Anti-immigrant ties in the drive for a big-money takeover of California politics

Supporters of California’s Proposition 32, the measure that claims to get special interest money out of campaigns but in fact targets unions while allowing corporate money to keep flowing, have connections to basically any kind of offensive politics you could name. It starts with the assault on unions and the protection of corporate spending, of course, and goes on to homophobes and school privatizers. But it goes on. Several of Prop. 32’s big backers have also given money to some truly vicious anti-immigrant politicians.

For instance, at least two Prop. 32’s biggest donors have given to Allen Mansoor, now a candidate for State Assembly and previously mayor of Costa Mesa, California:

In 2005, well before Arizona ever passed its anti-immigrant law SB 1070, Mansoor authorized Costa Mesa police to run immigration checks on individuals suspected of crimes, as well as on unlicensed drivers. He even proposed authorizing local police to investigate federal immigration crimes—creating a national news story over fear the rule would result in the racial profiling of Latinos.

But Frying Pan News’ Matthew Fleischer raises a bigger issue:

Earlier this week, the Prop. 32 campaign netted a massive $11 million donation from a mysterious non-profit calling itself Americans for Responsible Leadership. The organization is based in Arizona.

Little is known about ARL, and even less about its financial supporters. Our efforts to contact the group by press-time were unsuccessful.

Despite the scant details over the Arizona money’s origins, however, its infusion into the political process ultimately points to the greatest cause for concern over Prop. 32—the complete unknown.

Take union money out of politics and we just don’t know what could happen. Republicans don’t have to have a concrete agenda in place now. If they win this one, they’ll have knocked out the financial power of one of the big forces fighting them from elections at every level to ballot measures. That’s why they rightly see this measure as a chance to make Republicans competitive in California elections.


Anti-immigrant ties in the drive for a big-money takeover of California politics

Supporters of California’s Proposition 32, the measure that claims to get special interest money out of campaigns but in fact targets unions while allowing corporate money to keep flowing, have connections to basically any kind of offensive politics you could name. It starts with the assault on unions and the protection of corporate spending, of course, and goes on to homophobes and school privatizers. But it goes on. Several of Prop. 32’s big backers have also given money to some truly vicious anti-immigrant politicians.

For instance, at least two Prop. 32’s biggest donors have given to Allen Mansoor, now a candidate for State Assembly and previously mayor of Costa Mesa, California:

In 2005, well before Arizona ever passed its anti-immigrant law SB 1070, Mansoor authorized Costa Mesa police to run immigration checks on individuals suspected of crimes, as well as on unlicensed drivers. He even proposed authorizing local police to investigate federal immigration crimes—creating a national news story over fear the rule would result in the racial profiling of Latinos.

But Frying Pan News’ Matthew Fleischer raises a bigger issue:

Earlier this week, the Prop. 32 campaign netted a massive $11 million donation from a mysterious non-profit calling itself Americans for Responsible Leadership. The organization is based in Arizona.

Little is known about ARL, and even less about its financial supporters. Our efforts to contact the group by press-time were unsuccessful.

Despite the scant details over the Arizona money’s origins, however, its infusion into the political process ultimately points to the greatest cause for concern over Prop. 32—the complete unknown.

Take union money out of politics and we just don’t know what could happen. Republicans don’t have to have a concrete agenda in place now. If they win this one, they’ll have knocked out the financial power of one of the big forces fighting them from elections at every level to ballot measures. That’s why they rightly see this measure as a chance to make Republicans competitive in California elections.


Anti-immigrant ties in the drive for a big-money takeover of California politics

Supporters of California’s Proposition 32, the measure that claims to get special interest money out of campaigns but in fact targets unions while allowing corporate money to keep flowing, have connections to basically any kind of offensive politics you could name. It starts with the assault on unions and the protection of corporate spending, of course, and goes on to homophobes and school privatizers. But it goes on. Several of Prop. 32’s big backers have also given money to some truly vicious anti-immigrant politicians.

For instance, at least two Prop. 32’s biggest donors have given to Allen Mansoor, now a candidate for State Assembly and previously mayor of Costa Mesa, California:

In 2005, well before Arizona ever passed its anti-immigrant law SB 1070, Mansoor authorized Costa Mesa police to run immigration checks on individuals suspected of crimes, as well as on unlicensed drivers. He even proposed authorizing local police to investigate federal immigration crimes—creating a national news story over fear the rule would result in the racial profiling of Latinos.

But Frying Pan News’ Matthew Fleischer raises a bigger issue:

Earlier this week, the Prop. 32 campaign netted a massive $11 million donation from a mysterious non-profit calling itself Americans for Responsible Leadership. The organization is based in Arizona.

Little is known about ARL, and even less about its financial supporters. Our efforts to contact the group by press-time were unsuccessful.

Despite the scant details over the Arizona money’s origins, however, its infusion into the political process ultimately points to the greatest cause for concern over Prop. 32—the complete unknown.

Take union money out of politics and we just don’t know what could happen. Republicans don’t have to have a concrete agenda in place now. If they win this one, they’ll have knocked out the financial power of one of the big forces fighting them from elections at every level to ballot measures. That’s why they rightly see this measure as a chance to make Republicans competitive in California elections.


Romney dodges immigration by talking about … Obama’s pension?

It’s not news that the Romney campaign was trying to deflect blame from Mitt Romney’s role in Sensata Technologies sending 170 jobs from Illinois to China by focusing on President Barack Obama’s pension from his time as an Illinois state senator. But it’s hard to believe Romney believed this was going to be a winning debate moment:

GOVERNOR ROMNEY: Yes, just going to make a point. Any investments I have over the last eight years have been managed by a blind trust. And I understand they do include investments outside the United States, including in Chinese companies.

Mr. President, have you looked at your pension?

THE PRESIDENT: Candy —

GOVERNOR ROMNEY: Have you looked at your pension?

THE PRESIDENT: I’ve got to say — Candy —

GOVERNOR ROMNEY: Mr. President, have you looked at your pension?

THE PRESIDENT: You know, I don’t look at my pension. It’s not as big as yours so it doesn’t take as long. (Laughter.)

GOVERNOR ROMNEY: Let me give you some advice.

THE PRESIDENT: I don’t check it that often.

GOVERNOR ROMNEY: Look at your pension. You also have investments in Chinese companies. You also have investments outside the United States. You also have investments through a Cayman’s trust.

First off, Mitt Romney’s financial arrangements do not actually count as a blind trust. Were he elected president, he would have to completely change how his money is managed, because presidents need actual blind trusts (if they’re not going to disclose much, much more about their finances than Romney would ever do) and that’s not what he has. Blind trusts are managed by financial institutions that have not done business with the person whose money they manage. Romney’s money is managed by his personal lawyer.

Secondly, President Obama’s pension? Really? That’s a pension from two jobs ago, worth between $50,001 and $100,000, which Obama cannot collect until he’s 62 and in which he’s one of hundreds of participants. He has no say—none—over how that money is invested, any more than any other person with a defined benefit pension gets to tell their former employer’s pension fund how to invest. If this is not the definition of a bullshit political distraction, I don’t know what is.

If Romney was trying to defend himself on his Chinese investments and especially on Sensata, he only managed to look defensive. What he succeeded in doing here was looking evasive on the subject he was supposed to be talking about (immigration), looking like a petty dick, and letting Obama call attention to his vast wealth. But who knows—given that he was supposed to be talking about immigration, maybe this distraction was preferable to his other options.


Democrats, Republicans, Independents Differ on Issues That Worry Them Most

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Republicans say federal spending is their top worry; Democrats name health care; and independents say the overall economy is their top concern.

 

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