No Need to Compromise – A message from Chuck DeVore

Last night I finished strong in a one hour debate with Tom Campbell and Carly Fiorina (to be broadcast Sunday morning — we’ll send you the media analysis when it comes in).

But I wanted to take a moment to type out some of my thoughts on the day’s news and provide you with an update on my campaign.

If you didn’t hear, Sarah Palin posted a Facebook message earlier yesterday about the California Republican primary.

She bashed Tom Campbell.

She tried to ignore me.

And she announced her support of Carly Fiorina.

She called Fiorina a “commonsense conservative” and said Fiorina is “the only conservative in the race who can beat Barbara Boxer.”

I like Sarah Palin. I think highly of her. But she got this dead wrong.

Carly Fiornia is NOT a conservative.

And she is certainly NOT the only candidate in the race who can beat Barbara Boxer.

Let me address each of those issues with some cold, hard facts.

Is Carly Fiorina a conservative?

* She supported the Wall Street bailouts.
* She supported Cap and Trade.
* She supported the confirmation of Sonia Sotomayer.
* She has criticized the new Arizona immigration law.
* Before she was fired as the CEO of Hewlett-Packard, she allowed the company to sell technology to Iran.
* And last year when liberal Democrats and moderate Republicans were trying to push through a massive tax increase in a California referendum, Carly Fiorina had “no comment.”
* I call her a “John McCain Republican” – she talks the talk from time to time and says she’s a conservative but she has a “never with us when it counts” record just like McCain.

Don’t get me wrong, if a liberal Republican like Tom Campbell or a moderate Republican like Carly Fiorina win the primary instead of me, I will support them against Barbara Boxer.

But there’s no need to make a compromise like that.

This is not a primary election where electability needs to be a factor.

Again, let me offer the cold hard facts.

Here’s the most recent polling numbers from the independent Rasmussen poll.

* Fiorina 38% – Boxer 42%
* DeVore 39% – Boxer 42%
* Campbell 41% – Boxer 43%

The margin of error in the poll was 4.5%.

That means Fiornia is statistically tied with Boxer.

So am I (actually one point better than Fiorina).

And so is Tom Campbell.

There is literally no difference at all in how we are performing against Boxer.

The fact is Boxer has been mired in the mid-to-low 40s for more than a year.

Whether it’s her abrasive politics, her leading role in Cap and Trade, the way California Democrats have run the state into the ground, the way Washington Democrats are running the country into the ground, the “Can you call me Senator?” episode, or something else, the fact is Barbara Boxer is going to have a very difficult time winning re-election this year.

So the choice before the California primary voters isn’t who can beat Boxer…

…it’s which Republican candidate best represents your values.

* Is it Tom Campbell, the “Nelson Rockefeller Republican” who supported the largest tax increase in history at the state level, a 32-cent gas tax increase, and is liberal on social issues?
* Is it Carly Fiorina, the “John McCain Republican” who claims she is a conservative but has a never with us when it counts record of support for the bailouts, for cap and trade, and for the confirmation of liberal Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor?
* Or is it me, Chuck DeVore, a “Ronald Reagan Republican” who has a proven, conservative record on taxes, on spending, on social issues, and on defense?

I believe it’s vitally important to California and America’s future that we get Barbara Boxer out of the Senate…

…but I also believe it’s just as important we replace her with a true conservative who will faithfully hold strong to the Founding Father’s vision of a limited government

My record is clear.

I have a proven voting record in the California State Assembly that has earned me several “Legislator of the Year” awards from conservative organizations.

I was a Reagan White House appointee in the Pentagon and I’m a Lt. Col. in the U.S. Army Reserve.

And I was against the bailouts, against cap and trade, and against the confirmation of Sonia Sotomayer. I support the Arizona immigration law. And when California Republican moderates tried to raise taxes I resigned my leadership position in protest.

My record has earned me support from conservatives like:

*** Senator Jim DeMint’s “Senate Conservative Fund”
*** Governor Mike Huckabee’s “HuckPAC”
*** Congressman Tom McClintock (R-CA)
*** Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA)
*** Congressman Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
*** The Tea Party Express
*** Citizens United PAC
*** Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association PAC
*** And more than 60% of California’s Republican elected officials.

Media commentators Glenn Beck, George Will, Andrew Breitbart, and Mark Levin have all identified me as the true conservative candidate in this race.

I’m not going to lie to you, I would have liked Sarah Palin’s endorsement, too (and I look forward to getting it after I win the primary).

But the support I most need and want is yours.

If you live in California, I need your vote on June 8th.

And no matter where you live, I urgently need your immediate financial support.

Based on the Facebook and Twitter comments, it seems a lot of Sarah’s supporters weren’t very happy about her decision to support Carly.

To those of you who are looking for a strong, tried-and-true conservative who can win in November, I invite you to join my team right now.

I need your help.

Click this link right now to make a donation and help me win this primary. Any amount you can give, even if it’s just $5, will make an immediate difference.

I am the REAL conservative who can win this primary and defeat Barbara Boxer.

But I can’t do it by myself.

I need the help of conservatives like you. And I need it right now.

So please don’t delay. Click this link right now and help me, the “Ronald Reagan Conservative,” win the Republican primary.

All the best,

Chuck DeVore
State Assemblyman (R-CA)
Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army Reserve

Tensions High at California High School Following Flag Flap

By Joshua Rhett Miller-

Tensions are rising at a California high school where five students were sent home for wearing American flag T-shirts on Cinco de Mayo.

More than 200 Hispanic students reportedly skipped class on Thursday and marched to school district headquarters while chanting “we want respect” and “si se puedes” — “yes we can” — the Morgan Hill Times reported.

“We did this to support the Latino/Hispanic community,” Francine Roa, a 2005 Live Oak High School graduate, told the newspaper.

At least six Morgan Hill police vehicles traveled alongside the students, many of whom carried Mexican flags. No arrests were made related to the march, the newspaper reported.

Police have been told to be on alert for gang-related retaliation against the boys, according to Ken Jones, whose stepson, Daniel Galli, was one of the students who refused to turn their T-shirts inside-out when asked by a vice principal on Wednesday.
related links


California Students Sent Home for Wearing U.S. Flags on Cinco de Mayo

“We just want this whole thing to die down,” Jones told “We’re not trying to keep these flames firing.”

The five teens — Galli, Austin Carvalho, Matt Dariano, Dominic Maciel and Clayton Howard — were sitting at a table outside Live Oak High School Wednesday morning when Assistant Principal Miguel Rodriguez asked two of them to remove their American flag bandannas, one of the boys’ parents told The youths complied, but were asked to accompany Rodriguez to the principal’s office.

The students were then told they must turn their T-shirts inside-out or be sent home, though it would not be considered a suspension. Rodriguez told the students he did not want any fights to break out between Mexican-American students celebrating their heritage and those wearing American flags, the parent said.

But Jones said the preemptive action was unnecessary, and that Rodriguez “overstepped his bounds.”

“The issue was, there was nothing going on,” Jones told Fox News on Friday. “There was no sense of violence at all amongst the students, there was no conversation, there was no bullying.

“We just feel like the vice principal overstepped his bounds. He jumped in too quickly. We can understand he might be concerned something would happen, but there was no indication that was going to happen at all.”

Officials at the high school, a 1,300-student institution in Santa Clara County, near San Jose, have not returned several messages seeking comment.

As of late Thursday, Jones said the five boys’ parents have no plans to sue the school or Morgan Hill Unified School District, which has characterized the incident as “extremely unfortunate” and is conducting an ongoing investigation. Several attorneys have contacted the families offering to represent them pro bono, Jones said.

“We’re keeping an open mind,” he said. “We want to stand up for our First Amendment rights.”

He said the families are seeking an apology from school officials and want the students’ unexcused absences for leaving school to be expunged.

Galli said he frequently wears the American flag T-shirt to school and that he wasn’t trying to incite any tension. Asked if he wore the shirt to make a statement related to the ongoing immigration debate, Galli said, “No, it had absolutely nothing to do with that.”

District officials, meanwhile, sent a voicemail message in English and Spanish to all parents late Thursday.

“The Morgan Hill Unified School District does not prohibit nor do we discourage wearing patriotic clothing,” the message from Superintendent Wesley Smith said. “The incident on May 5 at Live Oak High School is extremely unfortunate. While campus safety is our primary concern and administrators made decisions yesterday in an attempt to ensure campus safety, students should not, and will not, be disciplined for wearing patriotic clothing. This situation and our response are under review.”

Asked if the district will be taking any steps to quell rising tensions at the school, a district official told in an e-mail, “Our focus for [Thursday] was student safety. Students are safe and administrators are continuing to work through the investigation.”

Eugene Volokh, a professor of law at UCLA, said the students are protected under California Education Code 48950, which prohibits schools from enforcing a rule subjecting a high school student to disciplinary sanctions solely on the basis of conduct that, when engaged outside of campus, is protected by the First Amendment.

If the school could point to previous incidents sparked by students who wore garments with American flags, they could argue that the flag is likely to lead to “substantial disruption,” Volokh said.

“If, for example, there had been fights over similar things at past events, if there had been specific threats made. But if [school officials] just say, ‘Well, we think it might be offensive to people,’ that’s generally speaking not enough.”

Volokh said the students and their parents likely have a winning case on their hands if they decide to take the matter to court.

“Oh yes, it’s almost open and shut,” he said.


News from Help Save Maryland – Action Alert! HSM/PFC Rally in Silver Spring Saturday May 22

May 6, 2010

by cecilcalvert

Here is the official date for our Counter Protest to the Lawless Activities taking place in the State Of Maryland which they refuse to uphold as the law regarding enforcement of Immigration Laws and Support of The Arizona Act. Come and join us as we protest against Illegal Alien Activities in our Communities and let’s go right where it all started in Maryland, Casa De Maryland Day Labor Center. Last protest, they had people there trying to speak above and beyond their right. Let’s show them, that, we, the True Americans and Legal Immigrants are no longer going to stand quietly as our Rights have been swept under the carpet. Join me and the Press, WCBM, The Gazette and I am sure others from the media will be there. I know we would love to have the Former Governor make a showing at this event and stand with the True Freedom Fighters and those who want the laws in Maryland upheld, no exceptions.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Help Save Maryland Action Alert


DATE: SATURDAY, MAY 22, 10:30-12:30 PM


MEET HSM & PFC Members from Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Baltimore City, Cecil, Harford, Howard, Montgomery, Prince George’s, Talbot and Washington Counties.








Montgomery County Police will be on the scene.


RSVP to:

Brad Botwin, Director, Help Save Maryland 240-447-1884, bb67chev

” Find strength in the fact that you’re not alone and that your actions contribute to a cause, whether in politics, business, or in other spheres of life. I am here to be effective, to have agency, to make claim on power, to spread it around, to rearrange it, to democratize it, to legislate it into justice.” Tony Kusher, playwright

San Francisco’s Unconstitutional Arizona ‘Boycott’

By Bruce Walker

San Francisco and other city governments have jumped on the bandwagon of formally “boycotting” business with Arizona in response to that border state’s new law to assist the enforcement of federal immigration laws. Boycotts are an honorable way to influence governments or citizens. When the Nazis came to power, millions of Americans boycotted German imports. Blacks in Mississippi boycotted the Montgomery Bus System for its discriminatory practices toward blacks five decades ago. American patriots boycotted British goods prior to the Revolutionary War. Conservatives prior to our toppling Saddam Hussein called for boycotts of French goods.

Boycotts have been used against conservatives like Dr. Laura and against leftists like Rosie O’Donnell. In a world in which we have enough “stuff,” there is a compelling case to be made that all of us should use our votes in the marketplace to support values we treasure instead of just getting the best economic bargain. Many of us do that. I have not watched new television programming for decades. Millions of us boycott Hollywood.

The term “boycott” derives from a British officer, Captain Charles Boycott, who zealously enforced the legal but draconian rights of British landlords against Irish tenants in 1880. The Irish people voluntarily decided to have absolutely nothing to do with Captain Boycott. They neither offered nor threatened violence. They acted as a group, but as a group of private individuals. Within a fairly short period of time, the captain and his family left Ireland and returned to England.

Those cities threatening to “boycott” Arizona, however, are not threatening a boycott at all. Instead, as governments under our Constitution, these leftist city councils are creating an embargo. This is wrong, and it is unconstitutional. Under our federal system, state governments and their political subdivisions may not impose undue burdens on interstate commerce. Moreover, states and cities have no right to punish private citizens in other states for the actions of the state governments. Citizens have the right, within our federal system, to be treated equally and fairly.

Arizona, for example, could not pass a law preventing any business with San Francisco until that city modified its ordinances on sexual relations or gun control. It would not matter if an overwhelming majority of Arizonans thought this embargo was good. Political majorities and politicians backed by those majorities may not discriminate against citizens or states which displease them.

Likewise, San Francisco could not refuse to carry merchant traffic from its port facilities to Arizona. Likewise, Arizona could not stop interstate commerce traveling from San Francisco through Arizona. If state and city governments begin to exercise an extra-constitutional power to obstruct interstate commerce by imposing political filters, then there is no logical ending point to a feud between politicians from one part of the country and those in another part of the country. State and local governments throughout the nation have duties to each other. Apolitical and open trade is one of those duties.

Who is hurt when the City of San Francisco “boycotts” (i.e., embargoes) trade with the State of Arizona? The injured parties are the citizens of San Francisco and the citizens of Arizona. Commerce between those governments would exist only if that commerce made economic sense. In other words, the only time in which the prohibitions enacted by San Francisco government would go into effect would be when it makes economic sense to do business with Arizona. Ordinary citizens — who have always had the private right to boycott those they dislike — lose.

Who wins from an embargo when leftist run cities artificially substitute politics for market value in investments? Politicians with an almost insatiable appetite for power and praise win politically — after all, it is not their businesses hurt by an economically irrational embargo against Arizona. Who wins financially? Shrewd investors who buy undervalued assets in places like Arizona! The effect of an utterly political embargo is to reward those who ignore it.

An unconstitutional embargo could also easily cause economic blowback. What if Arizona passed a retaliatory embargo on commerce with the City of San Francisco? How short a step would that government-to-government embargo be from an Arizona embargo that precluded commerce with any business licensed by the City of San Francisco? Such businesses, after all, must largely conform to San Francisco municipal laws, and those laws would formally discriminate against Arizona. What argument would there be against such a discriminatory embargo by Arizona — particularly when the underlying rationale for a San Francisco government embargo on business with Arizona is explicitly to hurt Arizona businesses?

The underlying problem reflects a concern which I expressed in a recent article: The gravest problem in America today is not government, per se, but the use of government as a sock puppet for an angry, relentless partisan or interest group movement. When those groups seize governments, then the general welfare, as opposed to the welfare of special groups, melts into limp glop. The welfare of the citizens of the several states, even the welfare of ordinary San Franciscans, is abandoned so that political bosses can kowtow to particular interests.

America has an excellent mechanism for punishing those who follow the law but behave badly. It is called the free market. Nearly all of us make our consumer choices based upon complex factors which include more than pure economics. Just as we give our money to churches and to synagogues and we give our time to charities and to community activities, so we buy goods and services, in part, because we approve of the values of those selling. The danger of substituting brute state force for persuaded consumer opinion is that there is no end to the cycle of action and reaction — and no resolution to any of the underlying problems.

Bruce Walker is the author of two books: Sinisterism: Secular Religion of the Lie, and his recently published book The Swastika against the Cross: The Nazi War on Christianity.

LT living a life without morals

Taylor was arraigned on charges of third-degree rape and patronizing a prostitute.

Mark Kriegel is the national columnist for He is the author of two New York Times best sellers, Namath: A Biography and Pistol: The Life of Pete Maravich, which Sports Illustrated called “the best sports biography of the year.”

It is tempting to think of Lawrence Taylor as Ben Roethlisberger writ large, to wag your finger and proclaim this latest arrest as the natural consequence of entitlement and risk.

But a life lived so badly doesn’t qualify as a morality tale. In fact, there’s nothing moral at all about Lawrence Taylor.

Football’s greatest defensive player was unlike any other athlete. With unmatched ferocity and talent, he didn’t have to train. He didn’t have to lift. He could snort and smoke and drink and whore about, and still lead the league in sacks. And he always seemed quite proud of it.

Now, 29 years after he was drafted — an occasion he recently recounted for having downed “41 Coors Lights” — Taylor remains unlike any athlete I’ve ever encountered. For all he was given, most apparent now is what he lacks.

Consider him with his contemporaries: a trio of gifted but perennially-recovering cokeheads who became famous in New York in the Eighties. Darryl Strawberry, God bless him, had some. Dwight Gooden could fake it. But Lawrence Taylor had none at all. I’m talking about shame. I don’t even think Lawrence Taylor has the capacity for it. I’ve never seen a guy embrace his inner dirt bag quite like LT.

According to police, this latest arrest involves a pimp and a teenage prostitute who was allegedly delivered to LT with an already blackened eye. He was taken into custody early Thursday in room 160 at the Holiday Inn in Suffern, N.Y.

“As with every celebrity, Mr. Taylor is a target,” said his attorney, Arthur Aidala, who categorically denied his client had sex with the 16-year-old.

From Steve Garvey to Tiger Woods, take a look at our top sports sex scandals.

Now I understand that Taylor is entitled to the presumption of innocence — but only in a courtroom. His life as a man is out there to be judged. He failed at least two NFL drug tests, though who knows how many he would’ve flunked if he hadn’t availed himself of various teammates’ urine samples. He was arrested on drug charges in 1996, ’97 and ’98, all resulting in conviction or court-mandated rehab. In 2000, he got five years probation for tax evasion. Also, as his lawyer described him as a “loving family man,” I’m obliged to mention that he was once arrested for failure to pay child support.

Also worth mentioning: This Holiday Inn is about six miles from a notorious neighborhood called The Hill in Spring Valley, N.Y., where, as mere coincidence would have it, the opening scene of Taylor’s second autobiography takes place.

“LT: Over the Edge” was a huge bestseller. But the protagonist recalls his misadventures with too much glee for anyone’s comfort.

It begins with — what else? — Taylor copping drugs in the mid-Nineties. But it sounds like a Seventies blaxpoitation picture. After Taylor makes the buy, a guy with a gun in the passenger seat of LT’s Cadillac rips him off for his Rolex and his pinkie ring. In short order, the hero-drug-addict-linebacker turns on his assailant and starts “pounding him in the face with my fists.”

Finally, this little set-piece scene ends with — what else? — LT hitting the gas and thinking to “grab that punk ass by the neck and shove him out of the car.

“And then I drove home and smoked their crack.”

Talk about a happy ending! Surprised he didn’t celebrate with a sack dance.

Then again, it was a long time ago. “A period in my life,” he recalled, “when the only people in my life were dealers, addicts, and hookers.”

My, how things have changed. A decade into the new millennium, he finds himself six miles down the road.

This is your life, Lawrence Taylor.

School District: Flag Clothing Incident “Extremely Unfortunate”


Some parents of students at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill are keeping their kids home from school after tension related to an incident involving students wearing American flag clothing on Cinco de Mayo spilled out onto the streets.

Now the school district is sending a message to parents about the controversy, which has become national news. The school district’s superintendant directly addressed parents Thursday in a letter posted on the school’s website and also sent as a voicemail:

Good evening. This is Dr. Wesley Smith, Superintendent of the Morgan Hill Unified School District. The Morgan Hill Unified School District does not prohibit nor do we discourage wearing patriotic clothing. The incident on May 5 at Live Oak High School is extremely unfortunate. While campus safety is our primary concern and administrators made decisions yesterday in an attempt to ensure campus safety, students should not, and will not, be disciplined for wearing patriotic clothing. This situation and our response are under review.

We know that this is an emotionally charged topic. We would ask you to encourage your students to be safe and focus on their academics while in school. If conversations and/or activities are necessary to express their feelings on this issue, we will find appropriate venues that do not disturb student learning or jeopardize the safety of our students. Furthermore, we encourage everyone to demonstrate respect for each other, open communication, and responsibility.

Thank you for your support and understanding.
Dr. Wesley Smith

It all started on Wednesday, Cinco de Mayo, when five boys wore clothing depicting the American flag. The school’s principal asked the boys to remove the items of clothing, turn their shirts inside out, or face suspenion. Instead, the boys opted to go home for the day.

On Thursday, about 200 Mexican-American students walked out of class in protest of the flag clothing incident. Members of the group waved the Mexican flag and said they were marching for respect and unity. They also demanded the school suspend the boys who wore the U.S. flag-adorned clothing.

As a result of this heated debate, other Bay Area schools by the name of Live Oak have been threatened. The Live Oak School District in Santa Cruz County has received several calls from people angry about the issue, even though they are in no way involved in the Morgan Hill school’s issue. That district’s superintendant believes it’s just a same-name misunderstanding and lack of clarity in reporting the school’s location.

When Sports & Politics Don’t Mix

by Elisabeth Meinecke

One of the cardinal rules of sports organizations is that it always boils down to the fans. That’s why mixing politics and sports, like the Phoenix Suns organization did Wednesday, is tricky.

The Suns decided to wear their “Los Suns” jerseys—which they’ve done before—on Cinco de Mayo for their playoff game against the San Antonio Spurs. In a statement Tuesday, the Suns’ owner Robert Sarver explained the decision was to honor “our Latino community, and the diversity of our league, the state of Arizona, and our nation.” But then he said, “The frustration with the federal government’s failure to deal with the issue of illegal immigration resulted in passage of a flawed state law. However intended, the result of passing this law is that our basic principles of equal rights and protection under the law are being called into question,” referring to the new Arizona immigration law.

The Suns’ marquee player, Steve Nash, talked about the law, the decision, and how important the fans are to the team: “I think the law is very misguided… I think it’s very important for us to stand up for things we believe in. As a team and as an organization, we have a lot of love and support for all of our fans. The league is very multicultural. We have players from all over the world, and our Latino community here is very strong and important to us.” In another interview, Nash said, “I think that it opens up the potential for racial profiling and racism…I think it represents our state poorly in the eyes of the nation and the world.”

The team’s decision even prompted a rally near the arena where the Rev. Al Sharpton joined a group of protesters against the new immigration law wearing the Los Suns jerseys.

The Suns’ comments and decision are fairly bold as you look at these facts:

1. The law isn’t targeted at the Latino community. It’s targeted at illegal aliens—people who are breaking our country’s laws. So the only people this law should really be offending are those breaking it anyway. We’re pretty sure those aren’t the type of fan base any team wants to be defending.

2. A majority of Arizonans—presumably the bulk of Phoenix’s fan base—support the Arizona law, according to the latest polling. Basically, the team was making a statement that arguably over half their fans disagree with. It makes it look like the wishes of a law-abiding fan base were overlooked by the team and the owner so that a political statement could be made. Were those fans considered?

3. Nash is Canadian. The law doesn’t affect him any more than it affects the next person, because he’s not an illegal alien. Yet how offended would Canadians be if an American skated in Game 2 of the NHL playoffs for the Montreal Canadiens wearing a jersey that spelled the team’s name the American way (Canadians), and this after he criticized a Canadian law that didn’t affect him? You’d have World War III on your hands.

4. The misinformation out there about the law is astounding, and you don’t do a service to your fans by spreading it. For example, Nash talked about the law leading to racial profiling, but racial profiling is expressly prohibited in the law itself. In fact, in a move that will make her forever cool, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer wrote an op-ed that was an exclusive on countering some of the most outrageous claims. When ESPN is publishing legislative op-eds by governors, you know sports and politics have passed the courtship stage.

Maybe the Suns addressed these issues privately. The organization said the statement put out Tuesday and wearing the jerseys speak for themselves, and they will have no further discussion on the issue. But it seems there are still questions that sports fans don’t have answers to.

Or maybe the Suns have learned the wisdom in Los Angeles Lakers’ Coach Phil Jackson’s response to the ordeal as ESPN reported: “I don’t think teams should get involved in the political stuff. And I think this one’s still kind of coming out to balance as to how it’s going to be favorably looked upon by our public. If I heard it right, the American people are really for stronger immigration laws, if I’m not mistaken. Where we stand as basketball teams, we should let that kind of play out and let the political end of that go where it’s going to go.”

Miss Meinecke was a member of Hillsdale College’s Dow Journalism Program, sports editor and beat reporter for the campus newspaper, and also contributed to Life Times, the newsletter for Southern Indiana Right to Life. She interned at Comcast SportsNet in Washington, D.C. through the National Journalism Center before joining Human Events in August 2008. E-mail her at You can also request to follow her on Twitter.

Ariz. governor rejects delay of immigration law

AP – Protesters hold signs that read in Spanish: 'No to the SB1070 law', in reference to the newly approved …

By LAURIE KELLMAN, Associated Press Writer

ASHINGTON – A prominent Senate Democrat asked Republican Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer to put off her state’s controversial immigration law to give Congress a chance to act. Scant time passed before Brewer’s answer came back: No.

The request by Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York was a long shot for getting a stalled Senate immigration initiative moving again. Even the White House thinks the Senate proposal is nearly dead. “There’s not enough support to move forward,” White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Thursday.

Still, among Democrats, there’s plenty of support for trying — at least in public — to advance immigration reform during this year of midterm elections. The party’s control of Congress depends in part on Hispanics, a key constituency, voting Democratic.

Hence, at a Cinco de Mayo celebration Wednesday at the White House, President Barack Obama said he wanted to start work on immigration legislation this year. Days earlier, he had said there was no appetite in Congress for another big legislative fight.

Schumer set out an unlikely path to passage for the troubled immigration plan in his letter to Brewer on Thursday. Delay for a year the date the Arizona law takes effect, he proposed, and push one of Arizona’s two Republican senators to support the Democrats’ outline for an overhaul of immigration law.

The delay would give Congress a chance to pass a comprehensive federal law that would toughen borders and forge a path to citizenship for millions here illegally, Schumer argued, an outcome he contended would be more effective than the state law.

Even if Brewer had agreed to call the legislature back into special session to make the delay official, it was highly unlikely that either Sen. John McCain or Sen. Jon Kyl would have changed their minds and supported the Democrats’ proposal.

Schumer’s short-lived idea was the Democrats’ latest effort to look like they’re not abandoning immigration reform in the face of Arizona’s crackdown on those in the state illegally. It’s true that no Republican senator is openly supporting the stalled effort, but it’s not clear that all of the Democrats are behind it, either.

The outcome of fall elections could determine whether Congress takes up immigration next year. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., an original sponsor who has backed away from the immigration bill, has said it could be done in 2012, when Obama is up for re-election.

Hispanic voters have long been frustrated that Obama’s campaign promise to pass immigration reform has not been kept. Some members of the House Hispanic Caucus agreed to vote for his health care overhaul on the understanding that he would push immigration reform through this year.

Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, struggling with a tough re-election bid in heavily Hispanic Nevada, considered bringing it to the floor of the Senate ahead of energy and climate change legislation.

Even after Obama told reporters Congress lacked the appetite for a bill this year, Senate Democrats unveiled an immigration outline — not a bill — the next day.


Associated Press writer Paul Davenport in Phoenix contributed to this report.

Michigan Elementary School Principal Investigated for Blacks-Only Class Trip

Dicken Elementary School Principal Mike Madison helped organize the controversial fieldtrip.

By Jana Winter-

An elementary school principal in Michigan is under investigation for authorizing a field trip last week for 30 black students to meet with an African-American rocket scientist. Students who are not black were excluded from the outing — a possible violation of a state law that bans racial favoritism in public schools.

“The district is investigating the allegations of violation of the State of Michigan Proposal 2,” a spokeswoman for the Ann Arbor, Mich., school district told “There was no ill-intent or malice in the principal and teachers planning this field trip,” she added.

The principal, Mike Madison, who is black, said the trip was part of an effort to close the achievement gap between black and white students. But some parents whose children were not included say it clearly was illegal.

The controversy began last week when the 30 students, members of an African-American academic support group, were taken to hear the rocket scientist, Alec Gallimore, speak at the University of Michigan, where he is an aerospace engineering professor and propulsion lab director.

The goal of the trip, Madison said, was to close test score gaps and inspire the students to consider careers in the sciences.

But parents of students who were excluded protested, and the children who went on the trip were booed by their classmates when they returned to school.

Earlier this week, Madison tried to quash the controversy by sending a letter home to parents, in which he wrote:

“In hindsight, this field trip could have been approached and arranged in a better way.

“But as I reflect upon the look of excitement, enthusiasm and energy that I saw in these children’s eyes as they stood in the presence of a renowned African American rocket scientist in a very successful position, it gave the kids an opportunity to see this type of achievement is possible for even them.

“It was not a wasted venture,” he continued, “for I know one day they might want to aspire to be the first astronaut or scientist standing on the Planet Mars….

“The intent of our field trip was not to segregate or exclude students, as has been reported, but rather to address the societal issues, roadblocks and challenges that our African-American children will face as they pursue a successful academic education here in our community.”

But Madison’s explanation only fueled the controversy, and parental complaints turned into allegations that the school had violated Proposal 2, a newly enacted Michigan law that bans racial preference in public schools.

“If it was directed, guided, organized by the school district, they cannot say they are doing a field trip today for blacks only, or for whites only, or for Hispanics only or for Asians only,” Leon Drolet, the former chairman of the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, told the Detroit Free Press.

But district spokeswoman Liz Margolis said that bridging the gap in test scores between white and black students was a serious issue that legitimized the trip. Plus, she said, the field trip was paid for by a private donation.

“We don’t feel that it at all violates (Proposal 2), but frankly, as with any group of students, if we identify a group of students that need support, we would be addressing that,” Margolis told the Free Press.

“But we also have to have better education for our parents so they know why it’s being done,” she said.

A parent-teacher meeting to discuss the issue is scheduled for Thursday night.

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