Go DUNCAN HUNTER!
Along with the news the Media won't report, we have the best of the web with wisdom & insight.
Illegal immigration is simply 'share the wealth’ socialism and a CRIME not a race!
"NO COUNTRY CAN SURVIVE WITHOUT BORDERS"
"JESUS WEPT" An American Story
This is HISTORY you didn't learn in school about the destruction of a nation who could not defend it's borders.
William Wilberforce, the British parliamentarian and abolitionist, told his colleagues, “Having heard all of this, you may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know.”
[snip]Occidental's planned drilling of the Elk Hills doesn't only threaten the memory of the Kitanemuk [Indian tribe}. Environmentalists say a rare species of fox, lizard and the kangaroo rat would also be threatened by Oxy's plans. A lawsuit has been filed under the Endangered Species Act. But none of that has given pause to Occidental or the politician who helped engineer the sale of the drilling rights to the federally-owned Elk Hills. That politician is Al Gore.
Gore recommended that the Elk Hills be sold as part of his 1995 "Reinventing Government" National Performance Review program. Gore-confidant (and former campaign manager) Tony Cohelo served on the board of directors of the private company hired to assess the sale's environmental consequences. The sale was a windfall for Oxy. Within weeks of the announced purchase Occidental stock rose ten percent.
That was good news for Gore. Despite controversy over Dick Cheney's plans to keep stock options if elected, most Americans don't know that we already have a vice president with oil company stocks. Before the Elk Hills sale, Al Gore controlled between $250,000-$500,000 of Occidental stock (he is executor of a trust that he says goes only to his mother, but will revert to him upon her death). After the sale, Gore began disclosing between $500,000 and $1 million of his significantly more valuable stock.
Nowhere is Al Gore's environmental hypocrisy more glaring than when it comes to his relationship with Occidental. While on the one hand talking tough about his "big oil" opponents and waxing poetic about indigenous peoples in his 1992 book "Earth in the Balance," the Elk Hills sale and other deals show that money has always been more important to Al Gore than ideals.
"We are very particular about our conservatives.We like principles and backbone. We elected Helen Chenoweth/Hage and Bill Sali. Helen loved Duncan Hunter and spoke of him often, that is why I loved him before he ever decided to run."Helen and Duncan had a great appreciation for each other and accomplished much while they were both in congress, especially protecting private property rights.
Mr. HUNTER: I think that shows some of the misguided policies, and, Mr. Chairman, I think this falls on our back as well as those of the Administrators. In this effort that is to protect the environment and the perversion that I think we have made of some of the regulations, we have actually damaged the environment. We have massive traffic jams that are a result of people not being able to afford homes in the areas where they work.Recently, Hunter has stated this concerning property rights and the Kelo property rights/eminent domain decision by the Supreme Court:
One reason they cannot afford homes is because we are protecting their environment in the communities where they work. So we have them put out tons of smog on the freeway to get 60 miles away where they can afford a home.
So I think that working America has a real stake in seeing to it that we pull back regulation, make it more reasonable and make it more applicable to folks like the gentleman who was in here, Mr. Turecek. I do not know if you saw him, but average people that have pieces of land that they want to develop, to give them a fighting chance at it.
Mr. Kading, I appreciate all of the witnesses, but I especially appreciate you being here and laying out the perspective of a working man."
"I am deeply concerned with the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision greatly broadening local government’s use of eminent domain in Kelo vs. New London and believe it is important that Congress protect the property rights of private landowners and curb the government from excessive regulatory takings. It is for this reason that I voted in favor of expressing the grave disapproval of the House of Representatives regarding the majority opinion in the Kelo case.
Additionally, I cosponsored H.R. 3268 , the Eminent Domain Tax Relief Act of 2005, which abolished the capital gains tax on private property taken by the government through eminent domain. I also voted in favor of a legislative amendment offered to H.R. 3058, the FY2006 Transportation, Treasury, Housing and Urban Development, the Judiciary, the District of Columbia, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Act, prohibiting federal funding from being used to improve or construct infrastructure support on lands acquired through the use of eminent domain of private property for private development."
The Thomas More Law Center, a national, public interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, attacked by the other side because it was a Christian advocacy group, figured prominently in the victory. The Law Center represented San Diegans for the Mt. Soledad National War Memorial in the successful appeal, and it represented them in opposing Paulson’s petition to the California Supreme Court. The Law Center also filed a lengthy objection to the ACLU’s request for depublication.
Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel for the Law Center, commented, “This is a major victory for religious freedom, the democratic process, and for the people of San Diego who voted overwhelmingly to preserve the historic Mt. Soledad veterans memorial and cross for future generations.” Thompson commented further, “It was also important for us to defeat the ACLU’s sinister plan to have the decision of the California appellate court depublished. The ACLU wanted the decision depublished so it could continue with its anti-Christian agenda free from opposing precedent. This appellate court decision will forever be a stumbling block for the ACLU—and we are pleased about that.”
The article doesn't mention that one big reason why this cross was saved and the ACLU lost (Yay!)was the actions of one man.
[snip] In its filing with the California Supreme Court, the ACLJ represents itself and 20 members of the 110th Congress including Congressman Duncan Hunter of California who sponsored legislation that transferred control of the Mt. Soledad Memorial to the federal government. That legislation was signed into law by President Bush in August 2006.
"If you want to start coming to America, you're going to have to start knocking on the front door," he said. "That fence is going to be up, that back door is going to be closed." Duncan Hunter
National Taxpayers Union shows a more telling trend. He was strong in the early 1990s, getting "B's" and one "A", but as time went by, like most politicians, his score dropped. For the past few years, he's been getting "C's".For the past few years? Well, yes, WAR appropriations happen to be expensive; he voted along the lines of his party and president. When Hunters record is examined bill, by bill his budget votes were about military spending. No one has yet made a case that any of his votes were ‘pork’ . But the ‘Club’ doesn’t mention that.
The coalition was a juggernaut that fought virtually any verification initiative. Because Republicans control Congress, conservative lobbyists were especially influential. The fact that some limited, voluntary verification projects stayed in the bill at all outraged some conservatives.Working closely with Stephen Moore of the Cato Institute, Cesar Conda (former domestic advisor to Dick Cheney) circulated a statement against Prop. 187 of California in the nineties.
"I view it as the camel's nose under the tent for a national ID card," said Stephen Moore, an economist with the Cato Institute who lobbied against the bill. "The theme we played to Republicans was that if you're trying to roll back big government, you shouldn't be instituting this new police-state power."
Social conservatives like Norquist and libertarians like Moore don't see illegal immigration as a major problem.
"Illegal immigration is part of the price we pay for being both a prosperous and a free country, and I'm not willing to sacrifice some of our freedoms to try to keep out immigrants, especially when I don't think it's going to work very well," said Moore.
He added that spending $3 billion-plus a year to fund the Immigration and Naturalization Service "probably is a waste of money. But this is a political issue. And the way you deal with illegal immigration is you increase the INS budget. It doesn't do a lot, but at least politicians on both sides can go home and say, `Well, how can you say I'm not doing anything about immigration? I increased the INS budget.' "
What you don't do, he said, is involve employers in enforcement.
"Sometimes in politics you pass feel-good measures," Moore said. "And that's not necessarily a bad thing. Passing a bill that's mostly window dressing is a way of defusing public alarm about something. And in states like California, illegal immigration is perceived as a big problem."
SAN DIEGO -- It's not just the number of people coming into the U.S. that is a concern for the Department of Homeland Security, but it's from which countries they are coming.
Border Patrol agents in San Diego stop nearly 400 illegal border crossers each day.
There is no telling how many they don’t stop.
"We never know what they're here for or what their intentions are," added Feige.
10News joined agents on patrol and saw firsthand what they face. In one incident, two men and one woman tried to sneak by right in front of agents. They first hid and then surrendered. The group turned out to be Mexican citizens with no criminal records, and they were processed and sent back to Mexico.
Because 85 percent of those apprehended by agents are from Mexico, the Department of Homeland Security classifies the others detained as "OTMs," or Other Than Mexican.
"They try to pass themselves off as being from Mexico," said Border Patrol agent Allen Gustafson.
Last year, OTMs came from 148 of the 193 countries in the world. Several came from what Homeland Security terms “special interest” countries -- countries that are considered a great threat.
10News learned that in the last six months, agents along the Southwest border caught 15 people from Iran, 35 from Pakistan, 12 from Jordan, two from Syria and five from Lebanon. These are numbers Homeland Security would not officially release.
Potential terrorists are not the only concern.
Agents said many violent criminals cross the border.
"In fact, we caught a person who was number 17 on Mexico's most wanted list," said Feige.
A top priority for the Federal Bureau of Investigation is to stop the influx of a notoriously brutal gang called the MS-13 -- the Mara Salvatrucha -- a group linked to violence across California and 32 other U.S. states.
According to reports, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras export members of the MS-13 gang.
10News learned that agents have stopped 26,035 undocumented people from El Salvador, 11,781 from Guatemala and 16,370 from Honduras in the last six months.
In the last six months, nearly 1,200 people from China were caught trying to enter the U.S. illegally.
Agents said Chinese nationals pay smugglers up to $30,000 for passage to the U.S.[snips]
________________________The only pundit who has come out against Ramos & Compean is Andrew McCarthy, a former federal prosecutor, friend of the White House and Dick Cheney and founder of Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Is the white house passing money out again to journalists??
The Border-Patrol Two Deserve Jail
Law enforcement defends its honor, despite the “hero” propaganda
By Andrew C. McCarthy
“Texans aren’t whiners,” Johnny Sutton told me. Still, forgive him if he sounds a bit frustrated.
Numerous FDD principals have been associated with the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), a neoconservative institute that was one of the leading promoters of the Iraq War and the Bush administration's aggressive security doctrine. These include Bauer, Woolsey, Gaffney, Kristol, Forbes, Perle, Kirkpatrick, and Krauthammer.
Thursday, February 8, 2007
Jonathan Saint-Preux was indicted on Oct. 5 with his wife, Michele, and another man on federal charges that they submitted fraudulent documents to help hundreds of undocumented immigrants stay in the U.S. Saint-Preux, who pleaded innocent, attended the White House party on Nov. 30, said his attorney, Patrick Toscano.
U.S. District Judge Katharine Hayden in Newark, New Jersey, signed an order granting permission for Saint-Preux ''to travel to Washington DC to attend a function at the White House at the request of President and Mrs. Bush." A Justice Department prosecutor consented to the trip, court records show.
''He was at a Christmas party," Michele Saint-Preux said today in an interview at her husband's office in Irvington, New Jersey, where she is the manager. ''He's been doing political work with the White House for years."
Inside the law office were separate framed photographs of Saint-Preux with first lady Laura Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Democratic New York Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. Michele Saint-Preux said her husband also did political work to support former President Bill Clinton.
White House spokeswoman Emily Lawrimore didn't have details on why Saint-Preux was invited to the party. ''Thousands of people attend the White House holiday parties," she said.
Jonathan Saint-Preux didn't return a message left with his wife. Hayden didn't return a call seeking comment.
Bush Not Aware?
''I doubt very highly that if the president was aware that Mr. Saint-Preux was having legal problems here in New Jersey, he would have been invited," Toscano said in an interview. ''It wasn't Mr. Saint-Preux's intent to cause problems for anybody."
Toscano and Assistant U.S. Attorney Adam Lurie signed a consent order that allowed Saint-Preux to take the trip. Hayden approved that order on Dec. 1. Saint-Preux is free on $250,000 bail and is not supposed to leave New Jersey without a judge's authorization. It wasn't clear why Hayden signed the order on Dec. 1, the day after the party.
''This is the sort of request that we get routinely from defense lawyers wanting to relax the bail restrictions because of business, family, or social reasons," said Michael Drewniak, a spokesman for U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie in Newark.
According to the indictment, Saint-Preux, his wife, and a man who recruited clients for him, Naranjan Patel, lied on immigration documents. They claimed the immigrants had lived continuously in the U.S. from before 1982 until at least May 1987, prosecutors said. Prosecutors claim the ruse was intended to help immigrants qualify for legal residency under a U.S. amnesty program.
The indictment, which accuses Saint-Preux of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. and seven counts of submitting false immigration documents, cites seven unnamed ''cooperating witnesses" who have provided evidence to prosecutors.
Saint-Preux, then 44, was arrested on Oct. 12. Toscano said plea negotiations are underway. ''We're hoping to amicably resolve this," he said.
Saint-Preux donated $1,100 to New Jersey Republicans in 2004 and 2005, according to opensecrets.org, a Web site.
''I know that Jonathan was active in political circles, but I can't speak to how he was invited to the White House Christmas party," Toscano said.
On Nov. 30, Bush met with Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al- Maliki in Amman, Jordan, before returning to Washington. The buffet menu at the holiday party included sugar cured Virginia ham and chicken fried beef tenderloin, according to the White House Web site.
Richard Skinner, Inspector General for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and David Walker, Comptroller General with the Government Accountability Office (GAO), appeared today before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to discuss management and contract problems within DHS. The particular programs under scrutiny were the Secure Border Initiative (SBI) and Deepwater, but the hearing also highlighted more fundamental concerns about contracting and transparency in the Department.
In his written testimony (pdf) for a similar hearing yesterday in the House Homeland Security Committee, Walker stated:
...DHS has not made its management or operational decisions transparent enough so that Congress can be sure it is effectively, efficiently, and economically using the billions of dollars in funding it receives annually, and is providing the levels of security called for in numerous legislative requirements and presidential directives. Our work for Congress assessing DHS’s operations has been significantly hampered by long delays in granting us access to program documents and officials, or by questioning our access to information needed to conduct our reviews. We are troubled by the impact that DHS’s processes and internal reviews have had on our ability to assess departmental programs and operations. Given the problems we have experienced in obtaining access to DHS information, it will be difficult for us to sustain the level of oversight that Congress has directed and that is needed to effectively oversee the department, including the level of oversight needed to assess DHS’s progress in addressing the existing transformation, integration, and programmatic challenges identified in this statement.
Walker’s testimony further relates that these sort of impediments were encountered during his investigation of the Deepwater and SBI programs. A Tuesday article by Chris Strohm for the publication CongressDaily looks at one of the main individuals at DHS behind both Skinner and Walker’s investigative difficulties:
Walker said the problem is "systemic" and not the fault of any single individual. But he complained that GAO has had to go through the office of General Counsel Philip Perry. Perry is married to Elizabeth Cheney, a former State Department official who is one of the vice president's two daughters. Walker said it is his understanding that people from Perry's office have to review documents GAO seeks before they are released and selectively sit in on interviews with department employees.
"When you have more lawyers in a meeting than program people, you know you got a problem. Something needs to be done about this," Walker said. "There needs to be an understanding that if the general counsel's office is going to get involved, it's clearly got to be the exception rather than the rule," he added. "Right now the system is structured to delay, delay, delay ... We haven't had a situation where they refuse information but it might take months to get it."
Homeland Security Inspector General Richard Skinner said his investigations have also been hindered. "We're experiencing the same problem," said Skinner, who added his office is "oftentimes" told who they can interview and that it sometimes takes weeks to get documents.
Perry’s questionable behavior extends far beyond nepotism and delaying investigations. He’s also a pro at jumping back and forth between government and the private sector, doing what he can to benefit industry along the way. After Bush became president, Perry moved from being a junior partner at the DC law firm Latham & Watkins to holding the position of Associate-Attorney General for the Department of Justice. He then moved to the Office of Management and Budget as General Counsel, where he had a hand in drafting plans for DHS. In 2003, he returned to Latham & Watkins as a member of their Homeland Security practice group and lobbied on behalf of Lockheed Martin and other companies.
An article by Art Levine in the most recent addition of the Washington Monthly chronicles Perry’s exploits over the course of his career. By the time Perry joined DHS, he was a veteran advocate for the chemical industry and government contractors, and he had also made the right connections in government. Levine states:
Enter Philip Perry. When Michael Chertoff was nominated to head the DHS in 2005, he had asked Perry to join him as the department’s general counsel. The two were not only colleagues at Latham & Watkins but also members of the conservative Federalist Society, and they were of like minds in their general distrust of government regulation of business. By the summer of 2006, as various bills competed for attention, Perry’s services were in great demand. “Industry went back to the well,” says one DHS official.
To no surprise, Perry’s “revolving door” habits haven’t ended with his position at DHS. Secretary Chertoff announced on Jan. 23 that Perry would be resigning from DHS by Feb. 6, presumably to rejoin his old law firm. Although Perry’s exit will undoubtedly be an improvement for DHS accountability, the enormous problems that he had a hand in creating at the Department still remain.
Today’s hearing on DHS is proof of that fact. Members of the House Committee, particularly Reps. Kucinich, Duncan, and Hodes, condemned the extensive underhanded dealings between industry and government officials that have resulted in huge losses for taxpayers. Rep. Duncan proclaimed at one point that the Deepwater and SBI programs are “emblematic” of the contracting problems discussed in yesterday’s NYT editorial.
Furthermore, the GAO and DHS Inspector General’s concerns have kept the Department on GAO's “high-risk” list (pdf), meaning that the stakes involved are high and much remains to be accomplished. As Congress continues with its hearings and investigations, it’s also possible that even more problems and cases of corruption will come to light. Finally, if his past is any prelude to the future, Perry will return to the scene like a villain in a low-budget horror movie sequel.
From what we've found, it appears Philip Perry may have also been involved with the Ramos/Compean prosecution and resulting 'confusion' over statements, testimony, investigation by Homeland Security. Perry resigned this month to 'spend more time with family'.
Remember Skinner is the one who admitted to congressmen last week that Homeland Security had 'misled them' about statements Ramos and Compean made to the Homeland security investigator.
Perry's wife Elizabeth (daughter of Dick Cheney), was #2 at the State Dept for Mid eastern affairs until recently.
Congressman: Convicted agent's injuries are worse than reported
By Sara A. Carter, Staff Writer
An imprisoned former Border Patrol agent who was beaten in his sleep has injuries that are more serious than previously reported, said a congressman on Friday.
Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., met with Ignacio Ramos, who was convicted in March for the nonfatal shooting of a Mexican drug smuggler. Ramos is serving an 11-year sentence at Yazoo Correctional Complex in Mississippi.
Tancredo said he was astonished at the injuries on Ramos' body, which he said did not coincide with reports from the prison earlier this week that described his injuries as "minor.""His bruises were deep and severe," Tancredo said. "His arm, chest and back are black and blue with broken blood vessels on his arm. It was terrible."
Two Border Patrol agents who testified against two co-workers convicted of shooting a drug smuggler will be fired for changing their stories about events surrounding the shooting, according to documents obtained by The Sun's sister newspaper, the Ontario-based Inland Valley Daily Bulletin.
Sources inside the Border Patrol also say Oscar Juarez, a third agent who testified against Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean, resigned from the agency last month shortly before he was to be fired.
All three agents gave sworn testimony against Ramos and Compean for the U.S. Attorney's Office, which successfully prosecuted the shooting case in March. The three agents were given immunity in exchange for their testimony despite changing their accounts of the incident several times."When you give deals to witnesses like immunity, the government usually gets the testimony (it wants)," said Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, a former judge and prosecutor. "This case is a perfect example."
Some wise man said, "The only indicator of future behavior is past behavior".
There is lots of hype lately from the K St Crowd, that Gingrich helped found, to push him for president as the only "conservative" in the race. Newt has his finger in the wind, and is finding that Americans want immigration controlled, so now he's suddenly on "our side". Don't believe it!
Let me remind you of a few FACTS.
In his much touted 'Contract with America'....NOT one word about immigration. In fact only recently has Newt even talked about immigration enforcement. In the letter below, he joins other open border lobbyists proclaiming Bush's amnesty is the 'only way to go'.
Newt's voting record on immigration....pretty bad! Per Numbers USA and others: " Leans toward higher immigration, population growth, foreign labor. I can find nothing, in all the years that Gingrich was in office where he ever introduced or worked for legislation that would control our borders.
I won't even get into all of Newts money and corruption scandals over these many years or the fact that Newt never met a NAFTA/CAFTA type trade agreement he didn't love.
Arlington, VA – The following "Conservative Statement of Principles on Immigration" appeared today in the Wall Street Journal. If you have any questions regarding the statement please contact Tamar Jacoby, Manhattan Institute, at (973) 744-6117 or Stuart Anderson, National Foundation for American Policy, at (703) 351-5042.
The Wall Street Journal
February 6, 2004
Welcome to America
Fifteen authors offer this "Conservative Statement of Principles on Immigration":
In his farewell address to the nation, President Reagan said: "I've spoken of the Shining City all my political life . . . [I]n my mind it was . . . teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace, a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and heart to get here."
America is a nation of immigrants. Except for Native American Indians, everyone in this country came to America or is here due to the good fortune that a parent, grandparent, or other relation came before them. Keeping a door open to those with the "will and heart to get here" is vital to our economy, our culture, our role in the world, and our historic tradition as a land of freedom and opportunity.
Conservatives believe in legal immigration. We believe that America grows stronger by welcoming those who seek to better their families, work in our industries, and find liberty and refuge from oppression.
Conservatives oppose illegal immigration. We believe there is a right way and a wrong way to immigrate to the U.S. However, as conservatives we believe that our laws must reflect reality and common sense, be fiscally responsible, and avoid the loss of innocent life. Our current immigration laws do not pass this test.
Between 1990 and 2000, the U.S. increased the number of Border Patrol Agents from 3,600 to 10,000. During that same period illegal immigration rose by 5.5 million. Moreover, over the past eight years, more than 2,000 men, women, and children have died attempting to cross into America and seek the opportunity to work and achieve a better life. The status quo is unacceptable and clinging to the status quo -- or tougher versions of it -- is neither conservative nor principled. It has become clear that the only viable approach to reform is combining enforcement with additional legal avenues for those who wish to work in our economy, while also addressing the situation of those already here in the U.S.
President Bush has proposed a new legal path to work in the U.S. through a temporary worker program that will match willing workers with willing employers. We applaud the president and believe his approach holds great promise to reduce illegal immigration and establish a humane, orderly, and economically sensible approach to migration that will aid homeland security and free up border-security assets to focus on genuine threats. The president has shown courage by calling on Congress to place reality over rhetoric and recognize that those already working here outside the law are unlikely to leave. Congress can fulfill its role by establishing sufficient increases in legal immigration and paths to permanent residence to enable more workers to stay, assimilate, and become part of America.
Immigrants are crucial to our competitiveness and future labor and economic growth, as well as our military strength. Our country's welcoming attitude to immigrants will permit the U.S. to grow and prosper, as the populations of many other nations stagnate and decline. Each generation of Americans must connect our nation's past to its future and in so doing keep President Reagan's vision of the "Shining City" alive.
Co-authored by Stuart Anderson, Jeff Bell, Linda Chavez, Larry Cirignano, Cesar V. Conda, Francis Fukuyama, Richard Gilder, Newt Gingrich, Ed Goeas, Tamar Jacoby, Jack Kemp, Steve Moore, Grover Norquist, Richard W. Rahn and Malcolm Wallop.
SIGNATORES: (Names you need to know, they are the enemy!)
National Foundation for American Policy
Capital City Partners
Center for Equal Opportunity
Cesar V. Conda
Former Assistant for Domestic Policy to Vice President Cheney and
Board Member of Empower America
Dean of Faculty
The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies
Gilder Gagnon Howe & Co. LLC
Hon. Newt Gingrich
Former Speaker of the House of Representatives
President and Chief Executive Officer
The Tarrance Group
The Manhattan Institute
Hon. Jack Kemp
1996 Republican Vice Presidential nominee, former Representative from New York, and Co-director of Empower America
Americans for Tax Reform
Richard W. Rahn
Hon. Malcolm Wallop
Former U.S. Senator from Wyoming and Chairman of Frontiers of Freedom
About the National Foundation for American Policy (Newt's group!)
Started in 2003, the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to public policy research on trade, immigration, and other issues of national importance. Its Advisory Board members include Columbia University economist Jagdish Bhagwati, Ohio University economist Richard Vedder, Rep. Guy Vander Jagt (ret.), Cesar Conda, until recently Vice President Dick Cheney's chief domestic policy adviser, and other prominent individuals.
Wall Street Journal: January 25, 2007; Page A8
"Yesterday morning, the weekly meeting of conservatives that is convened by antitax activist Grover Norquist, a White House ally, was marked by "tense exchanges" with administration press secretary Tony Snow over border enforcement and Mr. Bush's immigration proposals, according to conservative activists.""I think the president left a lot of conservatives shaking their heads" by avoiding the issues atop their agenda, said Bill Lauderback, executive vice president at the American Conservative Union.
FOX/AP One of two former Border Patrol agents sentenced to more than a decade in prison for shooting and wounding a suspected Mexican drug smuggler was beaten by a group of inmates last weekend, a Texas congressman confirmed Tuesday to FOXNews.com.
Ignacio Ramos, who was transferred to the Yazoo City Federal Correctional Complex in Mississippi last month to begin serving his 12-year sentence for the February 2005 shooting of Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila, was placed in a special housing unit after the incident pending an investigation, according to T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council.
"We received verbal confirmation from the prison folks that he was assaulted and went to the infirmary and was treated for injuries," Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, told FOXNews.com, adding that he has requested a written report of the incident.
Another agent, Jose Compean, is serving 11 years in another facility for the same border shooting.
Prison authorities, in a statement issued Monday, said that Ramos reported to the staff on Saturday around 10:15 p.m. ET that he was assaulted and that he sustained some 'minor' bruises and abrasions, Bonner said.
Some members of Ramos' family claim the assault happened after the airing of an "America's Most Wanted" segment featuring both Ramos and Compean. They say the attack happened after Ramos fell asleep.
"Nacho was assaulted Saturday night by about five illegal immigrants who were yelling at him in Spanish, 'Maten a la migra' — which means 'kill the Border Patrol agent,'" one family member said, according to Grassfire.org, a group that has petitioned President Bush to pardon the two agents and has been working with the agents' families.
Grassfire.org and Ramos' family dispute the prison report saying he suffered minor injuries. Grassfire.org in a press release says Ramos suffered "multiple and severe injuries." The release also said that a family member claims Ramos' attackers beat him with repeated blows and kicks and that he suffered wounds to his back, shoulder, arms and head. There also is concern from Ramos' family that he was not given medical treatment immediately after the incident and may not have received medical attention for up to 48 hours, the group said.
"Our government has betrayed these agents," said Grassfire president Steve Elliott. "And now they have put these men in mortal danger. I am frightened for the lives of these two family men. This is beyond outrage, and I am calling on grassroots Americans to express their outrage directly to the White House — demanding the president pardon agents Ramos and Compean before it's too late."
Bonner said Ramos believes that he was assaulted by four or five people and that his injuries are more than 'minor."
"I believe him more than I believe the Department of Justice and its attempt to minimize this," Bonner said. "After all, this is the same Department of Justice that's tried to cover up the facts surrounding the" case, he added.
The two agents' supporters — which include a slew of lawmakers on Capital Hill — claim the Justice Department and prosecutor Johnny Sutton did not appropriately handle the case.
Ramos and Compean were found guilty by a jury of not only shooting Aldrete-Davila, but also of trying to cover up the incident. Supporters say it was wrong for Sutton to go after the border agents and not the drug dealer who was given immunity for testifying against them, and that the Justice Department has been less than forthcoming about certain facts surrounding the case.
The transcripts of the trial have not yet been released by the court.
In response to the reports of the prison assault, Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., wrote to President Bush requesting an investigation into the incident. The letter also requested that Bureau of Prisons Director Harley Lappin be discharged from his position if it's discovered that the proper precautions were not taken to protect Ramos.
"Placing these two agents in general population, especially when assuring Congress it would not happen, constitutes an enormous dereliction of duty by the Administration and the Bureau of Prisons," said the Feb. 6 letter to Bush. "The families of agents Compean and Ramos deserve an immediate response. Further, please ensure that segregation from general population occurs immediately."
On Jan. 17, Hunter requested that both agents be put in isolation for their own safety. He and others were concerned that if jailed with many of the illegal immigrants and drug runners they helped put away, the safety and well-being of Ramos and Compean would be threatened.
"The assault against agent Ramos clearly demonstrates the severe risk involved with incorporating Border Patrol agents into general prison populations," Hunter said in a statement Tuesday. "An overwhelming number of federal inmates are non U.S. citizens who have been apprehended by the Border Patrol. The danger to agents Compean and Ramos was immediately apparent and the attack against agent Ramos could have been prevented."
Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., said he spoke to several of Ramos' family members Monday night. The Ramos family wasn't aware of the situation until late Monday, when they called him to wish him well on his 38th birthday. Ramos told his family that he was attacked by five men who beat him severely for being a former law enforcement agent.
Tancredo said one of the assailants has been identified by Ramos and is now being charged with assault.
"The administration has for too long turned their back on law enforcement and left them to fend for themselves," Tancredo said. "These men have been the victims of what the Bush administration’s border enforcement policy has always been. Mr. President, pardon these men now."
Bonner said Ramos likely asked to be put in general population because when in isolation, inmates are only allowed one phone call a month. Isolated prisoners also normally are in lockdown for 23 hours a day and only allowed out for one hour.
"Why they couldn't bend that rule given the fact they have law enforcement agent in custody … you kind of go stir crazy" in isolation, Bonner said.
"I don't blame him [Ramos], I blame the folks in charge for not being reasonable about that. One phone call a month sounds like punishment to me for someone who's been acting up. But here's a guy you're putting in isolation because you need to protect him."
Poe agreed, saying that it's Ramos' choice whether he wants to be put in isolation or general population, but wherever he is, it's the job of the federal government and the prison to ensure his safety.
"It's just another example that the federal government doesn't protect Border Patrol agents on the border and doesn't protect them in prison," Poe said.
"The prison authorities, especially the federal prison system, are experts at protecting inmates from harm from other inmates ... they've been doing this for years. Why aren't they protecting Ramos?"
Poe, who said he speaks to the wives of Compean and Ramos regularly, said Compean is in isolation. According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Compean is serving his sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution in Elkton, Ohio, a low-security facility housing male offenders.