12-09-2022  2:25 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Kwanzaa Returns In-Person to North Portland Library

For the past 20 years, North Portland Library has been hosting a community Kwanzaa event. After a two-year pause of in-person events, it's back.

NW Portland Store Allegedly Selling Psychedelic Mushrooms Raided

Witnesses say customers lined up around the block after a national story broke on the local business

Awash in Illegal Marijuana, Oregon Looks at Toughening Laws

So far this year, police have seized over 105 tons of illegally grown marijuana in Oregon. The grows use massive amounts of water in drought-stricken areas, contaminate the environment and employ migrant laborers who live in squalid conditions.

Merkley Introduces Bill to Ban Private Equity Firms from Predatory Housing Practices

End Hedge Fund Control of American Homes Act seeks to return single-family housing stock to families.

NEWS BRIEFS

Oregon Celebrates the 10th Open Enrollment Period Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA)

Eligibility rules have changed, making health coverage more affordable for an additional estimated 40,000 Oregonians ...

Volunteers of America Oregon Receives Agility Grant From the National Council on Problem Gambling

The funds will support the development of a Peer Driven Problem Gambling Prevention Campaign targeting high school and college-age...

Commissioner Jayapal Invites Community Members for Coffee

Multnomah County Commissioner will be available for a conversation on priorities and the county's work ...

GFO African-American Special Interest Group Meeting to Feature Southern Claims Commission

The Dec. 17 meeting of the Genealogical Forum of Oregon will feature Shelley Viola Murphy, PhD via ZOOM. Murphy will discuss the...

Charter Commission Concludes Study, Issues Report

The Portland Charter Commission have concluded their two-year term referring nine proposals to the November 2024 election and...

Pricey pants from 1857 go for 4k, raise Levi's questions

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Pulled from a sunken trunk at an 1857 shipwreck off the coast of North Carolina, work pants that auction officials describe as the oldest known pair of jeans in the world have sold for 4,000. The white, heavy-duty miner's pants with a five-button fly were among...

Oregon store allegedly selling psychedelic mushrooms raided

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A store that had been openly and illegally selling psychedelic mushrooms in Portland, Oregon, was raided by police on Thursday, authorities said. In 2020, Oregon became the first state in the country to legalize the use of psilocybin for people 21 and older in...

Saxen's 19 help Saint Mary's knock off Missouri State 66-46

MORAGA, Calif. (AP) — Mitchell Saxen's 19 points helped Saint Mary's defeat Missouri State 66-46 on Wednesday. Saxen had six rebounds for the Gaels (7-3). Aidan Mahaney scored 13 points and Alex Ducas finished with nine points. Chance Moore led the Bears (4-5) in...

Purdue Fort Wayne takes down Southeast Missouri State 89-68

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (AP) — Jarred Godfrey scored 19 points as Purdue Fort Wayne beat Southeast Missouri State 89-68 on Wednesday night. Godfrey had eight rebounds and five assists for the Mastodons (6-4). Bobby Planutis scored 14 points, and Quinton Morton-Robertson had 13. ...

OPINION

‘I Unreservedly Apologize’

The Oregonian commissioned a study of its history of racism, and published the report on Oct. 24, 2022. The Skanner is pleased to republish the apology written by the editor, Therese Bottomly. We hope other institutions will follow this example of looking...

City Officials Should Take Listening Lessons

Sisters of the Road share personal reflections of their staff after a town hall meeting at which people with lived experience of homelessness spoke ...

When Student Loan Repayments Resume, Will Problems Return Too?

HBCU borrowers question little loan forgiveness, delays to financial security ...

Tell the Supreme Court: We Still Need Affirmative Action

Opponents of affirmative action have been trying to destroy it for years. And now it looks like they just might get their chance. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

AP WAS THERE: Supreme Court legalizes interracial marriage

WASHINGTON (AP) — EDITOR’S NOTE: On June 12, 1967, the U.S. Supreme Court was wrapping up the final orders for the term. Among the cases before them was that of Richard and Mildred Loving, an interracial couple who had been sentenced to a year in jail for violating Virginia’s ban on marriage...

Pennsylvania panel updates anti-discrimination regulations

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A state panel on Thursday narrowly approved new definitions of sex, religious creed and race in Pennsylvania's anti-discrimination regulations, with three members appointed by Democrats in favor and two Republican appointees voting no. The Independent...

St. Louis mayor appoints commission to consider reparations

ST. LOUIS (AP) — St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones is appointing a reparations commission that will “recommend a proposal to begin repairing the harms that have been inflicted” by slavery, segregation and racism. St. Louis joins a growing list of places trying to determine how to...

ENTERTAINMENT

SF Conservatory buys Askonas Holt representation agency

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The San Francisco Conservatory added a major classical music agency to its commercial businesses, announcing Friday it was acquiring London-based Askonas Holt. Askonas' clients includes conductors Daniel Barenboim, Myung-Whun Chung, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Simon...

PHOTOS: The highs and lows of entertainment's 2022 comeback

After keeping the world at arm’s length for roughly two years, the entertainment world could finally get more personal again in 2022. Fans unfettered from pandemic restrictions flocked to film festivals and concerts to get glimpses of their favorite stars, whether Timothée Chalamet...

'Top Gun' named best film by National Board of Review

NEW YORK (AP) — “Top Gun: Maverick,” 2022's biggest box-office hit, has been named the best film of the year by the National Board of Review. Though the National Board of Review, a long-running organization comprised of film enthusiasts and academics, has no overlap or...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Club shooter's 2021 bomb case dropped, family uncooperative

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — The Colorado Springs gay nightclub shooter had charges dropped in a 2021 bomb...

Croatia beats Brazil on penalties in World Cup quarterfinals

AL RAYYAN, Qatar (AP) — Neymar is again going home without a World Cup title. Luka Modric's quest continues...

China struggles with COVID infections after controls ease

BEIJING (AP) — A rash of COVID-19 cases in schools and businesses were reported Friday in areas across China...

Tabloids fume, many in UK shrug over Harry and Meghan series

LONDON (AP) — Britain’s press erupted in outrage Friday at Prince Harry and Meghan’s documentary series,...

US keeps eye on China's space activities for potential risks

BEIJING (AP) — The U.S. is closely monitoring Chinese activities that potentially threaten American assets in...

Neymar ties Pelé's record but loses again at World Cup

AL RAYYAN, Qatar (AP) — Neymar walked off the field with teammate Dani Alves by his side, tears still rolling...

By Alan Silverleib and Tom Cohen CNN

Two weeks ago, the Senate passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill on a 68-32 vote, with 14 Republicans joining the Democratic majority to send the measure drafted by a bipartisan "Gang of Eight" to the GOP-controlled House.

President Barack Obama pushed for the House to quickly take up the measure that would provide a path to citizenship for 11 million immigrants living illegally in the country while bolstering security along the Mexican border.

The proposal also includes stronger worker eligibility verification standards and overall border entry-exit controls.

However, House Republicans made clear Wednesday they opposed the comprehensive approach of the Senate and intended to consider the issue in a series of bills that will take months to reach final votes.

In addition, the House GOP caucus was deeply divided on the question of eventual citizenship for undocumented immigrants, with some calling for a path to legal status while others opposed any kind of what they labeled amnesty for those who broke the law.

While House leaders warned the party faced political harm if it failed to act on immigration legislation, a vital issue for Hispanic Americans who comprise the nation's largest minority demographic, the piecemeal approach and divisions over the legalization issue portend a messy and uncertain future for the issue.

 

Here are five reasons why:

 

Bipartisanship necessary in Senate but not House.

A 60-vote majority is needed to push major legislation through the 100-member Senate, which means Senate Democrats and Republicans usually have to work together to get anything substantive accomplished.

The House, however, does not often require such a super-majority. As long as a simple majority sticks together, it can do virtually anything it pleases.

Mix that rule with increasing ideological orthodoxy and a decreasing willingness to compromise -- particularly within the conservative ranks of the majority House GOP -- and you have a recipe for stalemate with the Democratic-controlled Senate.

"Passing any version of the Gang of Eight's bill would be worse public policy than passing nothing," conservative pundits Bill Kristol and Rich Lowry argued Tuesday in National Review Online. "House Republicans can do the country a service by putting a stake through its heart."

In today's hyper-partisan political climate, doing nothing is the easiest path for House Republicans to take and even a bragging point for tea party conservatives who came to Washington to shake up the status quo.

While moderate House GOP leaders call for passing some kind of immigration legislation to avoid a potential political backlash, conservatives in the rank-and-file say such fears are unfounded as voters will reward Republicans for opposing what they call a bad Senate bill.

 

Republicans don't trust Obama on border security.

Kansas Rep. Tim Huelskamp might have said it best. The two-term conservative Republican tweeted Wednesday that "trusting Obama (with) border security is like trusting Bill Clinton (with) your daughter."

Ouch.

Virtually every congressional Republican says the Mexican border needs to be properly enforced before Democrats get their priority -- a path to citizenship for America's 11 million undocumented residents. Sens. Bob Corker, R-Tennessee, and John Hoeven, R-North Dakota, added billions for Mexican border security to the "Gang of Eight" bill.

For a lot of Republicans, though, the issue involves trust, not money. They remember the last major immigration reform effort, in 1986 under GOP President Ronald Reagan, that also called for tightened immigration controls while giving three million undocumented immigrants legal status.

They say the amnesty occurred but the tougher border controls didn't, leading to the much-worse situation today.

Now they don't trust Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to secure the border. They also claim Obama's recent decision to delay implementation of part of health care reform showed the administration can't be counted on to fully enforce any law.

By taking a piecemeal approach, House Republicans hope to secure the tougher border security they seek before acting on a separate plan that could provide legal status for at least some undocumented immigrants.

In short, pass a border security bill now, and then come back to the legalization issue once everyone agrees the border is sealed. Democrats reject such an approach.

 

The conundrum of citizenship/legalization

While the Senate measure provides a multi-year path to citizenship for most undocumented immigrants, House Republicans made clear Wednesday they remained split about 50-50 on the matter.

Reasons for opposing any kind of legalization range from punishing lawbreakers to political protectionism, with conservatives fearing that most immigrants given what they call amnesty and the eventual right to vote will lean Democratic.

However, the issue of legalizing immigrants is broad and complex, creating lots of uncertainty.

For example, the Senate bill would automatically give immigrants living illegally in the United States temporary legal status as "registered provisional immigrants." Only when certain border security steps had been taken could they apply for permanent residency, or green cards, as a step toward potential citizenship in process that would take more than a decade.

Many House Republicans made clear they don't want any kind of legal status for undocumented immigrants until the borders are secure. Even those open to legalization don't want it to include a path to full citizenship.

The labels and definitions of legal status will be a major sticking point in the continuing debate, but also could be a source of compromise.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia told Wednesday's GOP caucus meeting that children of undocumented immigrants brought illegally to America through no fault of their own should be provided a path to legal status, a position strongly favored by Democrats.

The backing of Cantor and other House Republicans for such a provision showed room for maneuvering exists.

After meeting with Obama at the White House on Thursday, GOP Sen. John McCain of Arizona called on House Republicans to negotiate an immigration bill.

"We are ready to sit down with you and negotiate and bring this issue to a conclusion," said McCain, part of the bipartisan Senate "Gang of Eight."

 

Sweeping reform isn't popular with GOP in either chamber.

There may be more Senate GOP support for comprehensive immigration reform, but not that much. Only 14 of 46 GOP senators backed the "Gang of Eight" bill heralded in its creation as a triumph of bipartisanship in a sharply divided Congress. Why should House Republicans be more in favor?

Remember that all politics is still local -- especially in the House. Many House Republicans represent ruby red districts with few Hispanics, where any path to citizenship is unpopular and the big fear is a primary challenge from the right.

Which leads us to ...

 

The Hastert rule

House Speaker John Boehner has made clear that the House will only take up immigration reform that is backed by a majority of its Republican members. That is keeping with the maxim of former House Speaker Dennis Hastert that prevented votes on legislation that lacked strong support from the controlling party.

Democrats contend the Senate version would pass the House with a few dozen Republicans joining them to overcome opposition by most of the GOP caucus.

While it is unclear if that's true, permitting it to happen would antagonize many of Boehner's fellow Republicans.

"If the speaker allows a vote on any immigration bill that results in passage despite a majority of the Republican conference voting against it, then it will be interesting to see if he can muster the votes to get re-elected after the next election," Alabama GOP Rep. Mo Brooks recently told CNN.

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