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Archive for the ‘immigration’ Category

Obama to Send More National Guardsmen to AZ Border: McCain of Course Still Not Happy

Crooks and Liars- By Heather Wednesday May 26, 2010 6:00am

How’s that pandering working out for you President Obama? Sen. Get-Off-My-Lawn McCain is never going to be happy even if he sent the 6000 troops he’s demanding. As Digby pointed out “it’s paranoid, wingnut crap that has no bearing on reality”. I agree with her here as well:

Mean Old Man McCain says we need 6,000 troops on the border, so I’m guessing President Goldilocks will say his “compromise” on this is “just right.” But hey, ratcheting up xenophobia is so good for everyone right now, why not just pretend there’s a huge problem that doesn’t really exist? We don’t have enough real ones apparently. After all, there are some Democrats who apparently think they need to show how much they hate Mexicans in order to win, so it’s all good.

(Oh, and remember that while there’s a huge “appetite” for expensive, stupid bullshit like this, there’s none for extending unemployment benefits to the lazy bums who want to live like kings on 250 bucks a week from government rather than get a non-existent job.)

That money would be better spent doing something about this disaster in the Gulf as well. Arizona’s Attorney General Terry Goddard on the other hand seemed pleased with the decision and was critical of the tone of McCain’s rhetoric. I’m sure he knows full well we wouldn’t see McCain acting like this if he didn’t have wingnut J.D. Hayworth for a primary challenger.

Transcript via CNN below the fold.

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Tea Partiers Riding To Arizona’s Rescue

TPM MUCKRAKER

Zachary Roth | May 14, 2010, 1:17PM

Tea Party activists are riding to Arizona’s rescue in the state’s time of need.

Conservative activists recently launched a “Buycott”, urging people to support and do business with several Arizona-based companies, including US Airways, Best Western, and U-Haul.* And others are planning a rally to “Stand With Arizona.”

The efforts come in response to calls from progressives to boycott the state as a result of the controversial immigration law it passed last month. As we reported yesterday, the mayor of Phoenix has said the city faces a “near economic crisis” as a result of lost revenue.

Gina Loudon, a St. Louis-based Tea Party leader, who helped get the Buycott off the ground and is tracking its impact, told TPMmuckraker that it likely has generated “hundreds of thousands of dollars,” in spending for the companies involved, but said she hadn’t yet had a chance to count the receipts she’s been sent. “The numbers are probably astounding, as soon as I have time to add them up,” she said.

Loudon recently helped organize similar Buycotts of Ford and Whole Foods, after both companies came under fire from progressive activists. “I can’t imagine right now in this American economy that anybody wants a boycott of anything,” she said. “I think it’s incredibly destructive.”

Separately, grassroots conservatives activists have organized a rally for May 29 in Tempe, where participants will show support for Arizona in the face of “left-wing bullies.”

A message on the website for the Stand With Arizona campaign declares:

Arizona is under heavy fire from the left-wing bullies for trying to protect its own citizens from the ravages of illegal immigration. The entire state is being attacked as ‘racist,’ ‘nazi’ and ‘extremist.’ (Sound familiar?) The left-wing bullies believe they can target, isolate and neutralize Arizona, and thereby pressure the people of Arizona to stop enforcing the law.

It continues: “If you support Arizona’s right to pass reasonable laws for the protection of its own citizens, you are hereby invited to JOIN US on May 29th.”

Both the Buycott and the rally were promoted in an email sent last night by the Tea Party Patriots, perhaps the largest organized Tea Party faction.
* An earlier version of this post said incorrectly said that Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) called for a boycott of Arizona businesses. In fact, he called for a more limited sanction against conventions and conferences in the state.

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Anti-immigration protesters in Fort Worth, Texas

Not Just Arizona: From Utah To Maryland, States Eye Harsh Immigration Laws

TPM Muckraker

Zachary Roth | May 3, 2010, 8:44AM

Arizona isn’t the only state looking to take extreme measures to crack down on illegal immigration. At least 10 other states — many inspired by Arizona — are talking about enacting similarly draconian legislation. And most aren’t places that are traditionally thought of as hot-spots in the immigration battle.

With a major hat tip to Think Progress, here’s a quick rundown:

Colorado: Scott McInnis, the presumptive GOP nominee for governor, said this week that if elected, he’d try to pass something “very similar” to Arizona’s bill.

• Georgia: Nathan Deal, a former congressman and GOP gubernatorial candidate, also has said he intends to propose similar legislation to Arizona’s.

Maryland: A Republican state legislator has said he plans to send a survey to state lawmakers and gubernatorial candidates to get them on the record as to whether they support Arizona’s approach.

Missouri: The state legislature is considering a law that would make it unlawful for any person to conceal or shelter “illegal aliens,” and would also make it a crime for illegal immigrants to transport themselves. Similar local laws have in the past been declared unconstitutional.

North Carolina: An anti-immigration leader said this week: “I believe the chances similar legislation [to Arizona's] will be filed here is (sic) over 95 percent likely from what lawmakers are telling me.” Allied groups concede, though, that with a Democratic-controlled statehouse, such a bill might not get far.

Ohio: Two Republicans — one a state legislator, the other a county sheriff — sent a letter recently to Gov. Ted Strickland, a Democrat, asking him to work “to assure legislation is passed that will mirror” Arizona’s. Strickland has been non-committal.

Oklahoma: The state has already passed a law that makes it harder for illegal immigrants to obtain IDs or public assistance, lets police check the immigration status of anyone they arrest, and makes it a felony to knowingly shelter or employ an illegal immigrant. A court has thus far barred the state from enforcing key provisions of the law.

South Carolina: A GOP legislator just introduced a bill he says is “virtually the same” as Arizona’s.

Texas: A Republican lawmaker has said she plans to do the same when the legislative session starts in January.

Utah: A GOP state lawmaker has advocated a bill that would make immigrants carry proof of status, and would ape Arizona by requiring police to question anyone they believe is an illegal immigrant. He says he “has the support to do it.”
And while we’re sort of on the subject, don’t miss our roundup of crazy, nonsensical, or just plain hilarious state laws…

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Crooks and Liars- By John Amato Thursday Apr 29, 2010 1:00pm

The hits keep coming in for Arizona’s Tancredo/Buchanan bill. The Mayor of Phoenix is no fan of this legislation and said this on Friday:

Phoenix Mayor Phil Gordon says seniors, kids and out-of-staters should be wary of the Arizona immigration bill signed into law this past week — warning that it puts them at risk of being arrested.

The law makes illegal immigration a state crime. It gives police the authority to question people about their immigration status and arrest those who cannot show documentation to establish their legal residency.

Gordon, a staunch opponent of the state law, said that means anyone who doesn’t carry an Arizona license — children under 16, seniors who don’t drive and people from out of state — could be “at risk of being arrested and turned over to (Immigration and Customs Enforcement).”

“It tramples civil rights,” Gordon told Fox News on Sunday. “Now everyone has to show and prove that they’re a legal resident or citizen.” The mayor of Arizona’s largest city is at odds with Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, who signed the bill Friday and described the legislation as her state’s answer to “decades of inaction and misguided policy” in Washington.

If I thought like Sarah Palin I might say that Arizona was more interested in ‘Arresting Grandma’ than solving the real immigration problem. Gordon makes good points on FOX because he’s talking about demographics in our society that will be out at risk. The elderly are always caught up on the down side of an issue when there are massive changes to laws like this.

Bill Hemmer does his FOX News best by quoting the odious Sheriff Arpaio, who says more people will come to Arizona because the state has become safer. Gordon smacked him around by saying that Arpaio is only making up his own statistics and noted that he’s actually under criminal investigation for civil rights violations. Sheriff Arpaio is one of those trusted FOX News sources. I should also include that most of the MSM uses Boss Tweed all the time. And there are plenty of reports in the news now saying that Arizona businesses are very afraid that this law will drive business away.

“Our members are concerned,” said Debbie Johnson, president and CEO of the Arizona Hotel & Lodging Association, which represents hundreds of hotels, bed and breakfasts and resorts in the state.

“They’re hearing from a lot of folks who visit and they’re obviously concerned with where this is playing out.”

On April 28th he told CNN that he’s going to sue Arizona’s bill:

Mayor Phil Gordon’s planned lawsuit contends Arizona’s recently passed immigration law is too vague and unenforceable.

The police will enforce it just fine. I bet taser sales go through the roof and I bet that’s one convention that won’t be cancelled.

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Lawsuits Over AZ Immigration Law Filed By Police Officer, Latino Group

BY JONATHAN J. COOPER and PAUL DAVENPORT | 04/29/10 04:58 PM | AP

PHOENIX — Anger mounted Thursday over an Arizona law cracking down on illegal immigration as a police officer filed one of the first lawsuits challenging the law and activists gathered outside an Arizona Diamondbacks game at Wrigley Field in Chicago, chanting “Boycott Arizona.”

The lawsuit from 15-year Tucson police veteran Martin Escobar is one of two filed Thursday, less than a week after Republican Gov. Jan Brewer signed the law that’s sparked fears it will lead to racial profiling despite the governor’s vow that officers will be properly trained.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has said the federal government may challenge the law, which requires local and state law enforcement to question people about their immigration status if there’s reason to suspect they’re in the country illegally, and makes it a state crime to be in the United States illegally.

Escobar, an overnight patrol officer in a heavily Latino area of Tucson, argues there’s no way for officers to confirm people’s immigration status without impeding investigations, and that the new law violates numerous constitutional rights.

MORE HERE

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The violation was known as “vagrancy.” If you were a black man in the South following Reconstruction, and you were unable to show proof of employment on-demand to the police, you could be arrested and delivered into what Douglas Blackmon, author of Slavery by Another Name, calls “Neo-Slavery.”

“Show me your papers” in the vernacular of the late 19th Century through World War II involved furnishing pay stubs or, if you were lucky, the word of your employer — some kind of evidence proving to a police officer that you were employed.

But what if you forgot to carry your employment records with you when you left the house that morning? What if you were — like so many regular citizens — unaware of the anti-vagrancy law? Hell, what if you were simply unemployed? It might be your last mistake as a free citizen of the United States.

Like so many other African American males of that era, you might be incarcerated, convicted and perhaps sold to a farming, mining or lumber operation. Yes, sold. After the Civil War. After the abolition of slavery and the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment. Slavery, it turns out, survived.

In the Spring of 1908, a young African American son of slaves living in Alabama named Green Cottonham was arrested at a train station. We don’t know for sure what law Cottonham had violated to warrant his arrest because, at his trial, the arresting officer literally forgot the reason why Cottonham was picked up in the first place. So the charge of vagrancy was substituted. Cottonham convicted and sentenced to 30 days of hard labor, but since he was poor and couldn’t pay several intentionally impossible-to-pay fines, the 30 day sentence grew to a year. He was carted off and “legally” sold for $12-a-month to U.S. Steel. At age 22, Green Cottonham was shoved into a coal mine as a manual laborer — occasionally whipped and tortured, eventually dying before the end of his sentence.

Vagrancy and a wide variety of other similar violations were intentionally broad and trivial — not intended to clean up the streets, but, instead, to suppress the advancement of blacks, as well as to feed the engines of agriculture and industry in the South with cheap forced labor.

This was a back-door slave trade, ensnaring hundreds of thousands of African American men. The Southern judicial system, fueled by ridiculous laws and ridiculous trials, became an above-boards means of rebuilding the South on the backs of slave labor. And it flourished until just after Pearl Harbor when President Roosevelt asked the Justice Department to shut it all down for fear the Germans and Japanese would use it against us in their propaganda.

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Gov. Jan Brewer Signs Controversial Arizona Immigration Bill: Decision Not ‘Made Lightly’

PAUL DAVENPORT and JONATHAN J. COOPER | 04/23/10 07:08 PM | AP

PHOENIX — Gov. Jan Brewer ignored criticism from President Barack Obama on Friday and signed into law a bill supporters said would take handcuffs off police in dealing with illegal immigration in Arizona, the nation’s gateway for human and drug smuggling.

With hundreds of protesters outside the state Capitol shouting that the bill would lead to civil rights abuses, Brewer said critics were “overreacting” and that she wouldn’t tolerate racial profiling.

“We in Arizona have been more than patient waiting for Washington to act,” Brewer said after signing the law. “But decades of inaction and misguided policy have created a dangerous and unacceptable situation.”

Earlier Friday, Obama called the Arizona bill “misguided” and instructed the Justice Department to examine it to see if it’s legal. He also said the federal government must enact immigration reform at the national level – or leave the door open to “irresponsibility by others.”

“That includes, for example, the recent efforts in Arizona, which threaten to undermine basic notions of fairness that we cherish as Americans, as well as the trust between police and their communities that is so crucial to keeping us safe,” Obama said.

The legislation, sent to the Republican governor by the GOP-led Legislature, makes it a crime under state law to be in the country illegally. It also requires local police officers to question people about their immigration status if there is reason to suspect they are illegal immigrants, allows lawsuits against government agencies that hinder enforcement of immigration laws, and make it illegal to hire illegal immigrants for day labor or knowingly transport them.

MORE HERE

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Arizona legislature demands immigrants and President of the United States verify their status.

Think Progress- By Andrea Nill on Apr 20th, 2010 at 6:30 pm

Just a few days after Arizona lawmakers passed an immigration law that will essentially require anyone who is or looks like an immigrant to carry their proof of residency at all times, the Arizona House voted for a provision that would require President Barack Obama to show his birth certificate and prove his own citizenship status. Arizona’s local KPHO station broke the news:

The Arizona House on Monday voted for a provision that would require President Barack Obama to show his birth certificate if he hopes to be on the state’s ballot when he runs for reelection. The House voted 31-22 to add the provision to a separate bill. The measure still faces a formal vote.

It would require U.S. presidential candidates who want to appear on the ballot in Arizona to submit documents proving they meet the constitutional requirements to be president. Phoenix Democratic Rep. Kyrsten Sinema said the bill is one of several measures that are making Arizona “the laughing stock of the nation.” Mesa Republican Rep. Cecil Ash said he has no reason to doubt Obama’s citizenship but supports the measure because it could help end doubt.

Casey Newton of the Arizona Republic points out that similar laws have been proposed in Oklahoma, Florida and Missouri, though none have been signed into law. Newton also points out that the bill “originated from a fringe group” known as “birthers.” Many have pointed out that even if the bill gets past the Senate and Gov. Jan Brewer’s (R-AZ) desk, it will likely be determined to be an “unconstitutional imposition of state eligibility requirements on federal candidates.” Experts have also predicted that Arizona’s recently approved immigration law will be found unconstitutional on the grounds that it “singles out the speech of immigrant day laborers for criminalization” and conflicts with the federal government’s enforcement of immigration laws — a function assigned by the constitution.

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Thousands protest sheriff’s immigration efforts

Via Raw Story- By The Associated Press
Saturday, January 16th, 2010 — 10:31 pm

PHOENIX (AP) — Ten thousand immigrant rights advocates marched in front of a county jail in Phoenix Saturday in a protest that was aimed at Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s immigration efforts and was marked by a clash between a small group of protesters and police officers.

Organizers say the protest was meant to show officials in Washington that Arpaio shouldn’t handle immigration enforcement, and that Congress and the Obama administration need to come up with a way for immigrant workers to come to the country legally.

The three-mile walk that started in a west Phoenix park ended by afternoon at the Durango Jail Complex, a collection of five jails, where officials played music, including a record by singer Linda Ronstadt, to drown out noise made by protesters. Ronstadt took part in Saturday’s protest.

Protesters chanted “Joe must go” as they approached the jail complex. One person carried a sign that said “We are human” and bore a picture of a lawman with a wolf’s face. A family of five wore T-shirts saying “Who would Jesus deport?”

For his part, Arpaio said he wasn’t bothered by the protesters and that they should be directing their frustrations at Congress because it has the power to change America’s immigration laws.

MORE HERE

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14 Things You Need to Know About Obama Heckler, Rep. Joe Wilson

By Adele M. Stan, AlterNet. Posted September 11, 2009.

He was mentored by notorious racist Strom Thurmond, he’s taken hundreds of thousands from the health industry, and “Joe” isn’t even his real name.

South Carolina Rep. Joe Wilson was pretty much a nobody until his outburst Wednesday during President Barack Obama’s speech to a joint session of Congress and the American people on the subject of health care. Here are some things worth knowing about Mr. Wilson, including his most recent video appeal, at the end of this list, where he continues to characterize the Democrats’ health-care plans as “government-run,” saying he will not “be muzzled.”

1. Like his ideological counterpart known as Mr. The Plumber, his real name is not Joe. It’s Addison. His middle name is Graves. That makes him Addison Graves Wilson.

2. Wilson is a member of the organization, Sons of Confederate Veterans, reports Dave Niewert of Crooks and Liars, which “as the Southern Poverty Law Center has detailed assiduously, has been taken over in the past decade by radical neo-Confederates who favor secession and defend slavery as a benign institution.” (Not that Wilson’s affiliation has anything to do with his unprecedented heckling, during a presidential address before a joint session of Congress, of our first African-American president.)

3. Wilson served as an aide to the late segregationist Senator Strom Thurmond, who is credited with conducting the longest filibuster in Senate history — against the 1957 civil rights bill.

4. When Thurmond’s bi-racial daughter, fathered out of wedlock with an African-American teenage girl, came forward in 2003 — after Thurmond’s death — Wilson castigated Thurmond’s daughter, saying he did not believe her story. Essie Mae Washington-Williams was conceived of a union Thurmond had with his family’s 16-year-old maid. Thurmond was 22 at the time. “It’s a smear on the image that [Thurmond] has as a person of high integrity who has been so loyal to the people of South Carolina,” Wilson said, according to TPM. Wilson later apologized to Washington-Williams.

5. A large percentage of Wilson’s campaign contributions come from the health sector, according to OpenSecrets.org. Over the course of his eight-year congressional career, Wilson has collected $414,000 from the health sector, topped only by contribution from what OpenSecrets calls the “finance, insurance & real estate” sector, from which he has gleaned $455,000.

MORE HERE

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