- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 29, 2014

They will sing. They will pray. They will risk arrest.

A coalition of faith groups promises “a massive act of civil disobedience” at high noon on Thursday in front of the White House. The rally includes immigrant-rights activists, bishops, nuns, rabbis and pastors representing the United Methodist Church, Disciples of Christ, CASA de Maryland, Sisters of Mercy and five other organizations. They will risk arrest, organizers say, “to oppose President Obama’s daily deportation of 1,100 aspiring Americans,” as Congress and administration consider expedited deportation of refugee children. There’s more to come. On Saturday, a “Not One More Deportation” march will also wind up at the White House, a project of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network.

“The president has a choice to make, and we want him to make the right one. He has the opportunity to grant relief or continue the partisan games of Washington he was elected to change,” explains Marisa Franco, campaign director for the organization. This situation has many moving parts, however.

Republicans continue to bristle over Mr. Obama’s threat to make his own immigration policy, bypassing the lawmakers altogether via his “pen and phone.” Some GOP lawmakers go to the southern border to see things for themselves, however. Republican Reps. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota and Steve King of Iowa returned Monday from Texas after taking the grand tour, from points of entry to resettlement areas, border patrol stations and a Catholic Church, among other sites.

“Everywhere we went, the response was virtually the same. This is a crisis of President Obama’s own making,” Mrs. Bachmann says. “The real problem is the president’s lack of political will to enforce the laws on the books and do whatever it takes to secure our border. We saw border processing, not border security.”

HOT-BUTTON AMNESTY

“Give us your poor, your tired, your future Democrats waiting to be registered. That’s what some in the Democratic Party are saying as they urge the president to pursue immigration goals even if it hurts in the ‘14 midterms,” proclaims an Investor’s Business Daily editorial, which suggests some Democrats are using amnesty for political purposes.

“In other words, damn the political torpedoes and full speed ahead,” the publication says, warning that the White House now is interested in a “sort of a Berlin airlift for illegal aliens.” The editorial concludes: “All of which is designed to fundamentally transform the demographics and politics of the United States and to punish Americans who believe, as President Reagan did, that a country without borders is not a country”

A TALE OF MANY PUTINS

Headlines full of prose and poesy are many about Russia President Vladimir Putin as both the press and the White House try to figure out his strategy. “It’s not a new Cold War,” President Obama told journalists Tuesday. Among the many titillating titles:

“Putin using Soviet tactics to confuse the U.S.” (Fox News); “Vladimir Putin’s private life revealed” (CNN); “Putin’s Ukraine unreality show” (The Wall Street Journal); “Putin may have passed the point of no return on Ukraine” (Reuters); “Russian oligarchs are tired of funding Putin’s land grab” (The Financial Times); “The West has cornered Putin and that’s when he’s most dangerous” (The New Republic); and “Putin nominated for Russia’s highest honor, ‘Hero of Russia’ title” (Moscow Times).

RON PAUL’S GIVING AWAY A WHAT?

“Each and every one of us has a God-given right — and duty — to defend freedom. That’s why Campaign for Liberty is giving away a brand new Colt LE6920MP-B AR-15 equipped with a red dot sight. The AR-15 will come with Magpul stock, pistol grip, handguard, and vertical grip and back-up sight. All you have to do is sign up for free for your chance to win! All entries must be submitted by 5 p.m. on Thursday, July 31.”

— A message from Ron Paul to fans of his nonprofit activist group. Those interested should consult Campaignforliberty.org.

SOUTH TEXAS IS A WHAT?

Show some muscle, or maybe not. Those are the choices in the Rio Grande Valley as one Texas Democrat questions his governor’s order for 1,000 National Guard troops to assemble in troubled border lands to wrest control of the illegal immigration surge.

“Any attempt to give domestic police power to soldiers is ill-advised. The people of South Texas do not want to and should not have to live in a police state,” Rep. Joaquin Castro wrote to Gov. Rick Perry in an open letter released Monday.

“For to long, the border has been used as a bogeyman for political gain I am disappointed that your first instinct was to head down to the Rio Grande to pose by mounted machine guns as if on a trophy hunt. These actions imply hostility toward young children fleeing violence in their home countries and give license to uglier demonstrations of hostility,” Mr. Castro advised the governor.

He wants to meet with Mr. Perry, who in turn wants to meet with President Obama, who may not want to meet with anyone at this point. Still, Mr. Castro might also consider sending a memo to Rep. David Schweikert, Arizona Republican. He proposes sending not 1,000, but 10,000 troops to the southwestern border.

CONGRESS: SAME OLD LOUSY RATINGS

“The air in Washington, D.C., has continued to grow heavy and oppressive, and this has had nothing to do with the weather. The partisan fighting is contentious and the intraparty fighting is not far behind in intensity. Americans are definitely taking notice of this, and the force of their displeasure is evident in how they feel about Congress,” says Regina Corso, vice president of the Harris Poll, which has gauged the numbers.

“When it comes to the overall job they are doing, just 9 percent give Congress positive ratings, while 91 percent give them negative ratings,” she says, adding that political parties also fare poorly: 54 percent of the respondents turn thumbs down on Republicans, 53 percent feel the same about Democrats.

NOT NANTUCKET BOUND

“We visited Goblin Valley, Spooky Gulch, Peekaboo Slot Canyon, Capitol Reef National Park, Bryce National Park, Zion National Park, Lake Powell, Rainbow Arch, Grand Canyon, and the four falls in the Havasupai Reservation. All totaled, we hiked over 50 miles: quite a feat for the young — and for Ann and me.”

Mitt Romney, describing what he did on summer vacation, via his “Medium” blog on Tuesday.

POLL DU JOUR

61 percent of U.S. voters oppose impeaching President Obama; 41 percent of Republicans, 77 percent of Democrats and 61 percent of independents agree.

58 percent of voters overall disapprove of Mr. Obama bypassing Congress to make policy; 91 percent of Republicans, 29 percent of Democrats and 64 percent of independents also disapprove.

58 percent overall say Mr. Obama exceeded his authority with the new health care law; 83 percent of Republicans, 39 percent of Democrats and 55 percent of independents agree.

57 percent overall say they would not want Mr. Obama to campaign for them if they were a Democratic candidate; 88 percent of Republicans, 29 percent of Democrats and 66 percent of independents agree.

43 percent overall would vote Democratic if the midterm election were today; 4 percent of Republicans, 80 percent of Democrats and 19 percent of independents agree.

41 percent overall would vote Republican if the election were today; 87 percent of Republicans, 8 percent of Democrats and 36 percent of independents agree.

Source: A Fox News poll of 1,057 registered U.S. voters conducted July 20-22 and released Tuesday.

Declarations and machinations to jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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