-- by Maria Sachetti, The Washington Post:
An increase in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids around the country and the recent White House executive order on immigration has kept immigration at the forefront of national debate. With far too much regularity, we hear reports of ICE stakeouts at church homeless shelters or of the Dreamer, whose DACA status had expired, but nonetheless spoke out on behalf of undocumented immigrants and was taken into custody by ICE raids.
These recent happenings have incited fear among members of the Latino community and other communities of immigrants. As we have said before, “our leaders must welcome the immigrants who have made their way here — not just for humanitarian reasons but for economic ones too.”
The Trump Administration has given a national platform to the alt-right’s hateful immigration agenda, and mobilized this audience with one dog whistle after another. The leaders of these organizations admit that they have only recently been given a seat at the table, despite many years of advocating their views and building their operation. In fact, Roy Beck, President of NumbersUSA, gleefully highlighted his organization’s newfound status under the Trump Administration saying, “we have been in the wilderness for 20 years under the Clinton, Bush, and Obama Administrations. It doesn’t matter the party. And yes, now we are in the room.”
In a recent Atlanta Daily World article, Hazel Trice Edney notes that the Trump Administration’s nomination of Senator Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General, its continued advocacy for a southern border wall, and its attempts to implement a Muslim travel ban have all been applauded by right-wing hate groups such as NumbersUSA, Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) and Center for Immigration Studies (CSIS) who “make up the network that lay the foundation for this vitriolic movement.”
Over the last decade, these extreme anti-immigration groups have received a staggering $20 million from the Foundation for the Carolinas, an organization run by individuals such as Fred Stanback, a wealthy North Carolina octogenarian who has been plotting a population control, pro-white agenda. In 2015 alone, Roy Beck’s NumbersUSA received $3 million from the Foundation, according to its tax records.
-- by Andrew Sourgel, US News & World Report
A group of nearly 1,500 economists and experts – including a half-dozen Nobel laureates and a cadre of high-ranking officials from previous presidential administrations – wrote to leaders of Congress and President Donald Trump on Wednesday reiterating the value of immigrants to the U.S. economy and pushing for lawmakers to "modernize" the country's immigration system.
The letter, coordinated by the right-leaning American Action Forum and New American Economy advocacy groups, featured a bipartisan smorgasbord of signatures, including economic advisers and officials who previously worked under former Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.
"Some of us favor free markets while others have championed for a larger role for government in the economy," the letter reads. "But on some issues there is near universal agreement. One such issue concerns the broad economic benefit that immigrants to this country bring."
The Hispanic Institute's Statement on President Barack Obama's Executive Order on Immigration Policy
For Immediate Release
We are more than pleased that the President has taken this incremental move toward fairness and justice in immigration policy. While we hoped this administration would have acted much earlier, thus sparing pain for countless hard-working families who were dedicated to helping this nation and its residents make a better life, we applaud his determination and encourage him in the battle that lies ahead.
In that vein we welcome the dialogue that this action will provoke. But let us not forget that in terms of constitutional authority this administration has already used executive power to deport two million undocumented immigrants. The Republican opposition will not talk about those deportations because it demonstrates that the President has already done exactly what they have asked. This executive action is a sorely needed corrective measure.
We expect that the order will arouse some not-so-kind sentiments towards immigrants. However, in the end we believe "better angels" will prevail.
Contact: XiNomara Velazquez: (202) firstname.lastname@example.org
-- by THI Chairman Gus West, for The Hill:
January 13, 2016
There are few things that Latinos consume more than broadcast news. According to the Pew Hispanic Center, 86 percent of Latino adults say that on a typical weekday they get their news from television, and nearly 70 percent say they rely on Spanish language news media. Broadcast news continues to be an integral and positive part of Hispanicfamilies’ daily media diet in this country.
At the Hispanic Institute, we are troubled by Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler’s proposalto eliminate long-standing broadcast exclusivity rules – rules that protect TV broadcasters so that they are compensated fairly for the redistribution of their content by cable providers. These regulations also allow the FCC to review complaints by broadcasters that cable companies have violated the terms of these agreements. While the Hispanic Institute supports free enterprise, we also advocate for a fair, competitive marketplace and regulations that help our families – not harm them. Unfortunately, Chairman Wheeler’s proposal falls into thelatter category.
-- by Gus West, for The Hill:
March 10, 2016
Once again, the powerful and wealthy pay-TV industry is playing politics with Americans’ access to vital programming in order to pad their pocketbooks. On Friday, March 4, AT&T U-Verse stopped providing Univision’s networks to its millions of subscribers around the United States. While AT&T has agreed to pay market rates to English-language broadcasters, it apparently does not feel it necessary to treat the largest U.S. Spanish-language network, known for its unique relationship and commitment to the Hispanic community, in the same manner.
-- by Gus West for The Las Vegas Sun, March 16, 2017:
It’s safe to say that Donald Trump doesn’t have many fans in the Hispanic community.
ButHispanics shouldn’t take Trump’s election as a personal affront — or a signal that they’re unwelcome in their own land.In fact, polling data show that the United States remains far more united in its commitment totolerance, diversity and fair immigration policy than at any time in our history.
Those who value these principles can’t afford to be distracted by their private contempt for Trump. On the contrary, now is the time for sober, loyal opposition focused on the legitimate policy threats posed by an erratic president.
That process starts with the recognition that Trump’s divisive tenor, particularly on immigrationissues, isn’t representative of the nation at large. After all, his share of the popular vote was nearly 3 million short of his opponent Hillary Clinton’s. The “rigged system” that Trump spent much of the campaign decrying is what installed him in the White House.
-- by Ross Ramsey and Jim Malewitz, The Texas Tribune:
Some of Texas’ 36 congressional districts violate either the U.S. Constitution or the federal Voting Rights Act, a panel of federal judgesruled Friday.
In a long-delayed ruling, the judges ruled 2-1 that the Texas Legislature must redraw the political maps it most recently used for the2016 elections.
"The Court finds that this evidence persuasively demonstrates that mapdrawers intentionally packed [concentrated certain populations] and cracked [diluted certain populations] on the basis of race (using race as a proxy for voting behavior) with the intent to dilute minority voting strength," U.S. District Judges Orlando Garcia and Xavier Rodriguez wrote in the majority opinion.
Specifically, they pointed to Congressional District 23, which stretches from San Antonio to El Paso, takes in most of the Texas-Mexico border and is represented by Republican Will Hurd of Helotes; Congressional District 27, represented by Blake Farenthold, R-Corpus Christi; and Congressional District 35, a Central Texas district represented by Lloyd Doggett, D-Austin.
- The chief justice of the California Supreme Court wrote to the attorney general and the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Thursday, expressing concern about reports that immigration agents were “stalking” courthouses.
-- by Herman Schwartz, The Nation: