Category Archives: Immigration

Pres. Obama Promotes Two State Solution For Middle East Calls for Israel to Return Pre 1967 Borders

President Obama has call for a two-state solution to Middle East peace between Israel and a Palestinian homeland. In doing so, Mr. Obama has called for Israel pre-1967 borders which would shrink Israel dramatically. The announcement come before a meeting between himself and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday. From the AP via Yahoo News:

President Barack Obama is endorsing the Palestinians’ demand for their future state to be based on the borders that existed before the 1967 Middle East war, in a move that will likely infuriate Israel. Israel says the borders of a Palestinian state have to be determined through negotiations.

In a speech outlining U.S. policy in the Middle East and North Africa, Obama on Thursday sided with the Palestinians’ opening position a day ahead of a visit to Washington by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Netanyahu is vehemently opposed to referring to the 1967 borders.

Reaction was swift to the announcement by the President was not received well by Israel. From The Jerusalem Post:

A day before their scheduled meeting in Washington, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama staked out dramatically conflicting positions Thursday as to the path for resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Netanyahu issued a quick, bitter response on Thursday night to Obama’s landmark Middle East speech, saying that the establishment of a Palestinian state could not come “at Israel’s expense.”

“The Palestinians, and not only the US, must recognize Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people,” he said.

Obama, in his address earlier in the day on the changes sweeping the Middle East, called for a demilitarized Palestinian state along the 1967 lines with agreed upon land swaps.While thanking Obama for his commitment to peace, Netanyahu said he “expects to hear from President Obama a reconfirmation of commitments to Israel from 2004 that received wide support in both houses of Congress.” This was a reference to a letter from president George W. Bush to prime minister Ariel Sharon that did not call for a return to the 1967 lines, and that recognized that any agreement would take into account the changed realities on the ground – a line interpreted by Israel to mean a recognition that it would hold on to the large settlement blocs.

Meanwhile  Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. has called for an Emergency Meeting of the Palenstine Authority leadership on Pres. Obama statement calling for Israel to return the Pre-1967 borders. Abbas will also consult with other Arabic nations on the announcement. Also from The Jerusalem Post:

 Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday called an emergency meeting of the PA leadership to discuss US President Barack Obama’s speech on peace in the Middle East, an official in Ramallah said.

Abbas has also decided to hold urgent consultations with a number of Arab leaders on the speech, the official said.

PLO Executive Committee member Saeb Erekat said that Abbas remained committed to fulfilling all Palestinian obligations in accordance with international agreements, especially the road-map plan and the 2002 Arab peace initiative.

Erekat said that the PA was hoping the Israeli government would fulfill its obligations “to give the peace process the chance it deserves.”

In the US  Presidential Candidate former Governor Mitt Romney(R-MA) accused Obama of abandoning  Israel. From The Hill:

President Obama “disrespected” Israel and threw it “under the bus” in a wide-ranging speech on the Middle East on Thursday, GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney charged.

Romney strongly criticized Obama, who, in a speech at the State Department, called for Israel to return to its border lines as drawn before the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.

“President Obama has thrown Israel under the bus. He has disrespected Israel and undermined its ability to negotiate peace,” Romney said in a statement.

Pres. Obama Get Testy with Dallas TV Reporter

It was bound to happen that Pres. Obama would lose his cool. His target Brad Watson a 40 year veteran TV news in Dallas. Watson who works for WFAA-TV/HD “News 8” was invited to an interview with the president at the White House on Tuesday. The President accused Watson of interrupting him.  News 8:

After the interview, Obama pointed out that he doesn’t like an interviewer challenging his comments.

“Let me finish my answers the next time we do an interview, all right?” he said.

The presidents interview was wide-ranging including the economy, jobs and the awarding of the space shuttle Endvour to New York instead of Houston’s Johnson Space Center more from News 8 :

WASHINGTON — News 8 sat down with President Barack Obama at the White House Monday afternoon to discuss the economy, immigration and his approval rating.

The president this week is talking up his deficit reduction plan with town hall meetings in Western states. He met with News 8 for a few minutes to explain why he thinks his plan is better than the deficit reduction plan pushed by Republicans in the House, and why he wants to pitch his plan hard in Texas.

The president said his mix of spending cuts and tax increases on the wealthy offer a balanced approach compared to the Republicans who want cuts in spending and taxes.

Apparently the President never heard of Sam Donaldson of ABC NEWS.

2010 Congressional Session Ends; Obama Holds End of the Year Press Confrence

Well the 111th session of Congress is over and President Obama holds a press conference. From Bloomberg News:

President Barack Obama said the final weeks of Congress proved that Republicans and Democrats can surmount partisan divisions to find consensus on the nation’s most pressing issues.

“If there’s any lesson to draw from these past few weeks, it’s that we’re not doomed to endless gridlock,” Obama said at a year-end press conference at the White House before leaving to spend the holidays in Hawaii with his family.

Instead of political stalemate after last month’s midterm elections, “this has been a season of progress for the American people,” which is what the voters have demanded, he said.

After what he described as a “shellacking” for his Democratic Party in the Nov. 2 elections, the president can claim victories during the lame-duck session on a host of priorities.

These include Senate approval of ratifying a nuclear-arms reduction treaty with Russia, an $858 billion deal to extend tax cuts and unemployment assistance for the long-term jobless, and repeal of a law that banned openly gay people from serving in the military. Lawmakers also passed a bill that would provide $4.3 billion in additional aid for those suffering from illnesses linked to the wreckage caused by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York City.

Senate Ends Don’t Ask Don’t Gays Tell In Military Ban While The DREAM Act Dies

The U Senate Continues its rush of last-minute votes on major pieces of legislation. Today its Don’t ask Don’t Tell and The DREAM Act. It was a split decision. Don’t Ask Don’t tell went down in defeat 65 to 31 which included 8 Republicans (yes 8 Republicans!)  Gay rights activists hailed the decision.From AP via Yahoo News:

In a historic vote for gay rights, the Senate agreed on Saturday to do away with the military’s 17-year ban on openly gay troops and sent President Barack Obama legislation to overturn the Clinton-era policy known as “don’t ask, don’t tell.”

Obama was expected to sign the bill into law next week, although changes to military policy probably wouldn’t take effect for at least several months. Under the bill, the president and his top military advisers must first certify that lifting the ban won’t hurt troops’ ability to fight. After that, the military would undergo a 60-day wait period.

Repeal would mean that, for the first time in American history, gays would be openly accepted by the armed forces and could acknowledge their sexual orientation without fear of being kicked out.

More than 13,500 service members have been dismissed under the 1993 law.

“It is time to close this chapter in our history,” Obama said in a statement. “It is time to recognize that sacrifice, valor and integrity are no more defined by sexual orientation than they are by race or gender, religion or creed.”

The Senate voted 65-31 to pass the bill, with eight Republicans siding with 55 Democrats and two independents in favor of repeal. The House had passed an identical version of the bill, 250-175, earlier this week.

The DREAM  Act Sponsored Sen. Majority Leader Reid and Senator Diane Finestein(D-CA) that bill didn’t pass cloture. The DREAM Act would children of illegal immigrants to join the military and enjoy in-state tuition. From The New York Times:

The Senate on Saturday blocked a bill that would have created a path to citizenship for certain young illegal immigrants who came to the United States as children, completed two years of college or military service and met other requirements, including passing a criminal background check.

The vote by 55-41 in favor of the bill, which is known as the Dream Act, effectively kills it for this year, and its fate is uncertain. The measure needed the support of 60 senators to cut off a filibuster and bring it to the floor.

Supporters said they were heartened that the measure won the backing of a majority of the Senate. They said they would continue to press for it, either on its own or as part of a wide immigration overhaul that some Democrats hope to undertake next year and believe could be an area of cooperation with Republicans, who will control a majority in the House.

Most immediately, the measure would have helped grant legal status to hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrant students and recent graduates whose lives are severely restricted, though many have lived in the United States for nearly their entire lives.

Read It!

Senate Brings Up Dream Act but not Enough Votes to Pass

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid(D-NV) on Thursday brings up the DREAM Act for a vote and the withdraw the measure because there was not enough votes to pass. From AP via Yahoo News:

The Senate moved Thursday to delay a politically charged showdown vote on legislation carving out a path to legal status for foreign-born youngsters brought to this country illegally, putting off but probably not preventing the measure’s demise.

Facing GOP objections, Democrats put aside the so-called Dream Act and said they’d try again to advance it before year’s end. They’re short of the 60 votes needed to do so, however, and critics in both parties quickly said they won’t change their minds in the waning days of the Democratic-controlled Congress.

“This is mainly a political exercise rather than a serious attempt to deal with our broken immigration system,” said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas.

Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska, one of several Democrats who have broken with their leaders to oppose the bill, said he too would block efforts to consider it.

The bill grants hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants brought to the United States as children a chance to gain legal status if they enroll in college or join the military.

The House passed it Wednesday night after Democratic leaders painstakingly lined up the votes to push it through. Just eight Republicans joined Democrats to support it while almost 40 Democrats defected to vote “no.”

Read More

Steven Colbert Appears in Congressional Meeting

Congressional Hearings have this habit of turning into a three-ring circus.Today is not exception. Comedian Steven Colbert of The Colbert Report on Comedy Central was invited to testify to House of Representative committee on Immigration. He was invited by Rep. Zoe Loftgren (D-CA)

AP via Yahoo News

Obama Renews His Pledge to Reform Immigration

On Wednesday, President Barack Obama is re-committing himself to bring comprehensive immigration reform to the fore. The President speaking to Latino leaders at the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute gala dinner in Washington.

Obama blames the GOP for the lack of progress on the reforms:

He blamed Republicans for backing away from reform and urged Hispanics — an important and growing voting bloc — to continue giving him the support they gave during his presidential campaign.

“Now, I know that many of you campaigned hard for me, and understandably you’re frustrated that we have not been able to move this over the finish line yet. I am too,” he told a gala dinner for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, referring to immigration reform.

“But let me be clear: I will not walk away from this fight. My commitment is getting this done as soon as we can. We can’t keep kicking this challenge down the road.”

Obama blamed Republicans for slow progress on the issue and, putting a spin on his “Yes we can” campaign slogan, said the opposition party had adopted a platform of “no se puede” which, translated from Spanish, means roughly “No we can’t.”

“Is that a bumper sticker you want on your car?” he said.

He encourage Latino lead to continue to press the Democrats and White House for the reforms.

Reuters via Yahoo News

US vs Arizona: US Department of Justice Sues Maricopa Sheriffs Department

You knew it was coming. Well now it has happened. US Attorney General Eric Holder’s Justice Department filed a lawsuit against Sheriff Joe Arpio and Maricopa County  Sheriff Department on Thursday.

The Justice Department said in their lawsuit that the Maricopa County Sheriff Department  did not comply with their requests for documents involving the arresting of Hispanics legal and illegal unfairly.

“The actions of the sheriff’s office are unprecedented,” said Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general for the department’s civil rights division. “It is unfortunate that the department was forced to resort to litigation to gain access to public documents and facilities.”

For years there allegations of harassment by deputies of Maricopa Sheriff Department. To find out if the arrestees were legal or illegal. Civil rights groups  including La Raza, American Civil Liberty Union(ACLU) investigated these claims which has led to lawsuits against Maricopa County.

Arpio constantly deny the claims. He wonders why the Obama Administration is suing him and the department after he says that he fully cooperated withe Justice Department.

“It surprises me because our lawyers have been meeting with the Justice Department officials the last week and we were cooperating,” Arpaio told Fox News’ Neil Cavuto. “Now all at once, I’m being sandbagged and they’re suing me.”

Arpio refused to handover other documents to the DOJ investigators. He claims that the DOJ refused to give a reason for the documents.

It’s been a year and half they’ve been investigating me and my office for alleged racial profiling. Nothing has happened. But why now?” he told Fox News. “They sued the state two months ago. They just filed another suit against some county schools. And now here I’m being sued.”

“So I think there’s a move afoot to go after Arizona because they don’t like us enforcing illegal immigration laws,” he added. “So they’re really going after the people of Arizona. The people of Arizona want something done and now they’re zeroing in with these lawsuits.”

Fox News

This comes on the heels of a new Rassmusen Poll the found 81% of Arizonans supported the controversial portions of  the Immigration Enforcement Act of 2010 better known as SB 1070.

It seems the Obama Administration has declared out and out war with the Copper State and the Valley of the Sun. This comes at a time that Washington,DC and the White House in not looked upon kindly. This will hurt Arizona Democrats at the Federal and possibably at the state level in the Midterm elections.

Not. Good. Not Good. At All.

72 Bodies Found Near US-Mexico Border

Mexican Marines discover 72 bodies 90 miles from US-Mexico border. They were led to the bodies by a lone survivor of the massacre. The survivor an Ecuadorian; wounded from beatings wondered to a Mexican Naval checkpoint.

The bodies of 58 men and 14 women illegal immigrants from Central American and South American countries. The place is on a ranch near the checkpoint.

Wall Street Journal has the story.

National Guard Begins Deployment to US/ Mexico Border Brings Confusion and Anger

Today start the deployment of the US National Guard to the US / Mexico border.  But Arizona politicians  misunderstood the August 1st date. They thought all the 524 national guard troop members would be on the border today.

The reality is that 1200 troops deployment  will take 90 days to complete. The news didn’t set well with Sen. John Mc Cain(R-AZ) “This administration seems to promise a lot and then when you get into the fine print, it just doesn’t happen,” said Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who has called for 6,000 National Guard troops.

Asked whether he been briefed on what role the troops would play, McCain said, “We have not been briefed, and we have asked for briefing both in writing and verbally, and the answer is,’we’ll get back to you.'”

Homeland Security Department officials  said the state leaders did not understand the scheduling:

“Troops will be there this Sunday as planned,” a Homeland Security spokesman said. “This is the beginning deployment stage. There is a ramp-up time and troops will be trained. Nothing has changed in our world.”

But the National Guard Bureau in Virginia says the date has been “over interpreted” and they’ve always had 90 days to reach full deployment across the southern border states.

A spokesperson for the Arizona National Guard said the application

process is now beginning.

In addition, California  will receive 224 troops , New Mexico receive 72,  and Texas with the longest part of  border with Mexico  will only get 250.

From Fox News