April 24th, 2014
We found it well beyond "curious" that such a shrewd and cagey rancher, in Cliven Bundy, who had managed to garner both public fervor and the social media as well, would then all of a sudden cluelessly fall on the rusty sword of racial bias....quite curious, indeed.
Huffington Post/ Views from the Left
NEW YORK -- Fox News host Sean Hannity said Thursday that Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy's racist remarks are “beyond repugnant” and “beyond despicable.”
For the past several weeks, the conservative Fox News network has given a major platform to Bundy. Some of its hosts and guests have portrayed his standoff with authorities over not paying fees to use federal land as a populist fight against an encroaching government. In a two-week stretch this month, Fox News devoted four hours and 40 minutes to Bundy’s story during late afternoon and evening broadcasts, according to progressive watchdog Media Matters.
But Fox News was noticeably silent on Thursday morning as others reacted to Bundy's controversial remarks on race, published Wednesday night by The New York Times. The Times' Adam Nagourney reported that Bundy had wondered during a public press conference if “Negro” people were “better off as slaves."
Fox News host Greta Van Susteren quickly condemned Bundy’s remarks on her blog, but media attention remained focused on how Hannity might respond. That's because Hannity has led the charge in promoting Bundy’s cause and, in recent days, sparred with Jon Stewart on the issue.
The "Daily Show" host ripped Hannity for dropping his typical law-and-order posture-- at least when it comes to undocumented immigrants or Occupy protesters -- in favor of supporting a rancher who has flouted the law for two decades and ignored court decisions ordering him to remove his cattle from land he doesn't own. Bundy had declared a "ranch war," and armed militia members flocked to the scene.
"Apparently Sean Hannity thinks laws are served buffet-style in that you can pick and choose the ones that you like best,” Stewart said Monday. “The ones that you don't like, you don't have to abide."
Hannity acknowledged the media attention Thursday by welcoming the “liberal media," who were “waiting for my comments breathlessly."
While distancing himself from the racist remarks, Hannity still argued that the way federal agents had tried to seize Bundy’s cattle was wrong. The host stressed that he has been, and will continue to be, opposed to "government overreach.”
Hannity said he was angry Thursday because people who "for the right reasons saw this case as government overreach now are like branded because of the ignorant, racist, repugnant, despicable comments of Cliven Bundy."
Other conservatives who had praised Bundy similarly tried to distance his remarks from the larger issue.
National Review correspondent Kevin Williamson told Talking Points Memo that Bundy's "racial rhetoric is lamentable and backward," but is still "separate from the fundamental question here, which is the federal government's acting as an absentee landlord for nine-tenths of the state of Nevada."
Hannity said he'll continue to cover what he considers government overreach, and it appears Fox News, more broadly, will do so, too.
On Thursday morning, another Fox News host and a Fox News correspondent each referenced Bundy in stories relating to a land dispute in Texas. They did not, however, mention his controversial remarks.
More from the Huffington Post
April 24th, 2014
By Sheila McLaughlin
MADISON TOWNSHIP House Speaker John Boehner theatrically mocked his fellow Republican Congressmen for being afraid to reform immigration policy when he spoke Thursday before the Middletown Rotary Club in his home district.
"Here's the attitude. Ohhhh. Don't make me do this. Ohhhh. This is too hard," Boehner whined before a luncheon crowd at Brown's Run County Club in Madison Township.
"We get elected to make choices. We get elected to solve problems and it's remarkable to me how many of my colleagues just don't want to ... They'll take the path of least resistance."
Boehner said he's been working for 16 or 17 months trying to push Congress to deal with immigration reform.
"I've had every brick and bat and arrow shot at me over this issue just because I wanted to deal with it. I didn't say it was going to be easy," he said.
The GOP-controlled House has refused to pass the immigration proposal passed by the Democrat-led Senate that includes a path to citizenship for millions of people living illegally in the United States. Critics characterize it as amnesty. Boehner is advocating for a step-by-step process that starts with securing borders and enforcing immigration laws. He can't get the House to consider it.
Boehner's appearance in Butler County Thursday was part of a barnstorming effort in his home district leading up to the primary. Boehner faces three opponents in the GOP primary May 6.
On the tea party: "There's the tea party and then there are people who purport to represent the tea party.
"I've gone to hundreds of tea party events over the last four years. The makeup is pretty much the same. You've got some disaffected Republicans, disaffected Democrats. You always have a handful of anarchists.
They are against everything. Eighty percent of the people at these events, are the most ordinary Americans you've ever met. None of whom have ever been involved in politics. We in public service respect the fact that they brought energy to the political process.
April 24th, 2014
On Thursday, 22 Republican senators, including even Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), denounced President Barack Obama in a scathing letter for threatening America's "entire constitutional system" with his immigration "enforcement review" that threatens to "nullify" the nation's immigration laws.
by TONY LEE
"Your actions demonstrate an astonishing disregard for the Constitution, the rule of law, and the rights of American citizens and legal residents," the senators wrote in a letter to Obama. "Our entire constitutional system is threatened when the Executive Branch suspends the law at its whim and our nation’s sovereignty is imperiled when the commander-in-chief refuses to defend the integrity of its borders."
After intense pressure from pro-amnesty groups who fear that amnesty legislation will not pass this year, Obama's Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson met with advocacy groups last month to reportedly consider administrative actions--such as granting more forms of amnesty, not deporting illegal immigrants who have not committed "major" crimes, and allowing bond hearings for illegal immigrants--to further erode the nation's laws. The senators said they had "grave concerns" with these potential actions because they "would represent a near complete abandonment of basic immigration enforcement and discard the rule of law and the notion that the United States has enforceable borders."
"These policies have operated as an effective repeal of duly enacted federal immigration laws and exceed the bounds of the Executive Branch’s prosecutorial discretion," the senators wrote. "It is not the province of the Executive to nullify the laws that the people of the United States, through their elected representatives, have chosen to enact. Congress has not passed laws permitting people to illegally enter the country or to ignore their visa expiration dates, so long as they do not have a felony conviction or other severe offense on their record."
Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), who also signed the letter and has relentlessly debunked the notion that Obama is the so-called "deporter in chief," told Breitbart News that Obama's immigration policies also further hollow out the Middle Class that has been found to no longer be the world's wealthiest and hurt Americans at the bottom of the economic ladder Obama claims he wants to help.
"The Administration’s immigration policies are widening the income gap the White House claims it wishes to narrow," Sessions told Breitbart News. "American workers have a right to the protections our immigration laws afford, but the Administration has nullified those protections while simultaneously pushing to double the flow of future guest workers into the United States. These policies make it more difficult for the working poor of all backgrounds to rise into the middle class.”
He also said that even though "evidence proves that the Administration has collapsed immigration enforcement," with the result that "millions of struggling Americans have been deprived of their jobs and incomes," Congressional Democrats "continue to empower the illegality and stonewall all efforts to stop it.”
April 24th, 2014
April 24th, 2014
By Kenric Ward | Watchdog.org Virginia Bureau
RICHMOND, Va. – A crosscheck of voter rolls in Virginia and Maryland turned up 44,000 people registered in both states, a vote-integrity group reported Wednesday.
And that’s just the beginning.
“The Virginia Voters Alliance is investigating how to identify voters who are registered and vote in Virginia but live in the states that surround us,” Alliance President Reagan George told the State Board of Elections.
George acknowledged that the number of voters who actually cast multiple ballots is relatively small. In the case of Maryland and Virginia, he revealed that 164 people voted in both states during the 2012 election.
But George said his group will expand their search for duplicate voters in the District of Columbia, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, North Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia and Georgia.
“We are also determining the best way to identify non-citizens who have registered to vote and may have voted in past elections,” George said.
Working with the Privileges and Elections committees of the state House and Senate, VVA identified 31,000 dead voters via the Social Security Administration’s Death Master File. Subsequent processing by SBE found 40,000 to 60,000 dead voter registrations.
“Dead voter registrations are prime targets for voter fraud which generate few complaints,” George noted.