Washington Post Condemns Citizens’ Concern About Housing Illegal Immigrants

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Many in the liberal media believe that those who don’t embrace the massive influx of illegal immigrants to the United States with open arms, accepting their illegal crossings as a search for “refuge,” are hate mongers and racists, or worse. Now, those who don’t accept the “it’s for the children” argument when faced with the influx of more than 60,000 unaccompanied alien children (UACs) are condemned as child-haters as well.

All of these elements were present in a hit job on the residents of Lawrenceville, Virginia recently perpetuated by The Washington Post. Reporter Tina Griego jumped feet first into the immigration debate on July 25, writing that this Virginia town had “unequivocally rejected temporary housing for 500 Central American children seeking refuge.” Firstly, Griego’s tone suggests that she has accepted the mainstream media argument that the current influx of illegal immigrants is because of violence in their home countries, not the perception that the United States has loosened its own immigration policies. As AIM’s Roger Aronoff reported earlier this month, the El Paso Intelligence Center, which utilizes federal data, states in a report that “Of the 230 total migrants interviewed, 219 cited the primary reason for migrating to the United States was the perception of U.S. immigration laws granting free passes or permisos…”

And, as Breitbart News has questioned, why has the Obama administration repeatedly been mentioning the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) memorandum if it does not itself believe that this memorandum played some role in the current border crisis?

While Griego is not willing to attribute anything but innocent motivations to the child crossings (she does not mention the many adult border crossings), she has nothing but terrible things to say about those who oppose “the children.” She calls it a “full-throated, bared-teeth rage with which not everyone is comfortable or proud,” quotes a source likening it to opposition to the Civil Rights movement and the forced integration of schools, and refers to it as “that night’s fury” and “heat.” The implication is that the backlash is irrational. “In the days since, similar anger has raged throughout the country,” she writes.

The “fury” in Lawrenceville was the town speaking out against the federal government’s decision to use the local historically black college as a temporary shelter for UACs.

But, according to Griego, we can’t use the term UAC either. It’s too dehumanizing. “In this heat, the children cease to become children. They are, instead, called by the government acronym for unaccompanied alien children: UACs,” writes Griego. “They are called juveniles, illegals, possible carriers of infectious diseases and random mayhem, young men of unverifiable age and unknown intent who might be better suited for the empty state prison down the road.”

Are these concerns really so unjustified? AIM has already cited reports of the infectious diseases carried by some illegal aliens. “Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council Shawn Moran told Fox News that the violent MS-13 gang is exploiting the chaos on the U.S. border to recruit new juvenile members,” reported The Washington Free Beacon earlier this month.

“They are denied innocence in order to be remade as symbols,” asserts Griego.

Griego, and the Post, are trying to turn this town into a symbol of hatred and bigotry because they don’t like its reaction to illegal immigration. But there are two sides to this debate, and a good reporter shouldn’t forget that. Demonizing one side to score political points, taken to this level by Griego, is nothing more than thinly disguised advocacy journalism.


This article originally appeared at AIM.org and is reprinted here with permission. 

Photo credit: Dan Holm / Shutterstock.com

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Obama’s Manufactured Border Crisis

Photo credit: NASA HQ PHOTO (Flickr)

The Obama administration is causing yet another crisis by allowing pregnant illegal immigrants and illegal immigrant parents with young children to stay in the United States to await 30-day hearings they will probably never show up for. This is, in many cases, not enforceable. After all, if the pregnant women were to have their children while in the United States, these babies would automatically become American citizens. (Fox News reports that “Many of them are in the advanced stages of pregnancy” and seeking just that.)

With the so-called DREAM regulations created by President Obama, a brighter future lies ahead for many children who were brought here illegally by their parents in the past. Amidst the influx of new illegal immigrants, “Vice President Joe Biden plans to travel to Guatemala to convince young people there that they will not receive the same treatment if they come to the United States now,” reports National Review.

And we have learned that Immigration and Customs Enforcement released 36,000 immigrants, some with criminal records, back into the U.S. last year.

If you’re an unaccompanied minor, or in legalese an unaccompanied alien child (UAC), you can count on social services and pro-bono legal support to help you stay in the country and reunite with relatives who already live here. “Our organization, Safe Passage Project, finds that nearly 90 percent of the unaccompanied minors we meet who are facing deportation qualify for immigration relief, allowing them to remain in the United States legally,” Safe Passage Project Director Lenni Benson told The New York Times last month. How many illegal alien parents will choose to go this route to ensure that their children have a chance at U.S. citizenship?

The New York Times fails to connect the Obama administration’s lax immigration policies to the influx of illegal immigrants, but their own reporting hints at the increase in what they term “migrants.” “While most men are held and processed quickly for deportation, border authorities struggling to manage the influx have been releasing pregnant women and parents with young children, allowing them to join family members living here and issuing them a deportation hearing notice,” writes Julia Preston for the Times. “Migrants have sent word back home they received a ‘permit’ to remain at least temporarily in the United States, feeding rumors along migrant routes and spurring others to embark on the long journey.”

In other words, this treatment is encouraging what the Times calls “migration”—what should be correctly called “illegal immigration”—across U.S. borders. “With no immigration detention site equipped for women with children in the area—the closest one, in Pennsylvania, is overbooked—they are freed by the Border Patrol with a bus ticket to travel to where they have relatives in this country, and an order to appear in immigration court in 30 days,” reports Preston. Yes, the U.S. government is even supplying them with bus tickets to speed these illegal aliens to wherever they choose to go.

And, thus, the Times misinforms its readers. Why isn’t it calling for more Border Patrol resources to deal with this problem? Is it because it supports amnesty for illegal aliens, instead? Indeed, following its classic model, the Gray Lady attributes criticisms of the administration to “Republicans,” not concerned citizens, thereby dismissing these views as more partisan politics.


This commentary originally appeared at AIM.org and is reprinted here with permission. 

Photo credit: NASA HQ PHOTO (Flickr)

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Why Hillary Will Get Away With Benghazi

No matter how many times it is called “phony” or the administration blames Fox News for keeping the scandal alive, the issue of Benghazi and the September 11, 2012 attacks remains alive and well. And this fact is damaging to presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, the former Secretary of State under President Barack Obama. A recent Pew Research Center/USA Today poll ranked the death of those four Americans that night in Benghazi as the “worst thing about the career of [Hillary] Clinton,” followed by her husband’s affair, according to Bloomberg this March.

The Democratic establishment has started to complain that this is Republican politicking because of Clinton’s unannounced, but presumed, candidacy. But the issue cuts both ways: the Democratic establishment has a glaring conflict of interest when it comes to finding out the truth about the Benghazi attacks because they don’t want some of their own tarnished in the process.

“The total cost of compliance with Benghazi-related congressional requests sent to the department and other agencies is estimated to be in the millions of dollars,” stated the Pentagon in a March 11 letter, according to the Associated Press.

“Congressional Republicans have been relentless in investigating the attack, arguing that the Obama administration misled the American people about a terror attack during the heat of the presidential campaign,” reports the Associated Press. “The GOP is determined to press ahead, especially since the assault on the mission occurred during Hillary Rodham Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state.” This manufactured public relations framework is aided by the fact that the House GOP established a website dedicated to the investigation into the Benghazi attacks, and has released a number of reports that are authored by the House majority without input from their increasingly alienated minority Congressional partners.

But the converse remains true. Why hasn’t the Democratic leadership forged ahead on the Benghazi issue to investigate and then close it once and for all? There are real issues that remain to be settled in this controversy, such as why the security was so inadequate at the U.S. Mission that night despite escalating threats, and why the military was so poorly positioned on the anniversary of September 11, 2001. One must ask whether this reluctance comes because the investigation might harm those in power at the time—President Obama and Hillary Clinton?

And if the Republicans are engaged in a “witch-hunt,” as Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA)—who solicited the Pentagon letter—contests, why, then, has House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) refused to create a Select Committee to investigate the scandal despite ongoing pressure from a number of groups and even relatives of the deceased?

“Instead, media consumers are left with the narrative that this is a political battle rather than a search for the truth, and that Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and his Oversight and Government Reform Committee are composed of belligerent politicians who care little about decorum or etiquette,” I wrote for Accuracy in Media back in October last year. “(That, according to Politico, seemed to be the greater takeaway.)” And the same messaging has continued to this day.

Now this issue is heating up, and the complicit media are quick to promote the party in power’s message. “A House Republican chairman is doggedly pursuing the question of whether military personnel were told to ‘stand down’ during the 2012 deadly assault on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya,” reported the Associated Press on March 28. “The panel’s persistence on an issue the military considers settled underscores that Republicans have no plans to relent in their politically charged investigation of the attack that killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans as President Barack Obama sought re-election that fall” (emphasis added).

In the MSNBC piece “Some Conspiracy Theories Aren’t Cheap,” Steve Benen writes that “These GOP lawmakers aren’t just spinning their wheels, looking for election gimmicks; they’re wasting our resources.” Politico says that Benghazi has “become a catchphrase signifying conservative suspicion of the Obama administration” and reports that all 17 Democrats on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee “demand” that Chairman Darrell Issa end his probe into the attacks.

Politico’s John Bresnahan also made sure to mention the Hillary connection. “Democrats privately believe that Issa is using Benghazi to try to hurt Clinton’s possible presidential ambitions in 2016,” he reports. At least Bresnahan was more honest; he reports the source of such complaints as being with the party in power instead of placing the blame on the GOP for politicizing the issue, as Businessweek and the Associated Press did.

“[Oversight spokesman Frederick] Hill said the reason the panel continues to probe the attacks—as well as pursues its investigation into allegations that the IRS improperly targeted conservative nonprofit groups—is because the Obama administration has turned it into a battle between the committee and the administration’s legal teams, slowing down the process dramatically while exponentially increasing costs,” reports Bresnahan. So the fight goes both ways. The media shouldn’t excuse the administration in the process.


This commentary appeared at AIM.org and is reprinted here with permission. 

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Exercising The Mighty Pen And Phone

Has President Obama become drunk with power in an attempt to avoid lame duck status and promote the Democratic Party for the upcoming elections? He announced to the press in January that “I’ve got a pen, and I’ve got a phone,” remarked glibly in February that “I can do whatever I want” an hour after he took controversial executive action on Obamacare, and is promoting a video that celebrates the executive orders of his “Year of Action” on his official website.

“America doesn’t stand still and neither will I,” says Obama in the video highlighting his 2014 State of the Union, a clear campaign rallying cry. “So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunities for more American families, that’s what I’ll do.” For the conservative-minded who often disagree with the President’s more progressive policies and promise of societal hope and change, this could be seen more as a threat rather than the extension of a helping hand.

Tom Mullen, writing for the liberal Huffington Post, explained the President’s seemingly power-hungry belligerence in early February: “What most Americans are hearing is, ‘I’m going to solve these problems myself, whether I have the legal or constitutional power to do so or not.’”

“Now, he not only has continued and expanded Bush’s real abuses, but has taken to flouting the Constitution rhetorically to score cheap political points,” remarked Mullen. “Senator Obama, where have you gone?” he laments.

Then-Senator Obama stated in 2008 on the campaign trail that “The biggest problems that we’re facing right now have to do with George Bush trying to bring more and more power into the Executive Branch and not go through Congress at all, and that’s what I intend to reverse when I’m president of the United States of America,” according to Fox News. Evidently, that statement had an expiration date as well.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney tried to put President Obama’s earlier comments in perspective, saying, “There is no question that this President has been judicious in his use of executive action, executive orders, and I think those numbers thus far have come in below what President George W. Bush and President Bill Clinton did.” Quantity doesn’t really matter for executive orders and actions; quality does. Carney also explained that Obama’s remarks were limited to the War on Terror, according to Fox News.

The Heritage Foundation has listed President Obama’s “Top 10 Abusive Executive Actions,” which include

  • “amending Obamacare’s employer mandate,”
  • “waiving the mandatory work requirement under the 1996 comprehensive welfare reform law,”
  • “deciding not to defend the constitutionality of the federal definition of marriage in court,”
  •  “imposing the DREAM Act by executive fiat,” and
  • “refusing to enforce federal drug laws in states that have legalized marijuana.”

The President has “unilaterally delayed parts of” Obamacare “29 times,” reported Fox News on February 15. This has since gone skyward and will likely continue to do so: The administration continues to use executive action to salve the wounds brought about by failures in the implementation of, or structural defects in, Obamacare rather than seeking legislative remedy in a fractured Congress where the House seeks full repeal.

The Associated Press reported on February 28 that some citizens who attempted to sign up for Obamacare through state exchanges, but could not do so due to technical difficulties, may now receive federal tax credits for the private insurance they purchased instead—all courtesy of Obama’s Health and Human Services Department. “Those who stand to benefit the most are Democratic governors who plunged ahead and ran into problems,” reports the AP. In other words, this is another politically motivated run-around on Congress to benefit Obama’s political comrades.

“Along with a delay in a key mandate that medium to large companies provide coverage or face fines, it’s another example of the administration trying to find flexibility to smooth out rough patches in the law’s implementation,” the AP quixotically wrote.

Of course, as Politico remarked last month, this is a deliberate strategy to avoid placing Obamacare back into the “national spotlight”—as if the issue wasn’t there already. “To get around that, some Democrats say the focus, for now, should be on finding a package of measures that the White House can quickly implement—and go around Congress—a tactic Obama vowed to do repeatedly during his State of the Union address, rather than risk a bitter floor fight in which the outcome is far from assured,” reported Politico.

Some in the mainstream media have, in recent months, essentially told the American people to look the other way, that President Obama’s rhetoric on this topic is unimportant, that his actions were either small or advancing the causes of the future, and that he is following historical precedent. Consider NPR’s January article on the subject: “Obama has actually issued fewer executive orders than his recent predecessors.” And, in an opinion piece for The Washington Post, Portland State University Professor Phillip J. Cooper writes, “In presidential Ping-Pong, the next player can always change the game.”

But doesn’t the presidential Ping-Pong hurt the U.S. Constitution and rule of law in the meantime?

“We are now at the constitutional tipping point for our system,” maintained George Washington University Law Professor Jonathan Turley, one of three constitutional scholars invited to testify at a February 26 hearing looking into the President’s constitutional duty to faithfully execute the laws of the land.

“To be clear, I do not view President Obama as a dictator, but I do view him as a danger in his aggregation of executive power,” he said. Professor Turley asserted that the President’s power needs to be checked before he leaves office, and said that while he disagreed with President George W. Bush’s abuses of power, President Obama has accelerated this process.

“Separation of powers was designed as a protection of liberty,” said Professor Turley.

Law Professor Elizabeth Price Foley of Florida International University had another term for Obama’s actions: benevolence. Or, rather, “benevolent suspensions of the law.” Because these executive actions—which carve out special treatment for entire populations under the law (or in the case of the Affordable Care Act, specific types of businesses)—can’t be proven to “hurt” anyone, there is no legal standing to bring a lawsuit against them, she said. “In fact, if the constitutionality of benevolent suspensions of law is ever going to be resolved, it must be resolved through litigation by Congress against the President,” she asserted. Whether Congress could gain standing for such a lawsuit is a matter of contention. She suggested a majority of the House engage in such a lawsuit to lend it credence.

former Obama administration Department of Justice official maintained that Obama was using his discretionary powers appropriately. “The administration is not claiming any authority to suspend, nullify, dispense with, any law,” testified Duke Law Professor Christopher Schroeder. “Even assuming that it is possible to see a resemblance between the administrative actions and such labels, the proper approach to analyzing the actions must begin by taking the administration at its word, because if they are defensible as exercises of discretion granted by law, their resemblance to these other things is immaterial” (emphasis added). (Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, in effect.) Schroeder later defensively said that he wasn’t judging the merits of Obama’s executive actions, just how to interpret them.

Yet despite Obama’s rhetoric that he will use his pen to enact executive orders and actions to change America for the better absent Congress, his press secretary recently defended the rule of law and execution of Congressional intent on immigration reform: “As the president has made clear going to your question, the job of the executive branch is to carry out the laws that are passed by Congress,” Carney said the day after the hearing, according to The Blaze. He later added, “The only permanent solution is a legislative one that will provide a broad-based path to earned citizenship.”

We will have to wait and see what type of executive action the President might take if his attempts to achieve an unlikely Congressional compromise on immigration reform utterly fail. Clearly, the administration is sending mixed messages on Obama’s willingness to go it alone.

“So I’m proud that the President took executive action, because he can’t allow America’s future to be held hostage by a Congress that won’t do anything,” remarked Rahm Emanuel recently. This is, of course, a false dichotomy: Professor Turley condemned Congressional inaction as “feckless” and “self-loathing”; but to be frank, a considerable number of Members agree with the President’s agenda despite his continuing consolidation of power. Gridlock is supposed to be the institutional friend of liberty, not its enemy.

Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (VA) will have lawmakers in the House vote on “legislation aimed at curbing what the GOP views as an abuse of power” by the President during the week of March 10, according to the Washington Examiner. Such legislation is largely symbolic if it has no chance of passing the Senate. For now, there seems to be little legislative check on Obama’s mighty pen.


This commentary originally appeared at AIM.org and is reprinted here with permission. 

Photo credit: cswtwo (Creative Commons)

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Liberal Reporter Changes Tune on Benghazi

Benghazi MIA Obama Hillary SC

CBS’ Lara Logan has been roundly criticized for using Dylan Davies as a source, and by all accounts he was a fraudulent one. This does not, however, mean that all other elements of her report were entirely false, a theory that was put forward by Nancy A. Youssef, a reporter at McClatchy News.  Youssef’s reporting seems to indicate that she’s changed her thinking over the past month. Either that, or she’s operating in a strange world of doublethink. And Logan, who was placed on leave for her retracted “60 Minutes” report, is now set to return early next year.

Youssef penned a piece on November 13 that took apart Logan’s reporting and her hyper-reliance on the idea that al Qaeda took part in the Benghazi attacks and guarded the hospital where the Ambassador’s body was taken. “Logan claimed that ‘it’s now well established that the Americans were attacked by al Qaida in a well-planned assault,’” in her 60 Minutes feature, wrote Youssef. “But al Qaida has never claimed responsibility for the attack, and the FBI, which is leading the U.S. investigation, has never named al Qaida as the sole perpetrator,” she continued.

Al Qaeda may have never been named the sole perpetrator of the attacks, but the 100 pages of emails released by the Obama administration show the CIA and FBI fingering core al-Qaeda operatives as early as September 14, 2012—just two days after the attack. In an email sent that day from the CIA, a staffer wrote “Thanks… Fyi FBI says AQ (not AQIM) was involved and they are pushing that theory.”

“So we are not ahead of law enforcement now.”

This clearly establishes that, internally, at least, the FBI and CIA were pointing to core al Qaeda for the attacks.

“While Logan had multiple sources and good reasons to have confidence in them, her assertions that Al Qaeda carried out the attack and controlled the hospital were not adequately attributed in her report,” concluded Al Ortiz in his internal investigation of Logan’s “60 Minutes” report.

Youssef’s account is hardly unbiased. She continues, “Rather, it is believed a number of groups were part of the assault, including members and supporters of al Qaida and Ansar al Shariah, as well as attackers angered by a video made by an American that insulted Prophet Muhammad” (emphasis added). “The video spurred angry protests outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo hours beforehand.”

So, according to Youssef, al Qaeda’s role in the attacks was overblown by Logan; and the YouTube video, “Innocence of Muslims,” truly did help spark the attack on the Special Mission Compound. Must the false YouTube video narrative be re-litigated time and again before the media?

According to Youssef, “The report repeatedly referred to al Qaida as solely responsible for the attack on the compound and made no mention of Ansar al Shariah, the Islamic extremist group that controls and provides much of the security in restive Benghazi and that has long been suspected in the attack.”

“While the two organizations have worked together in Libya, experts said they have different aims—al Qaida has global objectives while Ansar al Shariah is focused on turning Libya into an Islamic state,” she reports.

That’s not the impression the U.S. government gave in August 2012, shortly before the attacks. And that’s not the impression “experts” give in Youssef’s December 2013 analysis, either. The 2012 report, al Qaeda in Libya: a Profile, stated that “Al-Qaeda has established a core network in Libya, but it remains clandestine and refrains from using the al-Qaeda name.”

And, the authors wrote, “Ansar al-Sharia (Supporters of Sharia), a militia group led by Sufian Ben Qhumu, a former Guantanamo Bay detainee, could be the new face of al-Qaeda in Libya despite its leader’s denial” (emphasis added). The report speaks of an al-Qaeda “clandestine network” that has infiltrated the Libya Salafist movement “with which it shares a radical ideology and a general intent to implement sharia in Libya and elsewhere.” In other words, al Qaeda in Libya isn’t going to operate officially under the umbrella of al Qaeda; it’s just going to act like it.

In fact, the report characterizes Ansar al Sharia as an extension of al Qaeda, a fact Youssef quickly forgets. “Two of these local Islamist-oriented militias—Ansar al-Sharia and al-A’hrar Libya—are the tip of the iceberg,” write the authors. “They broadcast typical al-Qaeda-type propaganda on the Internet, and they have adopted the black flag, which symbolizes commitment to violent jihad promoted by [Al Qaeda senior leadership].”

“In a different direction, Ansar al-Sharia may become the new brand name under which jihadist groups in the Arab world seek to organize,” the report states (emphasis added). These are strong words to describe a locally oriented group.

Ironically, Youssef is the author of a more recent December 12 piece on Islamist militants in Libya, where international jihadis are being trained before shipping off to other countries. Her own reporting proves that Ansar al Sharia is not just locally oriented. “It also raises questions about the role of Libya’s homegrown militia, Ansar al Shariah, in the global jihadi movement,” Youssef writes, in a dramatic reversal. “Ansar al Shariah has its roots in the anti-Gadhafi uprising and it’s thought to have participated in the attack last year on U.S. facilities in Benghazi that killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans.”

“Any effort to train al Qaida-linked fighters here is unlikely to have gone forward without the backing of Ansar al Shariah, experts in the organization say” (emphasis added). If only Youssef would have said that much in November. What a difference just one month makes in her reporting.


This commentary originally appeared at AIM.org and is reported here with permission.