Rep. Luis Gutiérrez has been a consistent champion for immigration reform. He’s passionate and he’s great at cutting through all the nonsensical talking points Republicans have crafted about this crisis.
He appeared on Face the Nation right after Governor Rick Perry this morning to counter the ridiculous claims Republicans are making. By now, you know the talking points, but just for clarity, here they are along with Gutiérrez’s response.
Obama’s executive order about DREAMers caused the crisis - Gutierrez: One of these things is not like the other. There is a clear difference between kids being brought here by their parents years ago, growing up in this country, being educated here, and the kids running from terrible situations now.
The border isn’t secure - Gutierrez: Border security isn’t the problem and we don’t need the National Guard at the border. These kids are turning themselves into the border patrol. They’re refugees, not crossing the border illegally. Further, the Obama administration deports twice the number of people crossing the border.
Demonizing the children - Gutierrez reminded Rick Perry and the rest of the Republicans that these are children, and the 2002 law, renewed in 2008 is being followed.
Former Bush speechwriter turned Washington Post op-ed writer Michael Gerson wants the viewers of CBS’ Face the Nation to believe that the members of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s unit that have been coming out in droves to attack him in the media would not have been doing so if the Obama administration hadn’t called his service “honorable.’
Never mind that Fox regular and former Bolton and Romney adviser, Richard Grenell’s PR firm is behind coordinating their media interviews, which I suspect had to be in the works well before President Obama or Susan Rice made any statements about the release and prisoner swap to the press, given how quickly they were ready to get them on the air.
No never mind that, the president made them do it.
BOB SCHIEFFER: You know I must say that I— I do agree with Tom when he says, you know, we always have to go and get our people. We can never leave our people behind. But what happened after that is the part that I— I kind of have a problem with is this Rose Garden ceremony and all that. Michael, you were at the White House—
MICHAEL GERSON: Sure.
BOB SCHIEFFER: —how did that strike you?
According to Cardinal Timothy Dolan, the current Archbishop of New York, women don’t need insurance coverage for birth control because they can purchase it at “any shop on the street,” including a gas station like 7-11.
Dolan appeared on CBS’ Face the Nation over the weekend to defend for-profit companies’ right to deny birth control coverage to their workers, an issue that’s at the heart of a pending Supreme Court case. The archbishop argued that the most prominent plaintiff in that suit, Hobby Lobby, should have the right to refuse contraceptive coverage to thousands of its employees based on the owners’ religious beliefs.
When asked whether allowing for-profit corporations like Hobby Lobby to claim religious liberty could set a “dangerous precedent” for the rest of the country, Dolan deferred, claiming it’s not a problem because birth control is already widely accessible.
“Is the ability to buy contraceptives, that are now widely available — my Lord, all you have to do is walk into a 7-11 or any shop on any street in America and have access to them — is that right to access those and have them paid for, is that such a towering good that it would suffocate the rights of conscience?” Dolan said in an exchange uploaded by Raw Story. “I don’t think so. I hope the Supreme Court agrees.”
Dolan is likely referring to the male condom, which is typically available for purchase at gas stations. But that’s not what’s up for debate in the Hobby Lobby case. Hobby Lobby’s owners object to Obamacare’s contraception mandate, which requires employers to cover the full range of FDA-approved birth control methods at no additional charge to their workers, because they believe emergency contraception and certain types of IUDs are “abortion-inducing drugs.” That’s not scientifically true, but Hobby Lobby is seeking an exemption to this Obamacare provision anyway.
Despite Dolan’s assumption that women can simply walk into a store and buy the type of birth control they need, a Hobby Lobby win could seriously compromise women’s access to reproductive health care. The majority of women in the U.S. opt to use the birth control pill as their primary method of contraception, which requires a doctor’s visit and a prescription. Nearly 60 percent of women have used hormonal contraception for a medical reason other than avoiding a pregnancy, which means that a condom definitely won’t cut it. And this is a serious medical expense for women, running up more than $1,000 per year on average.
As women in the U.S. are increasingly delaying marriage and childbirth, they need access to reliable birth control more than ever before. There’s a widening gap between the time when women first become sexually active and when they want to have their first child. The typical American woman spends more than three quarters of her reproductive life trying to avoid pregnancy — and, when women successfully prevent unintended pregnancies, it saves the government money and reduces the need for abortion services.
The Catholic Church has been one of the primary opponents of Obamacare’s birth control coverage, so it’s no surprise that Dolan — who is notoriously conservative — is speaking out in favor of Hobby Lobby. But there’s evidence that the Catholic leadership doesn’t actually reflect its constituents on this issue. Most religious Americans use hormonal contraception at the same rates as non-religious Americans do, and more than 80 percent of U.S. Catholics believe that birth control is “morally acceptable.” Recent global polls of the world’s Catholics have found that the vast majority of respondents support birth control.
Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn disgraces our country yet again by defending the GOP’s blocking of Paycheck Fairness Act
Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) asserted over the weekend that the Republican Party was the party of “women’s equality” days after Senate Republicans blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act. In a party line Senate vote last week, Republicans refused to…
WASHINGTON — Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) on Sunday charged President Barack Obama with “emboldening the Taliban,” citing details from a new book by former Defense Secretary Robert Gates that harshly criticizes the president’s leadership in the war in Afghanistan.
"I don’t think we can ignore what’s in that book, and I think for many of us it confirms our worst fears," Rubio said on CBS’ "Face the Nation." "And that is that this is an administration full of people that either have the wrong convictions or, in the case of former Secretary Clinton, lack the courage of her convictions."
Rubio pointed to parts of Gates’ book that suggest Obama didn’t feel that the war in Afghanistan was his war, and that his decision to pull out troops was political.
"You saw that reflected in the decision that [Obama] made," Rubio continued. "At the same time that he announced the surge, he also announced an exit date and strategy, thereby emboldening the Taliban to believe they could wait us out.”
The Florida senator, whose name has been floated as a 2016 presidential contender, said Obama’s actions on Afghanistan have had international repercussions.
"Our allies see us as unreliable, and our enemies feel emboldened," Rubio said. "I think that this confirms our worst fears, that this is an administration that lacks a strategic foreign policy and, in fact, is largely driven by politics and tactics."
Source: The Huffington Post
FRC's Tony Perkins Loses It Over Supreme Court’s Marriage Equality Decision: "The Justices Have ‘Carjacked The Nation’"
The Supreme Court’s rulings on the Defense of Marriage Act and California’s Proposition 8 were “disappointing” decisions that “dragged ‘we the people’ from behind the wheel of this republic and carjacked the nation,” Family Research Council president Tony Perkins said on CBS’ Face The Nation Sunday.
Perkins argued that the Prop 8 case represented a “silver lining” for anti-equality conservatives, since the Court did not “impose same-sex marriage on the entire nation.” Nevertheless, he predicted that the rulings were dangerous decisions that will terrify Americans once they learn the true consequences of marriage equality.
“Americans will begin to see that with same-sex marriage does not come a hope chest, rather a Pandora’s box,” Perkins said. “We’ll see parents who pay taxes to send their kids to school, those schools are going to start teaching those children values that are in contrast with their parents. We’re already seeing bakers and florists and photographers forced to participate in same-sex marriages under the threat of law and in some cases even jail!”
WASHINGTON — Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) reiterated on Sunday that he won’t support additional disaster relief funding without spending cuts elsewhere — even after tornadoes ripped apart his own state last week.
"We’ve created kind of a predicate, that you don’t have to be responsible for what goes on in your state," he said on CBS’ "Face the Nation" while discussing the success Oklahoma has had in using state and private funds after the tornadoes.
Coburn said he doesn’t oppose any federal money going toward the state, however.
"Big storms like [Hurricane] Sandy, or like this tornado — there’s certain things that we can’t do that we need the federal government to do," he said.
The Oklahoma senator has been consistently opposed to disaster funding without offsets, but some expected that to change in the wake of the devastation to his state. But Coburn’s office quickly confirmed after the tornado that he would not be supporting disaster aid without offsetting the spending.
"That’s always been his position [to offset disaster aid]," Coburn spokesman John Hart said Monday in a statement. "He supported offsets to the bill funding the OKC bombing recovery effort."
On Thursday, Coburn responded to critics of his decision by saying they simply want to increase disaster funding so they can give it to their home states.
"It’s just typical Washington B.S.," Coburn said during an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “There’s $11.6 billion sitting in a bank account waiting to help people in Oklahoma … It’s a crass political game, because I was being asked these questions before we even pulled the dead people out of the rubble.”
He criticized the current system again on Sunday, saying that the way damage is calculated should be changed instead.
"It disproportionately hurts the more populous states the way we do it, the economic indicator, the economic damage indicator, the way it’s calculated," he said on "Face the Nation." "So a large state like New Jersey or New York is disadvantaged under the system that we have today. Then, we ought to have priorities about how we fund it, instead of borrowing the money. And then we ought to make sure the money is actually for the emergency at hand, not for four or five years later, and not allow bills to be loaded up with things that actually have nothing to do with the emergency at hand."
Source: The Huffington Post
Appearing on CBS’ Face the Nation this morning, Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) enthusiastically called for a government shut down:
SALMON: I was here during the government shutdown in 1995. It was a divided government. we had a Democrat [sic] President of the United States. We had a Republican Congress. And I believe that that government shutdown actually gave us the impetus, as we went forward, to push toward some real serious compromise. I think it drove Bill Clinton in a different direction, a very bipartisan direction. In fact, we passed welfare reform for the first time ever, and we cut the welfare ranks in the last decade and a half by over 50%. These are good things. We also balanced the budget for the first time in 40 years in 1997, 1998, 1999. And when I left we had an over $230 billion surplus. This was with a Democrat [sic] president, A Republican —
SCHIEFFER: You think that’s a good idea?
SALMON: Yes, I do. I really do. I think it’s about time!
Salmon’s theory, that the government shutdown somehow led to balanced budgets during President Clinton’s second term, was floated by Newt Gingrich in 2011, and it was no more true then than it is now.
Gingrich claimed that the shutdown led to the misleadingly named Balanced Budget Act of 1997, but the law was so laden down with conservative pet projects that it actually increased the budget deficit.
Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) has not hesitated to voice his distaste towards U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice, who may be nominated to replace Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State. On Face the Nation Sunday morning, McCain went even further than simply opposing Rice’s nomination and said that, “until we find out all the information” on the Benghazi consulate attacks, he would not support any Secretary of State nominee.
McCain at first said it “might be a beginning” if Rice could come on the program to explain her position. But when pressed by host Bob Schieffer, the Arizona senator dug in and refused to support any nominee “under the present circumstances”:
SCHIEFFER: Until then, you will remain opposed to her nomination?
MCCAIN: Under the present circumstances, until we find out all the information as to what happened, I don’t think you would want to support any nominee right now. Because this is very very serious and it has even larger implications than the deaths of 4 Americans. It really goes to the heart of this whole light foot print policy that this administration is pursuing.
Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) implied he would block anyone President Obama appointed to lead the Department of State — especially current U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice — if they were at all involved with the handling of the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi, Libya. Speaking on CBS’ Face the Nation, Graham called the consulate “a death trap for months” and suggested he would prevent anyone involved in the Administration’s response to the attack from taking the top job at State:
GRAHAM: I do reserve unto myself and other members of congress the ability to say no when justified. I cannot imagine promoting anybody associated with Benghazi at this point. …
SCHIEFFER: Well, I mean, would you try to lead a move to block her [Ambassador Rice] from getting the nomination if in fact she is nominated?
GRAHAM: I’m not entertaining promoting anybody that I think was involved with Benghazi debacle.
While it’s certainly true that Benghazi was a terrible tragedy, there’s simply no evidence that it was the sort of massive, disqualifying scandal that Graham says it is. Detailed, exhaustive reporting on the issue has shown that there was no “smoking gun” of a coverup nor any massive failure to respond to the attack with proportionate force. This wealth of evidence has led former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, no Democratic partisan, to say that the massive overreaction from people like Graham is overblown and that “it’s probably better to let the relevant bodies do their work.”
Before the nation even learned the full extent of an attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya, Republicans raced to politicize this tragedy. GOP presidential candidate Romney released a much maligned — and entirely discredited — statement claiming President Obama “sympathize[d] with those who waged the attacks.” A month later, Romney received an embarrassing live fact check during the second presidential debate after he falsely claimed that the president did not label the attack an “act of terror” the day after it occurred.
On CBS’ Face the Nation, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) took this effort to politicize the attacks to a new level, claiming it was “either cover-up or the worst kind of incompetence”, worse even than the scandal that forced President Nixon to resign:
MCCAIN: Also, by the way, he said he immediately ordered action to be taken, no action was taken over seven hours. Now we find out the Secretary of Defense decided not to take any action. You know what, somebody the other day said to me that this is as bad as Watergate. Well, nobody died in Watergate. But this is either a massive cover-up or an incompetence that is not acceptable service to the American people.
Similar statements were made by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich on other shows, all focused on the Defense Department’s supposed inaction.
The new GOP claims of cover-up are part of a long-line of attempts to label the shifting narrative as a policy failure. These latest claims build on a Fox News ‘exclusive’ that the CIA was denied a request to aid in countering the assault, while watching the attack in “real-time.” Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said on Thursday that intelligence on the ground during the assault in Benghazi was not clear enough to warrant sending U.S. forces potentially into harms way.
Yet this new line of attack is unlikely to prove any more grounded in reality than previous ones. Indeed, even former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice tried to hit the brakes on the idea that the Obama Administration reacted improperly to the attack, telling Fox News earlier this week that “it’s probably better to let the relevant bodies do their work” rather than “jump to conclusions about what might have happened here.”
(via David Edwards at The Raw Story: On CBS’s Face The Nation, Clay Aiken confronts Tony Perkins: “You’ll be ‘ashamed’ for opposing LGBT rights” | The Raw Story)
Gay country music star Clay Aiken on Sunday told the leader of a Christian think tank that he would eventually be “ashamed” over his opposition to rights for LGBT Americans.
During a discussion about President Obama’s support of same sex marriage, Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins explained that “civil rights are rooted in natural law: Americans just don’t see same sex marriage as being natural.”
“When you look at [the ban on] interracial marriage, that was wrong,” Perkins admitted. “There was no reason to be opposed to that because you had two people who met the definition of marriage between a man and a woman. And that’s consistent with natural law, which our civil rights are based on. When you look at same sex marriage, that’s counter to natural law.”
Sitting directly next to Perkins on CBS’s Face the Nation, American Idol runner-up Clay Aiken, a Southern Baptist who announced he was gay after having his first child in 2008, confronted the Family Research Council president.
“Between the time of 2003 and today, we’ve seen — as we’ve seen with gay marriage polling — we’ve seen minds changing,” Aiken explained. “We’ve seen people become more open and understanding of homosexuality.”
Five years ago, just off a bout from cancer, Bob Schieffer was set to retire from CBS’s “Face the Nation.” That never stuck, and now he’s doubling his workload.
Starting Sunday, the public affairs program expands to an hour. Vice President Joe Biden, whom Schieffer interviewed Thursday in Milwaukee, is the featured guest. Republican presidential candidates Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul are also booked.
With a presidential campaign under way, it’s an attention-getting time for the Sunday morning shows. The landscape changed already this year when George Stephanopoulos returned to the helm of ABC’s “This Week” in January.
Shortly after Schieffer started as host two decades ago, he said his competitor, the late Tim Russert of “Meet the Press,” went to his NBC bosses to urge that the show be expanded to an hour. Give me three months, Russert said, and if the ratings don’t improve we’ll go back to a half-hour.
They never looked back, and Russert dominated Sunday mornings until his death in 2008.
"Tim was the best of the best," Schieffer said. "But the fact of the matter is what propelled them to No. 1 is they went to an hour and they were the first to do that. When they did that, it left us in the dust."
Schieffer repeatedly nagged his bosses to follow suit. He made the same speech when Jeff Fager and David Rhodes took over last year, not expecting much. When they gave the go-ahead, Schieffer said, “I nearly fainted.”
Ratings and election news figured in the timing. “Meet the Press,” now with David Gregory, averaged 3.3 million viewers during the first three months of the year. “Face the Nation” was a close second with 3.09 million, the Nielsen company said. “This Week” had 2.53 million and “Fox News Sunday” averaged 1.15 million. “Face the Nation” is the only broadcast to see its ratings improve over last year.
Betsy Fischer, “Meet the Press” executive producer, said she’s all for more Sunday morning TV time.
"When we went to an hour 20 years ago, I remember the big advantage was that it gave us much more flexibility in programming the show," Fischer said. "I suspect it will be beneficial to CBS in that respect as well."
The Sunday morning political talk shows have long played a key role in American political discourse, providing a venue for balanced discussion about key political topics. But in 2011 at least, they were heavily skewed to one political party over the other. According to a new analysis of shows like Meet the Press from Roll Call, Republican lawmakers appeared nearly twice as often as Democratic ones last year, and held a smaller advantage in previous years:
In 2009 and 2010, Republican Members held a small advantage over Democratic Members in appearances on these programs, getting 52 percent of the invites in both years. In both years, CBS had more Democrats as guests than Republicans by a narrow margin; in the same period, Fox News had more Republican guests by a wider margin.
But in 2011, the GOP lawmakers captured 64 percent of the Congressional appearances on the five shows that Roll Call tracks, and every network featured more Republican lawmakers than Democrats. Of 330 Congressional appearances tallied by Roll Call last year, 210 went to Republicans and only 120 went to Democrats — fewer if you subtract the eight appearances made by Sen. Joe Lieberman, a Connecticut Independent who caucuses with Democrats.
Certainly, some imbalance could be expected given that Republicans control the House and have a presidential primary contest, but the disparity could arguably be too great to explain this way. Michael Shanahan, assistant director of the George Washington University School of Media and Public Affairs, offered another explanation: “Democrats aren’t all that interesting.” In other words, producers find that Democrats provide less entertainment value. Either way, it means that viewers will get disproportional exposure to one world view.
Continuing his crusade against the courts, Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich railed against judges “imposing secularism” on the country on this morning’s Face The Nation. Arguing that “activist judges” who make disagreeable decisions should be held accountable before Congress, he told Bob Schieffer that he would send a U.S. Marshal or Capitol Police officer to arrest judges if that’s what it took to reign them in, and then encourage impeachment:
SCHIEFFER: One of the things you say is that if you don’t like what a court has done, that Congress should subpoena the judge and bring him before Congress and hold a Congressional hearing… how would you enforce that? Would you send the Capitol Police down to arrest him?
GINGRICH: Sure. If you had to. Or you’d instruct the Justice Department to send a U.S. Marshal.
Newt the Grinch = moron.
H/T: Zach Ford at ThinkProgress Justice