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Eight migrant kids from border surge have come to sponsors in Idaho; Otter not happy

Eight migrant children from Central America apprehended at the Mexican border already have been sent to Idaho, according to a U.S. Health & Human Services report quoted late yesterday by the Associated Press, though they’ve gone to sponsors, not to state custody; that means they’ve been taken in by relatives, family friends or foster parents.

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter, who yesterday sent a letter to top federal officials declaring that the Gem State won’t take any of the unaccompanied minors who arrived illegally at the southern border as part of a surge of tens of thousands, wasn’t happy about the report. “Assuming this report is true, HHS has not provided any information  about this nor did it go through any of the established channels  to inform the Governor’s Office that this was happening,” Otter’s press secretary, Jon Hanian, said in an email.

“We are working now to determine the veracity of this report. Should it prove to be true, it underscores the importance of the letter the governor released yesterday putting the federal government on notice, that Idaho will not be used as a staging area or a destination for the crisis the federal government has created. Just as troubling is the fact that they are ignoring states and the impacts associated with placing these undocumented migrants without the knowledge or consent of state governments.”

The report cited by the AP said 269 children from the border surge have come to Northwest states between Jan. 1 and July 7 of this year – 211 to sponsors in Washington, 50 to sponsors in Oregon and eight to sponsors in Idaho. The U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement has the data posted here. Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber released a statement saying his state welcomes the children and that the border surge was a reminder of Congress’ failure to enact immigration reform. “These children are fleeing their homelands because of overwhelming violence and economic hardship, and they do not deserve to become political fodder,” Kitzhaber said.

Jaime Smith, spokeswoman for Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, said today, “There are more than 200 children who have been placed with sponsors in Washington state. These are children who have seen and experienced traumatic violence and disruption in their communities. The federal government has identified care givers, some of whom are family members, who have agreed to take these children in. This is clearly an improvement over holding children in detention facilities. Our state will provide the support and services they need as they await their court proceedings.”

Otter fires off letter to feds saying Idaho won’t take any immigrant kids captured at southern border

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter today fired off a letter to three top federal officials declaring that he wants “to immediately eliminate the chance of the federal government using Idaho as a destination or a staging area for the influx of unaccompanied and illegal immigrants entering the United States through our southern border.” There was no indication that Idaho – which borders Canada, not Mexico – had been targeted for any such use; the governor’s office didn’t immediately respond to an inquiry about that.

Otter, in a letter he also copied to the four members of the state’s congressional delegation, wrote, “It should be understood that the State of Idaho and its subdivisions will not be actively involved in addressing the humanitarian crisis the federal government has created. Idaho will not open itself to the unwelcome challenges with which other states have struggled at the federal government’s hands.” You can read Otter’s full letter here.

Otter’s letter was addressed to U.S. Health & Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services director Leon Rodriguez. 

Labrador: Player Or Tap Dancer?

Raul Labrador, Idaho’s first district Republican member of Congress, has been giving some good television. After going mano a mano on Meet the Press (July 7) with the New York Times’ David Brooks, on July 10 he got into it with a whole panel on MSNBC’s WOW. Topic A being, of course, immigration, on which Labrador has been a significant national figure almost since he arrived in Congress: A Latino Republican with actual expertise in the field. On WOW, Labrador shot back, “If you want to have a debate on the discussion, we can do that. I actually have my own mind. I was an immigration lawyer for 15 years. I think I know more than you do about immigration and on immigration reform. So let’s not try to insult people when trying to have an honest discussion about what’s happening in America.” Labrador does in fact have expertise on immigration law. Discerning exactly what he proposes to do about it, however, is trickier/Randy Stapilus, Ridenbaugh Press. More here. (AP file photo)

Question: Do you think Congressman Raul Labrador is a player or a tap dancer when it comes to immigration reform?

Labrador Pooh-Poohs Bush Lobbying

Former president George W. Bush, who enjoyed healthy support among Latinos during his time in office, has broken a virtual five-year silence in national politics to weigh in on immigration reform. The question is: Is anyone listening? Judging from the immigration debate roiling the House, probably not. Although Bush's public approval ratings are on the rise, he is a fast-fading memory on Capitol Hill, where more than half of the 234 House Republicans arrived on the scene after he departed. Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, who last month dropped out of bipartisan talks to develop a comprehensive House immigration bill, said Bush's views would have little impact. “Anybody has to take an ex-president's word seriously, but he's just another voice on this issue. He's not going to be the definitive voice,” Labrador said in an interview/David Nakamura & Ed O'Keefe, Washington Post. More here. (AP photo: George W. Bush places his hand over his heart during the national anthem before a U.S. citizen swearing in ceremony in Dallas on Wednesday)

Question: Wouldn't the Republican Party be in much better shape today if it'd followed then President George Bush's lead in reaching out to Hispanics?

Boise march, rally today to focus on immigration reform

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Labor and immigration activists are expected to rally and march in Boise in support for an overhaul of the nation's immigration system. The demonstration Wednesday is part of the May Day rallies planned in cities across the country, where demonstrators are demanding changes in the federal government's immigration laws. Activists are expected to meet at Julia Davis Park in downtown Boise before marching a half-mile to the state Capitol. More than 200 people have indicated they plan to attend the rally on a Facebook event created by the Coalition for Immigrant Rights of Idaho, a group pressing for changes in the law. Participants will begin gathering in Julia Davis Park at 4 p.m., where music and speakers are planned, before a “Family Unity March” to the state Capitol at 6.

Atlantic Mag Spotlights Labrador

The Atlantic has an interesting profile of Idaho 1stDistrict Rep. Raul Labrador this week, headlined, “Does the Fate of Immigration Reform Depend on This Idaho Congressman? Puerto Rican-born, Tea Party-purist, GOP-leadership-defying immigration attorney Raul Labrador has confounded expectations throughout his political career.” In the piece, Labrador talks about immigration reform, saying, “Most hardcore conservatives in the House come from rural agricultural districts, so we understand the need for reform”/Betsy Russell, Eye on Boise. More here. (AP file photo of Raul Labrador)

Question: Izzit just me, or has Congressman Raul Labrador become a major player on the Washington scene — and among the national GOP?

Labrador: Don’t just pass Ryan budget

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Raul Labrador, R-Idaho, emphasized substance over style in the upcoming budget and immigration policy talks Wednesday on Capitol Hill.

Addressing the media with other conservative members of Congress, Labrador said he was encouraged by the ideas behind a budget plan set forth by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., to balance the federal budget within a decade. He stressed that policy decisions should flow from that benchmark and urged the Republican party to make policy commitments, rather than simply passing the Ryan budget which has no force of law.

“Some people in this caucus believe that the plan is just to pass the Paul Ryan budget,” Labrador said, adding his goal is not to pass “a meaningless document by itself, unless we actually implement the policies that will get us to a 10-year balanced budget.”

Ryan’s budget is just one of competing visions for a federal government spending plan. Last week, Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., released her own spending bill that roundly rejected several of the Republican House’s key provisions. The Ryan plan calls for no increase in taxes and complete reduction of the deficit by 2023 through reforms to Medicare and repealing the Affordable Care Act. Murray’s budget, on the other hand, calls for nearly $1 trillion in tax increases targeting the wealthy, additional stimulus spending and no fixed date for a balanced federal budget.

Both plans are working their way through Congress. President Barack Obama, also required to release a spending plan by law, has delayed doing so since February, to the ire of many Republicans. The White House now expects to release its budget next month.

Labrador is widely hailed as the prominent figure in a potential bipartisan immigration reform deal. Last week at the Conservative Political Action Conference, the freshman congressman reiterated his stance that there should be no new path to citizenship for illegal immigrants in any reform legislation. He called instead for enforcement of existing laws and granting “legal status” to those who entered the country illegally, without the possibility of citizenship.

He responded to comments made earlier in the week by Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., in favor of immigration reform. Paul called for a legal status approach in line with his own beliefs, Labrador said, rather than media reports that said he was pushing a path to citizenship. He expressed support for plans to fix what he repeatedly called a “broken system,” including several ideas offered by Paul.

“We’re talking about a minor issue,” Labrador said of the pathway to citizenship proposal. “The real issue that we’re dealing with is immigration reform. Let’s fix it.”

Labrador blamed labor unions for defeating legislation put forward in the Senate in 2007. That law would have allowed for a new type of temporary visa available to undocumented workers. A bipartisan group in the Senate released a set of principles to guide reform in January that included both a new “tough and fair” pathway to citizenship and admitting more workers into the country.

Any immigration reform legislation in the House would have to be vetted by the Judiciary Committee, said Labrador. He said the window for real reform would probably close in December, when campaigning for the midterm elections would begin in earnest.

WA Lege Day 23: Fight ahead over immigration?

OLYMPIA — Add immigration to the list of issues that could provoke a heated argument in this year's Legislature. Two mutually exclusive proposals involving undocumented students in the state's colleges will be in the Senate.

Young adults who came to the United States with their parents as young children and were raised and educated in this country would be eligible for some state college aid under a proposal announced Tuesday by Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle.

What's being dubbed the Washington State DREAM Act would open up the State Need Grant and College Bound Scholarship programs to high school students who are undocument residents. Those programs already have long waiting lines; the State Need Grant last year had 32,000 applicants who couldn't get aid because the program ran out of money. . . 

To read the rest of this item, or to comment, click here to go inside the blog. 

House passes STEM jobs bill, but it’s not expected to be taken up in Senate

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: WASHINGTON (AP) ― The House has approved legislation to offer green cards to foreign students with advanced degrees, but only after a partisan fight that portends trouble when Congress attempts a wholesale immigration overhaul next year. In approving what is called the STEM Jobs Act on a 245-139 vote, Republicans who control the House were signaling Hispanic voters who abandoned them in the election that they're serious about fixing the flawed system. The bill passed Friday would provide 55,000 permanent residency visas to foreign students with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. But it drew fire from Democrats because it would kill a program that helps less-trained people from Africa and elsewhere gain entry to this country.

Click below to read Labrador's news release on the House vote; you can see his floor speech here in favor of the bill, in which he compares himself to Charlie Brown and the Democrats to Lucy, saying they keep pulling away the ball in a game of political football over immigration reform.

Labrador on piece-by-piece immigration reform: ‘If we don’t do it this way, it’s never going to get done’

Idaho Congressman Raul Labrador has his STEM jobs act up for a vote again in the House today, after it failed in a September House vote; he was interviewed by NPR's Renee Montagne about it this morning. The bill would replace the current diversity visa program, which grants 55,000 immigration visas a year through a lottery, with one targeting those completing post-graduate degrees in science, technology, engineering or math fields. “The diversity visa doesn't make any sense for the United States for the problems that we have today,” Labrador told Montagne. “We need high-skilled workers.”

Labrador said President Obama has come out against his bill “because it is not part of a comprehensive immigration reform plan.” He said, “If we do a comprehensive package, what you're going to have is a bill that every single member of Congress hates a certain aspect of it, and no one is going to vote for it. Let's start with the easiest thing first. … If we don't do it this way, it's never going to get done.”

Montagne asked Labrador about the Dream Act, which would allow young people brought illegally to the country as children a way to stay legally in certain circumstances, and Labrador said, “That should be the next thing we work on.” You can listen to the interview here, and read more here on today's vote from the Washington Post, which reports that the bill is likely to pass the GOP-controlled House, but not be taken up in the Senate.

Labrador tells GOP to reform immigration or give up on ever winning presidency

Idaho Congressman Raul Labrador says the Republican Party will never win the presidency again unless it can attract Hispanic votes, and he said that requires action on immigration reform. Idaho Statesman columnist Dan Popkey reports that Labrador made the comments at a Capitol Hill news conference Wednesday sponsored by a group he co-chairs, Conversations with Conservatives. “One of the main reasons that we lost is because Romney got 27 percent of the Hispanic vote,” Labrador said. “If we continue to get 27 percent of the vote for the rest of our lives, we will continue to lose every single presidential election that’s out there.” You can read Popkey's full report here.

Bennett: None Shall Pass

Clay Bennett/Chattanooga Times Free Press

High court issues rulings on Arizona immigration law, Montana campaign finance law

The U.S. Supreme Court is issuing major rulings this week, but it now appears it won't issue its ruling on the federal health care reform law until Thursday. This morning, the high court ruled on the Arizona immigration law, overturning much of it, but upholding the controversial provision requiring police to check the immigration status of someone they suspect is not in the United States legally. That decision upholds the “show me your papers” requirement for the moment, but it takes the teeth out of it by prohibiting police officers from arresting people on minor immigration charges, the Associated Press reports; you can read a full report here at spokesman.com, and read the court's full three-page decision here.

Also this morning, the high court struck down a Montana law limiting corporate campaign spending; the case was seen as a test of the 2010 Citizens United decision that opened the door to unlimited independent campaign expenditures by corporations. It was a 5-4 decision; you can read a full report here at spokesman.com, and read the 76-page full court decision here.

Idaho was one of 22 states that filed a brief in support of Montana's law, even though Idaho has no state laws restricting corporate campaign spending. Idaho allows direct corporate giving to campaigns, and unlimited corporate independent expenditures on campaigns, but does subject corporations to the same contribution limits to candidates as individuals, and requires reporting. The state Attorney General's office said Idaho weighed in on a state sovereignty basis, seeking to protect state authority.

Labrador: Obama immigration move ‘blatantly political’

Idaho Congressman Raul Labrador, an immigration attorney who touted his expertise on the issue as he ran for Idaho's 1st District congressional seat two years ago, blasted President Obama's announcement today of a major change in the nation's immigration law enforcement: Young illegal immigrants will be able to avoid deportation if they can prove they were brought to the United States before they turned 16 and are younger than 30, have been in the country for at least five continuous years, have no criminal history, graduated from a U.S. high school or earned a GED or served in the military. They also can apply for a work permit that will be good for two years with no limits on how many times it can be renewed.

“Our nation's first commitment must be to follow the rule of law and this action by the president bypasses the existing legal process,” Labrador said in a statement. “President Obama had two years in the White House to move immigration legislation through a Democrat-controlled House and Senate and he failed to do so. There are many Republicans in Congress who have been working to fix our broken immigration process. Instead of joining them to produce legislation in a constitutional manner, the president acted unilaterally in a blatantly political manner.”

Click below for a full report on the president's announcement from the Associated Press in Washington, D.C.

Fundraiser to help post Spokane River fishing rules in Russian

FISHING – Signs in Russian language are being designed for posting along the Spokane River to explain special fishing rules, and a fundraising is planned for Saturday to help pay for the effort.

 A group of anglers is trying to get all Spokane River anglers speaking the same legal language about the fishing restrictions designed to protect the struggling native redband trout.

The group has worked with the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department to tanslate important rules into Russian for signs to be posted along the river.

The issue is about fish conservation, but the fundraising event to raise money for the signs is all about art and painting.

The Tipsy Muse event, set for Saturday (May 19), 1 p.m.-4 p.m. at Arbor Crest Winery, features participants getting chance to work on a painting alongside a professional artist. The participants get to keep their painting and everybody enjoys sipping wine and bidding on fly fishing trips, casino packages and other items.

Limited tickets are available online only.  Cost: $45 (includes tasting fee) or $10 for spectators (non painting, but also includes tasting fee)

Read on for more details about the issue and the text on the signs.

Anglers want to post Spokane River fishing rules in Russian

OUTDO – A group of anglers is trying to get all Spokane River anglers speaking the same legal language about the fishing restrictions designed to protect the struggling native redband trout.

The group has worked with the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department to tanslate important rules into Russian for signs to be posted along the river.

The issue is about fish conservation, but the fundraising event to raise money for the signs is all about art and painting.

The Tipsy Muse event, set for Saturday (May 19), 1 p.m.-4 p.m. at Arbor Crest Winery, features participants getting  chance to work on a painting alongside a professional artist.  The participants get to keep their painting and everybody enjoys sipping wine and bidding on fly fishing trips, casino packages and other items.

For years, concerns have simmered about illegal fishing among Eastern European-Russian immigants, said Tyler Comeau, an Eastern Washington University student. Comeau has been working on the project with the Spokane Falls Chapter of Trout Unlimited.

Fish and Wildlife police confirm that language barriers often are given as excuses for poaching activity on the river.

Cost: $45 (includes tasting fee) or $10 for spectators (non painting, but also includes tasting fee)

Limited tickets are available online only:

Is the Border Patrol racial profiling?

Federal agents have increased their presence in the Spokane area in what some believe is an overreaching effort to combat illegal immigration at a local level.

Officials with the U.S. Border Patrol say they’re not specifically targeting illegal immigrants and that their presence at police stops in the Spokane County area is part of an ongoing partnership with local law enforcement.

But a Seattle-based immigrant rights group alleges border patrol agents are responding to calls even when their presence is not necessary, simply because they suspect someone may be an illegal immigrant.

“Only people who are Spanish speakers or are perceived to be Spanish speakers are the ones being questioned,” said Jorge Barón, executive director of the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project

Read the rest of my story here.

Idaho Supreme Court: Send child to dad in Mexico

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) ― The Idaho Supreme Court ordered a 3-year-old girl in state custody be delivered to her father, a Mexican citizen who has never met his daughter because he's legally barred from entering the United States. The justices ruled Thursday a lower court erred when severing the man's parental rights last December. The man married an Idaho woman in 2007 while living illegally in the U.S. He returned to Mexico under court order, with his wife, in 2008 but she soon went back to Idaho, giving birth. The state took custody of the baby months later, citing neglect. Both parents' rights were terminated at the state Department of Health and Welfare's request. When reinstating the father's rights, the high court questioned the department's motives, noting an employee wanted to adopt the girl.

You can read the full court decision here; click below for a full report from AP reporter Jessie Bonner.

Crapo, Risch Rip Immigration Change

Recent immigration policies enacted by the Administration undermine the rule of law, say Idaho Senators Mike Crapo and Jim Risch and a group of Republican senators in a letter to the President urging to remand the proposals. The directives in question call for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to perform case-by-case reviews, focusing on criminals and public menaces, while closing the books on those not considered a threat.  Additionally, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton recently directed the agency to use its “prosecutorial discretion” in deciding which of the pending 300,000 federal deportation cases should be prosecuted.  If DHS determines that a particular individual is not a criminal threat, they could be granted conditional permanent residency. In a letter sent to the President yesterday, the senators ask that DHS rescind the proposals dealing with increased use of prosecutorial discretion and abide by existing immigration laws/Mike Crapo news release. More here. (AP file photo: An supporter of tough immigration laws protests in Arizona)

Question: Who do you trust more to deal with immigration policy — congressional Republicans or the White House and congressional Democrats?

Reverse immigration…

Good morning, Netizens…

Is this morning's David Horsey cartoon depicting truth or speculation?

Granted, our national unemployment has risen to nearly an all-time high of 9.2%, while Mexican unemployment has remained at 4.9%, both facts which remain in question as to whether or not they retain accuracy. However, I haven't seen any statistical evidence that illegal Mexican immigrants are leaving the country in droves, rather I suspect the numbers of illegal immigrants crossing the border into the United States may be largely unchanged in recent months.

Since we are unflinchingly delving into speculative statistics, however, what would happen to our current national unemployment statistical base, if we were able to do so, were we to gather up every immigrant illegally in the United States? Would our employment suddenly ascend like a rocket to Mars?

Would farmers, somewhat dependent upon Mexican illegals for their harvests, simply find another method of acquiring temporary farm hands?

I also suspect that the closer one moves toward the Mexican-United States border, the number of illegal immigrants migrating back across the border into Mexico would decrease. The “coyotes” who are responsible for helping so many illegal immigrants cross the border for a fee are, simply put, too well organized and vastly more efficient than the U.S. Border Patrol.

I just cannot envision a horde of illegal immigrants crossing the border into Mexico. Perhaps the mob of quasi-legal immigrants bailing out of the United States depicted by David Horsey hasn't happened yet. Let our economy worsen a few more points and perhaps it might happen. Of course, your results and opinions may differ.



Politico: Labrador could be GOP’s ‘credible face for immigration reform’

Politico yesterday took a look at Idaho Rep. Raul Labrador as a possible “credible face for broader immigration reform” for the GOP. Reporter Marin Cogan writes, “Wading into the tricky politics of immigration reform would seem to be a dead end for any Republican these days — let alone a conservative freshman from Idaho. But Rep. Raul Labrador, a Puerto Rican-born former immigration lawyer and overnight tea party darling, is doing just that — meeting with Republicans and conservative opinion-makers to try to build a 'conservative consensus' to the seemingly intractable problem that defied a national reform effort nearly four years ago and still roils the political landscape on a state level.” You can read the full article here.

WA Lege Day 100: Transportation budget on hold over illegal immigration

OLYMPIA — The Senate began discussion of the 2011-13 Transportation Bill shortly afternoon — and stopped fairly quickly.

A ruling is needed to determine whether Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, can get a vote on an amendment that would require applicants for a drivers license to present a valid Social Security number or some other form of identification that proves they are citizens.

Washington is the only state that does not require citizenship before issuing a drivers license, Benton said. That makes it a “magnet” for illegal immigrants seeking some form of state-issued ID.

Sen. Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, argued that the amendment is out of order because it's outside the subject and scope of the transportation bill, which she said is about spending money on transportation projects over the next two years. Benton's proposed change would essentially create a new state law on drivers licenses that would extend beyond the life of the spending plan.

Benton argued it fits in the transportation bill, which has money for a pilot program for a new federal licensing program that mentions Social Security numbers as part of its qualifications.

The budget debate was put on hold, pending a ruling on whether Benton's amendment is out of order. A few minutes later, the Senate adjourned until Wednesday morning because its Ways and Means Committee has a hearing at 2:30 p.m. that will require much of the members to attend.

WA Lege Day 24: Outbursts end drivers license hearing

OLYMPIA – A legislative hearing over a proposal to make drivers license applicants give the state a Social Security Number and a verifiable residence was abruptly halted Thursday after some members of the audience called the plan racist and anti-immigrant.
Senate Transportation Chairwoman Mary Margaret Haugen, D-Camano Island, ended the hearing when several people in the audience tried to shout her down over the purpose of SB 5407

To read more, go inside the blog.

Chasing One Bad Idea After Another

Let’s start with the good news from the Idaho Legislature. Lawmakers have apparently abandoned the misguided notion of pursuing an Arizona-style immigration law. Here’s the bad news. Lawmakers haven’t given up on this kind of time-wasting windmill tilting because they have had some sort of good-government epiphany. Instead, they are dropping immigration from the agenda in favor of an idea that is just about as bad. Full speed ahead, and in defiance of two centuries of precedent, lawmakers insist upon pursuing the legal non-starter of “nullification,” looking to unilaterally void the federal health care reform law. A nullification bill was introduced in a House committee Wednesday on a party-line vote, with Republicans backing the measure and Democrats opposing it/Kevin Richert, Idaho Statesman. More here.

Question: Why are Idaho lawmakers prone to chase one unconstitutional windmill after another?

Police: Man stole cop car to be deported

JEROME, Idaho (AP) — Police in Idaho say a man who asked authorities to arrest and deport him to Mexico stole a squad car after his request was denied.

The Idaho Mountain Express reports that 38-year-old Guadalupe Cruz-Vasquez went to the Jerome County Sheriff's office Monday night and demanded to be deported.

Police Sgt. Duane Rubink says authorities declined to take the Jerome resident into custody, so he walked to a nearby police station, broke the window of a squad car and drove away with the vehicle.

Rubink says a cell phone inside the vehicle helped police track its location near Carey, but police didn't need to stop it: The car ran out of gas.

He says after that, Cruz-Vasquez finally got his wish.

Sheriff Joe’s priorities

Stateline.org reports that authorities in Maricopa County, Ariz., have raided some 40 workplaces in the past two years, looking for undocumented workers.  Although Arizona reputedly has the nation’s strictest laws against hiring illegal immigrants, fabled Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s forces have arrested and charged scores of workers, but hardly any employers.

Does that seem right?

Immigration sweeps round up 13

Here’s a news item from the Associated Press:  IDAHO FALLS, Idaho (AP) — Federal immigration officers arrested 13 illegal immigrants across southern Idaho last week and all but one are expected to be immediately deported. The Post Register reports the Boise office of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested 10 men and three women in a four-day sweep that ended last Friday. Seven people were arrested in Idaho Falls, with one each in: American Falls, Firth, Hamer, Lewisville, Shoshone and Sugar City. ICE spokeswoman Lorie Dankers says 12 have final orders of deportation. One man was turned over to the Bonneville County sheriff’s office for an outstanding arrest warrant on battery charges.

Walt & Raul Have Weird Debate Going

For the better part of a month, Congressman Walt Minnick, D-Idaho, and his Republican rival, state Rep. Raul Labrador, have been fighting about immigration. More to the point, they’ve been arguing over Minnick’s advertising campaign about immigration. The latest, airing throughout Idaho’s 1st Congressional District, has former Idaho U.S. Marshal Mike Johnson questioning Labrador’s anti-illegal immigration credentials because the Eagle attorney represents immigrants. What a strange debate this is. That is, when you consider they’re in tandem. On everything. Take your pick. Give Minnick a second term. Or send Labrador to Washington. Either way, your next congressman isn’t going to merely take a hard line on illegal immigration. He’s going after legal immigration, too/Marty Trillhaase, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: Have you figured out which candidate has a stand similar to yours on the immigration issue?

Idaho joins appeal on Ariz immigration law

Idaho has joined Michigan in a “friend of the court” brief siding with Arizona in its appeal from a federal judge’s initial ruling invalidating portions of the state’s far-reaching immigration law; 11 states have now joined in the appeal. Gov. Butch Otter said, “It’s our affirmative duty to protect states’ rights, and that’s particularly important when a lawsuit seeks to punish a state for doing what the federal government has failed to do – protect our borders and American citizens.” Click below to read his full news release.

Report: States rethinking immigration legislation after Arizona court ruling

USA Today reports that state legislators in an array of states - including Idaho - are rethinking plans to introduce Arizona-style immigration laws after a federal court temporarily blocked the core of the law. Among state lawmakers quoted: Idaho Senate President Pro-Tem Bob Geddes. The newspaper reports that he “says his colleagues had planned to file an S.B. 1070 replica but are making changes. ‘I don’t know that we would cut and paste exactly what Arizona has, based on what the judge has already ruled,’ Geddes says. ‘That doesn’t help us much to engage in the same battle that Arizona has lost.’”