Monday, November 24, 2014

OBAMA: NOT LEGITIMATE FOR FUTURE PRESIDENTS TO LOWER TAXES VIA EXECUTIVE ACTION

11/24/2014




After unilaterally granting temporary amnesty and work permits to millions of illegal immigrants last week, President Barack Obama said it would not be legitimate for a future president to unilaterally lower tax rates. 

When asked on ABC's This Week if his successor could unilaterally act to lower taxes if Congress does not, Obama replied, "absolutely not."
Obama, despite the IRS's targeting of conservative and Tea Party organizations, also said that his administration only audits "folks who are most likely to be cheating" and said that even though the IRS does not "audit every single person... we still expect that people are going to go ahead and follow the law."


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Race Baiter Al Sharpton's National Action Network - Hands Up For Justice Rallies

11/24/2014

Hands up for Justice Rally locations.


Listed in this flyer (from Sharpton's shake down service aka the National Action Network), is their list of locations where the leftist agitators plan on practicing their agitation once the Ferguson Grand Jury releases their findings on the Michael Brown incident. These are probably all good places to avoid in the days ahead. 
Link to .pdf file: http://is.gd/QM9Wfl



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Obama ENDS program that deported 283,000 criminal aliens after promising to expel 'felons, not families'

11/24/2014


  • 'Secure Communities' program was shuttered on Thursday as Obama finalized his immigration executive orders

  • Program allowed immigration authorities to learn when illegal immigrants were arrested for crimes and scheduled for release on bail

  • They could be held for up to an additional 48 hours so federal agents could pick them up and begin immigration or deportation proceedings

  • Now the US will only deport illegal immigrants after they are CONVICTED of a narrower list of more serious offenses – assuming they show up for trial

  • Immigration activists complained that people arrested for misdemeanors, including traffic offenses, were being handed over to ICE agents because they were also in the country illegally 

  • Along with his more sensationalized executive order granting some illegal immigrants a chance to stay in the U.S. without fear of deportation, President Barack Obama quietly ended a controversial program on Thursday that had deported 283,000 of them after they were arrested for crimes other than border-crossing.

    The Secure Communities program has been in place in limited form since 2006, and expanded nationwide in 2008. It allowed local law enforcement to hold arrestees and convicts 48 hours after they were officially bailed or released, if they were in the county illegally, so federal agents could pick them up and start immigration proceedings.

    Instead, the administration has replaced it with a much narrower program that limits the list of qualifying offenses and only lets the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency intervene after an illegal immigrant is convicted.

    Many make bail and never return to court to face their charges, however.

    SCROLL DOWN TO READ THE HOMELAND SECURITY ORDERS 
    Sad inheritance: Detective Michael David Davis Jr. was killed by a Southern California illegal immigrant who had been deported twice already
    Sad inheritance: Detective Michael David Davis Jr. was killed by a Southern California illegal immigrant who had been deported twice already
    RAISING THE BAR: Only illegal immigrants convicted of felonies and other serious crimes will be handed over to immigration authorities, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced Thursday
    RAISING THE BAR: Only illegal immigrants convicted of felonies and other serious crimes will be handed over to immigration authorities, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced Thursday

    'The president’s decision to suspend a program helping law enforcement identify and deport dangerous criminals from our country is indefensible,' Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn said Friday, 'and his actions will only tie the hands of law enforcement officials trying to keep criminals off our streets and our communities safe.'

    Rampage: Monroy-Bracamonte was charged with murdering two police officers in a shooting rampage along with his wife
    Obama, he said, 'has neither the will nor the leadership ability to do what presidents before him have done: work with Congress to achieve meaningful reforms. Instead, he’s chosen to ignore the rule of law and launch another massive executive power grab that has grave security consequences for all Americans.' 

    Obama's decision could help the federal government prioritize its strained resources to focus on deporting 'felons, not families,' as Obama promised in a prime-time speech Thursday night.

    'We're going to keep focusing enforcement resources on actual threats to our security,' he said.

    But if his aim is to focus on the worst of the worst, his administration has a tough road ahead.

    Last year ICE released more than 36,000 convicted criminal aliens while they were awaiting deportation, according to a May report from the Center for Immigration Studies.

    Those illegal immigrants included more than 16,070 convicted of driving while drunk or under the influence of drugs, 5,000 convicted of larceny, 303 kidnappers, 1,160 car thieves, 193 killers and 426 convicted of sexual assault.

    One of the murderers was convicted of willfully killing a law enforcement officer.
    ICE said in May that most of the 36,000 were released under restrictions such as GPS monitoring, telephone monitoring or other supervision; some merely had to pay a bond.

    In about 8 per cent of cases, courts ordered ICE to release them because their home countries refused to take them back. 

    'What possible justification could there be for freeing a murderer who is being deported? Dozens of times?' Center for Immigration Studies policy studies director asked CBS News at the time.

    'The vast majority of these releases were discretionary, or even contrary to the requirements of various provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act,' the group said in a statement.

    The reinvented Secure Communities Program, now called the 'Priority Enforcement Program' – the Homeland Security Department calls it 'PEP' – will 'only seek the transfer of an alien in the custody of state or local law enforcement through the new program when the alien has been convicted of' a narrow list of crimes, according to a memo from DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson to ICE Acting Director Thomas Winkowski. 

    Those crimes include all felonies other than immigration related crimes, street gang violence, a third or subsequent non-traffic-related misdemeanor, domestic violence, sexual abuse and burglary.

    They do not include the crime of crossing America's borders illegally.

    VAYA CON DIOS: President Barack Obama said goodbye to the Secure Communities program when he announced an immigration policy overhaul Thursday night
    VAYA CON DIOS: President Barack Obama said goodbye to the Secure Communities program when he announced an immigration policy overhaul Thursday night
    'INDEFENSIBLE': Texas Sen. John Cornyn said the new order will make it harder for police and sheriffs to do their jobs
    'INDEFENSIBLE': Texas Sen. John Cornyn said the new order will make it harder for police and sheriffs to do their jobs

    ICE can also take custody of criminal convicts whom they believe are 'engaged in or suspected of terrorism or espionage, or who otherwise pose a danger to national security.

    But 'unless the alien poses a demonstrable risk to national security,' Johnson wrote, 'enforcement actions through the new program will only be taken against aliens who are convicted of specifically enumerated crimes.'

    Many cities and counties in the U.S. long ago stopped cooperating with ICE – the Pew Charitable Trusts counted more than 300 and the entire states of California, Colorado and Connecticut – had stopped or curtailed their cooperation. releasing bailed arrestees and convicts on time despite so-called immigration 'detainers' from the agency.

    Those requests will no longer exist, replaced with a more polite request for a heads-up with an illegal immigrant's jail or prison sentence nears its end.

    'I am directing ICE,' Johnson wrote, 'to replace requests for detention (i.e., requests that an agency hold an individual beyond the point at which they would otherwise be released) with requests for notification (i.e. , requests that state or local law enforcement notify ICE of a pending release during the time that person is otherwise in custody under state or local authority).'

    Secure Communities operated through a digital fingerprinting database that local authorities shared with the federal government, whose analysts dissected it for signs of illegal immigrants. 

    Hispanic activists, however, saw increases in the number of low-level offenders swept up by the dragnet and deported. 

    The program's 'very name has become a symbol of hostility toward the enforcement of our immigration laws,' Johnson wrote Thursday, signalling a deep interest in whether largely urban communities approved of the government's enforcement methods.


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    NAME THAT PARTY: Leak of grand jury information could cost Attorney General Kane

    11/24/2014


    HARRISBURG — As an assistant Lackawanna County prosecutor, Kathleen Kane testified at the 1999 trial of Judge Francis Eagen, charged with taking bribes. He had sought information about the investigation, she said, and she told him that grand juries operate in secret and their “strict rules” cannot be violated.

    “For me to give out information to somebody who is not going into the grand jury is actually a criminal offense,” Kane told the jury.

    The panel found Eagen guilty of obstruction.

    Fifteen years later, a statewide grand jury in Montgomery County is investigating whether Kane, 48, of Clarks Summit, now state attorney general, leaked a grand jury's information to a Philadelphia newspaper. If Judge William Carpenter determines she did and finds her in contempt of court, Kane could be sentenced to six months in prison.

    Other potential criminal exposure for Kane is hindering prosecution, obstruction or perjury, depending on the facts and her testimony, experts say.

    At the least, they note, she has risked her credibility as a prosecutor and tarnished her political image.

    Kane and her attorneys insist she did nothing wrong. But they acknowledge that she knew her office this year released an internal memo from a 2009 investigation of a political activist, J. Wyhatt Mondesire.

    The probe never resulted in criminal charges. Mondesire could not be reached for comment.

    Kane's defense sounds like she has “one foot on a banana peel,” said Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli, who otherwise is supportive and sympathetic.

    Before heading into the grand jury last week in Trooper, near Norristown, Kane told reporters that releasing information to the Philadelphia Daily News “was done in a way that did not violate statutory or case law regarding grand jury secrecy.”

    The leak suggested that former Chief Deputy Frank Fina, who is at odds with Kane, did not aggressively pursue the Mondesire case, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported in September.

    Kane did not commit a crime, nor did she cross an ethical line, her lawyer, Gerald Shargel of New York City, told reporters.

    “Prosecutors view preventing leaks out of the grand juries as one of the most serious things they handle,” said Bruce Antkowiak, a former federal prosecutor who heads the criminology, law and society program at St. Vincent College near Latrobe.

    In a U.S. Attorney's Office, “the place goes into a shutdown if they think there's a leak of grand jury information,” he said.

    LEAKS, LEAKS, MORE LEAKS

    Even if the grand jury does not recommend criminal charges, “this is not something that will sit well with the community of prosecutors,” Antkowiak said. Leaking grand jury information “is a blow to the credibility of any prosecutor.”

    Grand jury secrecy protects defendants, witnesses and the integrity of an investigation, Antkowiak said.
    The Montgomery County grand jury, run by a special prosecutor, was authorized by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.

    “It is interesting that certain reporters have spent thousands of words rewriting stories about the attorney general's alleged illegal leak when they ignore the plain language of the law about what is or is not grand jury information, and who is or who is not covered by the Grand Jury Secrecy Act,” said one of Kane's lawyers, Lanny Davis, a crisis communications specialist who helped President Bill Clinton.

    “Yet they have ignored all the leaks they are receiving about grand jury information concerning this current grand jury,” Davis said. “Is it possible the reason they are ignoring that story is because they are the recipients of the leaks?”

    There is precedent in Pennsylvania for a jail sentence for contempt stemming from a grand jury leak.

    In 2007, James Kolojejchick, a former agent in the Attorney General's Office, was sentenced to 10 days in jail for violating a grand jury secrecy oath by making information available to a newspaper. The judge, Barry Feudale, pushed for stiffer penalties for such violations. The Supreme Court raised the maximum to six months.

    PUBLIC RELATIONS DISASTER

    Kane has insisted that court orders prevent her from telling the public the full story.

    Voters might not understand the ins-and-outs of grand jury leaks, but the appearance that Kane is immersed in a serious legal battle is not good for her political image, said Jack Treadway, former political science chairman at Kutztown State University.

    “When someone keeps showing up in these messes, it's not just a coincidence,” said Treadway, referring to a string of political difficulties for Kane, including her decision not to prosecute Philadelphia lawmakers who took cash from an undercover lobbyist, and an ex-traffic court judge who accepted a $2,000 bracelet, because she claimed the videotaped encounters were legally flawed.

    “If you've done nothing wrong, you don't need all these high-powered lawyers coming in,” Treadway said in reference to Shargel, one of the top criminal defense lawyers in New York and Washington-based Davis, who was Clinton's special counsel.

    Kane's appearance before the grand jury started another bad week for her, some observers said.

    “The attorney general has certainly had a few bad days in what has been a tumultuous year,” said Chuck Ardo, former press secretary for Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell. “While we don't yet know whether her legal judgment in deciding not to prosecute in the public corruption case was sound, what we do know is that it was a PR disaster.

    “In the same vein, hiring a high-powered criminal defense attorney and a well-known crisis manager to represent her in the grand jury leaks investigation sends the wrong message,” Ardo said. “Whether she is found to have violated the law or not, she has created the appearance of impropriety. Her status as a rising political star has dimmed considerably.”

    Said Davis: “Only those who have a biased perspective would say that a public figure unfairly attacked, who is unable to respond due to a court order, would say that the public figure had a ‘bad week.' ”

    ‘ONE THING AFTER ANOTHER'

    The day after her grand jury appearance, Kane implied for the first time, in a CNN interview, that child pornography was included in the email scandal centered in the Attorney General's Office. Her aide Renee Martin backtracked the next day, saying the material did not rise to the level of child porn and was not prosecutable.

    The day after that, Martin doubled back: “When I said that the Pennsylvania attorney general has decided not to prosecute regarding the emails as pornography, including depictions of children contained in some emails, I misspoke.”

    On Thursday, the Pennsylvania Turnpike corruption case Kane touted in early 2013 ended with guilty pleas by two final defendants. Her office agreed to plea bargains for all eight men charged; none will go to prison.

    It was a tough case, said former Senior Deputy Attorney General Laurel Brandstetter, who resigned in August. Brandstetter often was the only state prosecutor against a dozen or more defense lawyers in the case.

    “We often know corruption is going on. Proving it is a different story,” she said when asked whether the outcome disappointed her.

    No single incident — such as dizzying press statements — has much impact on the public's perception of Kane, said Kyle Kopko, a political science professor at Elizabethtown College.

    “People misspeak all the time,” Kopko said. The problem for Kane is “it's just one thing after another.”
    In an email to other district attorneys, Morganelli cited troubling issues not just for Kane.

    “If our elected AG can just be the subject of court orders barring her from speaking, investigating, etc., I would like to know on what authority, and who asked for it and why? This should be a huge concern of all of us,” Morganelli wrote. “I know many of you do not like Ms. Kane, or feel that she is not doing the right things, but what is happening to her and what she is saying or not being able to say scares me.”


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    Pa. Welfare Offices' name change to make collecting welfare "conscience-free"

    11/24/2014


    Pa. welfare agency to become Human Services Dept.

    Posted: Nov 24, 2014 3:06 AM ESTUpdated: Nov 24, 2014 3:06 AM EST
    HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Pennsylvania's public welfare secretary is about to unveil the agency's new name and logo.
    Secretary Bev Mackereth will preside over an event Monday that enacts a new state law changing the name of the Department of Public Welfare to the Department of Human Services.
    Supporters say they hope the new name will help reduce a stigma sometimes associated with welfare and public assistance. Proponents say it also more accurately describes the massive agency's mission.
    Mackereth is expected to be joined by lawmakers and people associated with the agency during the event at the Health and Welfare Building adjacent to the state Capitol.
    Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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    Top Pa. legislative leader (Democrat) blasts lameduck suggestion before Wolf sworn in. Delivers crickets on Obama's actions

    11/24/2014


    HARRISBURG — A suggestion by incoming Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman that Republicans might consider a session to ram through bills before Democratic Gov.-elect Tom Wolf takes office is “inappropriate, unprecedented and inexcusable,” the chamber's top Democrat said Friday.

    The House and Senate return to session Jan. 6 when new members are sworn in. The GOP has large majorities in both chambers.

    Corman, R-Centre County, said during a taping of “Face the State” on WHP-TV in Harrisburg that he has not ruled out holding a session during Republican Gov. Tom Corbett's final weeks in office.

    Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa, D-Forest Hills, said that would be “an act of desperation and serious blow to reform.”

    Corbett believes Costa and the Democrats are making “political theater,” spokeswoman Lynn Lawson said.
    She said Corbett has not talked with legislative leaders about a special session, though leaders could meet before Wolf's Jan. 20 inauguration without the governor's urging.

    “He is certainly ready, willing and able to continue the work at hand,” Lawson said.

    Senate Republicans for years have avoided lame-duck sessions. Technically, this would not be the same. The chambers would not be allowing defeated or retiring members to vote after the election. New members elected in November would have been sworn in.

    Wolf's “priority is to move Pennsylvania forward,” said spokesman Jeffrey Sheridan. “He looks forward to working with legislative leaders from both parties ... to tackle the difficult decisions needed to solve our state's financial crisis.”

    “Lobbyists are talking about it; reporters are talking about it,” said Stephen Miskin, a House Republican spokesman. “I have not heard a single legislator talk about it.”

    GOP lawmakers left unresolved Corbett's top issues: pension reform and state liquor store divestiture.
    During his campaign, Wolf said the state's public employee pension problems are not a crisis and that he favors modernizing, not eliminating, the state stores.

    “Why would anyone think they could do it now, when they've been unable to do it the last four years?” asked Moe Coleman, director emeritus of the University of Pittsburgh's Institute of Politics.

    Liquor sales and pensions are complicated issues. Diverse constituencies support and oppose selling the state stores.

    J. Wesley Leckrone, a political science professor at Widener University, agreed it's unlikely lawmakers could solve “intractable issues” in a few days.

    Leckrone said it may be an effort by some Republicans to set the stage for negotiations with Wolf — sending a message that Corbett lost the election but they beefed up their majority control.

    “It could be the beginning of legislative posturing,” Leckrone said.



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