Patterico's Pontifications


President Obama: Apathy Keeps Minorities From Polls

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:12 pm

[guest post by Dana]

President Obama made an interesting and provocative admission today during a radio interview with Rev. Al Sharpton when discussing voter i.d. laws:

“Most of these laws are not preventing the overwhelming majority of folks who don’t vote from voting,” Obama said during an interview with Rev. Al Sharpton. “Most people do have an ID. Most people do have a driver’s license. Most people can get to the polls. It may not be as convenient, it may be a little more difficult.”

“The bottom line is, if less than half of our folks vote, these laws aren’t preventing the other half from not voting,” Obama said. “The reason we don’t vote is because people have been fed this notion that somehow it’s not going to make a difference. And it makes a huge difference.”

It’s ironic, too, considering the Obama Justice Dept. charge that voter i.d laws suppress (Democratic) voters by placing undue hardships on poor and minority voters, as well as Holder’s own claims of voter i.d. laws amounting to a poll tax.

On a side note, commenter Charlotte made a smart observation on the Supreme Court Allows Texas Voter I.D. Law thread:

How is it that Mozambique, with a per capita GDP of $ 435 and an illiteracy rate of 48%, has just held an election requiring photo ID for its electorate, but so many on the left baulk when similar requirements are legislated in the US.


White House Edits Embarrassing Joke By Obama Out of Official Transcript

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:54 pm

The Blaze:

The official transcript of a fundraiser speech President Barack Obama delivered at a private residence in Chicago Monday afternoon failed to include a joke he made about finding unpaid bills on his Chicago home’s desk.

“One of the nice things about being home is actually that it’s a little bit like a time capsule. Because Michelle and I and the kids, we left so quickly that there’s still junk on my desk, including some unpaid bills — I think eventually they got paid — but they’re sort of stacked up. And messages, newspapers and all kinds of stuff,” Obama said during his address, according to the pool report.

That joke about unpaid bills, however, didn’t make it into the official transcript.

Instead, as noted by Politico’s Jennifer Epstein, the quote leaves out the reference to finding the stack of bills. It only quotes the president as saying that “there’s still junk on my desk, including some — newspapers and all kinds of stuff.​”

The Associated Press’ Josh Lederman explained on Twitter that finding the quote required reviewing the tapes of the event.

At Hot Air, they reveal that the transcript now says “inaudible” instead of the bit about Obama not paying his bills. Hmm. It was audible to the reporters. Funny how it got inaudible exactly at the embarrassing part!

The joke is obvious and others have already made it:

Is this why his credit card got declined?

But in all seriousness: you can’t trust a thing they say.

David Corn Falsely Smears Rand Paul as a Truther

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:05 am

David Corn, lefty hack from Mother Jones, has a hit piece designed to take out Rand Paul. It’s full of spin and exaggerations, but let me highlight one particularly nasty piece of dishonesty:

Jones’ show has also been a hub of the so-called truther movement, which claims that the 9/11 attacks were mounted or permitted by the US government. During Paul’s 2010 Senate campaign, it was revealed that his campaign spokesman was a truther (as well as a death-metal musician with racist and satanic tendencies). When a Kentucky newspaper asked if Paul agreed with this view, his campaign replied that it was a “complicated situation” with “truth on both sides.”

Well. That’s a strong charge. First Corn claims that Paul’s campaign spokesman was a 9/11 truther, defined as someone who “claims that the 9/11 attacks were mounted or permitted by the US government.” Then Corn claims that Paul’s campaign sanctioned this view.

I looked into this. It wasn’t hard. What Corn says simply isn’t true.

Paul’s campaign spokesman was dismissed after several aspects of his online life were distorted in the press. Relevant here is a letter he wrote to a Kentucky newspaper in which he defended Ron Paul’s position that the 9/11 terrorists were motivated in large part by the United States’s military actions in the Middle East. Ron Paul, an adamant noninterventionist, has long argued that the United States’s penchant for becoming embroiled in military expeditions overseas has unintended consequences. One of those consequences is that it motivates people to plot terrorist attacks on the United States.

The point of my post is not to defend this claim on its merits — although it is certainly beyond dispute that the 9/11 terrorists were motivated in part by the U.S. presence in the Middle East, as is evident to anyone who has read bin Laden’s diatribes. I don’t think this mitigates the terrorists’ responsibility for their awful and indefensible actions on 9/11, but I don’t know if Ron Paul (or Rand Paul) thinks that either.

What I do know is that this argument is very different from saying that “the 9/11 attacks were mounted or permitted by the US government.”

And when Paul’s campaign said the issue was complicated, with truth on both sides, they weren’t saying: “Maybe the government was behind 9/11. Who can say?” They were saying: “We don’t want to be distracted by this controversy, which is why we have fired this guy, but there are aspects of what he said about U.S. foreign policy and interventionism that we can’t honestly disavow.”

That’s very different from what Corn claims.

In short, David Corn is simply lying. Shocking, I know.

(Corn’s claim about the spokesman’s supposed racist tendencies appears to be more exaggeration, for what it’s worth. You can follow the links and see for yourself.)

This post, by the way, is not link bait. Although Rand Paul recently linked this blog when it defended his comments about what the CDC says about Ebola, I doubt very much that he will be linking this post — although he is certainly welcome to, if he likes. The post speaks the truth, but it’s my impression that Paul is currently downplaying the aspects of his previous foreign policy statements that might make GOP donors nervous. My guess is that, even though this post shows that Corn is lying about him sanctioning Trutherism, Paul will take a pass on anything that draws further attention to his noninterventionist statements from the past.

The details, for those who are interested, are in the extended entry.


Feds Preparing For A “Surge” Scenario

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:05 am

[guest post by Dana]

Of course, while given the perfect cover of a public very distracted by Ebola, the administration has been quietly working to prepare for an expected surge of immigrants to live and work in the U.S.:

Unnoticed until now, a draft solicitation for bids issued by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Oct. 6 says potential vendors must be capable of handling a “surge” scenario of 9 million id cards in one year “to support possible future immigration reform initiative requirements.”

The request for proposals says the agency will need a minimum of four million cards per year. In the “surge,” scenario in 2016, the agency would need an additional five million cards – more than double the baseline annual amount for a total of 9 million.

“The guaranteed minimum for each ordering period is 4,000,000 cards. The estimated maximum for the entire contract is 34,000,000 cards,” the document says.

The agency is buying the materials need to construct both Permanent Residency Cards (PRC), commonly known as green cards, as well as Employment Authorization Documentation (EAD) cards which have been used to implement President Obama’s “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals” (DACA) program. The RFP does not specify how many of each type of card would be issued.

How big of a surge are we really talking? Consider this:

Jessica Vaughan, an immigration expert at the Center for Immigration Studies and former State Department official, said the document suggests a new program of remarkable breadth.

The RFP “seems to indicate that the president is contemplating an enormous executive action that is even more expansive than the plan that Congress rejected in the ‘Gang of Eight’ bill,” Vaughan said.

In conjunction with this, one should take note of current unemployment rates across the country.

I think we can assume that this indicates the president’s plans are likely to be far more wide-reaching than we originally anticipated.


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