70+ votes for immigration reform in the Senate? That sounds rather crazy, but John McCain thinks “it’s doable.” There’s a feeling amongst some of the senators working on the legislation that if the bill gains majority support from both parties in the Senate, the House won’t have any choice but to put it to a vote. We are skeptical that either of those things will happen, let alone both. source
How can we beef up security checks on those who wish to enter the United States? How do we ensure that people who wish to do us harm are not eligible for benefits under the immigration laws, including this new bill before us?Senator Chuck Grassley • Linking myriad security issues associated with surviving alleged Boston bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to the U.S. immigration system — Dzhokhar and his older brother Tamerian began living in the United States at ages 9 and 15 respectively. To read Grassley’s remarks you’d think that the Tsarnaev brothers had passed through the traditional immigration protocols chiefly debated in today’s politics, but there’s a complicating wrinkle in their case — they became citizens not through regular immigration channels, but via an asylum request. This already entails security checks for fraudulent applications, and after a year of living here in asylum their family could apply for green cards (Dzhokhar got a green card in 2007, and was naturalized in 2012, while elder brother Tamerian was not granted citizenship, reportedly due to a domestic violence incident). Rep. Bruce Braley, of Sen. Grassley’s home state of Iowa, called the latter’s linking of the bombings to immigration “misguided,” insisting they are separate issues which ought to stay as such. source
I’m not going to rule out anything right now.Former Massachusetts Sen. Scott ”bqhatevwr” Brown • Suggesting that a senate run in New Hampshire was a real possibility for him. He made the statement in the Granite State homestead of Nashua—the first of four visits to the state in the next five weeks. Current Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is up for reelection in 2014. source
I have spoken to so many Kentuckians over these last few months who expressed their desire for a fighter for the people & new leader. While that won’t be me at this time, I will continue to work as as hard as I can to ensure the needs of Kentucky families are met by returning this Senate seat to whom it rightfully belongs: The people & their needs, dreams, and great potential.Actress Ashley Judd • Writing on her Twitter account about why she won’t be running for the Senate in Kentucky in 2014, despite much speculation that she’d take on Mitch McConnell. “Thanks for even considering me as that person & know how much I love our Commonwealth,” she added. The decision came after days of speculation that she was ready to announce at any time that she was running. (One group even made an ad attacking her.) The about-face is a bit of a surprise in that context.
In her last days, my mother occasionally became confused....”
One of the perks of being an early employee...
Over the last 90 days, the Digg...
I have come to the conclusion that our government should not limit the right to marry based on who you love…Good people disagree with me. On the other hand, my children have a hard time understanding why this is even controversial. I think history will agree with my children.Sen. Claire McCaskill, becoming the 42nd senator to support marriage equality. Extra points for making the announcement on her Tumblr
There’s a wrinkle here: In its recounting of today’s revelations, the Daily Caller writes that the lawyer “blamed four news outlets — CNN, The Daily Caller, Telemundo and Univision — for allegedly encouraging him to fabricate false accusations about Menendez.” This isn’t true; according to the Post, the man only accused the Daily Caller—not the other three outlets—of offering to bribe him (the other three were mentioned as having requested to interview the man after he made the claims). The lawyer’s reliability is already shot, having reversed his story at least once, but the Daily Caller has seriously undermined its own credibility by reporting the original story in such a misleading, and indeed factually inaccurate, way. This is one of those weird news stories where all parties involved seem to have been dishonest to some degree—with the possible exception of Menendez himself.
I have said time and time again I want people to have the ability to vote on assault weapons, mental health, safety in schools, federal trafficking, clips — everything. But I cannot do that until I get a bill on the floor. Right now her amendment, using the most optimistic numbers, has less than 40 votes. That’s not 60.Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid • Explaining why Senate Democrats are putting the kibosh on legislation to ban so-designated “assault weapons” — at least for now. Procedurally, this is a very old story — despite maintaining a 53-seat majority in the U.S. Senate, Democrats are unable to bring legislation to the floor without either passing a 60-vote threshold, removing the now nearly-automatic threat of Republican filibuster. Consequently, Reid’s plan is to remove the assault weapons ban from a larger gun control bill, and add it back in as an amendment after it actually reaches the floor — that is, if the support even exists at that time to pass it. If Reid’s math is correct, they’d still need another ten votes to secure a majority (assuming the obvious Joe Biden tiebreaker), ostensibly culled from fellow Democrats still dubious of such a ban. source