“It would have been nice for him to see and speak to some of these children and some of these mothers with children who’ve come — to find out first hand why they’re coming,” Michelle Brane, director of migrant rights and justice at the Women’s Refugee Commission, said Wednesday. “I think that would make a difference in how he sees this problem.” [ABC News]
UNDOCUMENTED TEENS and children caught in a humanitarian crisis on the U.S. border has exposed the ineptitudes of American foreign policy that over many decades has ignored what’s happening south of America. Representatives, senators and just about everyone else are whining about President Obama not going to the scene of the human tragedy unfolding. A statement will have to do, which he’ll deliver tonight.
President Obama has requested $3.7 billion in “emergency” funding, which seems like a preposterous sum, especially for a policy failure that includes every administration for 20 years. Foreign policy is always about Europe, Russia, the Middle East, the Asian-Pacific Rim, but never about South and Central American countries that are now getting even for being ignored.
Every Washington lawmaker who can find a microphone or a cable show is pontificating about either the optics or the Katrinaesque appearance of President Obama going to fundraisers over seeing the situation first hand. That’s American politics in a nutshell. Show up, don’t act, except the Administration is acting even if they’re getting no help from Congress.
Greg Sargent has a very odd post up today about an immigration “bomb” President Obama may lob in the middle of the midterm elections this fall, obviously through executive order, because, again, Congress is feckless. Sargent doesn’t report anything specific just that Something Big Is Coming.
Beyond this, though, my sense of internal discussions currently underway is that no one is really sure how the politics of this will play out. Indeed, to hear one source familiar with those discussions tell it, Dems mostly see this as guesswork, since we’re in largely uncharted political territory here: Yes, Americans support immigration reform and a sensible path to legalization, but no one knows how the public will greet unilateral action to bring about temporary relief from deportation, at least for some.
It’s politics versus what President Obama can pull off legally using constitutional authority given to the Executive Branch.
Meanwhile, Glenn Beck is taking a risk by going against his supporters, and jumping into the tragedy we’re all reading about. Beck is having what is being reported as tractor-trailers of food, teddy bears and soccer balls to the border where the teens and children are currently residing. Â His bottom line is reportedly taking a hit, which isn’t surprising if you listen to right-wing radio. Â What Beck is doing is tantamount to ideological treason.
Nothing is as good, however, as seeing Kirsten Powers slap Bill O’Reilly around for being un-sufficiently Christian.
“I am so tired of this with you. I’m so tired of your mocking”“”“mocking liberals because they care about people, that there’s something self-righteous about wanting to take care of children. You know, I thought this was a Christian thing, Bill.” – Kirsten Powers
President Obama is busy attending fundraisers, a trip that started in Denver where he refused a joint, but drank a beer. In Texas he’ll do a round table with Governor Rick Perry for some unknown reason (photo above is Obama being greeted by Perry this hour), but everyone wants him to witness the humanitarian crisis personally. Â Obama doesn’t do optics unless he’s up for election. Â Whether he should is another story. For the headaches not going is costing the White House, the obstinance is all about ego.
The entire nation has been hamstrung by southern border issues for decades. Â The drug war has crippled our legal system, incarcerated multitudes of brown and black men, and cost U.S. taxpayers millions, while not solving one part of the drug challenge we face. Â Legalizing medical marijuana is a beginning, but if you’ve followed that issue it advances way too slowly in states. Â Immigration we haven’t dealt with properly since before Ronald Reagan.
There is no evidence that Congress has the attention span or intelligence to tackle immigration reform.
Something’s got to give eventually, but until then it’s going to be a free-for-all to get to a microphone.