Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America criticize President Trump’s unusual press conference decision to declare a national emergency to work around Congress and free up $8 billion for a border wall – although they appreciate his desire to confront illegal immigration and smuggling. They also react to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez cheering Amazon’s decision to scrap plans for a new headquarters in New York, agreeing that crony capitalism is bad but marveling at how little she seems to understand about basic economics. And they yawn and laugh as former Massachusetts Gov. William Weld launches a GOP primary challenge to President Trump.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America react to California Gov. Gavin Newsom greatly scaling back high-speed rail in the state, proving once again that the concept is not the dream solution that liberals think it is. They also slam New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez for being outraged that people entering the U.S. illegally and illegal immigrants caught driving drunk are treated like criminals. And they have fun with New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker declaring that meat consumption is destroying the planet and that he wants to make the existing model of the food system obsolete.

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Progress, Immigration, and the Question of Rule

 

One of the complaints in the Declaration of Independence addresses the king’s position on immigration. Let’s have a look, shall we?

He has endeavored to prevent the population of these States, for that reason obstruction the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America review Jim’s trip to the Koch Seminar Network and how the billionaire brothers that Democrats and the media like to describe as evil are pouring money into charities so struggling Americans don’t have to depend solely on the government. They also sigh as reports make clear that Senate Republicans have no intention of allowing another government shutdown, meaning they aren’t prepared to play hardball over border wall funding. And they take aim at a Washington Post opinion column arguing that it’s somehow sexist to question whether Kamala Harris got help in launching her political career due to prominent appointments she received from a man she was having an affair with at the time.

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Possible Comprehensive Immigration Bill?

 

Will we get comprehensive immigration reform with a Democrat controlled House that was not possible when Republicans were in control? I know we must have some diverse viewpoints on Ricochet. More

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Immigration and the Census

 

Judge Jesse Furman of the District Court for the Southern District of New York issued a 277-page opinion last week in the watershed case of The State of New York v. United States Department of Commerce. At issue was the lawfulness of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’s order to include a question in the 2020 census that asks all individuals whether or not they are citizens of the United States. That order was vehemently resisted by the Census Bureau and was promptly challenged in court by New York State, which assembled a coalition that included 17 other blue states, numerous cities and towns, and private organizations whose funding allocations depend on an accurate census count. They claimed that including the citizenship question on the census would reduce the size of the total population count as illegal aliens would decline to participate in the census, lest they be put in legal jeopardy. They further insisted that none of the customary follow-up procedures could remedy that structural undercount.

Judge Furman ruled against the Department of Commerce on a standard array of administrative law grounds. He found that the various plaintiffs had standing to challenge the order; that the Department offered pretextual grounds for the decision; and that its decision was not in accordance with law, because it both ignored specific mandates in the Census Act of 1976 and that its lack of factual foundation rendered it arbitrary and capricious. Furman denied, however, all constitutional challenges to the ruling, by finding that the Department did not engage in any form of invidious discrimination against immigrants and hispanics.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss President Trump’s latest offer to secure the border and end the partial government shutdown and how the tide is turning against Democrats for refusing to negotiate. They also roll their eyes as Kirsten Gillibrand and Joe Biden are profusely apologizing for holding positions years ago that anger the progressive base of the Democratic Party now. And they react to signs that Maryland GOP Gov. Larry Hogan may be positioning himself for a primary challenge against President Trump.

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A Moment of Silence, Please

 

For all the Federal workers who don’t get MLK Jr. Day off because they’re already off for the government shutdown. More

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America get a kick out of CNN commentator Areva Martin telling radio host David Webb his success is a result of white privilege – until Webb tells her he is black. They’re also aghast as 59 percent of registered voters support a 70 percent marginal tax rate on the nation’s highest earners, including 45 percent of Republicans. And they shake their heads as Beto O’Rourke openly wonders whether our “empire” can “still be managed by the same principles that were set down 230-plus years ago.”

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America react to House Republicans stripping Iowa Rep. Steve King of all committee assignments after his controversial comments in the New York Times. Jim also reveals some his interesting discoveries after combing through the record of California Sen. Kamala Harris as she prepares for a 2020 White House run. And they wonder why New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is bothering to run for president and planning to run as a champion of women in a Democratic primary full of them.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are glad to see Republican leaders denounce the latest controversial comments from Iowa Rep. Steve King and argue that while it’s worth defending the greatness of Western Civilization, there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it. While being perfectly fine with a wall at various points along our southern border, they offer multiple reasons why an emergency declaration to move it forward would be a bad idea now and an even worse precedent for when a Democrat eventually becomes president. And they get a kick out of CNN’s Jim Acosta intending to make an argument against the need for a border wall but accidentally demonstrating why a wall works. And Jim explains how Acosta has become the Hollywood caricature of an arrogant reporter.

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Cesar Chavez vs. Humane Walls

 

It is said that good fences make good neighbors. One of the benefits of a border barrier is that it can prevent activists/victims of illegal aliens from taking the law into their own hands. Did you know it happened back in the 1970’s? Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers took border enforcement to a […]

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Welcome to the Harvard Lunch Club Political podcast number O.M.G. 207 it is the Wall Walkout edition of the show with your holdout hosts radio guy Todd Feinburg and AI guy Mike Stopa (the handsome one…if I haven’t said so yet).

This week, well, it is wall-to-wall (knew I was going to do that, didn’t you?) Wall and Shutdown and Trump and the Dems and the battle royale. And in spite of the utter predictability of our topic we are (if we do say so ourselves) scintillating! You will enjoy!

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Immigration and the Orchard

 

Sometimes, people ask you questions that make you stop. The other day, I was asked what I considered to be the source of my positions and convictions about immigration. This got me to thinking.

A lot of things go into it, of course. Intuitions. Principles. History. As a matter of full disclosure, my own family largely immigrated to this nation in the late 1800s and early 1900s as near as I tell. Not that this particular fact matters a whit with regard to how I formulate my positions. My opinions are generally derived from first principles, and I will employ an analogy to illuminate them.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America think President Trump did alright in his speech and agree that his presentation was better than the stiff stares of Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi. They also shake their heads in wonder as more Democrats embrace huge tax increases and government-run health care and Jim breaks down the truly radical ideas contained in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal. And speaking of the new congresswoman, Jim unleashes a fantastic rant after Ocasio-Cortez suggests on national television that the people trying to enter the U.S. illegally are more American than people who want a border wall.

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Signal and Noise: The Border Wall

 

The English language is a wonderfully powerful and expressive tool — if it’s used competently and honestly. So, let’s see if we can talk competently and honestly about the border wall.

As I write this, the government is partially shutdown. The point of contention is the so-called border wall: specifically, the President and the Democrats are at loggerheads over funding for any portion of a wall. The President insists that he will not sign a spending bill that does not include at least some funding for a wall — the precise amount changes — while the Democrats (who control the House where funding bills must originate) are adamant that no funding will be forthcoming.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America are glad to see President Trump making a detailed case for border wall funding in tonight’s televised address, a more effective strategy than tweets and sound bites. They also like National Security Adviser John Bolton’s clarification that the Trump administration does want to get our troops out of Syria but we also have no intention of letting ISIS grow again or letting Turkey slaughter the Kurds. They slam the door behind failed Virginia GOP Senate and gubernatorial candidate Corey Stewart, who says he will not run for re-election to his local office and is getting out of politics. And Jim is in rare form as he and Greg discuss the fact that every year is an election year in Virginia.

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Hole Theory

 
B-17G 43-38172 of the 8th AF 398th BG 601st BS which was damaged on a bombing mission over Cologne, Germany, on 15 October 1944 (Only the bombardier was killed.)

The B-17 was one helluva of an airplane. Like the old Timex ad used to say, it could take a lickin’ and keep right on tickin’.

Engineers and aviation buffs to this day marvel at how much damage a Flying Fortress could take and still fly back to their home bases in Britain. During the war Boeing dispatched designers to look at these damaged wonders and make them even better. To do that though it took some counter-intuitive thinking.

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