arizona

Arizona coverage

Our coverage of Arizona follows. The recent coverage focuses on those who've lied and misled about SB 1070, that state's new immigration law. Click each link to read the full post.

Last modified May 13, 2010
Discussed in (click each link for the full post):

Which Republicans will vote for John McCain's "Edward M. Kennedy immigration bill"? - 04/01/14

On March 28 [5], John McCain accepted a "Lifetime Achievement Award" [1] from the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and said the following [2]:

"when immigration reform passes I will make sure it is forever called the Edward M. Kennedy immigration bill"

Howard Buffett shouts "Viva Mexico!"; supports amnesty and guest workers; enables illegal immigration; wins Mex. govt award - 12/02/12

That very long title is more than justified since Howard Buffett - son of Warren Buffett - has been very busy supporting very bad immigration policies.

Horrors: Arizona immigration law costs $640,000 (but saves many millions) (Jacques Billeaud, AP, Paul Davenport) - 10/28/12

One of the more ludicrous attempts by the Associated Press to enable illegal immigration is the article "Ariz. spends $640,000 on immigration training" by Jacques Billeaud ([1]). Even Homer Simpson wouldn't fall for it:

Luis Gutierrez turns on his former amnesty buddy Jeff Flake (immigration, Richard Carmona) - 10/26/12

Rep. Luis Gutierrez (see the link) has turned on his former associate Rep. Jeff Flake. Back in 2007, they sponsored the STRIVE Act immigration amnesty together.

Nowadays, Gutierrez has this to say ( peekURL.com/zDJbt32 ):

Democratic Party 2012 platform on immigration: why it's wrong - 09/04/12

The section about immigration in the Democratic Party 2012 platform is below. It only has broad outlines and countless Democratic leaders have repeated these same things many times before.

They were wrong then, and the platform is wrong now (see each link for the details):

GOP 2012 Platform on immigration - 08/29/12

The following are all of the excerpts in the GOP 2012 platform that mention immigration.

The entire text is available here: scribd.com/doc/104097929/Final-Language-GOP-Platform-2012

GOP platform supports Arizona-style laws, but includes guest worker program - 08/21/12

First the good news about the newly-passed GOP platform. From [1]:

The official party position now reads that "State efforts to reduce illegal immigration must be encouraged, not attacked," and says the Department of Justice should immediately drop its lawsuits against controversial state immigration laws in Arizona, Alabama, South Carolina and Utah.

US cities with highest unemployment have something in common. What is it? - 06/28/12

Per the Associated Press, these were the U.S. cities with the highest unemployment in May, 2012:

Supreme Court guts Arizona immigration law SB1070; who won, what to do - 06/25/12

[SEE UPDATE BELOW]

The US Supreme Court has struck down three of the four parts of the Arizona immigration law SB 1070, making the law largely ineffective.

Brave New Foundation, Rachel Maddow think you're gullible (FAIR, immigration, SB1070) - 04/25/12

The video below shows Rachel Maddow and Robert Greenwald's Brave New Films thinking you're a gullible sucker in at least two ways.

Laura W. Murphy of ACLU misleads about Arizona immigration law - 04/23/12

Laura W. Murphy of the ACLU writes [1]:

Today, the ACLU joined with our allies in the nation’s capital to let federal lawmakers know that Arizona’s racial profiling law, S.B. 1070, is about much more than just the state of Arizona and its immigrants. It’s about how we see ourselves as a nation.

Zac Moffatt: how did Obama lie about Mitt Romney and Arizona immigration law? - 04/14/12

Dear Zac Moffatt, Digital Director for the Mitt Romney campaign (@zacmoffatt):

Alexander Burns thinks a mainstream immigration stance is "hard-line" (Wil Cardon, Arizona, Jeff Flake) - 04/10/12

Alexander Burns of Politico offers (link) a textbook example of how the establishment media presents a mainstream, pro-American immigration position as "hard-line". At the same time, Burns presents the corrupt position of Rep.

GOP debate February 22, 2012 (Arizona, CNN, Romney, Gingrich, Santorum, Ron Paul) - 02/22/12

The worthless GOP debates move into a new month with yet another worthless debate tonight.

NETWORK: CNN

Immigrants' List are immigration lawyers; Daniel Strauss and Huffington Post don't reveal that (Immigration Heroes List) - 01/17/12

Immigrants List is a pro-massive immigration PAC that recently named their list of top 10 immigration heroes [1], i.e., those who support massive and/or illegal immigration. One man's hero is another man's villain, and in the case of their Heroes all are villains to most Americans who oppose massive and/or illegal immigration.

DOJ investigation claims Sheriff Joe Arpaio engaged in "unconstitutional policing" (immigration, Arizona, Maricopa County) - 12/15/11

The Department of Justice's politically-motivated quasi-witchhunt of Maricopa County, Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio has concluded with a report claiming that Arpaio engaged in "unconstitutional policing" and unreasonably targeted Latinos.

Russell Pearce concedes: illegal immigration profiteers get a win (Arizona, Jerry Lewis) - 11/09/11

Arizona state senate president Russell Pearce has conceded defeat in his recall election (link), a victory for those who seek to profit from illegal immigration. Pearce has been on the front lines against illegal immigration and is the author of Arizona's SB 1070.

Immigration and Texas governor Rick Perry: a summary - 08/11/11

Tom Tancredo has a summary of Texas governor Rick Perry and immigration (link). All sixteen paragraphs point out ways in which Perry supports or enables illegal immigration, here are just the first five:

Tea Party Patriots admit immigration "isn't an issue for us" (Mark Meckler) - 07/12/11

One of my major complaints about the Tea Party is that they're ignoring immigration to concentrate on issues that are much less popular, much less important, and much less vital. See all the examples in the posts on the tea parties page, and the leader of a major Teaparty group has now explicitly confirmed that his group isn't really all that concerned about an issue that's more important than spending.

Supreme Court upholds 2007 Arizona immigration enforcement law; eVerify; losing: US Chamber, DOJ, Berman, NCLR, ADL, SPLC, AILA, SEIU, LULAC - 05/26/11

In a major victory for states that want to reduce illegal immigration, the US Supreme Court has upheld Arizona's 2007 "Legal Arizona Workers Act" employer enforcement law that requires the use of eVerify and that allows Arizona to pull the business licenses of companies that knowingly hire illegal aliens. Note that the 2007 law and the decision have no relation to Arizona's more recent immigration law. A Los Angeles Times article is here, and links to legal documents are here. Sonia Sotomayor voted in dissent; see her name's link.

Those who opposed Arizona's law in court and who lost today include the Obama administration's Department of Justice (see Obama immigration) and the US Chamber of Commerce (see their name and this).

Others who filed briefs in the case and who lost today include (see each link for more on that group):

* Rep. Howard Berman
* National Council of La Raza
* Anti Defamation League
* American Immigration Lawyers Association
* PRLDEF (a former associated group of Sotomayor)
* Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (a former associated group of Barack Obama)
* Southern Poverty Law Center
* Service Employees International Union
* National Day Laborer Organizing Network(NDLON)
* National Immigrant Justice Center
* American Immigration Council
* Asian American Justice Center
* Asian American Institute
* Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund
* Asian Law Caucus
* Asian Pacific American Legal Center of Southern California
* League of United Latin American Citizens
* Legal Aid Society
* Los Abogados Hispanic Bar Association
* National Employment Law Project

Others on the losing side were former senator Arlen Specter and Ron Mazzoli (of the 1986 Simpson-Mazzoli amnesty fame).

UPDATE: Thomas Saenz of MALDEF (which doesn't appear to have been involved in the suit) weighs in. He got one thing right: just because the 2007 law was upheld doesn't mean SB 1070 will prevail. In my opinion, states should just simply copy Arizona's 2007 law for now.

In any case, here's what Saenz says (maldef.org/news/releases/az_evrfy):

"Today's regrettable decision in Chamber of Commerce v. Whiting is a tortured product of judicial activism responding to perceived political views of the moment. The majority proclaims itself unable to find implied preemption of an Arizona law that plainly impedes a federal scheme of exclusive enforcement of longstanding immigration-related employment law, and then, with a facile shift, easily finds an implied permission for Arizona to mandate E-verify, a power that Congress denied the federal government itself. All of this is accomplished through providing talismanic significance to the word 'licensing' even though Arizona's use of the term violates any plain-language or historical understanding of the term."

"Despite this egregious outcome, today's decision provides little predictive value as to the constitutional issue of preemption with respect to Arizona's SB 1070 and similar laws recently enacted in other states. Laws that encroach on exclusive federal immigration enforcement by mandating or permitting untrained local police officers to engage in racial profiling will find little refuge in today's decision. Wise state and local lawmakers must continue to tread carefully in areas touching on immigration. As has been the case for well over 200 years, federal action remains the sole legitimate avenue to address immigration issues."

UPDATE 2: The ADL weighs in with a bit of a muted press release (adl.org/PresRele/SupremeCourt_33/6050_33.htm). They're "disappointed":

The law increases the legal risks for businesses that employ undocumented workers but fails to provide sufficient \safeguards to protect those workers against unlawful treatment. It undermines federal efforts to balance discrimination concerns with control of illegal immigration.

The Arizona law also requires state use of E-Verify – a federal pilot program that allows employers to verify the eligibility of newly-hired employees – even though the program relies on records that are prone to error. That is one reason Congress has decided to hold off on making participation in the program mandatory.

Although the Court has upheld Arizona's law, we hope other states will show greater concern for the potentially discriminatory impact such laws can have, and choose not to follow Arizona's lead.

And, I hope they do follow Arizona's lead. We'll see how that works out; I tend to think several will.

NCLR congratulates SEIU on 90th anniversary (Janet Murguia, Eliseo Medina) - 04/29/11

Janet Murguia of the National Council of La Raza has written a letter to the Service Employees International Union congratulating them on their 90th anniversary. In it she gives a shout-out to their International Secretary Treasurer Eliseo Medina and commends them for their work on comprehensive immigration reform, aka amnesty. (Note: see all those links for background information).

She also references how the SEIU "recognized early on that their membership was changing and growing more diverse". In other words, the SEIU realized that all those illegal aliens could be organized to form a power base, no matter their impact on the American workers with whom they were in competition. The SEIU is indirectly profiting from illegal activity: they gladly take union dues from those who are working in contravention to our laws. Oddly enough, that didn't make it into Murguia's note (seiu.org/2011/04/nclrs-murguia-on-seiu-90th.php):

On behalf of the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) familia, I would like to congratulate SEIU on its 90th Anniversary. NCLR values its long partnership with SEIU. Together, we have worked to fix our broken immigration system, improve working conditions and the quality of life for all of America's workers, and empower the many in our nation whose voices have all too often been ignored.

SEIU has been a pioneer in the labor movement when it comes to the Latino community. Their visionary leadership recognized early on that their membership was changing and growing more diverse. What they did with that recognition should serve as a model for not only the labor movement but for other institutions in American society.

SEIU invested significant resources in reaching out and serving this growing constituency. They made Latinos a key part of the union's decision-making leadership such as our good friend colleague, SEIU's International Secretary Treasurer, Eliseo Medina. And they made the critically important decision to focus their efforts beyond just their membership to helping the entire Latino community advance.

When the Latino community has needed SEIU, they have been there. For nearly a decade, SEIU has been at the center of the effort to enact comprehensive immigration reform. When Latino organizations called for a boycott of Arizona in the wake of the notorious racial profiling law, SB 1070, SEIU joined the fight. And SEIU joined with NCLR and others last November in releasing a poll on the Latino vote to ensure that neither party neglects or writes off the Latino community.

As the recent 2010 Census numbers clearly demonstrate, SEIU was ahead of its time in realizing the importance of the Latino community to America's future. But as our continued challenges also clearly demonstrate, there will continue to be a need for our organizations to work together to address the critical needs of all our communities, protect all of America's workers, and strive for justice for all those who call our country home.

CIS: Immigrants use welfare at higher rate than natives - 04/06/11

Some of the findings of a new study from the Center for Immigration Studies ("Welfare Use by Immigrant Households with Children: A Look at Cash, Medicaid, Housing, and Food Programs", link) include:

# In 2009 (based on data collected in 2010), 57 percent of households headed by an immigrant (legal and illegal) with children (under 18) used at least one welfare program, compared to 39 percent for native households with children.

# Immigrant households’ use of welfare tends to be much higher than natives for food assistance programs and Medicaid. Their use of cash and housing programs tends to be similar to native households.

# A large share of the welfare used by immigrant households with children is received on behalf of their U.S.-born children, who are American citizens. But even households with children comprised entirely of immigrants (no U.S.-born children) still had a welfare use rate of 56 percent in 2009.

# Immigrant households with children used welfare programs at consistently higher rates than natives, even before the current recession. In 2001, 50 percent of all immigrant households with children used at least one welfare program, compared to 32 percent for natives.

# Households with children with the highest welfare use rates are those headed by immigrants from the Dominican Republic (82 percent), Mexico and Guatemala (75 percent), and Ecuador (70 percent). Those with the lowest use rates are from the United Kingdom (7 percent), India (19 percent), Canada (23 percent), and Korea (25 percent).

# The states where immigrant households with children have the highest welfare use rates are Arizona (62 percent); Texas, California, and New York (61 percent); Pennsylvania (59 percent); Minnesota and Oregon (56 percent); and Colorado (55 percent).

Per this:

Some immigrant-advocacy groups criticized the report, saying it was engineered to inflame anti-immigrant sentiment by making an unequal comparison between immigrant households, which tend to be low-income, and all native households, including low-income and high-income households.

Immigrant households use welfare programs at about the same rate when compared with the low-income native households, said Jonathan Blazer, an attorney at the National Immigration Law Center an immigrant-advocacy group in Washington, D.C.

Since that appears to be the best argument that opponents can offer, CIS's report must be solid. Why are we allowing millions of poor people to immigrate here when we already have more poor Americans than our social welfare programs can apparently handle? Especially since the future for those poor immigrants and their children doesn't look very promising, as even Obama admits? What's going to happen to our social welfare programs as the children of those poor immigrants and their children retire?

Border Patrol used beanbags against armed bandits (Brian Terry) - 03/03/11

From this:

Border Patrol agents shot beanbags at a group of suspected bandits before the men returned fire during a confrontation in a remote canyon, killing agent Brian Terry with a single gunshot, records show...

...The (FBI) documents say the group of illegal border entrants refused commands to drop their weapons after agents confronted them at about 11:15 p.m. Two agents fired beanbags at the migrants, who responded with gunfire. Two agents returned fire, one with a long gun and one with a pistol, but Terry was mortally wounded in the gunfight...

Terry's brother, Kent Terry, said the other agents who were there that night told him that they were instructed to use the non-lethal beanbags first. It's a policy that doesn't make sense to Kent Terry.

"You go up against a bandit crew that is carrying AKs, and you walk out there with guns loaded with beanbags - I don't get it," Terry said in a phone interview from Michigan. "It's like going to the Iraqi war with one knife. It boggles my mind. ... These guys (Border Patrol agents) are professionals; they should be able to use their judgment call on their own."

It's worth recalling the 2004 controversy surrounding the Border Patrol's use of non-lethal weapons. George P Bush - nephew of George W Bush - spoke out against those weapons and later somewhat backtracked. But, not before the Mexican government threatened to sue. No doubt there's a combination of reasons why the DHS would use beanbags: they're worried about unarmed people being shot, they don't really want to stop the flow of people and (perhaps less likely) drugs, and they're worried about suits from the Mexican government and their little helpers in the U.S. such as the American Civil Liberties Union, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and MALDEF.

If you don't like the current situation, it's possible to somewhat neuter those last groups by helping discredit them. Unfortunately, and while I'm grateful for any help I've received, after years of not getting much help I'm not too hopeful. The loudest opposition to Barack Obama - the tea parties - concern themselves with not much more than trying to help the Koch family make more money. Discrediting groups that support illegal immigration is beyond their abilities, but so too is helping those who are able to discredit such groups.

3/9/11 UPDATE: Janet Napolitano appeared before Congress today (link):

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told a congressional panel Wednesday that U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and his fellow agents were not under orders to refrain from using lethal force in a December gunbattle near the Mexican border that resulted in Mr. Terry´s death.

Testifying to the Senate Judiciary Committee, Miss Napolitano said agents are allowed to use lethal force “if you are under threat of serious injury or death.” She said she herself had asked whether the four agents involved in the Dec. 14 shootout with bandits on the border in Arizona had their hands tied by orders, and she said the answer is “absolutely not.”

“Our lethal force policy is the same as virtually every law enforcement agency in the country - that is, if you are under threat of serious injury or death, you may use lethal force,” Miss Napolitano said.

I believe that's what we already knew. The issue is that the agents might have been too scared - due to law suits and the like - to initially confront the smugglers with real guns.

Arizona sues feds for failing to enforce border, immigration laws - 02/10/11

Last year, the Department of Justice sued Arizona over that state's immigration law SB1070. Now, Arizona has returned the favor by countersuing the feds, making the obviously correct claim that the feds aren't enforcing our immigration laws as they should. Whether the countersuit will succeed isn't clear, but at the least it might help air just how derelict in their duties the Department of Homeland Security has been.

From this:

The lawsuit alleges that the federal government has failed in five areas:

* To achieve and maintain "operational control" of the border.
* To protect Arizona against "invasion."
* To enforce immigration laws.
* To uphold the 10th Amendment, which states that "powers not delegated to the United States by the constitution … are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people."

"What we’re seeking is to force the federal government to do its job,” Attorney General Tom Horne said, adding that the Obama Administration is “actively” not enforcing immigration law.

Horne said there have been similar cases filed out of other states over the years.

“We hope this one will be successful,” he said.

Video of the announcement is below. For an unknown reason one of those present was Kyrsten Sinema, who tried to throw cold water on the suit. She might have a point, especially about the "invasion" part. Updates when the Obama administration and legal observers weigh in.

Suicide bomber book found at border; extremist cleric caught sneaking into U.S. - 01/27/11

Two recent but unrelated stories about immigration terrorism:

1. From William La Jeunesse of Fox News (link):

A book celebrating suicide bombers has been found in the Arizona desert just north of the U.S.- Mexican border, authorities tell Fox News.

The book, "In Memory of Our Martyrs," was spotted Tuesday by a U.S. Border Patrol agent out of the Casa Grande substation who was patrolling a route known for smuggling illegal immigrants and drugs.

Published in Iran, it consists of short biographies of Islamic suicide bombers and other Islamic militants who died carrying out attacks.

2. From this:

U.S. border authorities have arrested a controversial Muslim cleric who was deported from Canada to Tunisia three years ago and was caught earlier this month trying to sneak into California inside the trunk of a BMW, according to court documents.

Said Jaziri, the former Imam of a Muslim congregation in Montreal, was hidden inside a car driven by a San Diego-area man who was pulled over by U.S. Border Patrol agents near an Indian casino east of San Diego. Jaziri allegedly paid a Tijuana-based smuggling group $5,000 to get him across the border near Tecate, saying he wanted to be taken to a “safe place anywhere in the U.S.”...

...But Jaziri’s supporters said he was targeted for his fundamentalist views: Jaziri backed Sharia law for Canadian Muslims and led protests over the publication of the prophet Muhammad cartoons in a Danish newspaper in 2006.

For background on extremists and potential terrorists crossing the border, see all the entries at the first link in this post such as Reading the 9/11 Commission Staff Reports: Chapter 3 (2004), "Terror-Linked Migrants Crossing Into U.S." (2005), and "U.S. Fears Terrorism Via Mexico's Time-Tested Smuggling Routes" (2004).

If you want to help resolve this issue before something disastrous happens, promote the question authority plan.

Did Pima County Sheriff Dupnik ignore Jared Loughner's warning signs before Gabrielle Giffords shooting? - 01/13/11

Almost immediately after the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords and several others by Jared Lee Loughner, Pima County, Arizona Sheriff Clarence Dupnik began politicizing the tragedy [1]. Part of that politicization was justified, part was not. Specifically, considering the role that an overly hostile political environment might have played in the tragedy and urging calm is acceptable, but naming specific persons (Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh) as possible contributing factors is not.

In any case, supporters and enablers of Palin, Limbaugh, and the tea parties movement responded by going on a witch hunt against Dupnik, using his initial claim that Loughner had made death threats [2] to claim that Dupnik knew about Loughner's issues and had done nothing. In some cases, they claimed that he had done nothing because Loughner's mother worked for Pima County. [3]

However, the police reports on Loughner's past contacts with the Pima sheriff's office (summary here; in full here) and Pima Community College (read them here; PDF cached) have been released, and neither indicate any death threats. Loughner's negative past contacts with the Sheriffs are on two minor matters; the contacts with the College are more severe however none of them would seem to offer any reasonable person a clue to what was to come.

So, while Dupnik needlessly politicized this, the teaparty enablers' attempts to smear him as incompetent or corrupt strongly appears to be false. Unless he and his office were mindreaders, there's little they could have done to stop the tragedy.

UPDATE: From this:

Jared Loughner's increasingly menacing behavior, what may look like a psychotic spiral in hindsight, likely would not have been enough to have him forced into psychiatric care, much less arrested... mental-health and legal experts say it's likely that no one could have seen a tragedy coming before Saturday... Even with Arizona's broader laws on involuntary psychiatric commitment, it's still a high bar...

ADDED: See also
* FAQ: Is Jared Lee Loughner linked to Tea Party, conservatives, or libertarians? (Gabrielle Giffords shooting)
* Jared Loughner: anti-Bush, pro-small government? Intellectually dishonest Tea Party defenders
* Loughner's "Genocide school" video
* Friend's claim that Loughner wasn't political is two years out of date
* Jared Loughner's AboveTopSecret postings show no clear political slant
* Arizona state Fusion Center uses Giffords shooting to smear American Renaissance)
* Glenn Reynolds denies Tea Party's history of intimidation
* first post on Gabrielle Giffords shooting

-----------
[1] From this, search for more:

Dupnik called Arizona a "mecca for prejudice and bigotry," assigning a measure of blame for the rampage that killed six and wounded 14 others to overheated political "vitriol."

[2] From a 1/9/11 Reuters report (link):

Dupnik said there had been earlier contact between Loughner and law enforcement after he had made death threats, although they had not been against Giffords. He said the authorities believe he may not have been working alone.

[3] The epicenter of tea party claims was the 1/9/11 post "Jared Loughner is a product of Sheriff Dupnik’s office" (thechollajumps.wordpress.com/2011/01/09/
jared-loughner-is-a-product-of-sheriff-dupniks-office):

The sheriff has been editorializing and politicizing the event since he took the podium to report on the incident. His blaming of radio personalities and bloggers is a pre-emptive strike because Mr. Dupnik knows this tragedy lays at his feet and his office. Six people died on his watch and he could have prevented it... Jared Loughner has been making death threats by phone to many people in Pima County including staff of Pima Community College, radio personalities and local bloggers. When Pima County Sheriff’s Office was informed, his deputies assured the victims that he was being well managed by the mental health system. It was also suggested that further pressing of charges would be unnecessary and probably cause more problems than it solved as Jared Loughner has a family member that works for Pima County. Amy Loughner is a Natural Resource specialist for the Pima County Parks and Recreation.

Either that never happened, or the records linked above are incomplete. More than likely, it never happened. "The Cholla Jumps" has a follow-up post (thechollajumps.wordpress.com/2011/01/11/
loughner-history-with-law-enforcementmental-health-system-is-becoming-muddled):

I had to source the puzzle pieces and vet the information with people who assured me they had first hand information regarding Jared Loughner. I wanted documentation. Unfortunately the mere possesion of the documentation would be a violation of HIPPA laws and the track back would be detrimental to the livelyhoods and lives of the people involved... Anyone in Law Enforcement or Mental Health in Pima County that ever had contact with Mr. Loughner is now in bunker mode. Everyone is afraid of lawsuits down the road. They are evaluating their behavior and checking to make sure they followed all rules governing the care of Jared Loughner... Lawfully some of the people that had knowledge of Mr Loughner could never come forward without subpoena by a lawful authority. Others are just too afraid.

Based on that, it's almost certain that their initial report was just made up.

None of that kept AllahPundit from retransmitting their tale ("Did Clarence Dupnik miss the red flags on Loughner?", hotair.com/archives/2011/01/10/
did-dupnik-miss-the-red-flags-on-loughner), even if he CYAs:

we’re getting lots of e-mails about this post, but I’m unfamiliar with the site and can’t vouch for its credibility. Under those circumstances I’d normally pass on it, but since America’s new standard of journalism requires no supporting evidence whatsoever before tossing an assertion into the news stream, here you go. Maybe it’s true, maybe it isn’t. The important thing is, does it serve your political agenda?

Moe Lane was even less cautious (moelane.com/2011/01/10/
did-dupnik-dismiss-loughner-threat):

it is not a matter of controversy whether or not Loughner made death threats, or at least it should not be. As was reported by both local sources (via here) and Reuters, Sheriff Dupnik himself revealed that Loughner had made death threats against at least one person who was not Congresswoman Giffords. This happened. What the The Cholla Jumps site is alleging – and which has not yet been confirmed- is the following [claim as above]... The question is, is this true? We don’t know – yet – but it’s certainly plausible. Again, we know that there were death threats made, because Dupnik himself admitted that they had happened (that’s the NPR link). And we also know that Loughner was sufficiently unstable to have been thrown out of college as being, frankly, a menace to the local community. And when I say ‘thrown out’ I want it to be understood that the police were involved, because they were. But it could be that this is not actually a true report: a violent paranoid schizophrenic with a history of erratic behavior might have managed to restrain himself to making death threats to one specific person outside of the jurisdiction of the Pima County Sheriff’s Office – thus making him not specifically the problem of one Clarence Dupnik...

Needless to say, that was linked by Glenn Reynolds (instapundit.com/112919 ).

Note that AllahPundit later admitted "There were no missed red flags as far as I can tell" (hotair.com/archives/2011/01/12/
finally-dupnik-releases-police-reports-on-loughner-family).

DHS uses Giffords shooting to push loose borders political agenda (Jared Lee Loughner, American Renaissance) - 01/09/11

[IMPORTANT UPDATE: AmRen has been cleared, and Fox's memo wasn't even from the DHS. See the updates below.]

The Department of Homeland Security and various media sources are using the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords by Jared Lee Loughner as an opportunity to try to smear opponents of illegal immigration, focusing on the higher-level white racial separatist group American Renaissance (DHS memo at [1], report at [2]). Not only do they get that group's ideas wrong, but they mislead about what was in Loughner's videos and what appears to have been on his MySpace page.

From the memo at [1]:

no direct connection - but strong suspicion is being directed at AmRen / American Renaissance. Suspect is possibly linked to this group. (through videos posted on his myspace and YouTube account.). The group’s ideology is anti government, anti immigration, anti ZOG (Zionist Occupational Government), anti Semitic.

I didn't see Loughner's MySpace page, which has since been taken down. There's a supposed picture of it here, with nothing I can see about AmRen. I watched (and saved) his Youtube videos and there was nothing in there about AmRen. Further, AmRen responds here:

American Renaissance condemns violence in the strongest possible terms, and nothing that has ever appeared in it pages could be interpreted as countenancing it.

AR is not anti-government, anti-Semitic, or anti-ZOG, as is clear from the 20 years of back issues that are posted on our website. The expression “ZOG” has never appeared in the pages of AR, and we have has always welcomed Jewish participation in our work. Many of the speakers at American Renaissance conferences have been Jewish.

Not only did the memo get their ideas wrong, but Google shows just eight other pages mentioning Giffords at their site; none of those focus on her or contain any questionable mentions of her.

This latest smear is of a piece with the DHS' rightwing extremists report, something that they were even criticized for by Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson. In this case, you don't have to be an AmRen supporter to oppose smears of them, especially when done to push a loose borders agenda.

The DHS has always been a highly political agency, whether under George W Bush or under Barack Obama, and the goal of their leadership is the same under both: look like they're doing their job while - at least when it comes to immigration - trying not to do the job they should be doing.

The entry point of the smear was a blog posting by Greta van Susteren of Fox News [1]. A later Fox News report [3] subtly changes the provenance of the memo, and an Associated Press report by Eileen Sullivan refers not to the memo but an anonymous source [4].

1/10/11 UPDATE: From Greg Sargent of the Washington Post (link):

a DHS official tells me that the department has not established any such possibility [as outlined in the memo], undercutting what appears to be the primary basis for this claim...

But DHS has not officially provided any such information to any law enforcement officials, the DHS official says.

"We have not established any such possible link," the official says...

The official cautions it's conceivable that a law enforcement official got unofficial info from a DHS official somewhere along the lines of what Fox reported. But he emphasizes that DHS has not even concluded in any official way that even the possibility of such ties exists. The official adds that it wouldn't be DHS's place to reach any such conclusion in the first place, since the FBI is leading the investigation.

1/11/11 UPDATE 1: On the ninth (before Sargent's post above), Patrik Jonsson of the Christian Science Monitor offered "American Renaissance: Was Jared Lee Loughner tied to anti-immigrant group?" (link). While it includes AmRen's denial and a "hate" monitor questioning whether there could be a link, the article also smears by asking the titular question and not, for instance, by questioning the DHS over what they were thinking.

David Greenberg of The New Republic links (link) to the article with the following, reaching a conclusion that even Jonsson was unwilling to make:

Jared Lee Loughner, is reported to have admired Mein Kampf and claimed ties to the anti-Semitic hate group called American Renaissance.

If he had claimed such ties, we certainly would have heard about it; Greenberg apparently can't read.

1/11/11 UPDATE 2: AmRen has been cleared and Fox's memo wasn't even from the DHS. From this:

David Denlinger, commander of the Arizona Counter Terrorism Information Center acknowledged that the document came from his agency, but contained errors and overstated the link between Jared Loughner, the 22-year-old charged with shooting Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and others outside a Tucson supermarket, and American Renaissance.

“I do have no reason to believe in anything that we did that (Loughner) had any direct connection or was being directed by American Renaissance,” Denlinger, an Arizona state police major, told POLITICO Tuesday.

The ACTIC - also known as the "Arizona Fusion Center" is per azactic.gov "a joint effort between the Department of Public Safety, Arizona Department of Homeland Security, Federal Bureau of Investigation and other participating agencies".

There's much more about this at the link above; while past reports from Kenneth Vogel of The Politico have shown bias, he seems to have done a good job with this report.

ADDED: See also
* FAQ: Is Jared Lee Loughner linked to Tea Party, conservatives, or libertarians? (Gabrielle Giffords shooting)
* Jared Loughner: anti-Bush, pro-small government? Intellectually dishonest Tea Party defenders
* Claims by Tea Party enablers that Pima Sheriff Dupnik could have stopped Loughner are false
* Loughner's "Genocide school" video
* Friend's claim that Loughner wasn't political is two years out of date
* Jared Loughner's AboveTopSecret postings show no clear political slant
* Glenn Reynolds denies Tea Party's history of intimidation
* first post on Gabrielle Giffords shooting

-------------
[1] From this:

Below is a note from my FNC colleague Jennifer Griffin: (by the way, the fact that my blogs focus on Congresswoman Giffords in no way is meant to take away from the other victims and their families. The tragedy is immeasurable and words inadequate.)
----

Per Griffin

This is an internal memo obtained by Fox News put out by DHS compiling facts known so far about the case - new - shooter's mother worked for Pima board of supervisers and the suspected anti-Semitic motivation of the shooter.

MEMO:
"The investigation has been taken over by the FBI, and is being run through the Tucson Command Post. Here's what can be confirmed at this time (1800 hrs)... * Gabrielle Giffords Is in ICU.* Federal judge John Roll is deceased. He did rule on a 32 million dollar civil rights lawsuit in February, 2010. That ruling brought death threats to Roll and his family, and for a time he was given a protection detail.* 6 deaths attributed to the shooting. 19 total people hit by gunfire.* suspect’s mother works for the Pima County Board of Supervisors* the suspect has multiple arrests ... But no criminal record? Intervention by someone?* no direct connection - but strong suspicion is being directed at AmRen / American Renaissance. Suspect is possibly linked to this group. (through videos posted on his myspace and YouTube account.). The group’s ideology is anti government, anti immigration, anti ZOG (Zionist Occupational Government), anti Semitic. Gabrielle Gifford is the first Jewish female elected to such a high position in the US government. She was also opposite this group’s ideology when it came to immigration debate.* DHS have a list of names and dates of birth of all victims.* the ACTIC is still playing a major role in the investigation... Computer forensics is cleaning up the surveillance videos, and images from around the scene, and involved in the investigation - working together, was MCSO, DPS, Phoenix PD, ICE, and of course the FBI. It did just come in from the command post, that the federal judge was Not originally scheduled to attend the meeting, according to wife. She stated that he received a phone call about an hour before and was invited to attend. Wrong place - wrong time. For the planning side, there are impromptu memorials popping up all over the state, but the largest one is downtown phoenix, at the capital."

[2] politico.com/news/stories/0111/47308.html by Maggie Haberman of the Politico.

A Department of Homeland Security memo quoted by Fox News says the agency is looking into whether Loughner is “possibly linked” to the fanatical group American Renaissance... The group promotes views that are “anti-government, anti-immigration, anti-ZOG (Zionist Occupation Government), anti-Semitic,” the memo says... Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, the target of Loughner’s firing frenzy, is “the first Jewish female elected to such a high position in the U.S. government. She was also opposite the group’s ideology when it came to immigration debate,” according the memo.

Haberman even works in a quote from Mark Potok of the Southern Poverty Law Center who, to his slight credit, admits that Taylor isn't anti-Semitic.

[3] A newer report by Fox (link) only refers to the memo as a "law enforcement memo based on information provided by the Department of Homeland Security".

[4] From this:

An official familiar with the Arizona shooting investigation said Sunday that local authorities are looking at a possible connection between accused gunman Jared Loughner and an online group known for white supremacist, anti-immigrant rhetoric.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing investigation, said local authorities were examining the American Renaissance website for possible motives for Saturday's shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-Ariz.

John Quinones to lie about Arizona SB 1070, immigration enforcement (ABC, "What Would You Do?") - 12/20/10

In early 2011, ABC News' "What Would You Do?" series - hosted by John Quinones - will broadcast an episode in which they'll lie about Arizona's new immigration law SB 1070. In fact, the segment described here would very likely be illegal and would probably generate a lawsuit.

Specifically, security guards aren't empowered to enforce SB 1070, whether they're U.S. citizens or not. Arizona cops can only question someone's status after having detained them for something else and after having reasonable suspicion that those being detained are here illegally. Federal agents charged with enforcing immigration laws - such as the Border Patrol - have wider latitude but it's highly unlikely they'd do something as described below. The Border Patrol and related agencies have been doing their jobs for decades without valid complaints about their right to detain suspected illegal aliens. And, of course, there's the "papers" bit trying to compare a law designed to reduce illegal activity with the Nazis:

When a man dressed like a security guard demanded "papers" from two Hispanic patrons at a local Mexican restaurant recently, Andrea Morken stood up.
"Excuse me. I don't think you can do that," Morken said loudly enough for the rest of the diners at BK Carne Asada and Hot Dogs to hear.
The Anglo guard struck an aggressive pose and repeated his demand.
"Actually you can't do that and that's not going to happen right now, right here, today," said Morken, who owns a day spa in Tucson. "So you just need to get on out of here now."
Others agreed, telling the security guard to leave the men alone.
"I am an American citizen," he shot back, "and I have the right to see if these two are illegals or not."
The man eventually left - to the applause of the diners - but he returned shortly and said he had called the authorities to come pick up the two men.
Fed up, Morken offered the patrons a ride. The older of the two stood to comply, then took off his sunglasses.
"Do you know who I am?" he asked.
It was ABC's John Quinones. The man eating with him and the security guard were both actors. And the entire incident was being filmed by hidden cameras inside BK, 2680 N. First Ave., for an upcoming episode of the ABC show "What Would You Do?"

Note that Brady McCombs of the Arizona Daily Star is quite starstruck and doesn't call Quinones on misleading about Arizona's law. Please send him an email and suggest he act like a real reporter and not Quinones' publicist.

How "centrist" will No Labels be on immigration? - 11/26/10

There's a new "centrist" group called No Labels in town [1], but they actually appear to be just a vehicle for a presidential run by Michael Bloomberg. And, it looks like on immigration and trade they'll support policies that are establishment-friendly but which cause harm to everyone else.

One of the leaders of the group is former George W Bush advisor Mark McKinnon, and one of those who'll be appearing at their kickoff announcement is Antonio Villaraigosa. Another person involved is John Avlon. And, another person involved in some way is former Los Angeles Times editor Andres Martinez (currently with the New America Foundation).

If you've been following this site for a while (or clicked the links above), by now alarm bells are ringing in your ears: all those listed are bad on immigration. On that issue they're only centrists in the misleading establishment sense, supporting comprehensive immigration reform (aka amnesty), a truly radical plan. The amnesty they support would - among many other things - be a huge gift to the Democratic Party and would increase spending, lower the power of current U.S. citizens, and give the Mexican government a great deal of power inside the U.S.

And, all enable in their own ways illegal immigration, whether it's highlighting the importance of a ready supply of greenskeepers (Bloomberg), or sending all Mexico the message that he won't try to curb illegal immigration (Villaraigosa).

While there isn't much on their site about immigration, their true position is telegraphed by Avlon [2] and then driven home by Martinez [3].

I'll tweet @NoLabelsOrg and ask for an official statement with the details on their immigration position, but the chances of them supporting something like attrition are slim indeed.

12/13/10 UPDATE: I've never gotten a reply from @NoLabelsOrg, but here's another data point (link):

I tuned in to the webcast of the group’s kickoff to hear a woman saying, “You just have to look to Arizona to see extremists who are trying to divide us.” I guess I know how the group feels about the Arizona immigration enforcement law. Of course, I thought the point of the group was to stop labeling people; but I guess it’s okay to label the overwhelming majority of Arizonans “extremists.”

It would be obviously helpful to know who said that and how high in the organization they are, but it's certainly in line with the quotes below.

As a slight counterweight to everything else in this post, No Labels is certainly scaring or at least bothering a large number of GOP/Dem partisan hacks, so they've got that going for them. But, what we really need is a mainstream group that opposes things like Democratic race-baiting as strongly as they oppose giveaways to connected corporations and that, of course, also strongly opposes illegal and massive immigration. The chances of such a group forming are slim because the money is on the other side and most people who concern themselves with politics tend to be partisan.

--------------
[1] From this:

No Labels (www.nolabels.org) is led by Democratic fund-raiser Nancy Jacobson and Republican strategist Mark McKinnon, who were introduced to each other by Kevin Sheekey, Mr. Bloomberg's political adviser.

The group has raised more than $1 million to seed its effort against what it calls "hyper-partisanship." Backers include co-chairman of Loews Corp. Andrew Tisch, Panera Bread founder Ron Shaich and ex-Facebook executive Dave Morin. Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, as well as U.S. senators (Joe Lieberman) of Connecticut and Michigan's Debbie Stabenow, will attend the New York launch [on December 13].

[2] nolabels.org/blog/americans-vote-divided-government-again

"From deficit reduction to energy independence and immigration reform, there are policy paths where the center can lead in proposing new solutions."

[3] nolabels.org/blog/hey-voter-rest-world-out-get-you

But let’s not kid ourselves: this manufactured xenophobia leaves a lasting legacy. It isn't good – for ourselves or the rest of the world – when the United States turns inward. Americans oscillate between seeing the rest of the world as a boundless opportunity or as an overwhelming threat, and the latter mindset erodes our national confidence and clouds our better policymaking judgment. Regardless of what one thinks a rational immigration policy looks like, it is hard to even have that discussion with the hyper-partisan and overwrought demagoguery around the issue. The constant China-bashing makes it hard for the administration to engage Beijing on any subject. America now runs the risk of running scared from any number of opportunities to grow our economy: a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll early this month found that 53% of those surveyed said free trade hurts the United States. Alarming, but hardly surprising given the narrative of our politics.

U.S. bows to United Nations Human Rights Council, ACLU helps (Arizona, SB1070) - 11/05/10

In Geneva today the United Nations Human Rights Council met to assess the U.S.'s record on human rights, or at least human rights as they see them. And, as previously discussed, the report from the U.S. government mentions Arizona's recent SB1070 immigration law. While I downplayed the significance of this in the earlier post, perhaps I should raise the alert level given that one of the groups involved in complaining to the U.N. about the U.S. is the American Civil Liberties Union; more on them below.

From this:

The United States is submitting its human rights record to the scrutiny of other nations - both allies and adversaries - for the first time, as the Obama administration opens itself up to a committee shunned by his predecessor... The 30-strong delegation, headed by three top State Department officials and including representatives from many departments, including Justice, Defense and Homeland Security, arrives in Geneva with a 20-page report compiled with the input of civic and social organizations.

The ACLU's report [1] oddly enough doesn't mention Arizona; the two immigration topics they focus on are Stipulated Removal (specifically mentioning Postville) and the ability of illegal aliens to sue over workplace issues (Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB). To read their summary, they must think they live in Libya rather than what they're actually doing: helping countries like Libya.

Even if their report doesn't mention Arizona, Alessandra Soler Meetze of the Arizona ACLU is in Geneva, and she promises she'll bring up the topic of SB1070 [2]. She's being accompanied by day laborers center operator Salvador Reza [3].

[1] Download it from
aclu.org/human-rights/un-universal-periodic-review-submission
[2] aclu.org/blog/human-rights-immigrants-rights-racial-justice/
holding-america-accountable-international-human-r
[3] blogs.phoenixnewtimes.com/bastard/2010/11/
jan_brewer_on_blast_at_united.php

Possible massive voter fraud in Arizona and Colorado (SEIU link) (update: state denies it) - 10/25/10

A group linked to the Service Employees International Union might be involved in massive voter registration fraud in Arizona and Colorado. From Russell Pearce (link):

There has been an accusation that 65% of 5000 voter registration forms, submitted by Mi Familia Vota and One Vote Arizona, in Yuma County on the last day of filling are invalid due to the registrant not being a citizen, wrong/invalid address, false signature, etc. I also understand that these 2 groups have signed up 20,000 states wide and they have requested that 45,000 be put on the permanent early ballot. If 65% of these last minute registration forms in Yuma are invalid, which may be more as they are still checking the rest, then what is the percentages of invalid in Maricopa, Pima and other counties...

Yesterday a Colorado judge threw out 6000 bogus voter registration forms submitted by the same SEIU off shoot Mi Familia Vota here in Arizona...

A big word of caution: the person making the 65% claim is an anonymous source of r/w blogger "Publius Pundit" (link), and this story is being spread by Gateway Pundit (link) at Andrew Breitbart's site (link). The Colorado story was reported in their local media, but the Arizona story has yet to be confirmed. At the least, Mi Familia Vota does appear to have close ties to the SEIU.

UPDATE: It's a good thing I added the "big word of caution". Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett has issued a press release "set[ting] the record straight on voter-registration fraud/Office watching issue closely, but confident that Internet rumors are without merit " (link) which includes:

Rumor: Activist groups Mi Familia Vota and One Vote Arizona filed 3,000 voter-registration forms with Yuma County in recent days.

Reality: Arizona's voter-registration deadline for the General Election passed on Oct. 4. Last week, groups like Mi Familia Vota did submit in Yuma County a few thousand applications for the state's Permanent Early Voter List, which qualifies voters to receive an early ballot. About 45% of those requests were rejected, in most cases because the applicant was already on the early-ballot list. No voters will receive more than one ballot. Oct. 22 was the deadline to request an early ballot for the General Election.

Rumor: As much as 65% of the last-minute voter-registration forms submitted by Mi Familia Vota and One Vote Arizona were deemed invalid by Yuma County .

Reality: In the 10 days leading up to the Oct. 4 registration deadline, Yuma County received 822 applications for voter registration. Of those, 84 were rejected.

Rumor: Other counties across Arizona , including Maricopa and Pima, have also been the target in recent weeks of systematic voter-registration fraud by Mi Familia Vota, One Vote Arizona and other groups.

Reality: No elections officials in Arizona 's 15 counties are reporting an inordinate number of invalid registration forms, nor a coordinated attempt to circumvent the state's voter-registration laws.

Between the end of July and Oct. 4, the deadlines to register for the Primary and General Elections, Pima County processed 29,192 valid registration forms. An additional 762 were rejected because they were incomplete or failed to prove citizenship. The bulk of the rejected forms were submitted by University of Arizona students who failed to include all necessary information, including a driver's license number and signature. Mi Familia Vota submitted just over 100 registration forms in Pima County, and a handful was deemed invalid.

During the 10 days leading up to the Oct. 4 deadline, Maricopa County received 6,129 voter-registration forms from Mi Familia Vota and similar groups. Of those forms, 1,417 were rejected.

Pearce has provided an update (link); he admits he might have relied on some bogus information, but he still thinks there's something there. It doesn't appear that "Publius Pundit" or BigGovernment have posted updates.

United Food and Commercial Workers Union calls off Arizona boycott - 09/24/10

The United Food and Commercial Workers Union - UFCW - had been part of the movement to boycott Arizona over their new immigration law. They've now withdrawn from that movement (link), with a Local president saying:

"I hope Ms. Brewer joins the call to 'tone it down' and help create solutions for both border security and immigration reform... It is now time for calm, reasoned discussion that can move forward to first secure our borders, while designing a workable, humane plan to finally reform our nation’s immigration laws."

The "call to 'tone it down'" followed Jan Brewer pointing out that they were helping to hurt the state and her campaign starting to organize counter protests against the union. Her next target is the Service Employees International Union.

McCain (of course) is soft on DREAM Act; laughs about anti-American plan (trade Americans for illegal aliens) - 09/15/10

The video at peekURL.com/vbjwqf9 shows a John McCain appearance where a group of illegal aliens ask him to support the anti-American DREAM Act:

Interior Dep't environmental regulations hampering Border Patrol (Rob Bishop, HR 5016) - 09/08/10

From this:

...migrants and drug smugglers (marijuana, mainly) are attracted to parts of Arizona for a specific reason. On these federal lands, environmental regulations prevent the Border Patrol from doing its job. That's what the mainstream media won't report... [On the video below], (Rep. Rob Bishop) makes this simple point. The U.S. side of the 1,950-mile border with Mexico is about 60 percent private land and 40 percent federal. "Almost all" of the migrants and drug smugglers come across federal lands, protected by stringent "wilderness" designations or endangered species rules. The federals are submissive before the environmental regs that interfere with border enforcement. The Border Patrol, a division of Homeland Security, has to complete lengthy environmental reports and get permission from the Departments of Agriculture and Interior before it can do anything. This can take several months.

The author contrasts the situation in Arizona with that in Texas where most land is private, which makes some sense. And, he says that Rep. Raul Grijalva - someone on the opposite side from Bishop - "seems to be primarily interested in representing Mexican interests", something I've found to be true. (Unfortunately, the author tries to weave this into a larger libertarian-oriented framework against redistributionism and environmentalism and the like. Giving this issue a partisan sheen isn't generally advised.)

The 37-minute Bishop video from June referred to above is at http://peekURL.com/vq864qf
For the 2-minute version, see http://peekURL.com/vvkj6l2
And, Bishop challenges Department of the Interior secretary Ken Salazar on http://peekURL.com/vum86ga
The reader is encouraged to go to one of Salazar's public appearances and ask him when he'll be doing the items on the last video, or ask him to explain exactly why he won't be doing them.
Bishop is also the sponsor of HR 5016: "To prohibit the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture from taking action on public lands which impede border security on such lands, and for other purposes.".

Rachel Maddow smear: Jan Brewer, SB1070, and CCA private prisons (Arizona, Morgan Loew) - 09/07/10

Rachel Maddow and others are implying an absurd claim: that Arizona governor Jan Brewer signed SB 1070 - that state's new immigration law - in part to profit Corrections Corporation of America. CCA has a contract with the Department of Homeland Security's ICE agency to provide immigration detention facilities, and two people linked to Brewer are also linked to CCA. For background from far-left illegal immigration supporters, see this and this; the Morgan Loew report from KPHO is here; Brewer's campaign manager responds here [1].

On the video at peekURL.com/v19y5iz (transcript here) Maddow states:

The uptick in anti-immigration stuff isn't really about immigration at all. It's about what makes good politics for anti-immigration [2] politicians. And, it is about what makes big profits, apparently, for some very well-connected people.

The claim that Brewer signed the law to profit CCA is absurd on its face. Under Maddow's scenario, Brewer and her advisors would have otherwise been opposed to signing the law, but lobbying and contributions by CCA would have changed their minds. Does that make sense? If there were no connection between her advisors and CCA, can anyone imagine her not signing the law? If CCA stood to benefit from her not signing the law, and that's what she did, Maddow's smear might be a bit more believable.

Maddow's smear might have legs if the bill in question were something more obscure and the signing of which was a bit odd. That's not the case here: SB 1070 was national news before Brewer signed the bill and the bill had already generated wide support across the nation.

Further, SB 1070 was originated by Russell Pearce, a "true believer" in curbing illegal immigration. He also originated a bill intended to prevent reconquista-style classes from being taught in the public schools, and Brewer signed that bill as well. Would Maddow like to claim that CCA stood to profit from that? How about the two dozen or so other states that are considering Arizona-style immigration bills; did CCA get to them too?

What Maddow gets right is that this is political: some politicians are waking up to the fact that a large majority of Americans oppose illegal immigration.

It's also political in an ironic way: the only reason Maddow is smearing Brewer is because the Democratic Party sees illegal immigration as a source of political power.

And, Maddow and others spreading this smear have almost zero likelihood of following the money on who profits from illegal immigration such as low-wage employers, banks, and countries. Rather than opposing exploitative companies and crooked banks, Maddow is in effect enabling them.

Now, the above doesn't mean that Brewer's advisors shouldn't take steps to avoid any appearance of impropriety and it doesn't mean that there aren't major issues with private prisons. It just means that - once again - you can't trust what Rachel Maddow tells you.

[1] Morgan Loew of KPHO interviews Caroline Isaacs of the American Friends Service Committee and uses her in the role of "the person who says the things the reporter would like to say". Loew only describes the AFSC as a group "which advocates for social justice issues". He doesn't reveal that they're far-left supporters of illegal immigration with an indirect link to the Mexican government.

[2] Maddow also misleads with her terminoloyg. There aren't too many "anti-immigration politicians"; there are very few politicians who oppose both illegal and legal immigration.

DOJ sues Joe Arpaio over civil rights investigation documents - 09/02/10

The Department of Justice has sued Joe Arpaio - sheriff of Maricopa County - claiming that he's obstructed their investigation into possible racial profiling. This is, needless to say, the Obama administration's latest attack on Arizona in an attempt to prevent states from doing the job the federal government won't do: try to reduce illegal immigration. And, those attacks are preventable if people would work to reduce illegal immigration in smart ways.

From the DOJ's press release [1]:

The department filed today’s lawsuit after exhausting all cooperative measures to gain access to MCSO’s documents and facilities, as part of the department’s investigation of alleged discrimination in MCSO’s police practices and jail operations. Since March 2009, the department has attempted to secure voluntary compliance with the department’s investigation. MCSO’s refusal to cooperate with the investigation makes it an extreme outlier and the department is unaware of any other police department or sheriff’s office that has refused to cooperate in the last 30 years.

“The actions of the sheriff's office are unprecedented. It is unfortunate that the department was forced to resort to litigation to gain access to public documents and facilities,” said (Thomas Perez), Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division.

The department’s investigation of MCSO concerns alleged discrimination against Hispanics, in violation of the prohibition on national origin discrimination in Title VI; the pattern or practice provisions of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968; and the pattern or practice provisions of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. Title VI prohibits discrimination in federally assisted programs on the ground of race, color, or national origin.

UPDATE: From this:

When the Department first informed Arpaio that a probe was under way, back in March 2009, it sent a letter saying the investigation would focus on "alleged patterns or practices of discriminatory police practices and unconstitutional searches and seizures." But now we learn that just six months before that, in September 2008, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, known as ICE, did its own investigation of Arpaio's office -- and gave it a clean bill of health. Arpaio's lawyers recently got a copy of the ICE report through the Freedom of Information Act... ...ICE investigators also interviewed top federal officials involved in illegal immigrant cases in Arizona. They found an "excellent" working relationship between the sheriff's office and the feds. ICE talked as well to federal prosecutors in Phoenix, who described the cases brought by Maricopa County as "high quality."

The report contains this:

"The [Homeland Security Department's Office of Investigation] and [DHS' Detention and Removal Operations] supervisors consider the conduct and performance of the [Maricopa County Sheriff's Office] ... officers to be professional and meeting the requirement of the [memorandum of agreement between Arpaio and the Feds on 287g]."

Recall also that in January of this year, John Morton - the head of ICE - defended Arpaio against charges of profiling.

[1] justice.gov/opa/pr/2010/September/10-crt-993.html

Obama admin UN Human Rights Council report mentions Arizona immigration law, 287g - 08/25/10

The site impeachobamacampaign.com offers the somewhat inflated post "Obama Hauls Arizona Before the UN Human Rights Council" (link) about the Obama administration's report to the United Nations Human Rights Council (PDF at [1]). The administration's report mentions both their suit against the new Arizona immigration law and their changes to the 287g program as examples of how the U.S. cares about the human rights of immigrants.

I've seen far worse things than those statements and I can't find anything overly surprising in them. However, others disagree (link). I'm also failing to see how anything in the report could transfer jurisdiction from the U.S. to the UN. That doesn't mean their statements are a good thing, just that they aren't that out of the ordinary (for the Obama administration) and they probably won't have any effect at all. Feel free to tell me what I'm missing in comments.

Here's the "Values and Immigration" section of [1]:

92. That immigrants have been consistently drawn to our shores throughout our history is both a testament to and a source of the strength and appeal of our vibrant democracy. As he left office, President Reagan remarked that the United States is “still a beacon, still a magnet for all who must have freedom, for all the pilgrims from all the lost places who are hurtling through the darkness, toward home.” Over the last 50 years, the U.S. has accepted several million refugees fleeing persecution from all corners of the globe as well as many millions of immigrants seeking a better life or joining family. Today, the United States and other countries to which a significant number of people seek to emigrate face challenges in developing and enforcing immigration laws and policies that reflect economic, social, and national security realities. In addressing these issues we seek to build a system of immigration enforcement that is both effective and fair.

93. In 2009, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) began a major overhaul of the U.S. immigration detention system in an effort to improve detention center management and prioritize health, safety, and uniformity among immigration detention facilities, while ensuring security and efficiency. As part of this effort, in conjunction with ongoing consultations with non-governmental organizations and outside experts, DHS issued revised parole guidelines, effective January 2010, for arriving aliens in expedited removal found to have a credible fear of persecution or torture. The new guidelines firmly establish that it is not in the public interest to detain those arriving aliens found to have a credible fear who establish their identities, and that they pose neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community.

94. Under section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, DHS may delegate authority to state and local officers to enforce federal immigration law. DHS has made improvements to the 287(g) program, including implementing a new, standardized Memorandum of Agreement with state and local partners that strengthens program oversight and provides uniform guidelines for DHS supervision of state and local agency officer operations; information reporting and tracking; complaint procedures; and implementation measures. DHS continues to evaluate the program, incorporating additional safeguards as necessary to aid in the prevention of racial profiling and civil rights violations and improve accountability for protecting human rights.

95. A recent Arizona law, S.B. 1070, has generated significant attention and debate at home and around the world. The issue is being addressed in a court action that argues that the federal government has the authority to set and enforce immigration law. That action is ongoing; parts of the law are currently enjoined.

96. President Obama remains firmly committed to fixing our broken immigration system, because he recognizes that our ability to innovate, our ties to the world, and our economic prosperity depend on our capacity to welcome and assimilate immigrants. The Administration will continue its efforts to work with the U.S. Congress and affected communities toward this end.

[1] state.gov/documents/organization/146379.pdf

McCain trounces JD Hayworth in GOP primary; who's to blame (tea parties, Palin, Scott Brown...) - 08/25/10

In last night's GOP Senate primary in Arizona, John McCain trounced JD Hayworth with 59% versus 29% for Hayworth (and 11% for Jim Deakin). To a certain extent, McCain's win was due to him spending around $20 million on advertising and him pretending to be tough on immigration matters. Defeating McCain would have sent a strong message to the Beltway establishment, the mainstream media, and other amnesty supporters. Instead, those who should have opposed him either didn't oppose him, didn't take a position, or engaged in useless or counter-productive activities.

Who shares the blame?

1. Hayworth isn't exactly a prize catch, no matter ones political affiliation. So, he bears part of the blame.

2. The four major Arizona tea parties groups that decided not to endorse McCain, Hayworth, or Deakin also shares some of the blame. [1] The "Arizona Tea Party" - which might be an umbrella group including some of those listed at [1] did support Hayworth, at least in twitter dot com/azteaparty. However, the Tucson Tea Party has a post explaining that they don't endorse candidates; the reason given differs from that in their press release.

3. The one other teaparty group that decided to hold a border event - instead of doing things in smarter ways - shares part of the blame.

4. Sarah Palin, Grover Norquist, Scott Brown and perhaps tea parties chief leader Dick Armey all supported McCain, thus sharing part of the blame.

5. And, starting over four and a half years ago, I've been trying to get people to go to McCain's events and ask him tough questions. Video of McCain being put on the spot could get hundreds of thousands of views on Youtube and might have prevented him from being the GOP's 2008 nominee and might have prevented him winning yesterday's primary.

There are plenty of videos of people asking McCain questions, the problem is that the questions and the questioners are invariably weak. McCain is able to bowl them over and launch into stock speeches; some members of the mainstream media have asked him tougher questions than regular citizens at his public events. See the question authority page for an action plan and more information.

Those sites that get more traffic than me and that have (except in one or two brief cases) completely refused to encourage their readers to follow that plan bear a good share of the blame.

One lesson to learn from the above is not to put trust in those who don't know how to do things in the right way, or who can't figure out the best outcome, or who are only interested in feathering their own nests.

[1] From a press release (link):

The organizers of the four largest Arizona Tea Party organizations – including the Tucson Tea Party, Greater Phoenix Tea Party, Flagstaff Tea Party, and Mohave County Tea Party – issued a joint press release regarding their unified decision to decline endorsing a candidate in the Arizona Senate primary race between John McCain, J.D. Hayworth, and Jim Deakin.

“The Tea Party is a non-partisan, grassroots movement that stands for limited government, free markets, and fiscal responsibility. Both McCain and Hayworth’s records during their many years in Washington leave much to be desired on these issues,” said Robert Mayer, co-founder of the Tucson Tea Party. “It is their job to hold themselves up to these values and fight for our votes.”

[2] tucsonteaparty.info/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=93&catid=35&Itemid=55

The reason that the Tucson Tea Party (TTP) does not endorse any one candidate in the primaries is because we are made up of a diverse group, which include constitutional, fiscal, and social conservatives, we also have many that are simply free market thinkers... So, if the Tucson Tea Party were to pick one candidate over another, or over many others, we would simply be creating a situation of conservative bloodletting and infighting that would serve no purpose for conservatives in general or the Tea Party specifically.

Michael Steele distances GOP from Arizona law, on Univision - 08/24/10

Speaking on Univision, RNC chairman Michael Steele tried to distance the GOP from the new Arizona immigration law (link, video at peekURL.com/vjoo7o3 ). In a minor way this is a good thing in that by so doing he's distancing himself from the Republican base and dragging down other GOP leaders with him.

It's a bad thing because he's giving more power to the far-left, the Democrats, and other illegal immigration supporters. The voiceover to the clip referred to the Arizona law as "anti-immigrant" (in Spanish). Instead of calling them on such lies, Steele propped up the notion that in order to reach out to Hispanics you need to go on a Spanish-language television network that supports illegal immigration and pander to the likes of their host Maria Elena Salinas (she's at the end of the clip above). And, it's not going to do him or the GOP any good: he's promoting concepts that will help the Democrats undercut the GOP.

From the link here's what Steele said:

"The actions of one state's governor is not a reflection of an entire country, nor is it a reflection of an entire political party," he said, referring to Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer and her support for S.B. 1070.

"The governor and the people of Arizona made a decision that they thought was in their best interest, and that's the beauty of a republic, that's who we are."

Steele has faced criticism as RNC chairman because of his propensity for gaffes and difficulty managing the organization's finances and fundraising efforts.

He said Tuesday that since the immigration debate is now "in full bloom," he hopes that "level heads will prevail" in finding a "commonsense solution" to the immigration issue.

UPDATE: Steele has clarified his remarks to Soledad OBrien, showing again how incompetent he is:

"We support the Republican governor of Arizona in her efforts, but we also recognize that this is a transcendent issue and that for different parts of the country they look at it and approach it differently and Republican candidates and the Republican leadership in those states and those communities have to be able to respond to the needs at that time... We have pro-choice Republicans, we have pro-life Republicans, so I can't say that one of them is a reflection of the entire party... The same is true on this question on Arizona. Some people see that law one way, some people see that law another way. It depends on where you live and what your background is."

Opposing abortion is a popular issue, but so too are those who take the "pro-choice" view. The same isn't true of illegal immigration: large percentages oppose that. There are many good arguments to be made against illegal immigration and many ways that Steele could trap up its supporters. That's something he doesn't have the capability or integrity to do.

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