Today on CSPAN … tune into what is going on in Congress too!
Thad Allen Briefing: c-span.org at 3pm ET
Senate Hearing: c-span.org at 2pm ET
JEC Hearing: C-SPAN3 at 2pm ET
The weekend is almost here and most of us will be at home maybe relaxing, drinking coffee, getting up to do errands or go to church; basically not experiencing natural or man-made disasters like the one by BP, but most of us will not be in the path of tornados , earthquakes over 6.0, mine disasters, or sinking oil rigs. It does seem like Americans are easily desensitized from the events that have happened over the last few days or months. Do not get me wrong, yes, life goes on yet the latest moves from the very people voted into public service have shown fear that cannot be ignored because we are all going to be feeling it. We all need to be responsible for watching, listening to how these new Arizona laws just waiting to go in effect at the end of the month effect the Arizona people, specifically the brown ones. The birther law will essentially make it impossible to run for office in AZ without producing a birth certificate that they feel or deem valid and the police will handle SB1070, which legalizes racial profiling, and take note fear is driving these two laws.
The question is what kind of fear. Yes, there is a lot of violence, drugs, and large numbers of people literally shooting their way into our borders and it definitely has to be dealt with as soon as possible. Though the way to resolve immigration is not by making life harder for some that have lived year for generations or picking up people merely because they look a certain way, talk a certain way or judge them by their shoes – is just wrong. It’s not only wrong but is it just me or is it strange to be giving ICE authority to the local police who are already stretched to the limit and who clearly are not immigration agents to behave like them just makes no sense. The move does make it impossible for Congress not to address; they have to and anyone with common sense knows that the law in and of itself could incite big ole problems.
Arizona was a beautiful place that some say is of a diverse population. The reports say Hispanics make up 30% of the population. I wonder if that includes the many undocumented who have been here for generations have children that were born here who are hiding in the shadows now. I will admit to liking some of the stuff McCain said prior to the 2008 elections because it seemed like a foundation could be made between Republicans and Democrats when the legislation finally reached the floor of Congress. But, like everything else -Republicans have stalled and blocked the progress of immigration and are now talking about immigration like it is a dirty word. This sadly includes Sen. John McCain and other Republicans who once were open to offering a pathway, offering legislation for legal immigration now are turning their backs on any path proving apparently they can only offer lies.
In a time when we have to accept, our government needs to be changed significantly as well as a need for bipartisanship not lies should be in full force on the floor of Congress for all Americans and quite obviously, it is not. I have found some of the attitude change or adjustment by democrats in Congress refreshing … to explain better; the notion that having a Democratic majority in both Chambers of Congress but were unable to get legislation through at the beginning of President Obama’s first year in office still is awkward or strange. The fact remains actual work is getting done. It has been slow but progress is real and continuous efforts for bipartisanship on most legislation are also a reality but if those efforts on the Republican side become disingenuous, the Democratic Party needs to move forward, which it seems to be doing even with all the comments and or noise coming from the right.
The noise and comments from Sen. Graham shows not only how Congress in the past were unable to handle more than one issue at a time but Republicans are willing to obstruct progress of all Americans for their own agenda; we have many American issues that need to be worked on at the same time. The news that Sen. Graham essentially is having a tantrum after 6 full months of work and a possible agreement on Climate being made on a bipartisanship path is huge. That being said, Graham is now stating”, putting a climate bill on hold is a cynical and or political ploy by Sen. Harry Reid; moving forward on immigration reform being hurried and panicky seemed to be reckless”
We the People certainly are not stupid enough to believe that the current situation with immigration is small, can be put on hold for climate change or clean energy policy or that it’s a political ploy and just hearing it is offensive. We all know that Republicans have a policy of NO a political ploy would not you say … we need lawmakers to do their jobs even if it means solving more than one at a time.
President Obama has proven he can handle more than one American issue at a time, the question is can our Democratic Party do the same.
Other News …
Budget deficit, jobs and economy focus of admin. appearances
Vice President Biden and the Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers Christina Romer will unveil the latest CEA quarterly report on the economic impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). The report will cover the amount of private sector jobs created through Recovery Act investment projects. Later, at a Joint Economic Committee hearing, Ms. Romer will give further evidence of the Recovery Act’s impact on job creation and economic growth. Recent reports show the U.S. federal budget deficit at $1 trillion with three months to go in this budget year.
$257.3 billion from the $787 billion stimulus fund has been paid out to states, according to the latest White House release. The Recovery Act was signed into law by President Obama on February 17th, 2009.
Holbrooke, Crocker Update Congress on civilian strategy in Afghanistan
A top American official in the Afghanistan war will go before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee today to review the governance and civilian strategy in Afghanistan. Richard Holbrooke, the Obama administration’s special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan will testify alongside former Ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker.
Following last month’s career-ending quotes by Gen. Stanley McChrystal in Rolling Stone magazine, Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), a committee member, requested an immediate hearing on U.S. goals in Afghanistan. Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA) scheduled the hearing which is expected to reaffirm the U.S. troop draw down next year and “provide clarity” on the administration’s handling of the war.
Integrity Tests delayed on Containment Cap, Relief Well
BP has delayed testing today to determine whether a new containment cap placed on the leaking well will contain the oil spilling into the Gulf. Additionally, Coast Guard and BP announced a temporary halt to the drilling of a relief well. Both groups will provide updates this afternoon — Thad Allen is scheduled to brief the media at 3pm (ET) and BP is expected to update later this afternoon.
The Interior Department announced Monday that they are issuing a second moratorium to block deepwater drilling. The new moratorium is not based on water depth like the first, but still targets deepwater drilling. The six-month moratorium is in place while oil and gas companies develop and implement new safety measures in response to the Deepwater Horizon explosion. Last Thursday, a federal appeals court rejected the U.S. government’s effort to keep a deepwater drilling ban in place after a lower court struck down the original ban.
The national commission investigating the cause of the Gulf Coast disaster yesterday completed its public meeting in New Orleans. The commissioners heard testimony involving the status of the spill response and the economic and community impact to the region. Witnesses included Adm. Peter Neffenger, Deputy Incident Commander, and Sr. VP of BP North America, Kent Wells. The commission also heard from Gulf citizens and business owners on the drilling moratorium and the impact to local communities