Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) (pictured) will not fight against the Gang of Eight Amnesty Bill, which was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee 13-5 and will be on the Senate floor in early June.
In the Judiciary Committee, the vote on S 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, was:
Patrick Leahy (D-VT)
Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
Charles Schumer (D-NY)
Richard Durbin (D-IL)
Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI)
Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Al Franken (D-MN)
Chris Coons (D-DE)
Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)
Mazie Hirono (D-HI)
Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
Charles Grassley (R-IA)
Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
John Cornyn (R-TX)
Mike Lee (R-UT)
Ted Cruz (R-TX)
Schumer, Durbin, Graham, and Flake are members of the Gang of Eight that drafted the bill.
Alexander Bolton reported in The Hill that McConnell would not try to block the immigration bill and, in fact, was hopeful it would pass:
McConnell praised the work of Senators John McCain (R-AZ), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Charles Schumer (D-NY), and other members of the Gang of Eight, who crafted the comprehensive legislation during months of private negotiations.
"The Gang of Eight has made a substantial contribution to moving the issue forward. So far, I'm told that the Judiciary Committee has not in any fundamental way undone the agreement reached by the eight senators, so I'm hopeful we’ll be able to get a bill we can pass here in the Senate."
McConnell could end up voting against the bill on final passage, but he won't fool many people who understand how Senate procedures actually work.
The U.S. House of Representatives voted 229 to 195, with 9 not voting, for HR 45, by Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) (pictured) and 128 cosponsors, to completely repeal Obamacare.
All of the Republicans who were present voted for HR 45, and all of the Democrats who were present--except for Rep. Jim Matheson (UT) and Mike McIntyre (NC)--voted against HR 45.
The 9 legislators who didn't vote at all were Republicans John Campbell (CA), Sean Duffy (WI), Sam Johnson (TX), Raul Labrador (ID), and Ann Wagner (MO) and Democrats James Clyburn (SC), John Lewis (GA), Edward Markey (MA), and Mike Quigley (IL).
It is disappointing that only two Democrats voted for repeal of Obamacare, since the many severe problems with the so-called Affordable Care Act are already being manifested and even more serious ones are expected soon.
Previous issues of this newsletter HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE documented how Obamacare is causing unemployment, hurting the economy, increasing the cost of health insurance, causing employees to lose their existing health insurance, and destroying small medical practices.
And that doesn't include trampling on the religious rights of those non-profit organizations and privately owned companies which have moral objections to being required to provide health insurance with abortifacients. Nor does it include the rationing of medical care through the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), which hasn't become operational yet in Obamacare.
Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) (pictured) is appearing in a 60 second TV ad in support of the Gang of Eight immigration bill, but Jon Feere at the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) said, "Every claim made in the ad is deceptive."
The ad was paid for by a group that calls itself Americans for a Conservative Direction, which Politico reported is a front group for FWD.us, an organization supporting "comprehensive immigration reform" that was founded by Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and headed up by Joe Green, a veteran of John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign.
The Organizing Director for FWD.us is Daniel Shih, "an experienced community organizer," in the 2008 Obama campaign and later "served in the White House as Domestic Policy Analyst for Vice President Biden." Lisa Conn, a "regional field director with the 2012 Obama campaign" is listed as the Organizer.
Feere's CIS analysis listed exactly what the TV ad claimed and provided a detailed response, partial excerpts of which follow:
RUBIO: Anyone who thinks what we have now in immigration is not a problem is fooling themselves. What we have in place today is de facto amnesty.
CIS: The problem is that Rubio wants to turn this "de facto" amnesty into a formal amnesty, and grant millions of law-breakers work permits, driver's licenses, Social Security accounts, travel documents, and an unknown number of additional state-level benefits…
The (Gang of Eight) amnesty bill would make permanent the inability to enforce the law by giving Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano "virtually unlimited discretion" to waive all enforcement of immigration law.
ANNOUNCER: Conservative leaders have a plan, the toughest immigration enforcement measures in the history of the United States.
CIS: The so-called Gang of Eight senators who wrote the bill aren't all "conservative leaders", unless you consider Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL), Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), and Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) to fit that description. True, the gang also includes Republican senators, but it is up for debate whether one considers Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), and Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) to be conservative on immigration.
Their immigration report card grades, from the pro-enforcement group NumbersUSA, are troubling: Graham has a "C", McCain a "D", and a Flake "C"…
On closer inspection, many of these measures (noted below) are not as tough as they seem to be.
A new Gallup Poll of small business owners documented the devastating effects Obamacare is having on employment and on both the cost and quality of health care.
49% of the owners say Obamacare is going to be bad for their small businesses, compared with only 9% who say it is going to be good. Another 39% said it would have no impact.
As a direct result of Obamacare, business owners say they've taken the following actions:
41% Held off on plans to hire new employees
38% Pulled back on plans to grow their business
24% Considered dropping health insurance coverage for employees
19% Reduced the number of their employees
18% Reduced the hours of employees to part time status
55% of the small business owners believe the costs of providing health care to their employees will increase, while only a miniscule 5% thought the costs would decrease. 37% thought the costs would remain the same.
Similarly, 52% of the owners say Obamacare is going to reduce the quality of health care for their employees, while 37% thought it would increase the quality. 30% said it would make no difference.
Furthermore, the Washington Post reported that a new Obamacare tax on health insurance "scares the daylights" out of some small business owners.
1. A new poll from Rasmussen Reports found that Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) (pictured) has lost support with Republicans because of his prominent advocacy of the Senate Gang of Eight Immigration Bill.
"Three months ago, 44% of GOP voters viewed him very favorably. Today, just 31% offer such strong praise," the Rasmussen analysis said.
The 844-page Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, S 744, would provide amnesty for illegal aliens and an eventual pathway to citizenship--including the right to vote in elections--while allegedly strengthening the security of the U.S border with Mexico to prevent a future influx of "unauthorized immigrants."
However, another Rasmussen poll found that just 30% of voters think it's likely the federal government would actually secure the border and prevent illegal immigration if the reform plan became law. That's down from 38% in March and 45% in January.
Furthermore, a new Gallup Poll found that voters are not very interested in immigration reform.
Dr. Frank Newport, Gallup's Editor-in-Chief, stated:
Americans put reforming immigration and reducing gun violence--the focus of much of the attention on Capitol Hill in recent weeks--at the bottom of a list of 12 priorities for Congress and the president to address.
Americans instead say leaders in Washington should give highest priority to jobs and the economy, followed by making government work more efficiently and improving the quality of education.
This result was similar to a previous Gallup Poll on this subject, on which this newsletter reported last month.
The Heritage Foundation issued a new report indicating that the amnesty in the Gang of Eight's bill would cost the U.S. taxpayers $6.3 Trillion.