Archive for April 12th, 2008

Speaking in San Francisco at a fundraiser for the wealthy, Barack Obama smeared Pennsylvanians and others by saying:

“You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration, and the Bush administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

Script and links to background information here: LONE WACKO

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The Washington Post

“I’m in favor of immigration,” Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-N.Y.) once said. “But we also need rules.” Most Americans probably agree. So why are sensible rules so hard to come by?

Last year, lawmakers on Capitol Hill tried and failed to pass comprehensive immigration and border security reform. The bill died largely because it tried to do too many things. For example, it would have granted amnesty to the millions here illegally and put all of them — whether they came here to work hard or to commit crimes — on a path to citizenship.

Fortunately, that approach collapsed. But the problems persist. America needs to regain control of its broken southern border and restore the integrity of U.S. immigration laws. Employers, meanwhile, need legal workers to grow the American economy. Doing nothing won’t make these troubles go away.

There is, in fact, a lot that can be done. Yes, without disgorging a massive comprehensive bill hundreds of pages long and stuffed with special-interest demands — one that members are expected to vote on first and read later. The problem is, congressional leaders appear unwillingly to let anything come to the floor. Certain lawmakers are insisting that nothing be done unless Congress follows last year’s flawed formula. Right now, the leadership is listening.

Holding immigration reform and enforcement hostage won’t work. An amnesty-first strategy formed the basis of the 1986 Simpson-Mazzoli legislation, Washington’s last major attempt at an overhaul. Then, an estimated 3 million were “unlawfully present.” Now it’s easily five times that number. Rampant fraud and a tsunami of applications overwhelmed the system. The number of visas for legal workers was far too small to meet the needs of a growing economy. Border security and workplace enforcement couldn’t keep up with the demand for undocumented workers.

Americans learned their lesson. That’s why they soundly rejected this approach a second time.

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