — have another $51.8 million  in affected contracts. The city does not have the authority to direct its proprietary  departments to terminate those contracts; it can merely request that they do so.

“We asked our city to officials to find out what contracts we have right now that we could actually terminate and have a bit of a financial impact,” Hahn said. “It is about $7 million or $8 million. We’re asking them to terminate those contracts, where possible and feasible.”

The Arizona law makes it a crime for unauthorized migrants to be in the state and requires police to check immigration papers of people they suspect of lacking legal status.

LA’s resolution notes that the city has “historically supported policies that prohibit discrimination based on race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation and disability. For example, LA supported economic sanctions in protest against apartheid policies in South Africa.

The council will consider a few exemptions. Reyes said the council will take cautions to avoid potential lawsuits over a boycott.

Officials with the Harbor Department and LA World Airports said they are concerned about possible termination of contracts. The Harbor Department has four contracts with Arizona firms.

Most of those contracts involve a program to reduce truck pollution at the Port of LA.

“We don’t recommend rescinding the contracts due to adverse effects on the environment and public health,” a port spokesman told the LA Times.

LA World Airports has equipment contracts with Arizona. It also recieves revenue from US Airways and Mesa — Arizona-based airlines.

“We’re being very methodical,” Reyes said. “We’re asking to have this assessed. The fact is, if we chose to ignore what happened in the South in the 60s, we’d still have the kind of discriminatory laws that were being proposed back then.

“We’re not going to wreckless here. We want to evaluate the legal impacts.”

Hahn, a candidate for Lieutenant Governor, also was asked about the Lakers upcoming NBA playoff series with Arizona. Games No. 3 and 4 are scheduled in Phoenix.

“We’re hoping the Lakers take two games in Arizona for the sweep,” Hahn told NBCLA. “If you go, we’re hoping you take your own snacks and won’t buy things in Arizona.”