Showing posts with label Obama Administration. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Obama Administration. Show all posts

Friday, September 4, 2015


Hillary Rodham Clinton
The State Department waited almost two weeks to barely comply with a judge’s order that it cooperate with the FBI in the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email use.
In a September 2 letter obtained by Breitbart News, State Department legal adviser Mary McLeod wrote to FBI general counsel James Baker asking FBI investigators to hand over any information that might be relevant to the nonprofit group Judicial Watch’s Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department. McLeod only asked for information that is not already in the State Department’s possession.
Judge Emmett Sullivan ordered the State Department to cooperate two weeks ago. McLeod’s one-page letter, signed a full thirteen days after Sullivan’s order, fulfills the absolute minimum level of cooperation mandated by Sullivan’s order. The State Department did not volunteer to help FBI investigators, but merely to send over any new documents before September 14, when the State Department’s status report about its cooperation in the case is due to Sullivan.
Judicial Watch is not impressed.
“It is jaw-dropping that the Obama State Department would wait 13 days to comply with an urgent August 20 federal court order requiring the State Department to coordinate with the Justice Department and FBI about making sure that documents from the seized Clinton email records are searched and produced in our FOIA litigation,” Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton said in a statement provided to Breitbart News.
“The bare-bones September 2 letter itself shows that the Obama administration has zero interest in quickly recovering, searching and producing records it seized from Mrs. Clinton. The Obama administration continues to protect Hillary Clinton by cover-up, delay, and inaction.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Judge blocks new federal rule on jurisdiction of waterways

A federal judge in North Dakota on Thursday blocked a new Obama administration rule that would give the federal government jurisdiction over some state waterways. 
U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson of North Dakota issued a temporary injunction against the rule, which gives the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers authority to protect some streams, tributaries and wetlands under the Clean Water Act. The rule was scheduled to take effect Friday. 
"The risk of irreparable harm to the states is both imminent and likely," Erickson said in blocking the rule from taking effect. 
Thirteen states led by North Dakota asked Erickson to suspend guidelines that they say are unnecessary and infringe on state sovereignty. The federal government says the new rule clarifies ambiguity in the law and actually makes it easier for the states to manage some waterways. It wasn't immediately clear if the injunction applied to states other than the 13 led by North Dakota." 
The other states involved in the lawsuit are Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming. 
State officials in North Dakota said the new rule will cost the state millions of dollars and take away from more important programs. State Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said there's "confusion and anxiety" among farmers and other landowners over the initiative. 
 North Dakota congressman Kevin Cramer called the judge’s ruling a “victory:”

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Obama Punishes Kansas for De-Funding Planned Parenthood by Cutting Its Title X Funding

The Obama administration has punished the state of Kansas for cutting taxpayer funds for the Planned Parenthood abortion business by cutting its federal Title X funding by the same amount.The moves comes at the same time the abortion giant is facing intense criticism over its sales of aborted babies and their body parts.
In 2011, pro-life Governor Sam Brownback signed a bill signed into law a bill that would shift funding away from the Planned Parenthood abortion business and stops abortion funding in health insurance programs. The Kansas Senate passed the measure on a 28-10 vote and the state House followed suit with an 86-30 vote.
The measure has the state budget directing over $300,000  in Title 10 money to local full-service health clinics instead of Planed Parenthood and it places $300,000 into the Stan Clark grant-matched fund for pregnancy support and adoption counseling.
Now, the Obama administration, in the wake of additional states cutting Planned Parenthood funding following the massive scandal, is going after one state that already cut tax-funding to the abortion company. According to an AP report: “The federal government reduced its Title X funding to the state by about the $370,000 annually in Title X money that two Planned Parenthood facilities in Wichita and Hays and an unaffiliated clinic in Dodge City had been receiving.”
While Kansas revoked taxpayer dollars for an abortion business, the Obama administration’s decision hurts women’s health and deprives them of legitimate medical and health care.
As AP reports, “Medical providers say that means low-income patients are finding it harder to access birth control, cancer screenings and other reproductive health care services.
“People have fewer places to go, and for those with limited means that may make utilizing those services even more difficult,” said J’Vonnah Maryman, director for public health at the Sedgwick County Health Department.
In terms of the pro-life law de-funding Planned Parenthood, the insurance portion of the legislation prohibits private health insurance companies from forcing enrollees to pay for abortions and it makes those who want to potentially have abortion coverage pay for an insurance rider. It also ensures abortions can’t be paid for with taxpayer dollars through the state exchanges set up under the federal Obamacare health care law.
ACTION: Thank Governor Brownback at

‘Diversity and Inclusion Specialist’ Job with Feds Pays $118K a Year

The Department of Energy (DOE) will pay a “Diversity and Inclusion Specialist” up to $118,000 a year, according to a new job opening with the federal government.
The full-time position, which opened up on Monday, will pay a minimum of $90,000 a year to a person who will come up with “effective inclusive practices and policies” for the agency.
“The Diversity and Inclusion Specialist position is located in the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI), Office of Economic Impact and Diversity, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE),” the job posting stated. “The office is responsible for providing leadership, direction, coordination, evaluation and support for managing a diverse workforce and establishing effective inclusive practices and policies at DOE.”
To apply, one must be a diversity and inclusion “expert.” The person hired will provide DOE managers with guidance.
“The Diversity and Inclusion Specialist serves as a subject matter expert and advisor to the Department of Energy (DOE) leadership on diversity management and inclusive practices, and assists with leading the integration of diversity and inclusion principles of into DOE’s workplace culture,” the posting said. “Provides advice and guidance to supervisors and managers on best practices associated with leading employees from diverse backgrounds and perspectives, and aligns inclusion initiatives with the organizational mission, goals, strategies and metrics, in accordance with Executive Order 13583, and guidance provided by the Office of Personnel Management.”
The position also requires developing a “DOE-wide action plan to accomplish diversity and inclusion outcomes” every year. The plans were mandated by the executive order signed by President Barack Obama in August 2011.
The position does not require a college degree and pays between $90,823.00 and $118,069.00 a year.

What is Obama’s top population control freak hiding? by Michelle Malkin

Copyright 2015

The most transparent administration in American history is at it again — dodging sunlight and evading public disclosure.
Screen Shot 2015-08-26 at 8.56.10 AMJoining former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and her secret servers, former IRS witch hunt queen Lois Lerner and her secret email accounts, former EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and her Internet alter egos, and former Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and his non-public email account is White House science czar John Holdren.
President Obama’s top climate change adviser is defending his hide-and-seek game in federal court. Earlier this month, the Washington, D.C.-basedCompetitive Enterprise Institute appealed a D.C. district court ruling protecting Holdren’s personal email communications from Freedom of Information Act requests.
CEI argues that federal transparency law “applies to the work-related records of agency employees regardless of where they are stored. Many agencies routinely instruct their staff to preserve any such documents that they might have on their personal email accounts.” Yet, as head of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, Holdren has placed himself above the law and spirit of transparency that Obama fraudulently vowed to uphold.
“It makes little sense to claim that an agency is not ‘withholding’ documents when it refuses to produce documents held by its own chief executive that relate to ‘agency business,'” CEI’s legal brief rightly argues. “Even if OSTP had demonstrated that these emails were not within its actual control — which it did not — its failure to search its director’s personal account would still violate FOIA because any agency records in that account fall within the agency’s ‘constructive control.'”
The White House science czar’s private email account–which was uncovered when CEI unmasked former EPA head Lisa Jackson’s private email aliases, which were used to conduct government business–resides with his former employer, the Woods Hole Research Center. It’s a far-left eco-alarmist group that pushes radical anti-capitalist interventions (Remember “cap and trade”?) to eliminate the decades-long hyped “global climatic catastrophe.” Their ultimate goal? Establishing government rule by eco-technocrats who detest humanity.
To this day, Holdren has escaped questions about his freaky-deaky population-control agenda. Remember, this is the unrepentant sky-is-falling guru who joined fellow whack jobs Paul and Anne Ehrlich in co-authoring “Ecoscience,” a creepy tome that called for saving the planet by proposing that:
–Women could be forced to abort their pregnancies, whether they wanted to or not.
–The population at large could be sterilized by infertility drugs intentionally put into the nation’s drinking water or food.
–Single mothers and teen mothers should have their babies seized from them against their will and given away to other couples to raise.
–People who “contribute to social deterioration” (i.e. undesirables) “can be required by law to exercise reproductive responsibility” — in other words, be compelled to have abortions or be sterilized.
–A transnational “Planetary Regime” should assume control of the global economy and also dictate the most intimate details of Americans’ lives — using an armed international police force.
The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy obstinately refused to answer my questions for Holdren on his views about forced abortions and mass sterilizations or on his continued embrace of forced-abortion advocate and eugenics guru Harrison Brown, whom he credits with inspiring him to become a scientist. Holdren’s mentor likened the global population to a “pulsating mass of maggots.”
These are not harmless dalliances of the past. Holdren’s insidious ideology — and his hidden policy communications — now have an untold impact on American taxpayers. He is the top strategist in Obama’s war on carbon, war on coal, war on the West and war on the economy. Holdren is the zealot “right at the heart” (as The New York Times put it) of devising White House climate change initiatives that reward environmental cronies, send electricity rates skyrocketing and kill jobs.
Who is Holdren conducting government business with, and what is he hiding from the public? What data is being doctored, what scientific evidence is being stonewalled in the name of rescuing the planet and consolidating power in the hands of the green elite? It’s time to turn up the heat.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Ambassador Kennedy used private email, watchdog says

Ambassador Caroline Kennedy and senior staff at the U.S. embassy in Japan used personal email accounts for official business, an internal watchdog report said Tuesday -- making Kennedy the latest Obama administration official to run afoul of email security guidelines.
The State Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) report said it received reports concerning the use of private email accounts for official business, and identified instances where emails labeled "sensitive but unclassified" were sent from or received by personal email accounts. 
“On the basis of these reports, OIG’s Office of Evaluations and Special Projects conducted a review and confirmed that senior embassy staff, including the Ambassador, used personal email accounts to send and receive messages containing official business. In addition, OIG identified instances where emails labeled Sensitive but Unclassified were sent from, or received by, personal email accounts," the report said.
The OIG stressed that department policy says employees generally should not use private accounts for official business, citing the risk of hacking and data loss. 
"Employees are also expected to use approved, secure methods to transmit sensitive but unclassified information when available and practical," the report says.
The report, conducted between January and March, comes as the same OIG office reviews email use and policies across the department amid the controversy over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email and server. The FBI is reviewing the security of that server, with questions mounting over whether classified material was improperly shared or stored on the Clintons' private account. 
Email issues aren't confined to the State Department. The IRS admitted Monday to a federal court there was a second personal email account -- set up under the name "Toby Miles" -- that Lois Lerner, the official at the heart of the Tea Party targeting scandal, used to conduct agency business.
But State Department messages can cover a range of sensitive and classified material involving America's allies and enemies. The OIG report does not appear to suggest a serious information breach. Sensitive but unclassified information can be shared outside of the government, though officials are required to use discretion. However, it puts further spotlight on the department's struggle to keep its information secure.
Kennedy, daughter of President John F. Kennedy, has been ambassador to Japan since November 2013.
The report also noted the economic section of the embassy – which works closely with the United States Trade Representative on the Trans-Pacific Partnership – was not maintaining centralized files, and the embassy has not enforced department or federal regulations on managing records.
“Officers have individual files based on their own filing systems, located in personal folders on a shared drive and in Microsoft Outlook email personal folders. These files are not accessible to anyone else and are not archived, retired, or retrievable,” the report said.
Asked about the report, a State Department official told The Associated Press that the embassy in Japan requires the use of official email accounts to conduct official business whenever possible, and indicated that Kennedy and other staff are acting on the inspector's recommendations.
"Ambassador Kennedy uses an official email address for official business. As the report reflects, in the past, like others at the mission, Ambassador Kennedy infrequently used her personal email account for official business," said the department official, who was not authorized to speak on the record and requested anonymity.
"This is allowed, so long as measures are taken to ensure that official records sent or received on personal email are preserved and other requirements are observed. The ambassador and embassy staff are implementing the OIG recommendations, including those regarding emails," the official said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Via: Fox News
Continue Reading....

Friday, August 21, 2015

[OPINION] David Sarasohn: Uncle Sam's failed mortgage-relief program

At the end of January 2009, less than a month in the Senate and a brand-new member of the Senate banking and housing committee, Jeff Merkley saw a problem in how the Obama administration was planning to deal with the Great Recession's mortgage crisis.

"Folks in key positions at the top of the Obama financial team," he cautioned, "are more oriented to Wall Street than families."

Despite Merkley's concerns, the administration proceeded with its Home Affordable Refinance Program and Home Affordable Modification Program, promising to adjust 4 million mortgages to keep families in their homes. Endangered homeowners would get in touch with their mortgage holders, get their payments reduced with the help of $50 billion in federal money set aside for the purpose, and both families and neighborhoods would be stabilized.

By that summer, the phones in government offices — and some at The Oregonian/OregonLive — were swamped by calls from applicants complaining about banks losing applications and documents, repeatedly asking applicants for the same information, telling homeowners not to make mortgage payments because they were applying for modification and then telling them they were in foreclosure because they hadn't made payments. By the end of 2009, Merkley warned, "There are some incredibly telling signs that this is not going well. The program is, so far, a huge disappointment."

By the end of the next year, the program that had promised to modify 4 million mortgages had totaled just over half a million. To the House financial services committee, Jack Schakett, Bank of America's executive for credit-loss-mitigation strategies, conceded "ineffective communications with customers, shortcomings in document maintenance, misunderstandings about program requirements and the inability to comply by some borrowers."

In 2011, Merkley introduced a bill to require banks to provide a single contact for applicants, to allow homeowners to refinance with different providers and to let bankruptcy judges modify the terms of mortgages, as they can with other debts. By then, Republicans had taken the House, and the issue was dead.

A report issued at the end of last month by Christy L. Romero, special inspector general of the Troubled Asset Relief Program, explained just how the program — which after six years has modified 887,000 mortgages, instead of 4 million — ended up as less profit than loss. With participation voluntary for the banks, all banks rejected the majority of applications — led by Citibank with 87 percent — and roadblocks in the process led virtually all applicants to be rejected the first time around. The report told of homeowners improperly rejected four times before finally, with legal help, getting approved.

"We are constantly seeing problems," Romero told The New York Times, "with the way servicers are treating homeowners and not following the rules. I don't understand why there hasn't been a stronger policing from Treasury on servicers."

To Merkley, his six-year-old doubts and objections about the program have all been painfully confirmed.

"The program was and is poorly defined," the senator said this month, and he holds to his diagnosis of the basic problem: Obama's economic advisers — Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and National Economic Council Chairman Larry Summers — "were more concerned about strengthening the banks than helping families."

Partly as a result, the ultimate decisions were all made by the mortgage holders, often distracted by their collecting fees on overdue payments.

"There were fundamental conflicts of interest and poor design," concluded Merkley. "There is an incentive to prolong the process. The only point when it's in the interest of the banks (to complete the modification) is when a family is just about to go under."

Which, not occasionally, was too late.

The bail-out programs have now been extended through 2016, but nobody expects them to make much progress toward 4 million modifications, or in fact to make much progress at all. Merkley reports his office now gets only about one call a month on modifications — most of the people who needed help having found another approach or, more likely, having left their house.

Instead, Merkley thinks about what could have been the effect of the 3 million mortgage modifications that were promised but never achieved.

"That's a lot of families not relocated, of kids staying in their schools, of marital tensions that would have been directly reduced," he says. "It would have had a strengthening effect on the economy. It would have been a real win-win."

Instead, with the design and operation of the program, and how hard it was for homeowners to get help, the recovery didn't move as much.

But a lot of American families did.
David Sarasohn's column appears on Wednesdays and Sundays. He blogs at

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Letter: Obama Administration Releasing Violent Illegal Immigrants Back into U.S. Towns

U.S.-Mexico border / AP
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been releasing illegal immigrants with violent criminal records back into local U.S. communities, where they have often gone on to commit violent crimes against American citizens, according to new disclosures by a leading lawmaker and local law enforcement agencies.
Rep. Matt Salmon (R., Ariz.) and law enforcement officials petitioned the Obama administration on Wednesday to end a policy that enables illegal immigrants with criminal records to be released back into the United States.
Arizona law enforcement officials announced on Tuesday that three illegal aliens with violent criminal records had been released by DHS and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) back onto the streets, where they went on to commit crimes including kidnapping and murdering an infant.
The ongoing release of criminals from countries such as Iraq, Sudan, and Russia prompted Salmon to petition DHS “to stop freeing violent criminals who are in our country illegally,” according to a copy of letter sent to the department and obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.
At least three illegal aliens released by DHS in recent weeks have been charged with serious crimes, including the beating of a 7-week-old baby and immolation of a person, according to local law enforcement and Salmon.
“Despite the repeated attacks on American citizens by illegal aliens released from our jails, DHS refuses to stop freeing violent criminals who are in our country illegally,” Salmon wrote in his letter to DHS. “Just today, we learned of three more individuals set free on law-abiding Arizonans by the Department of Homeland Security. Their crimes included the beating to death of a seven-week-old baby and the stabbing, beating, and immolation of a police informant.”
One of those released is accused of kidnapping and murdering a police informant “by taking him to a wilderness area where he beat, stabbed, and lit his gasoline-soaked body on fire,” according to Salmon.
“Instead of immediately deporting them to their country of origin, ICE released these criminals into Arizona and … chose not to inform local law enforcement before the release of these criminals was completed,” Salmon wrote.
Salmon and officials in Arizona law enforcement are demanding DHS do more to prevent such releases.
“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement under current law can no longer legally hold the three individuals,” ICE press secretary Gillian Christensen said. “To further promote public safety and transparency, ICE notified local law enforcement agencies of the release of the individuals.”
“To be clear, the backgrounds of the individuals in question would generally make them enforcement priorities for ICE,” Christensen continued. “However, ICE has no legal basis for continuing to hold these individuals.”
Christensen said one individual is a lawful permanent resident and the other two were released due to a Supreme Court decision.
“ICE has been releasing these criminal illegal immigrants into local communities, that we as Sheriffs are sworn to protect,” the Arizona Sheriff’s Association (ASA) warned in a statement issued Tuesday. “You don’t have to be the Sheriff or a uniformed patrol deputy to realize that these dangerous criminals will reoffend and victimize our Arizona families.”
Just last week, ICE began to notify local law enforcement agencies of the release of violent illegal aliens. The implementation of this notification system comes after years of pressure from local law enforcement officials.
ICE notified Arizona law officials that three violent illegal aliens had been released back into the community.
“This first such notification of three dangerous criminal illegals has Arizona Sheriffs angry and concerned for the public’s safety,” the ASA said in its statement.
The issue has long plagued local law enforcement agencies, which have found themselves struggling to protect local communities after the Obama administration frees criminal illegal aliens.
In 2013, ICE freed 36,007 illegal aliens with criminal convictions across the nation, according to statistics compiled by Arizona law enforcement. At least 193 of those aliens released were convicted of homicides, 426 were convicted of sex crimes, and 303 convicted of kidnapping.
“The releases typically occurred without formal notice to local law enforcement agencies and victims,” according to the ASA.
In 2014, federal authorities released another 30,558 illegal aliens with criminal records.
“By simply notifying Sheriffs of the release of dangerous criminals doesn’t address the core problem that these dangerous criminals remain in America,” the ASA said.
Salmon says he is seeking a larger fix to the problem.
“Our Department of Homeland Security needs to focus more on securing our homeland, not on cornering the market as a transportation option for illegal aliens in the United States,” he wrote to DHS. “Americans need protection from violent criminals and an explanation for why DHS has been so miserably failing at their primary task.”
“How many more Americans must be murdered by illegal alien criminals before this administration begins taking the safety of Americans seriously?” the lawmaker asked.
Salmon went on to note that in one instance a illegal alien released by ICE was later apprehended and charged with “kidnapping, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, armed robbery, sexual abuse, and child molestation.”
“Obviously this is a direct result of this administration’s dangerous policy of releasing tens of thousands of criminal illegal aliens onto our streets and into our communities,” Salmon said.
Salmon has championed several pieces of federal legislation that would end the policy of “catch and release” and also establish mandatory minimum prison sentences for illegal aliens.
“Simply, put, there is no excuse for ICE to be releasing violent, criminal illegal aliens back onto our streets and into our communities,” Salmon wrote.

Monday, August 17, 2015

[OPINION] Obama’s 'catch and release' border strategy seeks security without processing

The administration’s current approach to dealing with detained illegal immigrants has been characterized as “catch and release.” It is an apt term. In fishing, “catch and release” is designed to preserve a population, and that is precisely what the Obama Administration’s border policies are doing in the American pond—preserving a population of dangerous, deported individuals with a criminal history who re-enter the United States illegally.
The “catch and release” approach undercuts the rule of law, and it ensures taxpayers’ money and safety will be sacrificed for a border immigration.
- Nelson Balido
Late last year, a leaked Department of Homeland Security documentrevealed that there are 176,000 illegal immigrants in the United States who were convicted in a court of law, lawfully deported from the United States and then returned. In addition to those proven criminals are those who go on to commit crimes after their premature release. As reported in April this year, Jonny Alberto Enamorado-Vasquez, an illegal immigrant from Honduras, was released from detention for “lack of space” and is now in a Houston jail on homicide charges. Jalmar Mejia-Lopez, initially booked as a 17-year-old when he crossed into the United States illegally, has been charged with aggravated rape for impregnating his 12-year-old girlfriend.
The Obama Administration is pushing for faster clearing of detention centers, ignoring rule of law in lieu of more expedient dictatorial direction. In some cases, the Administration’s approach ensures dangerous criminals never even reach federal custody. Take the Obama Administration’s Priority Enforcement Program (PEP), for example, which replaced the Bush-era Secure Communities program. PEP ties Immigration and Customers Enforcement (ICE) agents’ hands, limiting collaboration with state and local law enforcement while severely restricting when they can take custody of an illegal immigrant with a criminal conviction.
Such a blunt, limiting approach to a complex situation is not only illegal but may also reignite the massive influx of people streaming across the border who believe (perhaps correctly) that weak U.S. immigration enforcement will allow them to dodge U.S. law and find residency. In 2014, more than 60,000 families poured into the United States from Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and elsewhere. That tsunami of illegal immigration has subsided to a raging river, but it could surge again at any point.
Meanwhile, unilateral direction from the White House sends the wrong message to the dedicated Americans risking their lives on the border. Giving credit where due, the Border Patrol is working hard to better monitor the border and stop people who sneak into the United States. But there are laws on the books they are sworn to follow. If detention facilities are forcibly emptied before investigative and immigration workers have completed their processing protocols, what does that tell the Border Patrol or ICE agent who signed up to enforce the law, not circumvent it?
Most concerning about the Administration’s “catch and release” approach is that it puts millions of Americans in danger, particularly those in the Hispanic community. Many criminal immigrants flock to sanctuary cities, which, by local law or tradition, shelter illegal immigrants. Yet, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 75% of former prisoners in 30 states are arrested within 5 years of their release. It takes little deduction to recognize that creating a safe-haven for criminals jeopardizes the community in which they live, which in a sanctuary city may well be largely Hispanic.
Recently, Sen. Cruz (R-TX) held a hearing examining the number of illegal immigrants who are convicted of crimes and then return to our streets. Sen. Cruz explained that in 2013, 104,000 convicted criminals were released, since the Obama administration has refused to deport 68K criminals, required by federal law, and has also released 36,000 with criminal records who were in deportation hearings in 2013.
The hearing also included testimony from families of recent victims of illegal criminal violence:
  • In January, Grant Ronnebeck was shot while clerking at a convenience store.
  • In the fall, Michael Davis, Jr. and Danny Oliver, Sacramento law enforcement officers, were killed as they tried to protect residents.
  • In July, Kate Steinle was shot on Pier 14 in San Francisco.
Kate’s father, Jim Steinle, summed up the injustice many now endure: "Unfortunately due to disjointed laws, and basic incompetence on many levels, the U.S. has suffered a self-inflicted wound in the murder of our daughter by the hand of a person that should have never been on the streets of this country.”
Sens. Cruz and Session have each introduced measures to curb this crime. Sen. Cruz’s legislation, named “Kate’s Law” in her honor, establishes a five-year minimum sentence for anyone who illegally reenters the country.
Flinging open the detention doors for illegal immigrants to waltz freely into America without precisely following laws for detention, processing and deportation presents enormous threats. Many of our immigration woes lead right back to an Administration that views its authority as superseding legislation. But laws are not laws if they can be ignored because their implementation is too hard or sometimes unpalatable. The “catch and release” approach undercuts the rule of law, and it ensures taxpayers’ money and safety will be sacrificed for a border immigration
Nelson Balido is the managing principal at Balido and Associates, chairman of the Border Commerce and Security Council, and former member of the Homeland Security Advisory Council.  Follow him on Twitter: @nelsonbalido

Maryland’s GOP Governor Larry Hogan: Conservative Getting Things Done

Defeating the political machine in one-party Democratic stronghold Maryland, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan went from nobody to overnight (and still going) sensation among conservatives across the country, especially for Republicans in a state where, aside from a Congressman here and there plus a celebrity governor, Republicans never fared well. With “Change Maryland”, his non-partisan interest group with bipartisan support,  Governor Hogan pushed tax and spending cuts, supported education, and killed expensive public projects.

A team player interested not just in furthering his career but helping his fellow Republicans, the son of a former Congressman has invested time and energy improving the Republican brand and increasing GOP outreach to otherwise unknown or untapped constituencies, particularly young voter and minorities. With Republicans nearing majority status in select counties, plus the growing weariness of voters taxed and regulated beyond reason, Hogan declared joyfully on the steps of the state house: “It’s a great day to be a Republican in Maryland”. With majority control over five of nine county executive boards, the new Governor is setting his sights on long-term growth and development for a state which barely survived eight years of uber-liberal Martin O’Malley.

Hogan has issued executive orders to require state officials and legislators to end the endless gerrymandering which marginalizes the most resolute of Old Line State residents. Despite the current push-back from the still Democratically dominated state legislature in Annapolis, Hogan is gaining prestige and strength. People want change, and Hogan is bringing it. One of his most recent and popular measures? Reducing the tolls and fees for Marylanders as well as visitors traversing the state.  Following the Baltimore riots, the governor exulted with national press that Baltimore would celebrate its world famous horse race. Residents stepped out to clean up and improve their city. The port of Baltimore is open for business, and bringing in major commerce with the largest shipping firm in the world.

Law and order has become the order of the day under the Hogan Administration, too. Recently, he has shown some muscle against illegal immigration, particularly in cases where a violent crime has occurred, despite the two-to-one Democratic voter registration in the state and previous Democratic Governor Martin O’Malley’s relentless policies to promote illegal aliens and transform them into “new Americans”.

Departing from the previous governor’s policy of non-cooperation, Hogan informed Marylanders that he would change the course of the state’s non-compliance legacy, comply with the federal government, and detain illegal aliens for Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.

The Washington Post reports:
Immigration advocates in Maryland are criticizing a decision by Gov. Larry Hogan to notify federal immigration officials when an illegal immigrant targeted for deportation is released from the state-run Baltimore City Detention Center.

Advocates consider Hogan’s stance to be a departure from the policy of his predecessor, Democrat Martin O’Malley, who last year joined other elected officials in refusing requests from the Obama administration to coordinate with federal law enforcement whenever a detainee was being released.

With a latent political savvy determined not only to thwart amnesty proponents but coalesce widespread general support for his decision, Hogan’s office responded:

When pro-amnesty group CASA de Maryland protested outside Governor Hogan’s mansion, hisoffice released another statement:

The Baltimore City Detention Center is simply complying with a request from the Obama administration in regard to individuals who have already been detained. If CASA has concerns about Obama’s Priority Enforcement Program, I would recommend they take those concerns to the White House.

“Priority Enforcement” comes in light of President Obama’s executive amnesty in late November last year, when he announced to the United States that he would defer deportation and permit five million illegal aliens to remain in the country who had not broken any other laws.
What a supreme and gratifying irony: A Republican governor in a deep blue state is enforcing the law,, rounding up illegal aliens who endanger the public; an executive —whoa—enhances public safety all while rebuffing critics by referencing the President’s own unconstitutional order to expand immigration and benefits to illegal aliens. Even the “shrilly, shrilly liberal” Washington Post had to concede to the Republican governor’s “common sense” on immigration.

Following those bold measures, Governor Hogan took unprecedented action and shut down a corrupt, inefficient, and dysfunctional detention center in Baltimore City, too. Fiscal prudent and morally sound, Hogan practices fiscal discipline without sacrificing the safety and security of his citizens. Surviving and thriving in spite of non-Hodgkins lymphoma, the (once considered unlikely) conservative Republican Governor of Maryland has become the face of the growing conservative upswing sweeping the country, a nation fed up with government serving itself instead of taxpayers, hardworking men and women who just want a leader who will get things done.

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