Streams

Monday Morning Politics: "So Sue Me"

Monday, July 07, 2014

Inside the dome of the U.S. Capitol Building, Washington, D.C. (O Palsson/flickr)

Slate's chief political correspondent John Dickerson talks about the latest out of Washington after the long holiday weekend, including President Obama's taunt to House Speaker John Boehner on the Speaker's lawsuit over executive action. Plus: the argument over illegal immigration and what to do over unaccompanied minors and families crossing the US-Mexico border. 

Guests:

John Dickerson

Comments [32]

"Oh please" indeed, "we were a ragtag country" is a laughable retort. That British shelling really left us in a shambles! Germany had the Marshall Plan (within larger war-torn Europe - to stem the Cold War) and Japan had US aid rebuilding. Expecting Central America to "take responsibility" is nice personal self-help jargon, ignoring the larger dynamic we set up; look at El Salvador, Honduras & Guatemala, the countries with the most emigres. Nicaragua had Somoza, then a more successful socialist government - after the "Contras"; Belize, the former British Honduras, emerged unscathed, along with Costa Rica which had no military and is an anomaly, now with healthy tourism to boast. Panama is virtually a US colony (US carved out from Columbia), due to the canal and had no significant upheaval (except for toppling Noriega, who Papa Bush/CIA supported until he didn't). The "Pottery Barn rule" applies to more than just Iraq - or it should.

Jul. 09 2014 01:11 PM
Josh

oh please... no responsibility on those countries to clean up their problems? Japan and Germany were in literal ashes as somehow managed. We were a rag tag country and defeated the British empire. Stop with the victim mentality already. Or are you saying that these people are incapable and need our handouts?

Jul. 08 2014 02:01 PM

We spent $2 Billion in Iraq in a week, for years! As for burying one's head in the sand, I said the economic-labor issues of immigration abuse were valid, but (re: Tyrone to RCUB) seeing the SCOTUS decision in just terms of reproductive rights isn't just burying one's head, but taking the bait, taking umbrage that it "trumps" other concerns. Possibly Sharia law is being enabled, etc., which is what RCUB pointed out; he also said the kids were one thing but was firm on deportation as is the President - who is bound by a law Bush signed...As for the "failed economies" of Central America, it's an inconvenient truth, and opening oneself up to "blaming America first" but there's the legacy of United Fruit Co. with CIA support creating these "banana republics" - economic imperialism AND Cold War support for death squads/goon governments, creating subsequent civil wars. (Sound familiar?) Perhaps it was a Freudian slip to refer to "irradiation" in connection to the diseases of those from there (maybe Mayan human sacrifice is "in their blood"). WE HAVE a "point system" - those immigrants coming in on planes, getting documented, feel cheated more at its abuse than anyone else, but no other border divides 1st & 3rd world so; Africans are dying by the boatload to get across the Mediterranean to Europe.

Jul. 08 2014 01:32 PM
Edith from Manhattan

Well we just got an initial appropriation from the president solely for legal fees and detention centers for just this last month's influx and it is 2 Billion dollars --- 2 BILLION dollars!!!!!!! Don't get started on the benefits that will be doled out later when an illegal child is born, etc. This is a travesty.

Jul. 07 2014 08:06 PM
Nancy cadet from Fort Greene

Brian, a correction is necessary, on air. The Central American children are being processed following the law signed by GW Bush in 2008http://www.ice.gov/news/releases/0812/081223washington.htm
This is called the "William Wilbwrforce Act" in honor of the anti -human -trafficking activist.

You and your guest have researchers . You KNOW there is a law governing this. Why be afraid to say it, repeatedly?

Shame on you . The BBC. Has much higher standards .

Jul. 07 2014 02:53 PM
dlm

Dickerson omits that many Democrats feel Obama cannot lead. Obamacare should rightfully be called Pelosi care. Pelosi is the one who carried all the water for that legislation.

Jul. 07 2014 01:18 PM
Tyrone

I'm so glad you are smarter than my spelling auto-correct. Too bad that's where it ends. Continue to bury your head in the sand, brother.

Jul. 07 2014 12:47 PM

Foodstuff is "irradiated" not disease. A sad thing is to comment on a sad situation and say "It was ever thus" mentioning Mayans, etc. What has changed isn't "sellout politicians" but the paralyzing cynicism that trope entails. Tyrone's economic-labor issues/costs, while valid, are not the point. The other comment cited that Mexicans are able to be repatriated, but current laws leave the President no option; despite his high deportation rate, his call for immigration reform gets labeled "liberal" by obstructionist Republicans playing it for all its worth. Disdain for a porous border of that length is easy, as are most panacea proposals of tightening it.

Jul. 07 2014 12:43 PM
Tyrone

jerseyjim, they've had brutal conditions in one form or another going back to Spanish rule or even back to the Inca or Maya. They've had failed economies and drug cartels for decades. Ask your self what has changed so recently. The answer is our sellout politicians.

Jul. 07 2014 11:34 AM

Central America - Honduras, Guatemala - has brutal conditions, brutal gangs exacerbating it all; a roof-top train ride through Mexico, being pelted with rocks to stay on, is what these kids go through to get here. A movie "Sin Nombre" (Without a Name) depicts this. Talk of repatriating them to their "families" is ludicrous. There is an English sub-titled version, but only the first segment is free.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uQfEIoIBizE

Jul. 07 2014 11:26 AM
Tyrone

RUCB_Alum, sometimes a message needs to be sent. Only one party is actually pushing this and unfortunately it is my own. At best, the other just doesn't want to be left behind. To think reproductive rights which seems to be the only thing other than this that we are pushing of late, while very important to me as well, trumps the right for my child to receive a decent and affordable education, or the right to a job that does not face ever increasing pressures, or an emergency room that is so overcrowded people are dying, etc. is completely ridiculous. For me, this makes me a one issue voter.

Quite frankly, as we've seen there is very little difference between the two parties at the end of the day. They talk a good game, but they'll both sell us out at the first opportunity. They both have issues that the will drone on about decade after decade, but even when they have majorities do nothing with, because they don't want the status quo to change. Then they would lose their issue voters. Just look at the last president vs this one. Both have been *absolutely* horrible. In the end, the only thing we have is the ability to send a strong message we are not happy.

Jul. 07 2014 11:18 AM
Tyrone

Stop the bull@#$ with the racism already. People are fed up with lawlessness. This has to do with the reality of what is going on. Illegal crossings have hit exponential growth now. How do you propose to pay for this? How can you think that added millions of unskilled people do not impact wages on our own working poor? (hint this also undermines minimum wage laws since they will work illegally).
As we've seen already, adding millions of children with special needs has caused havoc on schools and introduced diseases that were once irradiated here.
We are losing hospitals because they cannot balance their books (despite the fact that they over charge the rest of us to try to cover people that do not pay and cannot be traced)
Areas that had no gang activity, now have major law enforcement issues.
This is just a few of the major issues. When people imply everyone wants immigration reform, if you dig into the numbers the majority actually want complete border control and consider that reform. Hopefully we will get our heads on straight and use a point based system like every other country on the planet and stop this political foolishness.

Jul. 07 2014 11:05 AM

@Shoshanna

"This is a major issue for me and one that would make me hold my nose and vote republican with no hesitation."

You think the GOP has a reasonable answer for this? They don't. The GOP wants the highly-exploitable position to stay in place as long as possible. You'd be holding your nose while the stench of the current system gets worse and worse.

Making some room for the children of illegal immigrants who really know no other home is one thing. Letting folks ignore our borders or overstay visas without swift deportation is another.

Get legal or get out. (severe but needed, imo)

Jul. 07 2014 11:03 AM
fuva from harlemworld

Jeb's point about American international policy (which citizens are complicit with) causing this influx, at least in part, is correct. Underscores the need for informed, balanced discourse here.

Jul. 07 2014 10:55 AM

@Ed from Larchmont

Wrong! What Hobby Lobby does is establish the principle that closely-held corporations can enforce the same religious views as their owners. The SCOTUS has actually held that an artificial entity can have a religious view that the rest of us must respect. It's an absurdity. The same argument can be made by Jewish businesses who want to open on Sundays (in violation of blue laws where they still exist) because their Sabbath is on Saturday. Hasidim or Muslim employers require that ALL of their employees wear head coverings. And sadly religious views against homosexuality will now be used to delay rights for all citizens. The Right wants to pretend that this is an extension of religious liberty but it is exactly the opposite. Don't you see that?

@Brian - More than once you've bulleted BHO's term down to - His party had both houses for two years and he spent his political capital on getting health care passed. This legislation focused opposition and the nation (in response) elected a Republican House. What you elide in this summary is that fact that the Senate blocked Administrative action from Day One. The filibuster-proof majority was, depending on how you count, less than 5 months in duration and ended with the death of Teddy Kennedy in 2009. The KochBros financed the Tea Party that helped them turn an expected rollback into a tidal wave and since it was a census year, GOP controlled statehouses gerrymandered themselves into a nearly topple-proof majority - even though their party gets a minority of the nationwide vote. The President's problems of governing were (partly) of his own making. He didn't keep Howard Dean as DNC chair, he let the groups that got him into office fall into disuse. I have no doubt that if there is a sentence that begins "My biggest regret in office..." in Obama's future memoir will end "is that I didn't fight harder before the election of 2010". BHO was rope-a-doped into allowing a gentle rollback to be turned into an electoral rout. That's the voters' (and medias') fault for not being able to see accurately what would occur if Republicans were empowered to block his agenda.

Since 2001, GDP has double and median household income has not budged. That's nearly a full generation of no growth in family incomes. We can't let that happen again.

Jul. 07 2014 10:54 AM
Shoshanna

Just wait until local communities start to feel the costs involved with this problem - many are already. How are we going to afford to educate and care for them? How much further can we stress our own safety nets? This is a major issue for me and one that would make me hold my nose and vote republican with no hesitation.

Jul. 07 2014 10:47 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Yes, Lenny,

Let's have more and more "judicial reviews" so that we can have more and more work for lawyers. Illegals create no unemployment problems for lawyers.

Jul. 07 2014 10:45 AM
Lenny from Brooklyn

A lot of this discussion is ignoring the fact that Congress passed a law in 2008 requiring that all children crossing the Mexican-American border be given an administrative hearing. The law does not apply, however, to Mexican children. They may be turned around and directly returned to Mexico. The rest, by U.S. law, must be detained and given a judicial hearing regarding their refugee status. If the President ordered these children to be immediately expelled, he would be violating the law and an act of Congress.
It would be helpful if Brian did a minimum of prep in order to lead an informed discussion, not a free for all dramatizing our national political divisions.

Jul. 07 2014 10:40 AM
The Truth from Becky

The children MUST go back, their parents must be located and they must go back, let Honduras et al set up the shelter on THEIR side of the fence and place these kids....not because they are "ruining" our Country, that's asinine, but because they are NOT our responsibility. 52000 kids are you kidding me?

Jul. 07 2014 10:35 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

Brian you are seriously falling down on the job. Less than two weeks ago you had a guest (a lawyer) who explained that people fleeing gang violence are not eligible for asylum. Nor are "economic migrants":

http://www.wnyc.org/story/child-migrants-new-york/

I guess you conveniently forgot that for this segment. Our country takes in more legal immigrants than ANY OTHER COUNTRY on the planet. There is no humanitarian crisis in central America, this is pure politics and it is both unfair and unjust to legitimize those who by dint of mere geographic proximity enter our country illegally and drain jobs and resources away from LEGAL immigrants and other citizens. There are LOTS of poor, low skilled and unemployed Americans struggling to get by in America today (tens of millions) who will be underbid for and you, Brian Realpolitikian, don't care about them because you've already got their vote. Who are they gonna run to? Excellent math, real Nice.

Jul. 07 2014 10:33 AM
Mr. Bad from NYC

Brian you are seriously falling down on the job. Less than two weeks ago you had a guest (a lawyer) who explained that people fleeing gang violence are not eligible for asylum. Nor are "economic migrants":

http://www.wnyc.org/story/child-migrants-new-york/

I guess you conveniently forgot that for this segment. Our country takes in more legal immigrants than ANY OTHER COUNTRY on the planet. There is no humanitarian crisis in central America, this is pure politics and it is both unfair and unjust to legitimize those who by dint of mere geographic proximity enter our country illegally and drain jobs and resources away from LEGAL immigrants and other citizens. There are LOTS of poor, low skilled and unemployed Americans struggling to get by in America today (tens of millions) who will be underbid for and you, Brian Realpolitikian, don't care about them because you've already got their vote. Who are they gonna run to? Excellent math, real Nice.

Jul. 07 2014 10:32 AM
Jeb from Brooklyn

People are showing up at our borders as a direct of the instability in part created by overt and covert US government activities for decades throughout Latin America.

Honduras, Guatemala, Chile, etc. -- there is literally no country in the region in which we have not meddled in the internal politics for political or economic gain.

Where were the protests then? When did we say no? Never.

But I guess it's fair and reasonable to vent at powerless children coming into America. Though, I suppose for them it's actually a step up to be screamed at by American racists than to face the chaos and violence back home.

Jul. 07 2014 10:30 AM
nick

these people that brian quoted who say things about immigrants like "they're ruining the culture of our country" and so on were saying the same exact things about Obama a few years ago during the tea party madness. its racism plain and simple. call it like it is and talk about it.

Jul. 07 2014 10:30 AM
fuva from harlemworld

Did caller Joe just invoke jobs for white folks? If so, yes, current immigration has a net negative economic effect on the working and middle class. But, of course, black folks, who are disproportionately poor, are harmed the most, as usual.

Jul. 07 2014 10:29 AM
pliny from soho

"you know -middle aged white women"
Brian really? thats a way to criticize
your oponents

Jul. 07 2014 10:27 AM
paul from brooklyn

what about the optics of another possible impeachment of a democratic president? are the republicans just going to impeach every democratic president?

Jul. 07 2014 10:24 AM
David from Manhattan

Republican obstructionism of this President is damn near open racism. It seems clear to me that from the get go Republicans had never believed he had the legitimacy, mandate to lead. Despite his landslide electoral victories, they don't respect his Presidency simply because he is a Black President. I think history will shed light on this shameful period of Congressional obstructionism, indifference, ineptitude and racism. While celebrating the 4th of July this past weekend, I was saddened by the the list intractable problems this country faces as Congress do absolutely nothing.

Jul. 07 2014 10:22 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

What "dangerous conditions" Brian? Do they have concentration camps where they are gassing kids down there? Bleeding heart Brian wants to let in anyone and everyone living in harsh conditions, so that harsh conditions can hasten back to New York as they were in the '70s and '80s, if not worse.

Jul. 07 2014 10:20 AM
Chris from New Jersey

The children must be deported, regardless of how sorry we feel for the situation that sent them here. The United States cannot absorb every person on Earth who lives in a bad situation. It's not a sustainable policy, and it's unfair to the people who already live here and need jobs, healthcare, homes, and so on, and can't get them. To say that Obama would have "blood on his hands:"for sending the children back is ridiculous.

Jul. 07 2014 10:19 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Brian, I feared for my safety every single day growing up in the housing projects in Brownsville surrounded by gangs and all. If we don't send back those kids to their parents in their countries en masse, every other family in Central America is going to send their kids here EN MASSE. They have to be sent back.They are not being sent back to concentration camps as happened during WWII. They are just being sent back to the country they were born in and its too bad those countries are having gang problems. Maybe they should hire Giuliani to come down and fix it.

Jul. 07 2014 10:18 AM
JVerkuilen from NYC

Modern politics has become one string of double binds after another.

Jul. 07 2014 10:12 AM
Ed from Larchmont

In the Hobby Lobby case it was clear that their employees could get contraceptives somewhere else and that there was no need to burden peoples' religious freedom. But the dissents in the case kind of argue a new current line in legal thought: sexual rights trump all other rights.

Jul. 07 2014 08:00 AM

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