The Department of Justice Is Considering Arresting Sanctuary City Politicians

Immigration advocates say the move poses “a serious First Amendment problem.”


The Department of Justice is considering subjecting state and local officials to criminal charges if they implement or enforce so-called sanctuary policies that bar jurisdictions from cooperating with immigration authorities. Immigration advocates argue such a move would be illegal. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen made the disclosure Tuesday during a Senate committee hearing on…

 

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Emerging GOP Leader in Virginia Abruptly Quits Republican Party Because of Trump’s Racism

“It has become clear to me that today’s Republican Party is dominated by people who harbor deep anti-immigrant sentiments.”


“I’m totally out.” That’s what 28-year-old Republican activist Kyle McDaniel, who served on the party’s state central committee for two years, told the Washington Post after President Donald Trump’s leaked remarks calling African nations “sh*thole countries” and questioning why we should welcome more Haitian immigrants.

McDaniel has volunteered in Haiti with his church and considered adopting a child from the region with his wife.

“I have, on more occasions than I care to recall, been forced to ‘bite my tongue’ when in conversation with other party leaders about the issues of the day,” McDaniel wrote in his resignation letter to state party leaders. “I cannot in good faith continue to do that.”

McDaniel not only condemned Trump, but the Republican Party at large, writing, “It has become clear to me that today’s Republican Party is dominated by people who harbor deep anti-immigrant sentiments.”

Officials in the state Republican Party are reportedly worried that McDaniel’s public disowning of the party is representative of a possible trend by younger Republicans to leave.

Fairfax County Supervisor Pat Herrity (R-Springfield) said he expected McDaniel, his former employee, to run for office in the future as a Republican.

McDaniels made it clear that a return to the GOP isn’t in the cards for him.

“I’ll support candidates I agree with, but as far as any party affiliation, I’m out,” he said. “I’m independent.” 

 

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USA Today Editorial Board Calls Trump an ‘Inveterate Liar’ and Blasts Republicans for Enabling Him

“[N]o legislative priority is worth sacrificing your credibility to protect a president with so little regard for decency and honesty.”


“It’s bad enough that the president of the United States is an inveterate liar,” the Editorial Board of USA Today opens its scathing op-ed. “It’s even worse when members of Congress and his Cabinet feel compelled to lie on his behalf.”

The piece focuses on President Donald Trump’s racist reference to African nations as “sh*thole countries” and how Republicans are choosing to mislead the public on his behalf by calling into question the reports that he made the remarks at all.

“It defies credulity to think that anyone else who was in the room could forget such a remarkable exchange,” the Board writes. “Yet the other participants have chosen to lie, develop amnesia, or go mute.”

The Board also calls out a series of Republican leaders by name for refusing to set the record straight after being in the room when Trump made the vulgar remarks. “House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., and Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Fla., the son of Cuban immigrants — have gone radio silent on the subject. Let’s hear from them.”

As for Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen’s claim that she didn’t “hear that word used,” referring to “sh*thole,” the Board responds, “Sure. Whatever.”

The piece concludes that “no legislative priority is worth sacrificing your credibility to protect a president with so little regard for decency and honesty.”

 

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Kamala Harris Blisters ‘Racist’ Kirstjen Nielsen in Fiery Senate Interrogation

The Department of Homeland Security chief looked visibly uncomfortable.


Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) sparred with Homeland Security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen over the president’s racist remarks — and the administration official’s apparent support for those views.

Nielsen said earlier Tuesday during testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee that the president was simply repeating an observation about hard-working Norwegian immigrants, but Harris said Trump was unfavorably comparing them to African and Haitian immigrants.

“You spoke of them, according to the president, as the people of Norway — well, you know, they work very hard — the inference being the people of the 54 states of Africa and Haiti do not,” Harris said. “That is a fair inference.”

She then blasted Nielsen’s claim under oath that she was not aware that Norway was a majority white nation.

“You run the Department of Homeland Security,” Harris continued, “and when you say you don’t know if Norway is predominantly white when asked by a member of the United States Senate, that causes me concern about your ability to understand the scope of your responsibilities and the impact of your words — much less the policies that you promulgate in that very important department.”

Harris asked Nielsen why she ignored domestic terrorist attacks by white supremacists in her opening remarks about security threats faced by the U.S. — and she said the omission was “deeply troubling.”

“You must understand the inference, the reasonable inference, that the American public is drawing from the words you speak much less the words of the president of the United States,” Harris said.

Nielsen later complained that Harris had unfairly drawn conclusions based on her testimony.

“If you don’t mind, it’s not a fair inference to say that my comments about Norway were in contrast to any other country,” Nielsen said. “What I was describing was the president’s views upon meeting with the prime minister, and what I was quoting was what he was told in meeting with the Norwegian delegation. That’s what he repeated, words that he repeated that I repeated. It was not in contrast. With respect to white supremacy, we expanded our prevention efforts in the Department of Homeland Security to ensure we in fact are going after violence of any kind, any kind is not appropriate and I will not allow it to occur if it’s within our authority to stop.”

Harris made one brief response before ceding the floor.

“Mr. Chairman, I would just ask that the record — so we can all review it — will reflect in the opening statements when discussing challenges to our homeland in terms of security, the white supremacist threat was not mentioned,” Harris said.

 

 

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Father Ripped from Family’s Arms in Latest ICE Atrocity

“If Jorge isn’t safe, no one is safe.”


As the brutal attack on immigrant families and communities by President Donald Trump and Republicans in Congress continues, the video of a husband and father being ripped from the arms of his wife and two teenage kids and deported on Monday—which happened to be Martin Luther King, Jr. Day—offers the last up-close and personal example of what the GOP’s cruel and far-reaching policies look like in practice.

As the Detroit Free Press reports:

His arms wrapped around his wife and two teenage children, Jorge Garcia’s eyes welled up Monday morning as he looked into their eyes one last time near the entrance to the airport security gate at Detroit Metro Airport. 

His wife, Cindy Garcia, cried out while his daughter, Soleil, 15, sobbed into Garcia’s shoulder as they hugged. Two U.S. immigration agents kept a close watch nearby.

After 30 years of living in the U.S, Garcia, a 39-year-old Lincoln Park landscaper, was deported on the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. holiday from metro Detroit to Mexico, a move supporters say was another example of immigrants being unfairly targeted under the Trump administration.

The scene at the airport, with immigration officials standing to the side to escort Garcia onto a plane, was caught in this heart-wrenching video:

 

EMOTIONAL SCENE: A tearful Detroit father says goodbye to his wife and children before being deported to Mexico after living in the U.S. for nearly 30 years. Jorge Garcia came to America with an undocumented relative at the age of 10. He is too old to fall under DACA protection. pic.twitter.com/gI2dMWwlJ8

— ABC World News Now (@abcWNN) January 16, 2018

“How do you do this on Martin Luther King Jr. Day?” Erik Shelley, a leader with Michigan United, an immigrant rights group, told the Free Press. “It’s another example of the tone-deafness of this administration. … If Jorge isn’t safe, no one is safe.”

Brought to the U.S. by an older relative when he was just 10 years old, Garcia is now too old to qualify for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program which is now the center of heated negotiations on Capitol Hill.

Nearly forty, Garcia has now living the U.S. for three decades. According to reports he has never been in trouble with the law (not even a parking ticket) and pays his taxes each year.

Before his deportation, Garcia spoke of his sadness and worries for the future. “I got to leave my family behind, knowing that they’re probably going to have a hard time adjusting,” he said. “Me not being there for them.”

 

 

 

 

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Trump Appears Hell-Bent on Ending Immigration to America Altogether

Republicans have long claimed they were OK with legal immigration. Under Trump and Sessions, forget it.


If you happened to take a breather over the past few days you may have missed that Donald Trump told the DACA negotiators last Thursday that he didn’t like the compromise they’d come up with because he didn’t want any immigrants from “shithole countries” in Africa and wondered why we couldn’t just have immigration from places like Norway. The firestorm from those remarks is ongoing, with Senate Republican henchmen like Tom Cotton, R-Ark., and David Perdue, R-Ga., going on the Sunday shows and cravenly changing their stories about the meeting from “I don’t recall” to “nope, he never said it.”

This has now become one of Trump’s loyalty tests: which Republicans are willing to ignore the fact that the emperor is running around without his pants on. Of course he said it. There are probably not more than a handful of Americans who doubt it.

This is a man whose racism, xenophobia and nativism stretch back 50 years. In the 1970s, Donald Trump and his father were named in a housing discrimination suit against Puerto Ricans and African-Americans and had to operate under a consent decree. He ranted for years against policies that forbid police brutality, particularly in communities of color. This is a man who told associates he didn’t want black accountants because they were “lazy” and testified against Native American gaming by saying that tribal negotiators “don’t look like Indians to me.”

During the course of Trump’s presidential campaign he famously slagged Mexicans and Muslims as criminals and terrorists. Since then he has stood up for Nazis and neo-Confederates and called black football players who knelt during the national anthem “sons of bitches.” The New York Times reported that he recently said “Haitians all have AIDS” and that if we allowed Nigerians to come into the country they’d never go “back to their huts.”

This is the man who made his name in right-wing politics by elevating the lunatic-fringe conspiracy theory of birtherism into the mainstream.

So all these Trump loyalists who want to clutch their pearls and insist that he could never say anything so racist as “shithole countries” are making fools of themselves.

Unfortunately, the destruction of the Republican Party’s tattered credibility isn’t our biggest problem. The futures of the nearly 800,000 Dreamers who face mass deportation because of Trump’s reversal of the DACA program are hanging in the balance. Trump’s administration is also planning the mass deportation of nearly 250,000 Salvadorans, along with tens of thousands of HonduransHaitians and others, all of whom have been legally living in this country for many years, and many of whom have American children.

Unfortunately, Republicans are no longer just feigning horror at undocumented immigrants or those here with legal but temporary status to salve their insecure white base. They are following Trump down the white nationalist rabbit hole, head first.

Republicans are now pushing for changes to legal immigration the likes of which we haven’t seen since the the 1920s. (Apparently, we have finally located the era when Trump believes America was last great.)

The Los Angeles Times noted the abrupt GOP shift from a party that had traditionally made a sharp distinction between support for illegal and legal immigration, arguing that the latter was an important contribution to the economy and American cultural vitality. This wasn’t particularly partisan or controversial until recently, except among the far-right fringe. Now such mainstream leaders as the aforementioned Cotton and Perdue are pushing extremist legislation, backed by Trump’s malevolent adviser Stephen Miller, to slash the number of immigrants allowed into the U.S. each year and end all family reunification policies. Trump has adopted this policy in the form of one of his fatuous mantras: “End chain migration!”

I recall writing scathingly here at Salon about Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s foray into this issue during his ill-fated presidential campaign, after Walker conferred with then-Sen. Jeff Sessions and came out saying he was in favor of curtailing legal immigration. That seemed to be a huge mistake and was instrumental in alienating him from his benefactors, David and Charles Koch. A number of GOP senators, including Rob Portman of Ohio, rushed to the microphone to denounce this idea, saying, “As a party we’ve always embraced immigrants coming here legally, following the rules, and it’s enriched our country immeasurably. It’s who we are. It’s the fabric of our success.”

That was in August of 2015, when nobody dreamed that Trump would be president and Sessions would be attorney general two years later. They obviously didn’t know that Sessions and his apprentice Stephen Miller had written a white nationalist manifesto the previous January that was waiting to be taken up by any racist demagogue who wanted it. Walker flamed out early, but Trump picked up his torch and ran with it.

It was called  the “Immigration Handbook for the New Republican Majority, and it proposed a virtual halt to all immigration, legal and illegal, claiming that it is the cause of poverty, wage stagnation and the decline of the middle class. It’s a classic example of far-right populist misdirection, which explicitly references the racist and draconian Immigration Act of 1924, aka the National Origins Act and Asian Exclusion Act, claiming that the legislation “allowed wages to rise, assimilation to occur, and the middle class to emerge.”

Today is the national holiday to commemorate the life and achievement of Martin Luther King Jr. As is so often the case, he left us with the perfect words to express the American ideal that Trump is throwing into that hole in the outhouse.

This is from King’s famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail”:

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. Never again can we afford to live with the narrow, provincial “outside agitator” idea. Anyone who lives inside the United States can never be considered an outsider anywhere within its bounds.

President Trump does not agree. And he and the white nationalists who follow him now dominate one of America’s two major political parties.

 

 

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Trump Appears Hell-Bent on Ending Immigration to America Altogether

Republicans have long claimed they were OK with legal immigration. Under Trump and Sessions, forget it.


If you happened to take a breather over the past few days you may have missed that Donald Trump told the DACA negotiators last Thursday that he didn’t like the compromise they’d come up with because he didn’t want any immigrants from “shithole countries” in Africa and wondered why we couldn’t just have immigration from places like Norway. The firestorm from those remarks is ongoing, with Senate Republican henchmen like Tom Cotton, R-Ark., and David Perdue, R-Ga., going on the Sunday shows and cravenly changing their stories about the meeting from “I don’t recall” to “nope, he never said it.”

This has now become one of Trump’s loyalty tests: which Republicans are willing to ignore the fact that the emperor is running around without his pants on. Of course he said it. There are probably not more than a handful of Americans who doubt it.

This is a man whose racism, xenophobia and nativism stretch back 50 years. In the 1970s, Donald Trump and his father were named in a housing discrimination suit against Puerto Ricans and African-Americans and had to operate under a consent decree. He ranted for years against policies that forbid police brutality, particularly in communities of color. This is a man who told associates he didn’t want black accountants because they were “lazy” and testified against Native American gaming by saying that tribal negotiators “don’t look like Indians to me.”

During the course of Trump’s presidential campaign he famously slagged Mexicans and Muslims as criminals and terrorists. Since then he has stood up for Nazis and neo-Confederates and called black football players who knelt during the national anthem “sons of bitches.” The New York Times reported that he recently said “Haitians all have AIDS” and that if we allowed Nigerians to come into the country they’d never go “back to their huts.”

This is the man who made his name in right-wing politics by elevating the lunatic-fringe conspiracy theory of birtherism into the mainstream.

So all these Trump loyalists who want to clutch their pearls and insist that he could never say anything so racist as “shithole countries” are making fools of themselves.

Unfortunately, the destruction of the Republican Party’s tattered credibility isn’t our biggest problem. The futures of the nearly 800,000 Dreamers who face mass deportation because of Trump’s reversal of the DACA program are hanging in the balance. Trump’s administration is also planning the mass deportation of nearly 250,000 Salvadorans, along with tens of thousands of HonduransHaitians and others, all of whom have been legally living in this country for many years, and many of whom have American children.

Unfortunately, Republicans are no longer just feigning horror at undocumented immigrants or those here with legal but temporary status to salve their insecure white base. They are following Trump down the white nationalist rabbit hole, head first.

Republicans are now pushing for changes to legal immigration the likes of which we haven’t seen since the the 1920s. (Apparently, we have finally located the era when Trump believes America was last great.)

The Los Angeles Times noted the abrupt GOP shift from a party that had traditionally made a sharp distinction between support for illegal and legal immigration, arguing that the latter was an important contribution to the economy and American cultural vitality. This wasn’t particularly partisan or controversial until recently, except among the far-right fringe. Now such mainstream leaders as the aforementioned Cotton and Perdue are pushing extremist legislation, backed by Trump’s malevolent adviser Stephen Miller, to slash the number of immigrants allowed into the U.S. each year and end all family reunification policies. Trump has adopted this policy in the form of one of his fatuous mantras: “End chain migration!”

I recall writing scathingly here at Salon about Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s foray into this issue during his ill-fated presidential campaign, after Walker conferred with then-Sen. Jeff Sessions and came out saying he was in favor of curtailing legal immigration. That seemed to be a huge mistake and was instrumental in alienating him from his benefactors, David and Charles Koch. A number of GOP senators, including Rob Portman of Ohio, rushed to the microphone to denounce this idea, saying, “As a party we’ve always embraced immigrants coming here legally, following the rules, and it’s enriched our country immeasurably. It’s who we are. It’s the fabric of our success.”

That was in August of 2015, when nobody dreamed that Trump would be president and Sessions would be attorney general two years later. They obviously didn’t know that Sessions and his apprentice Stephen Miller had written a white nationalist manifesto the previous January that was waiting to be taken up by any racist demagogue who wanted it. Walker flamed out early, but Trump picked up his torch and ran with it.

It was called  the “Immigration Handbook for the New Republican Majority, and it proposed a virtual halt to all immigration, legal and illegal, claiming that it is the cause of poverty, wage stagnation and the decline of the middle class. It’s a classic example of far-right populist misdirection, which explicitly references the racist and draconian Immigration Act of 1924, aka the National Origins Act and Asian Exclusion Act, claiming that the legislation “allowed wages to rise, assimilation to occur, and the middle class to emerge.”

Today is the national holiday to commemorate the life and achievement of Martin Luther King Jr. As is so often the case, he left us with the perfect words to express the American ideal that Trump is throwing into that hole in the outhouse.

This is from King’s famous “Letter from Birmingham Jail”:

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly. Never again can we afford to live with the narrow, provincial “outside agitator” idea. Anyone who lives inside the United States can never be considered an outsider anywhere within its bounds.

President Trump does not agree. And he and the white nationalists who follow him now dominate one of America’s two major political parties.

 

 

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