Offering asides, recommended links, blogworthy quotations, and more, In Brief is the Northwest Progressive Institute's microblog of world, national, and local politics.

Tag Archives: Naturalization


If I was around Mr. Trump — Donald, who I know rather well — I would say, ‘You know, Don, let’s see what happens — let’s tell all the immigrants working in Trump hotels to stay home tomorrow… Let’s see what happens.”

— Colin Powell, telling Walter Issacson that Donald Trump doesn’t speak for all Republicans on immigration. Powell told Issacson that he’s “still a Republican” and wants to “continue to be a Republican because it annoys them.” By them, Powell means the extremist tea party movement. (Via The Hill).

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This morning, Pope Francis became the first leader of the Roman Catholic Church to address a joint session of the United States Congress.

In his beautifully framed speech, firmly rooted in humanity’s universal progressive values, he urged Congress to act to address income inequality, the climate crisis, and immigration. He also called for the abolition of the death penalty.

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While it seems almost everyone is in thrall to the visiting pontiff, many in the Republican base dislike much of what he has to say: climate change and poverty deniers reject his encyclical on degrading the planet or his call to help the poor; hawks can’t abide papal advice to make love, not war; immigration hardliners find him too soft, the list goes on.

— Political columnist Margaret Carlson: Republicans will tune out half of what Pope Francis says (via Bloomberg View).

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Sorry, Republicans: I’m an anchor baby, and I’m not going anywhere

“The party’s presidential candidates want to deny birthright citizenship to people like me because they know we’ll vote them out of office,” writes Gustavo Arellano for The Guardian (Comment is free).

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This summer camp just churned out eighty young progressive activists

The Los Angeles Times profiles Dream Summer, which it neatly describes as “an annual program that brings young immigrants from across the country to Los Angeles for a 10-week crash course designed to produce the next generation of immigrant rights leaders.”


I want to dedicate this award for my fellow Mexicans, the ones who live in Mexico. I pray that we can find and build a government that we deserve. And the ones that live in this country who are part of the latest generation of immigrants in this country… I just pray that they can be treated with the same dignity and respect as the ones who came before and built this incredible immigrant nation.

— Birdman Director Alejandro González Iñárritu, accepting his award for Best Director at the 87th Academy Awards (via MSNBC).


It is simply a message they want to send, not a solution that they want to affect… Republicans are racing to the right, putting forward the harshest and most draconian policies they can think of. This crisis demands an immediate response.

— Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, blasting the Republicans’ divisive and fatally flawed immigration bills as driven by political considerations.

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Above is the video of the speech delivered today by U.S. Representative Suzan DelBene in opposition to a pair of divisive, fatally-flawed Republican-backed bills on immigration. Below is the text of the statement released by her office on these bills.

The influx of unaccompanied children across the southern border is nothing short of a humanitarian crisis that requires immediate action. We desperately need members of Congress to work together in a bipartisan way to develop an effective and humane course of action to address this problem, and I am frustrated that House Republicans are playing politics with this crisis instead of creating a serious proposal to solve it.

Disappointingly, House Republicans have put forward an unworkable appropriations bill (H.R. 5230) that fails to adequately address this crisis. It includes harmful provisions that would weaken existing law and deny important due process protections aimed at ensuring that unaccompanied children are treated fairly and humanely.

Furthermore, this bill cuts over $400 million to FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund (DRF), negatively impacting the federal government’s ability to respond to other disasters.

Another bill (H.R. 5272) needlessly punishes innocent children, known as DREAMers, without addressing the humanitarian crisis caused by violence in Central America. This deportation-only and enforcement-only approach to changing our nation’s immigration laws is misguided and will do absolutely nothing to prevent our broken immigration system from spinning further into dysfunction.

In my district, there are businesses, farmers, faith leaders, law enforcement leaders, and families who have been asking Congress for years to find solutions to our broken immigration system. Instead, House Republicans have decided to make today’s divisive bill a priority. After more than a year of refusing to act on immigration reform legislation, this is an outrageous and unacceptable position to take.

I have been actively working as a member of the Judiciary Committee to find a bipartisan path forward – to tackle the job of fixing an immigration system that we all agree is broken, but House leadership has refused to do the work that’s needed to get responsible legislation to the President. I hope that Congress can come back to work in a bipartisan way to get real results for the American people.

NPI thanks Representative DelBene for her vote against these bills and insistence on a true solution to our immigration crisis.


I do wish that Ted Cruz would stay in the Senate… Nobody elected him speaker. Nobody elected him majority leader in the House, and it’s really a cheap shot to be coming in from the side. To have some guy come in from the outside like the Pied Piper is wrong.

— Republican Congressman Peter King of New York, making clear that he resents Texas Senator Ted Cruz’s meddling in the House Republican caucus.


Why do you hold power if you’re not doing the right thing for your country? If you’re doing the right thing people tend to send you back to Congress.

— Florida Democratic Representative Joe Garcia, suggesting ousted Republican Majority Leader Eric Cantor use remaining time in office to work on immigration reform in a short interview with The Washington Post.

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Republicans don’t want to govern because they can’t agree on policy directions

Greg Sargent observes that while Republicans can agree on winning, they can’t agree among themselves on policy directions, like immigration. (And even if they could, their policy prescriptions would be unpopular). The solution? Republicans will stop manufacturing fiscal crises while not bothering to address any of the United States’ problems with serious legislation. In other words, they don’t want to govern, but they want to be responsible for governing.