Immigration Reform · President Obama

President Obama’s Four Part Plan for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

The GOP presented an abbreviated version of their immigration plan ahead of the president’s announced plan yesterday.

Here is a video of the president’s plans which he presented today:

President Obama’s entire speech in Las Vegas 1-29-2013

NRA's Wayne LaPierre

NRA’s LaPierre: Universal Background Checks A Waste Of Time

National Rifle Association executive, Wayne LaPierre will say and do anything to protect the NRA’s hard-line stance on the issue of gun control…

TPM Live Wire

There’s no point in pursuing universal background checks for firearms purchases, National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre plans to tell the Senate tomorrow, because bad guys will get guns anyway.

LaPierre is among those scheduled to testify at the Senate Judiciary Committee’s gun violence hearing Wednesday. The NRA sent out his testimony Tuesday. LaPierre once again plans to tout the NRA’s call for armed guards in every school as well as the group’s call for loosen privacy laws the group says keep mental health records from being included in the existing background check system. But when it comes to expanding background checks to cover all firearms transactions, LaPierre will tell the Senate there’s little point.

“When it comes to the issue of background checks, let’s be honest – background checks will never be ‘universal’ – because criminals will never submit to them,” LaPierre’s testimony reads.

LaPierre will say the NRA is ready to pushback on gun control advocates calling for new legislation after Newtown.

“While we’re ready to participate in a meaningful effort to solve these pressing problems, we must respectfully – but honestly and firmly – disagree with some members of this committee, many in the media, and all of the gun control groups on what will keep our kids and our streets safe,” the testimony read. “Law-abiding gun owners will not accept blame for the acts of violent or deranged criminals. Nor do we believe the government should dictate what we can lawfully own and use to protect our families.”


GOP Hate-Mongering · Immigration Reform

Why immigration reform won’t be enough for the GOP to win Latino voters

Latino protesters march by the hotel where Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is scheduled to attend a fundraising event in Salt Lake City, Utah, September 17. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)
Latino protesters march by the hotel where Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is scheduled to attend a fundraising event in Salt Lake City, Utah, September 17. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

The GOP remind me of the silent movie comedy group called The Keystone Kops.

The term has since come to be used to criticize any group for its mistakes, particularly if the mistakes happened after a great deal of energy and activity, or if there was a lack of coordination among the members of the group. – Wiki

Less then a year ago members of the GOP were saying this, this and this about immigration.  After the 2012 election which gave Barack Obama 71% of the Latino vote, they are now trying to change their tune, thinking that they can actually get away with this current folly of theirs…

By the way, in my opinion, the term “illegal” is reprehensible when referring to any human being.


Republicans need to win more Latino voters if they want to remain a politically relevant party. The imperative to win back those voters is so strong that Senator John McCain openly admits it’s the reason others in his party are willing to embrace immigration reform, an issue many otherwise oppose.

But the bad news is that immigration reform may not be enough to help the party close the gap on the growing part of the American electorate.

Two key polls from 2012 explain why. A Pew survey found a majority of Hispanics say education, jobs/economy, and health care are “extremely important.” Only one in three said immigration was equally important. Even the federal budget deficit ranked higher, and Republicans have failed to win over Latino voters on that issue.

The Republican “small government” mantra won’t appeal to most Latinos either, as two in three said they preferred a “larger federal government with more services” over a smaller one in a Washington Post poll from last year.

Even some Republicans admit the chances for winning over the Latino electorate are slim. “Anyone who believes that they’re going to win over the Latino vote is grossly mistaken,” Congressman Lou Barletta told the Morning Call. “They will become Democrats because of the social programs they’ll depend on.”

But the biggest indication that the GOP is hopeless when it comes to shrinking the 44-point gap by which Romney lost Hispanic voters may be the memo sent to House Republicans yesterday.

Fresh off the heels of retreat events like “Successful Communication with Women and Minorities,” the conservative Hispanic Leadership Network is circulating a memo on the do’s and don’t’s of how Republicans should address immigration reform issues.

The do’s:

  • Acknowledge “our current immigration system is broken”
  • use the phrases “earned legal status” and “undocumented immigrants”

The don’t’s:

  • start the conversation out with “we are against amnesty”
  • use the phrases “pathway to citizenship,” “illegals,” “aliens,” or “anchor babies”

It’s not a good sign that Republicans are still learning to master the language to not offend the fastest growing demographic of the American electorate, but it’s dangerous to bank on any group of that sized voting on a single-issue.

Full memo below.

HLN memo

U.S. Politics

Walker starts to get cold feet on electoral scheme

The Maddow Blog

Over the weekend, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) offered cautious encouragement to Republicans hoping to rig the 2016 presidential election by changing how his state allocates electoral votes. The conservative governor didn’t explicitly endorse the idea, but Walker called it “interesting” and “worth looking at.”

Yesterday, the Wisconsin Republican was far more circumspect.

Gov. Scott Walker says he has a “real concern” about a Republican idea to change the way the state awards its electoral votes, conceding the move could make Wisconsin irrelevant in presidential campaigns. […]

“One of our advantages is, as a swing state, candidates come here. We get to hear from the candidates,” said Walker in an interview Saturday at a conservative conference in Washington, D.C. “That’s good for voters. If we change that, that would take that away, it would largely make us irrelevant.”

That’s a far cry from what Walker was saying over the weekend, and it’s a welcome change. What’s more, it’s worth noting that the governor happens to be correct — if Wisconsin changed to a system in which electoral votes are dictated by gerrymandered district lines, the state would immediately go from key, contested battleground to campaign afterthought.

Indeed, that applies to any of the other states (Michigan, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Ohio, and Florida) where the election-rigging scheme has been discussed — candidates and their campaign teams wouldn’t have any incentive to invest time and energy in states where the outcome is predetermined.

So, does this mean Walker is against the idea?

It remains unclear — he told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he’s “qualified” his comments from the weekend, and he’s “not embracing” the scheme, at least not yet.

Walker added, “The most important thing to me long-term as governor on that is what makes your voters be in play.” And if that’s true, this plan is a non-starter, since it would do the exact opposite.

This would, incidentally, put Walker at odds with RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, a long-time ally of the governor who’s also from Wisconsin and who’s endorsed the scheme.

U.S. Politics

Seen On The Internet

H/t: The Pragmatic Progressive Page

New Rule: You can’t say you LOVE something and only recognize SOME of it, be it a holy book, a constitution or a marriage vow.

If you want to scream ANYTHING involving the Second Amendment and how you will fight to the death to protect it, and you are unable to recognize the FIRST FOUR WORDS as being an important part of that Amendment, your opinion holds no value to the rest of us. And you and I know, walking into a Walmart and buying an assault rifle, is not well-regulated by any stretch of the imagination.

Pick-n-Choose Patriotism, really isn’t Patriotism. – vince


As passed by the Congress:

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Sandy Hook Elementary School

Father Of Newtown Victim Heckled While Calling For Gun Control

Is it insanity or callousness?

Either way, this nation and especially our children are in grave danger if trying to implement some control on assault weapons is not taken seriously.

No one is looking to take anyone’s hunting guns or home protection weapons away here.  Yet, no one needs an assault weapon to shoot a deer.  A decent handgun or rifle can stop a home intruder in their tracks.

In the case below, the “gun control” hearing was about limiting the rounds on an automatic weapons to ten…

Alan Colmes’ Liberaland

Neil Heslin, the father of 6-year-old Jesse Lewis, was in the minority at the Legislative Office Building in Hartford, where hundreds wore yellow armbands reading, “Another responsible gun owner.”

Heslin, the father of 6-year-old Jesse Lewis, who was killed by Lanza, was puzzled by the protests, by the assertions that their families will be unsafe if they are limited to 10-round magazines, as is proposed by one bill.

“We’re not living in the Wild West,” Heslin said.

Heslin, who grew up hunting, said he was wary about a widespread ban on firearms, but he also said he could imagine no reason why Nancy Lanza or any parent would have owned a weapon like the AR-15, a semiautomatic modeled after the military’s fully automatic M-16.

“The sole purpose of those AR-15s or AK-47s is to put a lot of lead out on the battlefield quickly, and that’s what they do. And that’s what they did at Sandy Hook Elementary School on the 14th,” Heslin said.

When he wondered aloud how such guns could be privately owned, someone shouted, “The Second Amendment!”

Heslin spoke while holding a gilt-framed portrait of him and his son, taken when Jesse was a baby.

Neil Heslin on the Sandy Hook Shooting

This is Mr. Heslin on the evening of the Sandy Hooks shootings appearing on Piers Morgan’s show.


Fox News · Immigration Reform · Rush Limbaugh

Limbaugh: It’s Up To Me And Fox News To Stop Amnesty

Good luck with that…

TPM Livewire

Conservative talk radio personality Rush Limbaugh said on his show Monday that it was up to himself and the Fox News network to stop a bipartisan effort to pass immigration reform which would create a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States.

“It’s up to me and Fox News,” Limbaugh said, “and I don’t think Fox News is that invested in this.”

He continued: “I don’t think there’s any Republican opposition to this of any majority consequence or size. We’ll have to wait and see and find out.  But this is one of those, just keep plugging away, plugging away, plugging away until you finally beat down the opposition.”

Electoral College · Electoral Fraud · Voter Supression

Virginia Electoral College Rigging Scheme Would Further Disenfranchise Minority Voters

History will not look kindly upon these types of proposals nor the people who support them…

Think Progress

As the Virginia Senate’s Privileges and Elections Committee prepares to take up a bill to rig bill the state’s electoral college voteDemocrats and even Republicans are distancing themselves from the effort, calling it “a bad idea,” “skewing,” and a “partisan bill aimed at defying the will of the voters.” A Think Progress analysis of Virginia voter demographics reveals another major flaw with the proposal: it would significantly dilute the influence of minority voters.

The 2012 Virginia Congressional mapsauthored by Delegate Robert Bell (R) based on the 2010 U.S. Census, divided the state’s estimated 8,001,024 people into 11 Congressional districts. Though the state population is more than 20 percent African American — and more than 31 percent non-white — just one Congressional district contains a majority of non-white voters (the Third District, which is majority African American). Though white non-Hispanic Virginians makeup just 68.6 percent of the population, they comprise at least 58 percent of the population in all of the other 10 districts.

While many of the electoral college-rigging schemes being pushed by Republicans nationally would still allocate two electors based on the popular winner in the state — the Virginia plan would not even do that. State Sen. Charles “Bill” Carrico Sr.’s Senate Bill 723 would allocate 11 electors based on the popular winner in each of the House districts and two to whichever candidate won the majority of those gerrymandered House districts.

So, with more than one-fifth of the population, African American Virginians would go from having about 20 percent of the say to just controlling one-thirteenth of the state’s electoral votes under the Carrico plan. And racial minority voters overall would go from having about 31 percent of the say, to also controlling just 7.7 percent of the state’s electors.

And while African American voters would of course have some say in districts where they do not make up a majority, more than a quarter of them them are packed into the 3rd district, meaning the remaining 73 percent would be in districts where they comprised, on average, just about 16 percent of the population. This would be a significant retrogression of influence for minority voters. Given Virginia’s history of racial discrimination and the fact that much of the state remains a Voting Rights Act covered jurisdiction, this maneuver might well be not just anti-democratic, but also illegal.