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Democrats face a messaging problem

safe imageThe biggest issue facing Democrats as they head toward the 2018 midterm elections and their quest to retake both the House of Representatives and the Senate is to identify what Democrats are for and not just against. The search is for a rallying issue, so to speak.
The difficulty is that it is sometimes a bit challenging to distinguish the two especially when dealing with such a destructive force as the CONmander-in-Chief.
There are a couple of good places to start, however. First, simply look at all of the Obama Administration actions that have been, item by item, undone by the current administration. Re-entering the Paris Climate Accord since we are the only nation, and I said only nation thanks to Trump, who is not a signatory is one easy issue to adopt for Democrats. Climate change, by the way, is real, and not being part of the solution implies we are part of the problem. Current efforts to roll back automobile emission standards are a prime example.
Rescinding President Obama's executive order on DACA, Deferred Actions on Childhood Arrivals, only served to create an unnecessary crisis. How this issue will ultimately be addressed remains to be seen, but it is likely that it will leave casualties no matter how it is addressed, if at all.

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No Wall! Yes a Wall! Which Wall? This Wall?

160216182653 trump border wall explainer animation orig nws 00003622Steny Hoyer walked out of the White House with a grim look on his face. He had spent the last two hours sitting next to President Donald Trump in a bipartisan meeting with his GOP counterparts discussing DACA and border security.
He walked up with a contingent of Democrats to the makeshift podium in the stakeout area outside of the West Wing near the North Lawn to talk about the issue and amazingly, to some, Hoyer said the president had potentially brokered a deal on border security that would ensure The Dreamers could stay in this country.

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CASA sues Trump administration over DACA repeal

  • Published in Local

The immigrant advocacy organization CASA de Maryland along with eight other groups and more than a dozen individuals announced on the afternoon of Oct. 5 they are suing the federal government over the elimination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which has given work status to undocumented immigrants who came to the Unitized States as minors, known as "dreamers."

Named in the lawsuit are President Donald Trump, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and four government agencies — U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection — and their department heads.

A legal team that includes Arnold & Porter LLP, the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP, and the Civil Rights Clinic of the Howard University School of Law is joining them in the legal action.

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“I’m no threat to anyone…”

  • Published in Local

Local woman afraid with loss of DACA she'll be deported

MPI CASA 0023 1DACA recipient Karina Velasco expresses her concern over the possible end of the program. PHOTO BY MARK POETKER  Lately, Karina Velasco thinks about her two-year-old daughter more than ever. If Velasco is deported to Mexico – a country she barely remembers and where she has no family – she wants her daughter with her.

But her husband, who, like their child is a United States citizen, wants the little girl to remain with him and grow up in America.

“The one person who drives me to fight is my daughter. I wouldn’t want her to live without her mother. I want her to be strong and grow up to be a person who is compassionate and willing to help others.”

When Velasco’s parents left Mexico with her and her brother, she was 14 years old and hadn’t seen her parents in six years as they strove for a new life for the family. Then, one day, she found herself in America, thanks to the family reunification program for unaccompanied minors.

“It was not our decision to leave,” she said of herself and her brother.

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Local Organizations Respond to DACA Announcement

  • Published in Local

The night Donald Trump was elected president of the United States, George Escobar knew DACA was doomed. Candidate Trump had pledged to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, and President Trump would surely deliver.

“We knew [ending the DACA program] was imminent as soon as the election results were handed out,” Escobar, senior director of CASA de Maryland, said.

So, when U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Trump administration would phase out the DACA program in six months, Escobar was ready. He and over 1,000 other activists with CASA and other local groups marched from the White House, past Trump International Hotel and the Department of Justice and ended at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement headquarters.

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Local communities prepare response to Trump’s immigration measures

  • Published in Local

Akieal Williams, an immigrant from Trinidad and Tobago who lives in Long Branch, is concerned that President Donald J. Trump’s stance on immigration could harm the community he lives in and enjoys.

Recently laid off and on the search for a job and a solution to gang activity, Williams was shocked to learn at a meeting of Our Voices Matter that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and Temporary Protected Status programs could potentially end soon.

Several Republican politicians wrote to Trump this summer calling for him to end DACA by Sept. 5, inspiring anxiety in local immigrant communities.

“They don’t know where to go. They’re scared,” said John Angel, a Long Branch business owner. “What are we going to do?” he said about what people have been asking.

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