Friday, February 27, 2015
Robert De Niro pays IRS $6.4 million after he's slapped with massive tax lien and says the government's been billing the WRONG ADDRESS
Legendary actor says delinquency notices regarding his 2013 taxes were sent to the wrong address
His reps said Thursday 'he had a check for the full amount [$6,410,449.20] hand delivered to the IRS this morning'
A lien from the IRS serves as a notice to creditors that the U.S. government has a right to you property
By Josh Gardner For Dailymail.com
Published: 21:18 EST, 26 February 2015 | Updated: 21:27 EST, 26 February 2015
Hollywood living legend Robet De Niro made headlines Thursday with the news he owed the IRS an astounding $6.4 million in back taxes.
However, the news appear to have come as a surprise to De Niro--who's worth a reported $200 million--as much as to his fans.
According to the 71-year-old's reps, he never saw the notices sent to him by Uncle Sam.
De Niro's reps said Thursday 'he had a check for the full amount [$6,410,449.20] hand delivered to the IRS this morning' after news broke that he'd
The delinquency notices were 'sent to an old address,' De Niro's people told the Smoking Gun, 'he had a check for the full amount hand delivered to the IRS this morning.'
The IRS lodged the complaint against the actor three months ago, according to Smoking Gun.
The lien was first noticed by the folks at FamousTaxLiens.com.
It lists De Niro's residence as a Tribeca condominium he helped develop along with his partners.
However, lending some believability to his claim, De Niro has many residences including a $125,000 per month rental--one of New York's priciest--overlooking Central Park.
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/27/2015 08:31:00 AM
Thursday, February 26, 2015
Why buy oil from Canada when we can buy it from our Muslim "friends" in Saudi Arabia?
If they're so concerned about carbon emissions wouldn't oil contained in a pipe be a better solution than trucks and trains hauling the oil through the United States?
If they're so concerned about carbon emissions wouldn't oil contained in a pipe be a better solution than trucks and trains hauling the oil through the United States?
We need 67 votes to override the veto.
Perhaps if Republicans vow they'll get Edward Snowden to check for leaks it'll pass.
President Barack Obama on Tuesday swiftly delivered on his vow to veto a Republican bill approving the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada, leaving the long-debated project in limbo for another indefinite period.
The Senate received Obama's veto message and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell immediately countered by announcing the Republican-led chamber would attempt to overturn the veto by March 3.
Obama rejected the bill hours after it was sent to the White House. Republicans passed the bill to increase pressure on Obama to approve the pipeline, a move the president said would bypass a State Department process that will determine whether the project is in the U.S. national interest.
"Through this bill, the United States Congress attempts to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and operating a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest," Obama wrote in his veto message.
Republicans, who support the project because of its job-creation potential, made passing a bill a top priority after gaining control of the U.S. Senate and strengthening their majority in the House of Representatives in November elections.
The bill passed by 270-152 in the House earlier this month and cleared the Senate in January. Despite their majority in the Senate, Republicans are four votes short of being able to override Obama's veto.
They have vowed to attach language approving the pipeline in a spending bill or other legislation later in the year that the president would find difficult to reject.
Obama has played down Keystone XL's ability to create jobs and raised questions about its effects on climate change. Environmentalists, who made up part of the coalition that elected the president in 2008 and 2012, oppose the project because of the carbon emissions involved in getting the oil it would carry out of Canadian tar sands.
TransCanada Corp's pipeline would carry 830,000 barrels a day of mostly Canadian oil sands petroleum to Nebraska en route to refineries and ports along the U.S. Gulf. It has been pending for more than six years.
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/26/2015 07:22:00 AM
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
Obama Aide Calls Netanyahu's Planned Visit 'Destructive' to U.S.-Israel Ties
What to know what is "destructive"?
Susan Rice... a liar without a shred of credibility. She lied about the Benghazi video and then this...
Bergdhal captured on the battlefield?
Susan E. Rice, President Obama's national security adviser. Credit Alex Wong/Getty Images
WASHINGTON — Susan E. Rice, President Obama's national security adviser, sharply criticized Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel on Tuesday over his plans to address a joint meeting of Congress next week, saying his actions had hurt his nation's relationship with the United States.
Mr. Netanyahu's decision to travel to Washington to deliver the speech two weeks before the Israeli elections has "injected a degree of partisanship, which is not only unfortunate, I think it's destructive of the fabric of the relationship," Ms. Rice said in an interview on the PBS television program "Charlie Rose."
Her comments marked the strongest public rebuke to date by the Obama administration since Mr. Netanyahu accepted an invitation from Speaker John A. Boehner to make his case to Congress against a nuclear deal with Iran, which is a priority of Mr. Obama's. It is also the frankest acknowledgment yet by a top American official of the degree to which the controversy has damaged United States-Israeli relations.
The speech, scheduled for March 3, was arranged by Mr. Boehner and the Israeli ambassador without consulting the White House — a move that Mr. Obama's team has called a breach of protocol.
The president has said he will not meet with Mr. Netanyahu during his visit to avoid any appearance that he is trying to influence the Israeli elections that are scheduled for mid-March.
The episode is a low point in the tense relationship between Mr. Obama and Mr. Netanyahu and has touched off weeks of mostly anonymous sniping and finger-pointing.
Top administration officials have hinted more openly of their displeasure in recent days.
Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., who as president of the Senate would be expected to attend, has said he will be traveling abroad. Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday that he would be in Switzerland negotiating with the Iranians. The White House has also not committed to sending a representative next week to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's conference, where Mr. Netanyahu is also scheduled to appear.
The Israeli prime minister himself has turned down a request by Democratic senators for a private meeting, Senator Richard J. Durbin, Democrat of Illinois, said Tuesday.
"We offered the prime minister an opportunity to balance the politically divisive invitation from Speaker Boehner with a private meeting with Democrats who are committed to keeping the bipartisan support of Israel strong," Mr. Durbin said in a statement. "His refusal to meet is disappointing to those of us who have stood by Israel for decades."
In a letter released by Mr. Durbin's office, Mr. Netanyahu said such a meeting "could compound the misperception of partisanship regarding my upcoming visit."
Mr. Netanyahu said Tuesday that he was making the trip because it was his obligation to "do everything I can to prevent" a nuclear agreement with Iran.
"Therefore, I will go to Washington to address the American Congress, because the American Congress is likely to be the final brake before the agreement between the major powers and Iran," he said as he toured a military base in southern Israel.
Ms. Rice demurred when asked whether she believed Mr. Netanyahu was making the speech to gain political favor.
"I'm not going to ascribe motives to the prime minister," she told Mr. Rose. "The point is, we want the relationship between the United States and Israel to be unquestionably strong, immutable, regardless of political seasons in either country, regardless of which party may be in charge in either country.
"We've worked very hard to have that," she said, "and we will work very hard to maintain that."
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/25/2015 12:10:00 PM
Saturday, February 21, 2015
So when they turn on Barry I guess the party's over.
New York Post Cover Ridicule’s Obama’s Non-View Of ‘Islamic Terrorism’
It’s not the first time the New York Post has framed President Obama on their cover in an unflattering way, but today’s latest New York Post Obama cover featuring the President wearing a blindfold and asking, “Islamic terror? I just don’t see it”, definitely ranks among the paper’s most openly mocking.
February 19, 2015 New York Post cover mocking President Obama’s refusal to associate Islam with terrorism.
The blindfolded Obama New York Post cover conveniently arrives during the President Obama White House launching of a summit aimed at understanding and attempting to deal with terrorism and violent extremists, reports the Washington Post.
The Obama-ridiculing New York Post cover also follows President Obama’s speech on Wednesday where he declared, “We are not at war with Islam. We are at war with people who have perverted Islam.”
Along with the New York Post, many constituents from both the right and left have been questioning President Obama’s refusal to label the Islamic State – also known as ISIS and ISIL – as Islamic terrorists, or to associate the jihadist group with “Islamic terror”.
At the same time, President Obama has explained his feelings on the matter, saying that associating ISIS with Islam would give them a legitimacy they don’t deserve.
“They try to portray themselves as religious leaders, holy warriors in defense of Islam. We must never accept the premise that they put forward because it is a lie. Nor should we grant these terrorists the religious legitimacy that they seek. They are not religious leaders. They are terrorists.”
This explanation by President Obama doesn’t seem to appease the New York Post, however, the paper being highly critical of President Obama’s speech in the story accompanying the Obama-blindfold cover.
“They’re (ISIS) burning and beheading victims in the name of Islam,” begins the New York Post story. “But President Obama delivered a major speech Wednesday on combating violent extremism — while refusing to use the words ‘Muslim terrorists.'”
The New York Post story moves on to further criticize President Obama’s refusal to use terms like “Islamic terror,” the President instead focusing on things like the positive role that Islam and the Muslim culture has played in America and around the world.
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/21/2015 03:49:00 PM
Thursday, February 19, 2015
to diffuse emphasis on a subject at hand by implementing a distraction mechanism. Sub (meaning below) referring to the fact that the act of diffusing should flow below the level of consciousness of the other persons.
(they don't know you're doing it)
This really describes Barry's speech last night to a tee. He talked about how great the country was in the past... and how we can face any obstacle. The key words were "in the past". He glossed over Muslim terrorism as he always does making excuses for their atrocities while the small gaggle of idiots, some dressed like they were from the planet Vulcan, and for good measure a cop in the front row in full dress uniform (guess he didn't know he was being duped) applauding enthusiastically. Same shit. Different suit. Could only watch about 7 minutes before I had to get the puke bucket.
Barry said, "No single religion is responsible for violence and terrorism"…adding he wants to lift up the voice of tolerance in the United States and beyond. Ya know, those damn Presbyterians are just as violent as Muslims! Barry could shit in a glass and convince these morons it was a chocolate malt.
Reagan would have told us he would wipe ISIS from the face of the Earth. Barry wants us to address their "grievances". I'm about ready to choke on his political correctness.
Obama says world should address 'grievances' that terrorists exploit
Feb. 18, 2015: President Obama speaks in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, during the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism.
WASHINGTON – President Obama defended his administration's approach to the terror threat at a White House summit Wednesday, standing by claims that groups like the Islamic State do not represent Islam -- as well as assertions that job creation could help combat extremism.
Obama, addressing the Washington audience on the second day of the summit, said the international community needs to address "grievances" that terrorists exploit, including economic and political issues.
He stressed that poverty alone doesn't cause terrorism, but "resentments fester" and extremism grows when millions of people are impoverished.
"We do have to address the grievances that terrorists exploit including economic grievances," he said.
He also said no single religion was responsible for violence and terrorism, adding he wants to lift up the voice of tolerance in the United States and beyond.
Obama's address came as Republican lawmakers and others criticized the administration for declining to describe the threat as Islamic terrorism.
State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf has also come under fire for suggesting several times this past week that more jobs could help address the terrorism crisis.
On Tuesday, Rob O'Neill, former Navy SEAL Team 6 member who claims to have fired the shot that killed Usama bin Laden, told Fox News: "They get paid to cut off heads -- to crucify children, to sell slaves and to cut off heads and I don't think that a change in career path is what's going to stop them."
Obama also called on Muslim leaders to "do more to discredit the notion that our nations are determined to suppress Islam, that there is an inherent clash in civilizations."
Obama acknowledged that some Muslim-Americans have concerns about working with the government, particularly law enforcement, and that their reluctance "is rooted in the objection to certain practices where Muslim-Americans feel they've been unfairly targeted."
He said it was important it make sure that abuses stop and are not repeated and that "we do not stigmatize entire communities." He also said it was vital that "no one is profiled or put under a cloud of suspicion simply because of their faith."
Although Obama called for a renewed focus on preventing terrorists from recruiting and inspiring others, some thought his message seemed to miss the mark.
"He was meandering, unfocused and weak," said Richard Grenell, former U.S. spokesman at the United Nations during the George W. Bush administration and a Fox News contributor. "He was talking about isolating terrorists. He doesn't understand the threat that we face… People are being burned in cages and he's talking about more investments?"
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, in an interview with Fox News, called Obama an "apologist for radical Islamic terrorists." And he mocked the president for recently comparing modern-day atrocities to those committed during the Crusades.
"I don't think it's too much to ask the president to stay in the current millennia," Cruz said, describing the rhetoric as "bizarre politically correct double-speak."
Leaders from 60 different countries traveled to Washington for the summit.
Community leaders from Boston, Minneapolis and Los Angeles were also in attendance and discussed how their cities could help empower communities to protect themselves against extremist ideologies.
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/19/2015 06:51:00 PM
Call me crazy but I believe Barry is a Muslim plant who somehow managed to bamboozle the electorate. Seriously... Barack Hussein Obama... not long after 911???
The story below spotlights another tactic (besides amnesty) he employs in his quest to undermine the country... or as he so aptly put it... Fundamentally Changing America.
On a tip from Ed Kilbane
The Costly Asylum Racket
by Phyllis Schlafly
February 18, 2015
We’ve had a lot of media comment about the bad effects of Obama’s executive orders admitting millions (yes, millions) of illegal immigrants and giving them welfare, Social Security, driver’s licenses, and a path to citizenship. Like many Americans, I realized the importance of this when thousands of unfamiliar people from a foreign country, without any advance notice, appeared in my community.
Then I attended an education conference where the asylum racket to admit millions of foreigners (long ignored by the media) was described by a knowledgeable speaker, Ann Corcoran. She started by asking questions of her audience.
(click to enlarge)
Did you hear about the El Cajon, California Iraqi man who was found guilty of murdering his wife after writing a phony note from supposed Islamophobes telling the family to leave the U.S.? Did you know that the Tsarnaev Boston Bombers came to our country with false claims of persecution and then cashed in to receive $100,000 in U.S. welfare handouts?
Did you hear about the Oregon Somali Christmas tree bomber? Did you hear about the Somali youths who left Minneapolis to join Al-Shabaab and ISIS?
Did you know that a Burmese Muslim, within a month of his arrival in Utah, murdered a little Christian Burmese girl and was sent to prison for life? Did you hear that Alaska has received so many Muslim refugees that they have built a mosque in Anchorage?
If you didn’t hear those facts, put it down to the secrecy of the refugee racket, which does its best to operate under the radar. We heard about these asylum events from Ann Corcoran, who has made it her mission to ferret out the facts and publish them on her blog, Refugee Resettlement Watch.
The asylum immigrants are brought into our country and settled in 180 U.S. cities by nine contractors (pretending to be “religious charities”) and 350 subcontractors. These lucky immigrants are mostly selected by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
Stop right here. Who are these "contractors" and why would we adhere to anything the United Nations has to say?
Iraq tops the list of refugee immigrants with 20,000 arriving each year, of whom 76 percent are Muslims. At least 10,000 are Somalis, and our State Department has announced that we will be admitting 10,000 Syrians this year, mostly Muslims.
Ann Corcoran doesn’t criticize the policy of admitting genuine refugees from persecution, but she does criticize the high numbers, the secrecy of the program, the lack of community involvement in the decision-making of where the immigrants will be located, and the large-scale admission of ethnic groups that have no intention of assimilating in America. This process is the result of the Refugee Act of 1980, the brainchild of Ted Kennedy, aggressively supported by Joe Biden, and signed into law by Jimmy Carter.
The contractors who bring in these immigrants are paid by the head with U.S. taxpayers’ money. The contractors have offices and plenty of staff to finance the resettlement of the aliens and are well organized to protect their foothold and their salaries.
They immediately expand the numbers of foreigners they are handling by bringing in the refugees’ family members. The first arrivals are labeled the “seed community.”
The big difference between these asylum refugees and other immigrants is that the refugees are entitled to all forms of government-paid welfare the minute they set foot in America, whereas our laws require ordinary legal immigrants to show that they have the means to support themselves and will not become a “public charge.” The feds even give the asylum immigrants start-up money for 3 to 6 months, which gives their contractor time to sign them up for subsidized housing, healthcare, food stamps, job counseling and training.
One of the biggest problems with this program is that the immigrant kids are quickly enrolled in public schools. We can blame this piece of mischief on supremacist judges, who ruled in 1982 that immigrant kids are entitled to attend U.S. public schools.
We now have U.S. school districts where dozens of different languages are spoken. Many of these kids not only don’t speak English, they don’t even speak Spanish and require translators who can speak languages unknown to most Americans.
It has become a tremendous cost to the U.S. taxpayers to provide interpreters in schools and in the criminal justice system. The top language of refugees now entering our country is Arabic, and Somali is the 4th language most often spoken.
Many cities are now resisting this invasion of their towns and schools. The U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement is trying to keep them in line by labeling them “Pockets of Resistance” and hiring a left-wing community organizing group called Welcoming America to shut them up.
The countries sending the largest number of refugees are Iraq, Burma, Bhutan, and Somalia. The Obama Administration is now pushing hard for us to take 50,000 from the Congo and 50,000 to 75,000 from Syria.
Ann Corcoran concluded her speech by warning: “We can survive terrorism. We can’t survive migration.”
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/19/2015 08:08:00 AM
Wednesday, February 18, 2015
State Department under fire for saying finding 'jobs' for jihadis - not 'killing them' - is the only way to defeat ISIS, as White House avoids saying latest beheading victims were Christian
Since we are giving tax refunds to illegals who didn't pay taxes I won't be a bit surprised when ISIS files for unemployment benefits. I learn something everyday. ISIS is not composed of ruthless, bloodthirsty, terrorists they are actually a "group" of people who just happen to be unemployed. But if they were employed the atrocities they commit would be deemed "workplace violence". Finally I got it.
'Countering violent extremism' conference kicks off in Washington but the White House insists 'we are not treating these people as part of a religion'
Marie Harf, the State Department's no. 2 spokeswoman, said Monday night that 'lack of opportunity for jobs' in the Middle East should be US focus
'We cannot win this war by killing them, we cannot kill our way out of this war,' she said of the ISIS terror army
Lengthy statement from the White House after brutal killings of 21 Christians by ISIS-linked minitants in Libya made no mention of Christians or Muslims
By David Martosko, Us Political Editor For Dailymail.com
Published: 12:03 EST, 17 February 2015 | Updated: 19:04 EST, 17 February 2015
The Obama administration is drawing fire for suggesting that defeating ISIS requires more of a jobs program for terrorists than a sophisticated approach to killing them.
State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf said Monday night on MSNBC that 'we cannot win this war by killing them, we cannot kill our way out of this war.'
Instead, she said, the administration should 'go after the root causes that leads people to join these groups' – including 'lack of opportunity for jobs.'
'We can work with countries around the world to help improve their governance,' Harf insisted. 'We can help them build their economies so they can have job opportunities for these people.'
The embarrassing gaffe aired as the White House attracted new criticism for papering over religious aspects of a mass-beheading of Coptic Christians by the ISIS terror army.
JOBLESS JIHAD: State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf insisted Monday night on MSNBC that a jobs program in the Middle East could stem the tide of ISIS
President Obama steps off Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Bace in Maryland after spending Presidents' Day weekend playing golf in Palm Springs, California
'THEY WERE CHRISTIANS': Pope Francis mourned the loss of 21 Copts in Libya who were beheaded on video by ISIS terrorists
Video surfaced on Sunday showing Libyan ISIS sympathizers decapitating 21 Christians on a beach. White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest issued a 192-word reaction condemning the brutal killings as 'despicable' and 'cowardly' but made no mention of the religion of the killers or their victims.
The words 'Christian,' 'Islam' and 'Muslim.' were not included in Earnest's statement.
The video itself was titled 'A Message Signed With Blood to the Nation of the Cross.' The slaughtered men, clad in orange jumpsuits reminiscent of Guantanamo Bay detainee garb, were described as 'crusaders.'
One of the men was seen praying just moments before his throat was slit.
The White House convened a conference with representatives from more than 60 countries on Tuesday on a subject it calls 'countering violent extremism.'
Like Earnest's statement, administration officials connected with the event have studiously avoided any mention of radical Islam or its animosity toward Christians and Jews.
'We are not treating these people as part of a religion,' a senior administration official said Monday during a conference call with reporters.
'We're treating them as terrorists. We call them our enemies and we'll be treating them as such.'
World leaders outside of Washington have leapt to connect ISIS, the self-described Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, with a religious battle that pits Islamists against the world's other great religions.
The 21 Copts, 'were killed simply for the fact that they were Christians,' Pope Francis said Monday at the Vatican, speaking in his native Spanish.
MUSLIM VS. CHRISTIAN: The five-minute ISIS video released on Sunday was captioned: 'The people of the cross, followers of the hostile Egyptian church'; One of the terrorists (center) boasted that 'safety for you crusaders is something you can only wish for'
IMPATIENCE IN CONGRESS: Republicans including New York Rep. Peter King are growing more frustrated with a White House that steadfastly refuses to frame the ISIS battle in religious terms
'The blood of our Christian brothers and sisters is a testimony which cries out to be heard. It makes no difference whether they be Catholics, Orthodox, Copts or Protestants. They are Christians!'
British Prime Minister David Cameron said he was 'appalled by the murder of Christians in Libya, a simply barbaric and inhumane act.'
'Our efforts to defeat the monstrosity of Islamist extremism must not waver.'
A CNN/ORC poll found 57 per cent of Americans disapprove of how President Obama is handling the threat posed by ISIS. Even among Democrats, 46 per cent say America's battle with ISIS is going badly.
Public approval of the administration's anti-ISIS efforts has slipped by 8 percentage points since September.
Part of that slide may be due to the State Department's focus on what conservatives deride as 'hashtag diplomacy' – a program of pushback through social media designed to strip away ISIS's glamourous appeal to would-be jihadis.
The New York Times reported Monday that State is engaged in a broad effort through its Center for Strategic Counterterrorism Communications to coordinate all the government's social media resources in response to nearly 100 Twitter accounts blasting pro-ISIS recruiting messages into the Internet's digital ether.
'We're getting beaten on volume, so the only way to compete is by aggregating, curating and amplifying existing content,' Under Secretary of State Richard Stengel told the Times.
'These guys aren't BuzzFeed,' Stengel said. 'They're not invincible in social media.'
But National Counterterrorism Center director told a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing last week that 'the government is probably not the best platform to try to communicate with the set of actors who are potentially vulnerable to this kind of propaganda and this kind of recruitment.'
'We try to find ways to stimulate this kind of counternarrative, this kind of countermessaging, without having a U.S. government hand in it.'
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/18/2015 08:32:00 AM
Tuesday, February 17, 2015
JUDGE EVISCERATES OBAMA’S AMNESTY PROGRAM
On Tuesday, Judge Andrew Hanen of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas issued a temporary injunction against the Department of Homeland Security’s enforcement of President Obama’s executive amnesty. In a comprehensive 123 page opinion, Hanen smacks down the Obama administration repeatedly.
Hanen begins by examining the legacy of executive branch failures to enforce immigration law, then points out that states have borne the brunt of cost related to ineffectual immigration enforcement:
While the States are obviously concerned about national security, they are also concerned about their own resources being drained by the constant influx of illegal immigrants into their respective territories, and that this continual flow of illegal immigration has led and will lead to serious domestic security issues directly affecting their citizenry.
Hanen then quotes Chief Justice John Roberts’ opinion in his infamous greenlighting of Obamacare to the effect that Congress has the power to determine immigration policy. Hanen writes:
The ultimate question before the Court is: Do the laws of the United States, including the Constitution, give the Secretary of Homeland Security the power to take the action at issue in this case?
Hanen says that he is not questioning the policy decency of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program pushed by President Obama, but of aspects of its legality. He adds that President Obama’s program may or may not be an amnesty, but says that it makes no difference what you call the program; only its legality is in question. Finally, Hanen sums up the issues:
(1) whether the States have standing to bring this case; (2) whether the DHS has the necessary discretion to institute the DAPA program; and (3) whether the DAPA program is constitutional, comports with existing laws, and was legally adopted.
After summing up the legal and factual background of the case, noting the contentions of both the administration’s critics and the administration’s responses, Hanen comes to the actual legal arguments.
He first discusses the issue of “standing,” the requirement in any case that the plaintiff in a case be directly affected by the law in question. That requirement breaks down into three elements: that the plaintiff suffer a “concrete and particularized injury that is either actual or imminent”; that there is a causal relationship between the statute and the damages; and that the injury could “likely” be addressed by the court striking down the regulation. Further, the judge points out, a broad harm to the general population should be addressed politically, not in the courts.
The judge points out a second level of standing as well: standing under the Administrative Procedure Act, which allows standing to a “person suffering a legal wrong because of agency action, or adversely affected or aggrieved by agency action within the meaning of a relevant statute.”
The ruling states that the states do have standing to contest the executive amnesty, citing the costs associated with processing of driver’s license, and the fact that supposed workarounds to avoid costs will likely be contested by the federal government, as the federal government did with regard to Arizona’s immigration law. “The federal government made it clear in Arizona (and would not retreat from that stance in this case),” the ruling states, “that any move by a plaintiff state to limit the issuance of driver’s licenses would be viewed as illegal.” The court further rules that these damages are not generalized, but particular to the driver’s license program. The judge slams the federal government’s incoherent immigration policy:
Although the federal government conceded that states enjoy substantial leeway in setting policies for licensing drivers within their jurisdiction, it simultaneously argued that the states could not tailor these laws to create ‘new alien classifications not supported by federal law.’ In other words, the states cannot protect themselves from the costs inflicted by the Government when 4.3 million individuals are granted legal presence wit the resulting ability to compel state action. The irony of this position cannot be fully appreciated unless it is contrasted with the DAPA Directive. The DAPA Directive unilaterally allows individuals removable by law to legally remain in the United States based upon a classification that is not established by any federal law. It is this very lack of law about which the States complain. The Government claims that it can act without a supporting law, but the States cannot.
As the judge adds, it is certainly ironic that the federal government is butting into the driver’s license business, given that it is traditionally a state function. He also points out that the feds require the states to pay certain fees for processing of driver’s licenses.
With regard to causation, Judge Hanen finds that there is a clear relationship between the regulation and the cost. He also finds that striking down the regulation would achieve the goal of avoiding that cost.
Hanen also points out several other possible grounds for standing. Hanen says parens patraie – the ability of a state to bring suit “to protect the interests of its citizens” – applies to state suits against the federal government. The state argued that businesses will be forced to cover health insurance for illegal immigrants under the new program. The federal government made the frightening argument that the federal government is the protector of the interests of citizens, so states could not file suit against the feds. Hanen says states could file parens patraie suit, but that this case has not yet materialized because the federal government has not made clear its intentions with regard to Obamacare.
Hanen then moves on to the biggest argument of all: the argument that the federal government’s refusal to enforce its borders costs the states money, and that that loss makes federal policy justiciable. He says that these costs are not directly related to DAPA:
The Court finds that the Government’s failure to secure the border has exacerbated illegal immigration into this country. Further, the record supports the finding that this lack of enforcement, combined with this country’s high rate of illegal immigration, significantly drains the States’ resources. Regardless, the Court finds that these more indirect damages described in this section are not caused by DAPA; thus the injunctive relief requested Plaintiffs would not redress these damages.
The court also rejected the argument that allowing illegal immigrants to stay increases costs with regard to programs like education, explaining that the “Constitution and federal law mandate that these individuals are entitled to state benefits merely because of their presence in the United States, whether they reside in the sunshine or the shadows.” The Court adds that the specific costs associated with DAPA – the argument that “continued presence in this county will increase state costs” — is solid, but that the federal argument that the economy will pay for all of that is at least supportable. Finally, the Court states that the federal government’s statements encouraging illegal immigration are not redressable.
The Court then turns to the issue of standing with regard to abdication. Judge Hanan says that “The most provocative and intellectually intriguing standing claim presented by this case is that based upon federal abdication,” the theory by which the “federal government asserts sole authority over a certain area of American life and excludes any authority or regulation by a state; yet subsequently refuses to act in that area. The Court calls this argument indisputable. “[T]he Government has abandoned its duty to enforce the law,” the Court states. The Court drops the hammer: “If one had to formulate from scratch a fact pattern that exemplified the existence of standing due to federal abdication, one could not have crafted a better scenario.”
Next, the Court turns to the question of prosecutorial discretion. The Court explains that prosecutorial discretion is the purview of the executive branch, but that the DAPA program is not discretion at all. Under the Administrative Procedure Act, the Court points out, there has been no rule promulgated that meets the requirements of notice and hearing. The Court states, “The responsibility of the federal government, who exercises plenary power over immigration, includes not only the passage of rational legislation, but also the enforcement of those laws. The States and their residents are entitled to nothing less.” The Court also says that this is not a question of merely federal inaction, but “affirmative action rather than inaction….Exercising prosecutorial discretion and/or refusing to enforce a statute does not also entail bestowing benefits.” Most tellingly, the Court quotes President Obama himself stating that he instructed the Department of Homeland Security to “change the law.” The Court then concludes:
While the Government would not totally concede this point in oral argument, the logical end point of its argument is that the DHS, solely pursuant to its implied authority and general statutory enforcement authority, could have made DAPA applicable to all 11.3 million immigrants estimated to be in the country illegally. This Court finds that the discretion given to the DHS Secretary is not unlimited.
In a final slap, the Court states, “In the instant case, the DHS is tasked with the duty of removing illegal aliens. Congress has provided that it ‘shall’ do this. Nowhere has Congress given it the option to either deport these individuals or give them legal presence and work permits.”
The Court also calls out President Obama directly for contending publicly that he changed the law, then sending his lawyers to claim that DAPA is supposed to be advisory in nature. The Court then states that the only “discretion” used has “already [been] exercised by Secretary Johnson in enacting the DAPA program and establishing the criteria therein.” The Court concludes, “The DAPA program clearly represents a substantive change in immigration policy…it contradicts the INA. It is, in effect, a new law.”
The Court issued an injunction in this case because, as Judge Hanan writes, “legalizing the presence of millions of people is a ‘virtually irreversible’ action once taken,” both in terms of cost, and in terms of the presence of the illegal aliens themselves. “Once Defendants make such determinations,” the Court writes, “the States accurately allege that it will be difficult or even impossible for anyone to ‘unscramble the egg.’….This genie would be impossible to put back into the bottle.” The Court points out that the status quo ante would not be changed by striking down the regulation; we would merely have the clarity of knowing whether the government has the authority for DAPA before it is implemented.
In short, the Court eviscerates the Obama administration’s position. The case will be appealed to the Fifth Circuit, but Judge Hanan’s heavy reliance on Fifth Circuit case law makes it unlikely to be reversed at that level. The injunction means that the case will expedite to the Supreme Court level. Now the question becomes whether the lawless Obama administration will obey the judge’s ruling even though the injunction has been granted.
Posted by Merchant of Venom at 2/17/2015 02:57:00 PM