Monday, January 12, 2015

Scalise Is Certainly A Full-On, Unreconstructed Racist But What's More Important Is That The GOP Has Been Captured By These People


One of the low points for Mitt Romney in his forever campaign for the presidency was the juxtaposition between him hiring illegal aliens and then him pandering the the vilest segments of the GOP Know Nothing base with his self-deportation screed. And one of the low points for Republican voters-- at least in 2012-- was a GOP debate audience booing Rick Perry for advocating educating DREAMers. This week ABC News and the Washington Post released a national poll on immigration reform. The Republican racist viewpoint is not the opinion of most Americans:

Worst, yet, as Greg Sargent reported in the Post on Friday, the Republicans somehow think associating official Republican policy with deportations of DREAMers is politically advantageous. That's a big mistake, at least outside of the overtly racist former slave-holding states. But the far right extremists who have so much power inside the House GOP caucus are demanding that Boehner do more than just try to defund Obama's most recent executive order regarding immigration reform. They have demanded-- and he has acquiesced-- that the House will pass amendments to strike Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programs-- created in the "Morton memos"-- and hunt down immigrants in schools and forcibly deport them. The vast majority of Americans outside the Old Confederacy absolutely oppose this approach. One of the Klan-oriented racist Reps from Alabama, Robert Aderholt, has already drawn up some ugly proposals.
But the key “Morton memo”-- whose implementation the new House GOP proposal is apparently targeting-- does not do those things. It merely lays out broad priorities to follow in carrying out enforcement. It doesn’t grant affirmative reprieve from deportation or work permits, as do Obama’s 2012 executive action temporarily shielding people brought here illegally as children and his recent action expanding that program and deferring the deportation of parents of children who are U.S. citizens or legal residents.

The Morton memo-- which was authored by John Morton, the director of U.S. Customs and Enforcement-- instructed its field officers, agents, and attorneys to give “particular care” to various considerations in deciding how to exercise prosecutorial discretion. It says they should give particular weight to “negative factors,” such as whether the enforcement target poses a “clear risk to national security,” is a “serious felon” or “repeat offender,” or poses a “clear danger to public safety.”

Meanwhile, the Morton memo also says officers and agents should weigh “positive factors” in exercising discretion, such as whether the target is a “long-time lawful permanent resident,” a minor or elderly individual, a victim of domestic violence, or suffers from a serious health condition.

This was in keeping with the Obama administration’s effort to shift enforcement priorities towards serious offenders and away from deporting low-level offenders with jobs or longtime ties to communities.

The new House GOP proposal being considered would appear to restrict funding for even implementing those basic enforcement priorities.

For the longest time, Republicans blasted Obama for failing to “enforce the law.” But when asked directly whether this meant the administration should deport more people from the interior, they tended to sidestep the question. But advocating for the unraveling of the priorities in the Morton memo would appear to offer a very clear “Yes” answer to that question.
Writing for the NY Times over the weekend, Ashley Parker, suggested that this is not an approach that Republican Members from outside The South want and that repealing protection for DREAMers is contentious even inside the GOP conference. "Roughly a dozen Republicans in a closed-door meeting Friday," she wrote, "objected to such an approach."

Frank Sharry,executive director of the country's top immigration advocacy group, America’s Voice, seems genuinely surprised that Boehner has ceded control of GOP immigration policy to extremists like Steve King (R-IA) and the southern KKK contingent. "It is outrageous and it is noteworthy," he said, "that the House leadership has embraced the most extreme proposals from the most extreme members of their caucus. It is nothing short of breathtaking that this is their first move coming out of the box in 2015 when they get the reins of power."

It's worth noting that the last time the House voted on the DREAM Act, December 8, 2010, it passed 216-198, 38 right-wing Democrats joining the Republicans:
Jason Altmire (Blue Dog-PA)
Mike Arcuri (Blue Dog-NY)
Brian Baird (New Dem-WA)
John Barrow (Blue Dog-GA)
John Boccieri (Blue Dog-OH)
Dan Boren (Blue Dog-OK)
Rick Boucher (New Dem-VA)
Bobby Bright (Blue Dog-AL)
Chris Carney (Blue Dog-PA)
Ben Chandler (Blue Dog-KY)
Travis Childers (Blue Dog-MS)
Jerry Costello (IL)
Mark Critz (PA)
Kathy Dahlkemper (Blue Dog-PA)
Joe Donnelly (Blue Dog-IN)
Brad Ellsworth (Blue Dog-IN)
Brian Higgins (NY)
Tim Holden (Blue Dog-PA)
Paul Kanjorski (PA)
Marcy Kaptur (OH)
Larry Kissell (Blue Dog-NC)
Frank Kratovil (Blue Dog-MD)
Dan Lipinski (Blue Dog-IL)
Jim Matheson (Blue Dog-UT)
Mike McIntyre (Blue Dog-NC)
Patrick Murphy (Blue Dog-PA)
Glenn Nye (Blue Dog-VA)
Bill Owens (New Dem-NY)
Collin Peterson (Blue Dog-MN)
Nick Rahall (Blue Dog-WV)
Mike Ross (Blue Dog-AR)
Kurt Schrader (Blue Dog-OR)
Heath Shuler (Blue Dog-NC)
Zach Space (Blue Dog-OH)
Bart Stupak (MI)
Gene Taylor (Blue Dog-MS)
Pete Visclosky (IN)
Charlie Wilson (Blue Dog-OH)
Of the 38, 31 subsequently lost reelection bids or were forced to retire rather than undergo certain electoral defeat. There will be far fewer Democrats today who vote with the GOP on this. But, we'll have the list for you as soon as they do.

This morning, La Opinión ran an editorial on the politics of deportation that Republican politicians outside the South need to read... and fast.
The new U.S. House of Representatives has a very clear stance on immigration. First, eliminate the deportation deferral program, and then expel both the young DREAMers and the undocumented parents of U.S. citizens.

President Obama's executive action put to rest last year's doubts about legislative leadership. The GOP's internal debate is still being won by the hardliners, who are even more emboldened.

The Republican majority's project not only seeks to eliminate protection for millions of people with relatives in the United States. It is also trying to revive every previously discarded measure to facilitate immediate, certain deportation.

Last Friday the Republican majority unveiled its plan to use the Department of Homeland Security budget negotiations, at the end of February, to block implementation of the President's executive actions for the past several years.

The measure, produced by Congressmen Bob Goodlatte, Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, and Robert Aderholt, makes clear that their goal is not to stop an allegedly unconstitutional presidential action as part of a theoretical power struggle. What they seek specifically is to expel youth and break families.

This is why the proposal also eliminates DACA protections, reestablishes the Safe Communities program, requires the local and state authorities to cooperate ith ICE, limits the discretionary use of parole for people being processed, and changes the priorities for deportation.

It will be difficult for such a radical plan to get through the Senate. Democrats can block it. But not even the remote chances of having their bill approved discourages the House Republican deporting faction.

This kind of legislative extremism on immigration is always explained as a esture to please the conservative base. It's much more than that. It is also an attack on the Latin and immigrant communities, whose repercussions are as specific as inhuman and painful. It's a gesture to be remembered at the voting polls.

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At 3:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wouldn't celebrate too wildly over a 52-44 margin on this question!

Note #3 among Brit's characteristics of fascism:

"Identification of enemies/scapegoats as a unifying cause. The most significant common thread among these regimes was the use of scapegoating as a means to divert the people's attention from other problems, to shift blame for failures, and to channel frustration in controlled directions. The methods of choice—relentless propaganda and disinformation—were usually effective. Often the regimes would incite "spontaneous" acts against the target scapegoats, usually communists, socialists, liberals, Jews, ethnic and racial minorities, traditional national enemies, members of other religions, secularists, homosexuals, and "terrorists." Active opponents of these regimes were inevitably labeled as terrorists and dealt with accordingly."

John Puma


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