2012 Presidential Candidates on the Issues

09/23/2012


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Mitt Romney

Birth Control – Opposes abortion rights, though he previously supported them; states state law should guide abortion rights, and Roe vs Wade should be reversed by a future Supreme Court ruling; said he would end federal aid to Planned Parenthood.

China- He said he would formally declare China a currency manipulator and would get tougher with China on human rights, religious freedom and intellectual property rights; wants more military capabilities in the Pacific to counter Beijing’s growing influence in East Asia. His company, Bain Capital shipped American jobs overseas to counties like China.

Debt – Promises to cut $500 billion per year from the federal budget by 2016 and to balance it by 2020, but vital specifics are lacking; at same time would increase military spending , reverse $716 billion in Medicare cuts and cut taxes; favors constitutional balanced budget amendment.

Economy – Lower taxes, less regulation, balanced budget, more trade deals to spur growth replace jobless benefits with unemployment savings accounts; proposes repeal of the law toughening financial – industry regulations after the meltdown that sector.

Education – Supported federal accountability standards of “No Child Left Behind Law; has said student testing, charter-school incentives and teacher evaluation standards of Obama’s “Race to the Top” competition “makes sense” though the federal government should have less control of education.

Energy – Pledges US will become independent to energy sources outside of North America by 2020; supports opening Atlantic and Pacific outer continental shelves, Western Lands, the Artic National Wildlife Refuge and offshore Alaska to drilling; wants to reduce obstacles to energy development by weakening the EPA’s rules.

Environment – Says green power has yet to become viable and the causes of climate change are unknown; opposes “ cap and trade” policy that limits emissions; proposes to remove carbon dioxide from lists of pollutants regulated by the  Clean Air Act.

Gay Rights - Opposes legal recognition of same-sex marriage, says it should be banned with a constitutional amendment; opposes civil unions but says states should decide which rights and benefits should be allowed under those unions; would not seek to restore the ban on openly gay military members.

Guns- Opposes stricter gun control law; suggested he favors tougher enforcement of existing gun laws; as MA governor, vowed in 2002 to protect the state’s “tough guns laws” and in 2004 signed a MA ban on assault weapons.

Health Care – Promises to repeal the Affordable Care Act that was modeled after his MA universal health care ; saying that states should drive policy on the uninsured; would expand individual tax-advantaged medical saving accounts and let saving be used for premiums and medical costs. Said that he would make Medicare a voucher system.

Immigration – Favors US – Mexico border fence; opposes education benefits to illegal immigrants; opposes offering legal status to illegal immigrants who attend college, but would do so for those who serve in the military; would establish an immigration – status verification system for employers.

Mideast- Appears to present a clearer US military threat to Iran; has spoken in favor of coveret action by the US in Syria but not military invervention; said “”Palestinians do not want peace and are committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel”

Social Security – Says he would protect the status quo for people 55 and older but , for the next generation of retirees would raise the retirement age for full benefits by one or two years and reduce inflation increase in benefits fot wealthier recipients.

Taxes – Wants to keep Bush – era tax cuts for all and drop all tax rates by 20 percent ; would curtail deductions, credits, exemptions for the wealthiest, end for individual, end capital gains tax for those Alternative Minimum Tax making below $200,000 , cut corporate tax to 25 percent.

Terrorism – Says foreign terrorism suspects should have no constitutional rights; in 2007 refused to rule out use of waterboarding to interrogate terrorist suspects; his campaign has said he doe not consider waterboarding to be torture. Said that Russia is the current biggest threat to the US.

War – Endorse 2014 end to US combat in Afghanistan, subject to conditions at the time; would increase strength of armed forces, including number of troops and warships, addition almost $100 billion to the defense budget in 2016.

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.President Barack Obama

Birth Control – Pro-Choice; believes in women’s right to choose.

China – Opposes citing China as a currency manipulator, which could lead to broad trade sanctions, instead pressing the matter through diplomacy and aggressively burnt unfair-trade cases to the WTO.

Debt – Promises to cut deficits by $4 trillion over 10 years, a goal that will require Congress to raise the capital gains tax, boost a taxes on households earning more than $250,000 a year, impose a minimum 30 percent tax on incomes above $1million.

Economy – Term marked by high unemployment, a deep recession that began in the previous administration and gradual recovery; responded to recession with a roughly $800 billion stimulus plan, expanded auto bailout begun under Bush; inherited and carried forward Wall Street bailout.

Education – Has approved waivers freeing states from the most onerous requirements of the Bush – era ‘No Child Left Behind‘ law; “ Race to the Top’ competition has rewarded winning states with billions of dollars for pursing education policies Obama supports.

Energy – Ordered temporary moratorium on deep-water drilling after the massive BP oil spill in the Gulf Mexico but has pushed for more oil and gas drilling overall; achieved historic increases in fuel economy standards expect to save money at the pump while raising the code of new vehicles.

Environment – Achieved regulations on – heat-tapping gases blamed for global warming and on mercury pollution from power plants; spent heavily on green energy and has embraced nuclear power as a clean source; failed to persuade a Democratic congress tin 2009 to pass limits he promised on carbon emissions.

Gay Rights- Supports legal recognition of same- sex marriage; achieved repeal of the military ban on openly gay members; has not achieved repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, which denies federal recognition of same-sex marriages.

Guns – Has not pushed for stricter gun laws as president; signed laws letting people carry concealed weapons in national parks and in checked bags on Amtrak trains; voices support for renewed ban on assault-type weapons; previously backed stronger gun controls.

Health Care – Achieved landmark overhaul with the Affordable Care Act
including a Medicaid expansion and a mandate for almost everyone to obtain insurance; under the law, insurers may not deny coverage to people with pre-existing illness, tax credits will subsidize premiums, people can seek insurance in new marks and young adults can stay on their parent’s health care plan until age 26.

Immigration – Issued directive that immigrants brought illegally to the US as children be exempted from deportation and granted work permits if they apply; has failed to deliver on promised immigration overhaul but says he is still committed to it.

Mideast – Opposes near-term military strike on Iran except as last resort to stop it from getting nuclear weapons,; seeks international pressure against Syrian government rather then military aid for oppositions.

Social Security – Has not proposed a comprehensive plan to address Social Security’s long-term financial problems; proposed a new way of measuring inflation that would reduce annual increase in Social Security’s benefits, which would reduce the long-term shortfall be a bout 25 percent.

Taxes – Would raise taxes on the wealthy and ensure they pay at least 30 percent of their income; would extend Bush-era tax cuts for those making under ›200,000 ($250,000 for couples), let top two tax rates go back up on 396 percent and 36 percent, raise rates on capital gains and dividends for the wealthy.

Terrorism – Approved the raid that killed Osama bin Laden ; set policy that the US would no longer use harsh interrogation techniques; expanded use of drone strikes against terrorist targets abroad.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/obama-romney-where-stand-issues-211840370.html

VOTE SMART. RE-ELECT PRESIDENT OBAMA 2012


Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

08/12/2012

Immigration

 

June 15, 2012

Remarks by the President on Immigration

Rose Garden

2:09 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT: Good afternoon, everybody. This morning, Secretary Napolitano announced new actions my administration will take to mend our nation’s immigration policy, to make it more fair, more efficient, and more just — specifically for certain young people sometimes called “Dreamers.”

These are young people who study in our schools, they play in our neighborhoods, they’re friends with our kids, they pledge allegiance to our flag. They are Americans in their heart, in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper. They were brought to this country by their parents — sometimes even as infants — and often have no idea that they’re undocumented until they apply for a job or a driver’s license, or a college scholarship.

Put yourself in their shoes. Imagine you’ve done everything right your entire life — studied hard, worked hard, maybe even graduated at the top of your class — only to suddenly face the threat of deportation to a country that you know nothing about, with a language that you may not even speak.

That’s what gave rise to the DREAM Act. It says that if your parents brought you here as a child, if you’ve been here for five years, and you’re willing to go to college or serve in our military, you can one day earn your citizenship. And I have said time and time and time again to Congress that, send me the DREAM Act, put it on my desk, and I will sign it right away.

Now, both parties wrote this legislation. And a year and a half ago, Democrats passed the DREAM Act in the House, but Republicans walked away from it. It got 55 votes in the Senate, but Republicans blocked it. The bill hasn’t really changed. The need hasn’t changed. It’s still the right thing to do. The only thing that has changed, apparently, was the politics.

As I said in my speech on the economy yesterday, it makes no sense to expel talented young people, who, for all intents and purposes, are Americans — they’ve been raised as Americans; understand themselves to be part of this country — to expel these young people who want to staff our labs, or start new businesses, or defend our country simply because of the actions of their parents — or because of the inaction of politicians.

In the absence of any immigration action from Congress to fix our broken immigration system, what we’ve tried to do is focus our immigration enforcement resources in the right places. So we prioritized border security, putting more boots on the southern border than at any time in our history — today, there are fewer illegal crossings than at any time in the past 40 years. We focused and used discretion about whom to prosecute, focusing on criminals who endanger our communities rather than students who are earning their education. And today, deportation of criminals is up 80 percent. We’ve improved on that discretion carefully and thoughtfully. Well, today, we’re improving it again.

Effective immediately, the Department of Homeland Security is taking steps to lift the shadow of deportation from these young people. Over the next few months, eligible individuals who do not present a risk to national security or public safety will be able to request temporary relief from deportation proceedings and apply for work authorization.

Now, let’s be clear — this is not amnesty, this is not immunity. This is not a path to citizenship. It’s not a permanent fix. This is a temporary stopgap measure that lets us focus our resources wisely while giving a degree of relief and hope to talented, driven, patriotic young people. It is –

Q (Inaudible.)

THE PRESIDENT: — the right thing to do.

Q — foreigners over American workers.

THE PRESIDENT: Excuse me, sir. It’s not time for questions, sir.

Q No, you have to take questions.

THE PRESIDENT: Not while I’m speaking.

Precisely because this is temporary, Congress needs to act. There is still time for Congress to pass the DREAM Act this year, because these kids deserve to plan their lives in more than two-year increments. And we still need to pass comprehensive immigration reform that addresses our 21st century economic and security needs — reform that gives our farmers and ranchers certainty about the workers that they’ll have. Reform that gives our science and technology sectors certainty that the young people who come here to earn their PhDs won’t be forced to leave and start new businesses in other countries. Reform that continues to improve our border security, and lives up to our heritage as a nation of laws and a nation of immigrants.

Just six years ago, the unlikely trio of John McCain, Ted Kennedy and President Bush came together to champion this kind of reform. And I was proud to join 23 Republicans in voting for it. So there’s no reason that we can’t come together and get this done.

And as long as I’m President, I will not give up on this issue, not only because it’s the right thing to do for our economy — and CEOs agree with me — not just because it’s the right thing to do for our security, but because it’s the right thing to do, period. And I believe that, eventually, enough Republicans in Congress will come around to that view as well.

And I believe that it’s the right thing to do because I’ve been with groups of young people who work so hard and speak with so much heart about what’s best in America, even though I knew some of them must have lived under the fear of deportation. I know some have come forward, at great risks to themselves and their futures, in hopes it would spur the rest of us to live up to our own most cherished values. And I’ve seen the stories of Americans in schools and churches and communities across the country who stood up for them and rallied behind them, and pushed us to give them a better path and freedom from fear –because we are a better nation than one that expels innocent young kids.

For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/06/15/remarks-president-immigration

En españolhttp://www.dhs.gov/describe-proceso-de-acción-diferida-para-los-llegados-en-la-infancia

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Department of Homeland Security announcement on Young People and Immigration

June 15, 2012

MEMORANDUM FOR:

David V. Aguilar
Acting Commissioner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Alejandro Mayorkas
Director, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

John Morton
Director, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement

FROM:
Janet Napolitano

SUBJECT:
Secretary of Homeland Security
Exercising Prosetorial Discretion with Respect to Individuals Who Came to the United States as Children

By this memorandum, I am setting forth how, in the exercise of our prosecutorial discretion, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) should enforce the Nation’s immigration laws against certain young people who were brought to this country as children and know only this country as home. As a general matter, these individuals lacked the intent to violate the law and our ongoing review of pending removal cases is already offering administrative closure to many of them. However, additional measures are necessary to ensure that our enforcement resources are not expended on these low priority cases but are instead appropriately focused on people who meet our enforcement priorities.

The following criteria should be satisfied before an individual is considered for an exercise of prosecutorial discretion pursuant to this memorandum:

• came to the United States under the age of sixteen;
• has continuously resided in the United States for a least five years preceding the date of this memorandum and is present in the United States on the date of this memorandum;
• is currently in school, has graduated from high school, has obtained a general education development certificate, or is an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces ofthe United States;
• has not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise poses a threat to national security or public safety;
and
• is not above the age of thirty.

http://www.dhs.gov

Our Nation’s immigration laws must be enforced in a strong and sensible manner. They are not designed to be blindly enforced without consideration given to the individual circumstances of each case. Nor are they designed to remove productive young people to countries where they may not have lived or even speak the language. Indeed, many of these young people have already contributed to our country in significant ways. Prosecutorial discretion, which is used in so many other areas, is especially justified here.

For more: http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/s1-exercising-prosecutorial-discretion-individuals-who-came-to-us-as-children.pdf

En español: http://www.dhs.gov/ynews/releases/20120803-dhs-describe-proceso-accion-diferida-para-llegados-en-la-enfancia.shtm

US Citizenship & Immigration Services – Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Process

Servicio de Ciudadanía e Inmigración de Estados UnidosAcción Diferida para los Llegados en la Infancia

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July 08, 2014 FACT SHEET: Emergency Supplemental Request to Address the Increase in Child and Adult Migration from Central America in the Rio Grande Valley Areas of the Southwest Border

July 09, 2014 Statement by the President Obama on Immigration

Broder Security Overview
Criminal Alien Program
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
Delegation of Immigration Authority, 287(g)
ICE Parental Interest Directive
Rapid REPAT
Removal Statistics
Repatriation
Secure Communities

¡Un voto para Obama es un Voto Intelegente!

¡Estamos Unidos Para Obama!

White House Hispanic 
WH.gov en Español

GOP_Elephant_WRONG_WAY_small

UPDATES:

5/16/14  Republican leaders to block US immigration measure

7/31/14  House Republicans abandoned a bill to address theimmigration crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border

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Congressional Hispanic Caucus and House Democrats On Child Migrant Humanitarian Situation

Aug 1, 2014


We Are United For Obama! ~ ¡Estamos Unidos para Obama!

06/21/2012

June 15, 2012

Remarks by the President on Immigration:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/06/15/remarks-president-immigration

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En Español: http://www.barackobama.com/es/entry/el-presidente-obama-es-la-accion-correcta

Department of Homeland Security announcement on Young People and Immigration http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/s1-exercising-prosecutorial-discretion-individuals-who-came-to-us-as-children.pdf .

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FaceBook Latinos For Obama: http://www.facebook.com/Latinosforobama

Twitter Latinos For Obama: http://latinos.barackobama.com

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¡Un voto para Obama es un Voto Intelegente!

¡Estamos Unidos Para Obama!

White House Hispanic: http://www.whitehouse.gov/hispanic

WH.gov en Español: http://www.whitehouse.gov/espanol

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UPDATE: Republican leaders to block US immigration measure

5/16/14 Associated Press By ERICA WERNER and DONNA CASSATA

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republican leaders intervened Friday to prevent a vote on U.S. immigration legislation, dealing a severe blow to election-year efforts to overhaul the widely denigrated system.

The move came after a Republican congressman announced plans to try to force a vote next week, over strong conservative opposition, on his measure creating a path to citizenship for immigrants who live here illegally yet serve in the military.

Rep. Jeff Denham labeled his bill the ENLIST Act and said he would seek a vote as an amendment to the popular annual defense bill, the National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA.

In response, Doug Heye, spokesman for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, said: “No proposed ENLIST amendments to NDAA will be made in order.”

Heye said no stand-alone vote on the measure would be permitted, either.

It was the latest setback for President Barack Obama’s efforts to move comprehensive immigration legislation through Congress to boost border security, remake legal worker programs and offer legal status to the estimated 11.5 million people now living here illegally. The Senate passed an immigration bill last year, but it’s been stalled in the Republican-led House.

Friday’s developments seemed to all but rule out anything happening on the issue this year in the House, if even Denham’s limited measure could not advance. Despite a wide coalition of business, labor, religious groups, farmers and others pushing for an immigration overhaul, many individual Republican House members who represent largely white districts have been unmoved.

Cantor, House Speaker John Boehner and other House Republican leaders have insisted they want to advance immigration legislation, though they’ve rejected the Senate’s comprehensive bill. Chances have always looked slim, but the White House and outside advocates saw a window for action over the next several months, before Congress’ August recess and November midterm elections.

Denham’s measure was widely popular and seen as perhaps the likeliest area for compromise.

But in recent weeks prominent conservative groups, including the Heritage Foundation, announced their opposition. Heritage Action, the group’s political arm, announced it would include the vote in its ratings on lawmakers and called Denham’s legislation “deplorable.”

Cantor himself faces a primary election challenge in the state of Virginia June 10 from a tea party opponent who has criticized the majority leader for not being conservative enough and accused him of supporting amnesty for immigrants living here illegally.

For more: http://news.yahoo.com/republican-leaders-block-us-immigration-measure-201549527.html


Going Forward

05/08/2012

2008

US Economic Meltdown

4.4 Million Jobs Loss

US Economy Spirals Down

2009 -2012

Jan 20, 2012 Senator Barack Obama takes the oath as President Of The United States of America

America starts to recover.

Today America’s auto industry is back.

Our enemy brought to justice by our greatest heroes.

Our troops are home from Iraq.

Instead of losing jobs America is creating jobs.

President Obama believes in America and fights for America.

We have more to do but we are coming back.

Because America’s greatness comes from a strong Middle Class.

Because you don’t quit and neither does he…

VOTE SMART & RE-ELECT OBAMA/BIDEN 2012



President Obama’s wish is to sign the DREAM Act

05/03/2012

President Obama understands the importance and urgency in fixing the broken immigration system and outlined his vision for a 21st century immigration policy:

  • Responsibility by the federal government to secure our borders:Today, our borders are more secure than at any time in the past several decades, and the Administration continues to refine and strengthen its strategy. Enforcement resources should be focused on preventing those who would do our nation harm from entering our country.
  • Accountability for businesses that break the law by undermining American workers and exploiting undocumented workers: Employers who deliberately hire and exploit undocumented workers must be held accountable. At the same time, we must give employers who want to play by the rules a reliable way to verify that their employees are here legally.
  • Strengthening our economic competiveness by creating a legal immigration system that reflects our values and diverse needs: Our immigration laws should continue to reunify families and encourage individuals we train in our world-class institutions to stay and develop new technologies and industries in the United States rather than abroad. The law should stop punishing innocent young people whose parents brought them here illegally and give those young men and women a chance to stay in this country if they serve in the military or pursue higher education. A smart 21st century system should also provide farmers a legal way to hire the workers they rely on year after year, and it should improve procedures for employers who seek to hire foreign workers for jobs if U.S. workers are not available.
  • Responsibility from people who are living in the United States illegally: Those people living here illegally must also be held accountable for their actions and get on the right side of the law by registering and undergoing national security and criminal background checks, paying taxes and a penalty, and learning English before they can get in line to become eligible for citizenship. Being a citizen of this country comes not only with rights but also with fundamental responsibilities. We can create a pathway for legal status that is fair and reflects our values.

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For the immediate time President Obama has issued these  important policies for immigration:

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
President Obama’s new DREAM relief policy [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, or DACA] would allow undocumented youth who qualify to request temporary relief from deportation, making them eligible to receive work permits and a social security number. For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/06/15/remarks-president-immigration

Family Unity Immigration Policy Change
President Obama’s  final rule in the Federal Register that reduces the time U.S. citizens are separated from their immediate relatives (spouse, children and parents), who are in the process of obtaining visas to become lawful permanent residents of the United States under certain circumstances. The process will be effective on March 4, 2013 and more information about the filing process will be made available in the coming weeks at http://www.uscis.gov/.

DHS Announces Proposals to Attract and Retain Highly Skilled Immigrants
As part of the Administration’s continuing commitment to attract and retain highly skilled immigrants, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today announced the publication of two proposed rules, including a rule to extend employment authorization to spouses of certain H-1B workers, and a proposal to enhance opportunities for certain groups of highly-skilled workers by removing obstacles to their remaining in the United States.

Issue Guidance for School Districts to Ensure Equal Access for All Children to Public Schools, Regardless of Immigration Status
Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Eric Holder today announced updated guidance to assist public elementary and secondary schools to ensure enrollment processes are consistent with the law and fulfill their obligation to provide all children—no matter their background—equal access to an education.

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UPDATES:

http://youtu.be/1edwcyZFkBE?t=13m3s

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Record Judicial Diversity, Record Judicial Delays

01/05/2012

Creating a judicial pool for the 21st Century, one with intellect, fair-mindedness and integrity that resembles the nation that it serves, is a top priority for President Obama and his administration. In fact, the President’s nominations for federal judges embody an unprecedented commitment to expanding the racial, gender and experiential diversity of the men and women who enforce our laws and deliver justice.

Hon. Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice
confirmation date: 8/6/2009

Hon. Elena Kagan, Associate Justice
confirmation date: 8/7/2010

Unfortunately, the delays these nominees are encountering on Capitol Hill are equally unprecedented: earlier this month, the Senate left for its August recess without considering 20 eminently qualified candidates, 16 of whom had passed through the bipartisan Senate Judiciary Committee completely unopposed, a development the Washington Post called “not only frustrating but also destructive” in an editorial published yesterday.

The victims of these delays, of course, are the American citizens who are being denied the fair and timely judicial proceedings they deserve because of the chronic shortage of federal judges on the bench.  Stephen Zack, president of the American Bar Association, told Senate leaders in a recent letter that the abundance of vacant federal judgeships “create strains that will inevitably reduce the quality of our justice system and erode public confidence in the ability of the courts to vindicate constitutional rights or render fair and timely decisions.”

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<strong>Senate approves New Jersey judge for appeals court</strong>

4/9/13 By HENRY C. JACKSON | Associated Press – 3 hrs ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate on Tuesday confirmed New Jersey judge Patty Shwartz to serve on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, giving her a lifetime appointment to the Philadelphia-based court.

Shwartz was confirmed by a vote of 64-34, with most Republicans opposing her nomination. The 3rd Circuit handles cases from Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania and can sometimes be the last stop before the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Senate’s confirmation came after Shwartz’s nomination was at first held up by a Democrat, New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez.
Menendez initially said he wasn’t satisfied by Shwartz’s answers to several legal questions. After he met with Shwartz earlier this year, Menendez lifted his hold and said he was satisfied with her answers.

“I’ve always taken the role of advice and consent for judicial nominations very seriously … appointments to the federal bench are lifetime appointments,” Menendez said on Tuesday.
Menendez and Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Va., the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, spoke in support of Shwarz on the Senate floor.

“Judged on her qualifications and her record, Judge Patty Shwartz should be confirmed by an overwhelming bipartisan vote,” Leahy said.

But many Republicans opposed her nomination, some citing her performance during a committee hearing about her nomination. Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said he opposed Shwartz’s nomination because of what he called a “lack of candor” during the panel.

“I was unable to make the determination that she is prepared to be a circuit court judge,” said Grassley, the ranking Republican the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I share doubts raised regarding her limited knowledge of constitutional law, misapplication of standards of review, and inadequate understanding of substantive areas of the law.”

Shwartz is currently a magistrate judge for U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey and an adjunct law professor. She previously worked in the U.S. attorney’s office in New Jersey.
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There will still be 14 other judicial nominees awaiting floor votes. Of these 14, 13 were approved by the Judiciary Committee unanimously, and five nominees would fill judicial emergencies. They have been waiting on the Senate floor for an average of 67 days for a vote. That’s nearly twice as long as President Bush’s judicial nominees.


G.O.P. Anti-Immigrant, Anti-Farms Agenda

07/31/2011

U.S. Fruit and Vegetable Industry is one the is very labor intensive. Simply shutting American’s door to immigrant farm workers is not the solution.

Reduction in the supply of workers that could make agricultural labor more expensive for the U.S. fruit and vegetable industry may impact industry competitiveness but the effects would vary by commodity that would lead to the extintion of American farms, American jobs and  heavy importing of fruits , vegetables and other food items.

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Farmers Oppose G.O.P. Bill on Immigration

7/30/11 By JESSE McKINLEY and JULIA PRESTON

Farmers across the country are rallying to fight a Republican-sponsored bill, Legal Workforce Act H.R. 2164 (E-Verify), that would force them and all other employers to verify the legal immigration status of their workers, a move some say could imperil not only future harvests but also the agricultural community’s traditional support for conservative candidates.

The bill was proposed by Representative Lamar Smith, a Texas Republican who is the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. It would require farmers — who have long relied on a labor force of immigrants, a majority here without legal documents — to check all new hires through E-Verify, a federal database run by the Department of Homeland Security devised to ferret out illegal immigrants.

For the entire article: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/31/us/politics/31verify.html?partner=rss&amp;emc=rss

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Texas Democrats attack GOP Rep. Lamar Smith over HALT Act

July 22, 2011 Julian Aguilar – Texas Tribune

AUSTIN — Republican U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith’s attempt to strip President Barack Obama’s administration of its immigration enforcement powers has drawn a harsh rebuke from Texas Democrats in the U.S. House, who say the proposal “is an attack on (the president’s) integrity that should not pass unnoticed or unopposed.”

Smith, R-San Antonio, this month introduced the Hinder the Administration’s Legalization Temptation  (HALT) Act, which would prevent the administration from, among other things, canceling the removal of illegal immigrants, granting protective status to any immigrant and granting parole or issuing deferred action —except in narrow circumstances. It is co-sponsored by U.S. Sen. David Vitter, R-La.

For the entire article: http://www.themonitor.com/articles/democrats-53082-texas-gop.html

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The Kochs’ quest

10/13/2012 09:11:44 PM PDT By Bill Wilson and Roy Wenzl – The Wichita Eagle
WICHITA, Kan. — In January 2009, just days after the inauguration of President Barack Obama, Charles and David Koch met in their company headquarters in Wichita with their longtime political strategist, Rich Fink.

The country was headed toward bankruptcy, they agreed. Fink told them bluntly that Obama’s administration represented the worst of what Charles and David fear most: a bloated, regulation-heavy, free-spending government that could plunge the country into another deep recession. That day, Fink advised two of the richest men in the nation that it would be the fight of their lives to stop the government spending spree and to change the course of the country, starting with the 2012 election.

“If we are going to do this, we should do it right or not at all,” Fink, 61, recalled telling the brothers. “But if we don’t do it right or if we don’t do it at all, we will be insignificant and we will just waste a lot of time and I would rather play golf.

“And if we do it right, then it is going to get very, very ugly.”

Three and a half years later, Obama accused the Koch brothers of engineering “a corporate takeover of our democracy.”

The brothers’ political spending and the network of conservative political organizations and think tanks they fund have sparked protests. The condemnations and criticism prompted Charles Koch to break his silence about politics. In his most extensive interview in 15 years, Charles Koch talked about why he wants to defeat Obama and elect members of Congress who will stop what he calls catastrophic overspending.

Government recklessness threatens the country and his business, he said.

The Kochs say the price for their involvement has been high: Death threats, cyberattacks on their business, hundreds of news stories criticizing them, calls for boycotts of the company’s consumer goods, and what the brothers see as ongoing and public attacks from the Obama administration.

The Kochs aren’t finished. Win or lose in November, they plan to start a new fight. They are organizing dozens of business and grass roots groups to build support for eliminating all corporate and agricultural subsidies.

For more; http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_21769107/kochs-quest?IADID=Search-www.mercurynews.com-www.mercurynews.com

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Ending agricultural subsidies would mean that American businesses would have to raise their prices and USA farmers would not be able to compete with cheap and inferior and unsafe imports.

* American diary farms would be impacted
* American vegetable and fruit farms would would be impacted
* American grain farms for human would be impacted
* American pork, beef and chicken farms would be impacted
* American nut farms would be impacted
* American fiber producers (cotton, wool, wood etc) would be impacted
* American gasoline would be impacted

There are many more that industries that would impacted.

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UPDATE: 


Building A 21st Century Immigration System

07/06/2011

Building A 21st Century Immigration System : Taking the Conversation on the Road

Over the next three months, federal officials will be traveling around the country to gather feedback that will assist us in developing a federal strategy on immigrant integration.

At the Kansas City event, representatives from Office of Refugee Resettlement at the U.S Department of Health and Human Services and the Office of Citizenship at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security heard from leaders who helped identify best practices and give their ideas about what the federal government can do to help immigrant populations and the communities where they settle.

  • Seattle, Washington on July 7th
  •  Atlanta, GA on July 13th
  •  Houston, Texas on July 26th
  • New York, NY on July 28th
  • Los Angeles, CA on August 5th
  • Detroit, MI on August 10th

The Obama Administration’s Agenda on Immigration

President Barack Obama outlined in his agenda five objectives in addressing immigration. They are:

  1. Strengthen Border Control
  2. Improve Our Immigration System
  3. Remove Incentives to Enter Illegally
  4. Bring People out of the Shadows
  5. Work with Mexico

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President Obama understands the importance and urgency in fixing the broken immigration system and outlined his vision for a 21st century immigration policy:

  • Responsibility by the federal government to secure our borders:Today, our borders are more secure than at any time in the past several decades, and the Administration continues to refine and strengthen its strategy. Enforcement resources should be focused on preventing those who would do our nation harm from entering our country.
  • Accountability for businesses that break the law by undermining American workers and exploiting undocumented workers: Employers who deliberately hire and exploit undocumented workers must be held accountable. At the same time, we must give employers who want to play by the rules a reliable way to verify that their employees are here legally.
  • Strengthening our economic competiveness by creating a legal immigration system that reflects our values and diverse needs: Our immigration laws should continue to reunify families and encourage individuals we train in our world-class institutions to stay and develop new technologies and industries in the United States rather than abroad. The law should stop punishing innocent young people whose parents brought them here illegally and give those young men and women a chance to stay in this country if they serve in the military or pursue higher education. A smart 21st century system should also provide farmers a legal way to hire the workers they rely on year after year, and it should improve procedures for employers who seek to hire foreign workers for jobs if U.S. workers are not available.
  • Responsibility from people who are living in the United States illegally: Those people living here illegally must also be held accountable for their actions and get on the right side of the law by registering and undergoing national security and criminal background checks, paying taxes and a penalty, and learning English before they can get in line to become eligible for citizenship. Being a citizen of this country comes not only with rights but also with fundamental responsibilities. We can create a pathway for legal status that is fair and reflects our values.

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For the immediate time President Obama has issued these  important policies for immigration:

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
President Obama’s new DREAM relief policy [Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, or DACA] would allow undocumented youth who qualify to request temporary relief from deportation, making them eligible to receive work permits and a social security number. For more: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/06/15/remarks-president-immigration

Family Unity Immigration Policy Change
President Obama’s  final rule in the Federal Register that reduces the time U.S. citizens are separated from their immediate relatives (spouse, children and parents), who are in the process of obtaining visas to become lawful permanent residents of the United States under certain circumstances. The process will be effective on March 4, 2013 and more information about the filing process will be made available in the coming weeks at http://www.uscis.gov/.

DHS Announces Proposals to Attract and Retain Highly Skilled Immigrants
As part of the Administration’s continuing commitment to attract and retain highly skilled immigrants, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today announced the publication of two proposed rules, including a rule to extend employment authorization to spouses of certain H-1B workers, and a proposal to enhance opportunities for certain groups of highly-skilled workers by removing obstacles to their remaining in the United States.

Issue Guidance for School Districts to Ensure Equal Access for All Children to Public Schools, Regardless of Immigration Status
Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Eric Holder today announced updated guidance to assist public elementary and secondary schools to ensure enrollment processes are consistent with the law and fulfill their obligation to provide all children—no matter their background—equal access to an education.

 

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UPDATES:

 


WhiteHouse.gov/Hispanic

05/09/2011

In his State of the Union address, the President laid out his vision for America to win the future. To win that contest and secure prosperity for Hispanics and all Americans, we have to out-innovate, out-educate and out-build the rest of the world. The Hispanic community plays an integral part of that plan to win the future.

Since taking office, every issue the Obama Administration has addressed has been of vital importance to the Hispanic community, from promoting job creation to making sure that every American has access to quality health care, to reforms that strengthen education for all Americans, to fighting for comprehensive immigration reform while standing up for the civil rights of all Americans.

To learn what the  Obama Administration is doing related to the Hispanic community please visit:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/hispanic

The Obama Administration’s Agenda on Immigration

President Barack Obama outlined in his agenda five objectives in addressing immigration. They are:

    1. Strengthen Border Control
    2. Improve Our Immigration System
    3. Remove Incentives to Enter Illegally
    4. Bring People out of the Shadows
    5. Work with Mexico

.
June 15, 2012
Remarks by the President on Immigration

June 15, 2012
Department of Homeland Security announcement on Young People and Immigration

,

White House Hispanic: http://www.whitehouse.gov/hispanic

WH.gov en Español: http://www.whitehouse.gov/espanol

.

UPDATE:  Republican leaders to block US immigration measure

5/16/14 Associated Press By ERICA WERNER and DONNA CASSATA

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republican leaders intervened Friday to prevent a vote on U.S. immigration legislation, dealing a severe blow to election-year efforts to overhaul the widely denigrated system.

The move came after a Republican congressman announced plans to try to force a vote next week, over strong conservative opposition, on his measure creating a path to citizenship for immigrants who live here illegally yet serve in the military.

Rep. Jeff Denham labeled his bill the ENLIST Act and said he would seek a vote as an amendment to the popular annual defense bill, the National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA.

In response, Doug Heye, spokesman for House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, said: “No proposed ENLIST amendments to NDAA will be made in order.”

Heye said no stand-alone vote on the measure would be permitted, either.

It was the latest setback for President Barack Obama’s efforts to move comprehensive immigration legislation through Congress to boost border security, remake legal worker programs and offer legal status to the estimated 11.5 million people now living here illegally. The Senate passed an immigration bill last year, but it’s been stalled in the Republican-led House.

Friday’s developments seemed to all but rule out anything happening on the issue this year in the House, if even Denham’s limited measure could not advance. Despite a wide coalition of business, labor, religious groups, farmers and others pushing for an immigration overhaul, many individual Republican House members who represent largely white districts have been unmoved.

Cantor, House Speaker John Boehner and other House Republican leaders have insisted they want to advance immigration legislation, though they’ve rejected the Senate’s comprehensive bill. Chances have always looked slim, but the White House and outside advocates saw a window for action over the next several months, before Congress’ August recess and November midterm elections.

Denham’s measure was widely popular and seen as perhaps the likeliest area for compromise.

But in recent weeks prominent conservative groups, including the Heritage Foundation, announced their opposition. Heritage Action, the group’s political arm, announced it would include the vote in its ratings on lawmakers and called Denham’s legislation “deplorable.”

Cantor himself faces a primary election challenge in the state of Virginia June 10 from a tea party opponent who has criticized the majority leader for not being conservative enough and accused him of supporting amnesty for immigrants living here illegally.

For more: http://news.yahoo.com/republican-leaders-block-us-immigration-measure-201549527.html


Statue of Liberty

10/27/2010

Liberty Enlightening the World

The Statue of Liberty Enlightening the World was a gift of friendship from the people of France to the people of the United States and is a universal symbol of freedom and democracy. The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886, designated as a National Monument in 1924 and restored for her centennial on July 4, 1986.

The New Colossus by  Emma Lazarus

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”


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