American Elephants

Open Borders and Amnesty or The Rule of Law? by The Elephant's Child

Arizona’s Senator John Kyl reports to a Town Hall meeting on his meeting with President Obama about Arizona’s immigration law and securing the border. The White House has denied that the president said any such thing, but Senator Kyl has reaffirmed his statement.

For border states in particular, illegal immigrants represent far more than poor Mexicans seeking work.  There is the problem of known criminals, drug trafficking, pressure on the public schools, hospitals and emergency rooms, welfare rolls, and terrorist infiltration.  Not all who cross the border are from Mexico.  There are a goodly number from countries known for terrorist training camps.  The states are reeling under the budgetary costs.

ADDENDUM: From Byron York at the Washington ExaminerKyl is not backing down. “What I said occurred, did occur,” he told an Arizona radio station. “Some spokesman down at the White House said no, that isn’t what happened at all, and then proceeded to say we need comprehensive immigration reform to secure the border. That is their position, and all I was doing was explaining why, from a conversation with the president, why it appears that that’s their position.”

Even if it didn’t have so many other fights on its hands, it would be unusual for an administration to align itself against an American state. But that’s precisely what has happened. Soon it will be up to the courts and voters to decide whether Obama’s campaign against Arizona will succeed or fail.

It’s Time to Move on Free Trade! by The Elephant's Child

President Obama has claimed to favor free trade. But as in so many cases, what he says doesn’t mean there will be any action.   The free-trade pacts with Columbia, Panama and South Korea have been “pending” for the last sixteen months.  Big Labor does not like free trade.  This one big interest group has driven much of Obama’s action or inaction on almost every administration program or policy.

This week there is some rumbling in the background.  Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made an impassioned plea at the Council of the Americas for Columbia  to hang on just a bit longer, assuring Bogota of  U.S. “commitment”.

John Kerry, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations committee, is focusing on South Korea and the increasingly dangerous situation on the peninsula.  He made a forceful plea to Obama along with GOP Sen. Richard Lugar, to use the trade pact to seal ties.  It is critical to secure the relationship.

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk, and Defense Secretary have separately made pleas for action from Democrats.

Contrary to Union objections, these trade pacts mean job opportunities and markets for U.S. Companies.  The three countries are signing pacts with Europe and other countries while Obama dithers.  There are limits to how long pacts can languish before governments move on.

If this was Obama’s aim, it’s another job killer, and a legacy-killer for his presidency.  It does not serve American interests.

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