February 15, 2019


'Off the reservation' Ann takes on 'idiot' president over wall 'emergency' (Jacob Heilbrunn, February 15, 2019, Spectator US)

The sheer weirdness of Trump's press conference, in which he veered around wildly from praising China for liquidating drug dealers to professing his love for tariffs to claiming Barack Obama, whom he always derided previously as a wimp, was on the verge of war with North Korea until he came along, must have given McConnell a fresh case of heartburn. Trump didn't even really make the case for an emergency declaration perhaps because he knows it's bogus. He himself gave away the game when he declared, 'I didn't need to do this.' Meanwhile, his erstwhile fan Coulter is busily tweeting about the 25th Amendment.

No One Hates the Immigration Plan More Than Trump's Base (ANDREW EGGER  FEBRUARY 15, 2019, The Bulwark)

Here's maybe the king of the immigration hawks, Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies, beseeching Trump not to sign the bill in a Thursday column at National Review:

The text of the funding bill was released last night/this morning, and lawmakers are expected to vote on the 1,169 page measure as early as this evening. The bill is disappointing in many respects, but if it had been as advertised earlier, it might have been tolerable.

But my fears that senators Durbin and Leahy would trick the Republican conferees (none of whom knows the first thing about immigration policy) were realized. Standing out among the many distasteful provisions are two poison pills that I hope the Republican committee members either didn't know about or didn't understand.

Krikorian goes on to describe how the bill sneaks in provisions requiring the Department of Homeland Security to get permission from local elected officials before building barriers in counties along the border--while also opting only to authorize new walls in the Rio Grande Valley, where local governments are overwhelmingly Democratic. Even worse, he says, the bill blocks border security agents from detaining "anyone who has effectively any relationship with an 'unaccompanied' minor--either because they're sponsors, in the same household as sponsors, or even just 'potential sponsors' (or in the household of potential sponsors!) of such a child.

It's genuinely difficult to put into words just how bananas this all is. The president of the United States is currently setting the concept of constitutional governance on fire, making a mockery of every conservative warning about the imperial presidency, and hanging his allies in Congress out to dry to boot, all in an apparent effort to placate the immigration wing of his base--who all the while are shrieking for him not to do the thing he is nevertheless doing.

Posted by at February 15, 2019 4:12 PM