Citizenship Promotion Act of 2007 (Barack Obama)

On Wednesday, Sen. Barack Obama introduced the "Citizenship Promotion Act of 2007". This important story was overshadowed by the most likely unimportant story about his stock holdings [1]. The CPA could be described as a "New Democrats Initiative/Funding Source for Possibly Foreign-Linked Pro-Illegal Immigration Groups" bill, and perhaps some reporters should have asked Obama and his co-horts about that. While the main feature is freezing the proposed hike in the cost of citizenship applications, another provision would distribute perhaps millions of dollars to pro-illegal immigration groups, some of which might be linked to the Mexican government. The bill would need to pass and those funding sources would need to be designated, but I know of no "immigrants rights" groups that are not virulent supporters of illegal immigration.

The original co-sponsors are: Senators Bob Menendez, Jeff Bingaman and Ken Salazar; Representatives Mike Honda, Neil Abercrombie, Hilda Solis, Ed Pastor and Raul Grijalva. Two other Reps involved are Luis Gutierrez and Jan Schakowsky. From the who-cares department comes this video of NYC Councilmen Hiram Monserrate and Miguel Martinez and NY Assemblyman Jose Peralta urging Hillary Clinton and others to co-sponsor it.

Those endorsing the bill include:
National Council of La Raza (funds extremists)
National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (directly linked to Mexican government via Ohtli award; NALEO)
Mexican American Legal Defense Fund (MALDEF) (indirectly linked to Mexican government)
Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (president linked to Mexican government)
Immigrant Legal Resource Center [2]
National Immigration Forum
National Immigrant Justice Center
Asian American Justice Center
Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society
Legal Momentum
American Immigration Lawyers Association
Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago
Massachusetts Immigration and Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA)

[1] See The Hill for an example. Suzanne Gamboa of the AP offers her attempt at a pro-Obama press release at his site.

According to a press release from the Mexico-linked National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, it would also:
...make the test for U.S. citizenship fairer by providing for uniform administration of the exam throughout the nation. The legislation would require the USCIS, when administering the test, to take into account the special circumstances of applicants who face particular challenges because of their age, education, or other similar characteristics...

...[provide] for greater accountability in the system of conducting background checks on naturalization applicants. Many naturalization applicants have experienced lengthy waiting times during their application processing because these checks are not completed in a timely manner. The bill generally would require the FBI to complete those background checks within 90 days...

...the CPA would create a national New Americans Initiative ("NAI") to provide $80 million for U.S. citizenship promotion, education and assistance by the USCIS and non-profit community organizations. Through the NAI, the USCIS must develop outreach materials to encourage legal permanent residents to apply for naturalization, and must disseminate those materials through public service announcements and other media...


So this is basically the Democratic version of the Republicans' Faith-Based Initiatives. Selectively funnel tax revenues to powerful party loyalists who are in the business of political organizing. Is Karl Rove working for Obama now?