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An average American that has some thoughts on politics, culture, and society with a conservative and Catholic twist.

Location: Louisiana, United States
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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Understatement of the Year

The Leader of the Republican Party in New Mexico chimed in on his view of how the immigration debate is affecting the Republican party. Tip of the hat to Pink Flamingo for pointing this article out. He said:

"You always have self-serving politicians who are focused on one thing - getting elected or re-elected - and they put rhetoric ahead of what's good for the country," said Allen Weh, chairman of the Republican Party of New Mexico. "We're going to have some collateral damage from this rhetoric." -

Well it would be nice if Lou Dobbs of CNN can quit his daily political commerical for the minutemen and Tom Tancredo and perhaps have this gentlemen on. Perhaps Sean Hannity can quit listening to his good friend Connie Hair and perhaps have him on for a few minutes. It seems that his is a voice that perhaps we should hear in the party since he is actually on the scene. Oh well, perhaps Michelle Malkin will call in sick and he can be a replacement.

OF course , this is the huge example of the year of this happening. The Dubai Terminal deal was also not the Republican Controlled House's finest hour.

I sometimes visted a very Progressive Liberal Immigration blog called Migra matters. Which reminds me I still have to respond to his responsesabout one of my post. Anywho, we disagree a great deal on certain specifics of what immigration reform would look like. However , it is nice to be able to discuss these matters with someone whose first reaction is not to tell me to shut up and to call me a traitor. Anyway he had this piece up the other day:

"What I wanted was witnesses who agree with me, not disagree with me," said Congressman Charlie Norwood(R-GA) at last Tuesdays Congressional field hearing on immigration in Gainesville Georgia held by The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health. The hearing was intended to gather information about the impact of undocumented immigration on the state's Medicaid program and health care delivery system. Apparently though, "information" was not really what the House Republican wanted to hear, threatening a witness when she failed to present testimony to support his views. At one point he scolded immigration specialist Alison Siskin, of the Congressional Research Service, saying he was "disappointed" with her testimony and that he intended to complain to her supervisors at CRS after she said there were no studies to show "rampant abuse" of government healthcare programs."

Well oh well that is what I like. Republican Congressmen threatening to go the the "Boss" because he wasnt hearing what he wanted too.(SARC)

It appears the Local paper agreeded with my sentiments
When it was announced that two Congressional hearings on the subject of immigration would be held in North Georgia, we heard from many people who thought the hearings would be little more than opportunities for politicians to pander to their political bases.
They might have been right.
With his comments, U.S. Rep. Charlie Norwood made it clear he wasn't interested in gathering information.
"What I wanted was witnesses who agree with me, not disagree with me," the congressman said.
He also threatened to call the boss of an immigration specialist with the Congressional Research Service for no other reason than he didn't agree with what she had to say.
It's little wonder people don't trust politicians when they see their elected officials close their ears to facts.
Why should we vote for someone who refuses to listen? Why have a hearing if you've already made up your mind on the issue?
People want answers from their leaders, not just someone who repeats what others have told them. That's not leadership, it's pandering.
And what about poor Alison Siskin, the immigration specialist who Norwood threatened? Siskin said studies had been unclear about whether illegal immigrants had much impact on government health care.
"The studies are all over the place," she said. "There are not studies that have shown rampant abuse."
Norwood said he was "disappointed" in Siskin and said he would call her boss to complain.
So now we are to assume that Norwood wants government officials to forego research, data and facts and simply go to Capitol Hill to tell politicians what they want to hear. What does this tell us about how our government works?
Norwood clearly believes the anecdotal evidence about immigrants being a drain on social services, though, as Siskin points out, there isn't a lot of hard evidence to support that. No doubt, health care for the uninsured is a problem, but there is little data that shows illegal immigrants are a disproportionate part of that.
Of course, if there was data to the contrary, Norwood would probably throw it out.
The congressman is clearly playing to his base. "I know what they are saying in my district. ... They want this border shut down and they want it secured."
On that point, we agree. We do need to close the borders, not just to stem the tide of illegal immigration, but also to help protect us from terrorists who might see the unsecured borders as an easy way to enter the country and attack us.
But we think that's a different debate from deciding what to do with the millions of immigrants who are already here. Illegal immigration is a real problem that needs real solutions, but those solutions should be based on facts, not guesswork and predetermined notions.
The Norwoods of the world are merely playing to the emotions of their voting base instead of trying to act like statesmen and solving problems with their heads.
We deserve better

Well again been there done that. We were treated to a horrific sight this past year when Congressional Republicans were ignoring the pleas of our Military to give them the time to present a case as how the treatment of the UAE in that terminal deal was a very bad thing. There were American Businessmen on the plane from the UAE to give the facts to Congress. Oh well didnt want that did we. The ever present Lou Dobbs was ranting and raving as well as Sean Hannity. SO what did we do? Well certain Republicans put a rider on a MILITARY APPROPRIATIONS BILL FOR OUR TROOPS!!! to make sure that Dubai did not get the leases. To me that sounded very much like a Democrat Tactic. Oh well at least it gave a few people a talking point for the upcoming elections.

Sadly to say the Gainseville Times hit it right on.

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