Hillary Clinton wise in choosing an Irish Catholic for VP material

POSTED ON
August 23

GOP registered voters beat us Independent registered voters by about 200,000 so far this year. Democrats remain 3rd place with Independents at 2nd place and still ahead of the Democratic voting block by about 600,000 voters. I repeat, Independents are ahead of the D's by 600,000 voters. A little bit of political Chicano advice to the Democratic leadership: Stop demonizing pro life Catholic Latino/a Democrats. Keep in mind that Hillary Clinton wisely chose an Irish Catholic Dem who is pro life in his private life as VEEP material. When you get local Democratic leaders such as Aaron Marquez who is the Vice Chair of AZ Dems using the Vice Chair position to influence people against "Hispanic"pro life Catholic Democrats, the AZ DEM leadership will lose the edge with regard to the growing Catholic Chicano / Latino Democratic voters. They ought to choose the hill they wish to die on, and in my opinion the growing Catholic Latin Democratic demographic is not really a fight they will win considering the Pope Francis of Rome is #ProLife. A huge chunk of Latino Catholics do pay attention to the pro life cues the Pope makes. If the Arizona Democratic Party leadership continues to interfere in the Democratic primaries and picking favorites -- they will continue to be in 3rd place in this state.

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Arizona State Senator Quezada Received Cease and Desist For Political Intimidation and Harassment

POSTED ON
August 23

For Immediate Release

August 22, 2016
 
 

CEASE AND DESIST LETTER SENT TO AZ SEN. MARTIN QUEZADA FOR POLITICAL INTIMIDATION / HARASSMENT

 
Phoenix, AZ -- Somos Independents is asking State Senator Martin John Quezada to cease and desist his political intimidation and harassment.  He was notified by email and acknowledged receipt of communication.   Local law enforcement, the FBI Internet Crime Department and The House Ethics Committee has been notified.   
 
August 22, 2016
 
Martin John Quezada
Arizona State Senator
____ N 99th Ave Apt. 3168
Glendale, AZ 85305-3040
 
Stephanie Parra
Campaign Manager
 
SUBJECT:  CEASE AND DESIST YOUR POLITICAL INTIMIDATION / HARASSMENT
 
Dear Mr. Quezada,
 
House Bill 2549 prevents anyone from terrifying, intimidating, threatening or harassing an individual through electronic communication.
 
On 10 August 2016 at approximately 4:52 pm, you were identified by a witness who saw you taking photos in the parking lot at the location where I volunteer and work. The witness took a photo of your car, and then went out the door and caught the majority of the license plate of the car you were driving.  An investigator identified the white Toyota sedan with license plate AZ 337HBY you drove as being registered to your father, Mr. Martin Quezada, Jr., at an address on Aster Drive in Peoria, AZ 85381. 
 
Moments after my witness saw you near your opponent’s campaign office, the photo you took of the building where we volunteer was uploaded onto a fake “DeeDee Blase” Twitter account, which clearly shows a pattern of intimidation and harassment practices by yourself or your agents.  That fake Twitter account describes falsehoods regarding my support of your opponent Lydia Hernandez (former Arizona State Representative).   The fake Twitter account clearly shows intimidation and harassment by either you, your campaign manager, or a person close to you when they mistakenly uploaded a photo of yourself on the day my witness saw you at our building.  An investigator confirmed the car was related to you due to the license plate captured at our office.  My witness remembered the clothing you were wearing that matches the photo uploaded in the fake DeeDee Blase Twitter account.  You were wearing a blue polo shirt with a logo that said “Pendergast.”  Video surveillance captured you driving into and exiting our parking lot.  The video also shows the blue polo shirt our witness saw you wearing. 
 
These intimidation tactics used by your campaign will not be tolerated.  
 
Your intimidation tactics were recorded and began with the mothers who wanted to recall you as a Board Member of the Pendergast School District in light of the bullying problems at your schools.  The attached print screens show your behavior with the mothers who are complaining about Pendergast schools.  Recently, you tried to intimidate Vanessa Hernandez, who is the teenage daughter of your political opponent, by posting her social media post on your facebook page and the photo that shows her support for her own mother.
 
Phoenix Police Department / Law enforcement authorities have been notified of your harassment and social media bullying conducted by you or someone very close to you, and an additional complaint was made with the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center for social media bullying/harassment.
 
On August 17, 2016, two volunteer workers at the campaign office had their tires slashed.  
 
If these intimidation and harassment tactics used by you or your supporters continue, I will have no choice but to file an Injunction Against Harassment against you.
 
This is the definition of Harassment” (A.R.S. § 13-2921): 
 
13-2921. Harassment; classification; definition 
A. A person commits harassment if, with intent to harass or with knowlede that the person is harassing another person, the person: 
1. Anonymously or otherwise contacts, communicates or causes a communication with another person by verbal, electronic, mechanical, telegraphic, telephonic or written means in a manner that harasses.
2. Continues to follow another person in or about a public place for no legitimate purpose after being asked to desist.
3. Repeatedly commits an act or acts that harass another person.
4. Surveils or causes another person to surveil a person for no legitimate purpose.
5. On more than one occasion makes a false report to a law enforcement, credit or social service agency.
6. Interferes with the delivery of any public or regulated utility to a person.
 
If you and your supporters do not cease and desist, I will ask the Ethics Committee of the House of Representatives to conduct a full investigation on your harassment tactics.
 
Regards,
 
DeeDee Garcia Blase
 
CC:      David Stevens, House Ethics Committee Chairman
            Arizona State Bar Association
 
(Above) Witness saw Sen. Martin Quezada take photo of our building.
 
(Above) Moments later a photo of a man taking photo of our building was posted on fake social media account.
 
 (Above)  Health Clinic confirmed they will release video surveillance over to Phoenix Police Department showing car registered to Martin Quezada, Jr.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Cartwright School Board Member Lydia Hernandez Advocates Public Safety / Increase Awareness Regarding Maryvale Serial Killer

POSTED ON
August 10

This evening Cartwright School Board Member, Lydia Hernandez, suggested increasing public safety and awareness to the approximate 19,800 students and their parents with regard to the Maryvale serial killer.   Superintendent Dr. Chavez supported the idea and the need to increase public safety with the school children and their families.

Dr. Chavez is going to draft a flyer and a letter informing students and their families with regard to what is going on to increase public safety and present same at the next board meeting for approval.  Watch video here to follow the proposed idea and the outcome of it. 

 

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Latino War About Education and Experience -- English and Spanish Oped By Lydia Hernandez, Arizona State Senate Candidate For LD 29

POSTED ON
August 09

 

The Latino War in District 29 is about Education and Experience

By Lydia Hernandez, Former AZ House of Representatives Running For Arizona State Senate

 

House Bill 2023-Ballot Harvesting-Bill makes it a felony to collect your ballot at your door step and take it from you with the intent of submitting it for you at the polls.  The bill passed the House and Senate and was signed into law by Governor Ducey in 2015.

For the record, I do not support the bill, however, I do feel strongly about informing my community about the law and its implications.  HB 2023 is law and we have to respect it and work on changing it.  I have spent over 20 years in community engagement in organizing events of large magnitudes, to teach in ins and educational forums all in an effort to empower, inform and engage the community.  I have obviously been in it for the long haul.  The kind of volunteer work that I have been involved in is long term because I am investing in the development of human capitol. I am a direct reflection of my community and I know how time and time again we continue to be victimized by unscrupulous people and industries.  We as a community have fallen prey to folks wearing sheep’s clothing, they resemble us and speak our language, however, don’t always have the best of intentions.  We, by culture are trusting and welcoming to those that don’t seem like a threat however, sometimes we are given bad advice or have been asked to sign documents that trick us out of our homes and livelihoods.  I am sure that nonprofits and immigrant rights groups understand this very well. 

I have built my whole life’s reputation on fending for our community, that work did not begin when I ran for office.  I have earned my community’s trust and have worked hard to defend them from repeated abuse.  As a state representative, I drafted legislation regarding these same issues, the right to pay for work performed, driver’s license since 1996 when I worked with then Senator Joe Eddie Lopez and Housing licensing requirements and making it criminal for committing fraud and practicing without a license. 

Today, I continue in the same community work.  With respect to this bill, my behavior is no different.  There is a new law that makes it a felony to collect ballots door to door and the penalties are criminal making it a felony and up to $150,000 in fines.  I don’t want anybody in my community to fall prey or to be involved.  As always, I will continue to inform.  Groups with good intentions are not the issue, however, this practice in the wrong hands can cause great damage and set us back from any progress that we have made.  I firmly believe that our community is an intelligent one and will engage when it needs to.  The voting process is relatively easy, receive ballot, vote, sign and seal it and return it, postage paid. We have 30 days in which to return it by mail.  We don’t and shouldn’t develop a culture in which we build crutches.  We are resilient and will rise and engage when informed and empowered. 

 

I don’t believe that this is a voting deterrence for our community at all.  Our community is a diligent and hardworking one.  One that doesn’t want things to be given because we work for what we have, this is part of our Latino family values.  We don’t need to play the victim card on this one.  Our community can speak for itself and that is reflected through its strong family and religious values; devout Catholicism and Christian roots and pro-life.  

Folks, let’s look at policy and experience.  I have dedicated my entire adult life to community engagement out of personal need.  My family has been directly impacted by the issues I have advocated and championed over the years.  My depth of knowledge on the issues is far greater than any other candidate running for office in my district.  I have served on the Cartwright school board for 12 years, and under my leadership turned a failing school district around.  Cartwright is the 2nd largest elementary school district in the state, is the highest paying in teacher salaries and we went from an “F” to an “B+” in a year and a half, on an operational budget of approximately, 100 million. School size, budget, demographics and other dynamics are important factors to equate towards successful leadership.  In addition, I have taken my leadership and expertize to higher levels by taking on elected leadership roles at national; National School Board Association officer and National Hispanic Caucus of Latino Legislators; Immigration and International Relations Chair among many more over the years.  Coupled with leading the 2006 and 2007 massive marches on Immigration in Arizona and involving Arizona in the national Immigration conversation for the first time speaks for itself. 

I am a true representation of my constituency, am deeply vested and committed to doing everything that I can to leverage resources and attention to our neighborhoods.  My vote is not up for grabs by public interest groups that are willing to pay for my campaign so as long as I speak as I am told.  I am running for hard working families that depend on my service of representing them.  I have done nothing short of that and I will continue to do so.

 

La batalla por el Distrito 29 se trata de Educación y Experiencia

Escrito por:  Lydia Hernández-Ex-Representante de Estado, Candidata para el Senado Estatal de AZ

La propuesta de ley HB2023-referida como Cosecha de Boletas-Propuesta de ley que hace el hecho de colectar boletas (de votación) de puerta en puerta con la intención de entregarlas a las urnas el dia de elecciones es una felonía.  La propuesta fue aprobada por la Cámara y el Senado y fue firmada a ley por el Gobernador Ducey en el 2015.  

Para su información, no apoyo esta ley, pero firmemente siento la necesidad de informar mi comunidad sobre la ley y sus implicaciones.  La propuesta HB2023 es la ley y hay que respetarla y trabajar para cambiarla.  He dedicado más de 20 años en involucrandome en la comunidad y organizando eventos de grandes magnitudes, desde enseñanzas y talleres a foros educativos, todo con el fin para empoderar, informar e involucrar la comunidad.  Obviamente he estado involucrada para el largo plazo.  El tipo de trabajo en cual yo he sido voluntaria  es de largo plazo porque se trata de invertir en el desarrollo del capital humano.  Yo soy una directa refleccion de mi comunidad y se muy bien que una y otra vez continuamos caller víctimas de personas y industrias sin escrúpulos.  Nosotros como comunidad hemos caído presos ante gente vistiendo ropa de ovejas, se asemejan a nosotros y hablan nuestro idioma, pero no todo el tiempo con las mejores  intenciones.  Por la cultura, brindamos confianza y le damos la bienvenida a los que no aparentan una amenaza, sin embargo, a veces nos han dado malos consejos o hemos firmado documentos engañadores en donde hemos perdido nuestros hogares, bienes y sustentos.  Estoy muy segura de que organizaciones sin fines de lucro y del derecho pro migrante lo entienden muy bien.

He construido toda mi vida sobre una reputación en defensa de nuestra comunidad,  y ese trabajo no empezó cuando me decidí correr para un puesto público.  A Través de los años, me he ganado la confianza de mi comunidad y he trabajado para defenderla de abusos.  Como diputada estatal, escribí propuestas de ley relacionadas precisamente a estos mismos temas; el derecho al pago por trabajo cumplido, las licencias de conducir-desde el 1996 cuando en aquel entonces trabajé con el Senador de mi distrito Joe Eddie Lopez, y otras propuestas alrededor de viviendas y requisitos de licencias convirtiéndolo un acto criminal por cometer fraude y practicando sin contar con una licencia.

Hoy en día, sigo trabajando en el mismo tipo de trabajo voluntario.  Con respecto a esta ley, mi comportamiento y postura no es diferente.  Hay una nueva ley que hace el hecho de recolectar boletas un acto criminal-felonia y lleva con ella una posible multa de $150,000.  Yo en lo personal, no quiero que nadie en mi comunidad caiga presa o que se vea involucrada.  Como siempre, continuará proveyendo informes.  Grupos con buenas intenciones no son el problema, esta práctica, en las manos equivocadas podrían causar mucho daño y podría retrasar los avances que hemos logrado.  Firmemente yo creo que somos una comunidad inteligente y nos involucramos cuando lo veamos necesario. El proceso de votación es relativamente fácil; se recibe la boleta, se vota, se sella, se firma, se regresa, postage pagado.  Tenemos 30 días para regresar por correo.  No debemos  y no deberíamos a desarrollar una cultura en la cual construimos muletas. Somos flexibles y nos levantaremos e involucrar al ser informados y capacitados.  No creo que esto es una disuasión de votación para nuestra comunidad en absoluto. Nuestra comunidad es diligente y trabajadora. Somos una que no pide, sino que trabajamos por lo que tenemos, esto forma parte de nuestros valores como Latinos.  No necesitamos jugar la carta de la víctima en este caso. Nuestra comunidad puede hablar por sí misma y esto se refleja en los familiar y religiosos; raíces devotas al catolicismo, cristianos y pro-vida.

Amigos, vamos a ver la política y la experiencia. He dedicado toda mi vida adulta a la participación de la comunidad por necesidad personal. Mi familia se ha visto directamente afectada por los problemas que la cual he abogado y defendido en los últimos años. Mi profundidad de los conocimientos sobre los temas es mucho mayor que cualquier otro candidato que se postula para un cargo en mi distrito. He sido miembro de la junta escolar Cartwright durante 12 años, y bajo mi dirección he logrado en mejorar un distrito escolar que estaba fracasando.

Cartwright es el segundo distrito más grande de las escuelas primarias en el estado, es la que más paga en salarios de los maestros y que pasó de una "F" a "B +" en un año y medio, con un presupuesto operativo de aproximadamente, 100 millones de dólares. Tamaño de la escuela, el presupuesto, la demografía y otras dinámicas son factores importantes de equiparar hacia un liderazgo exitoso. Además, he tomado mi liderazgo y sus conocimientos técnicos a niveles superiores al asumir funciones de liderazgo elegidos a nivel nacional; oficial de la Asociación Nacional de Mesas Directivas Escolares y el Caucus Nacional Hispano de Legisladores Latinos; La inmigración y la Cátedra de Relaciones Internacionales entre muchos más en los últimos años.

Junto con liderando las marchas masivas del 2006 y 2007 sobre la inmigración en Arizona y al haber involucrado a Arizona en la conversación al nivel nacional habla por sí mismo.

Soy una verdadera representación de mi circunscripción, estoy profundamente comprometida a hacer todo lo que pueda para aprovechar los recursos y atraer la atención a nuestros barrios. Mi voto no está en juego por grupos de interés público que están dispuestos a pagar por mi campaña así que mientras hablo como me han dicho. Me postulo para familias trabajadoras que dependen de mi servicio de representarlos. No he hecho nada menos que eso y voy a seguir haciéndolo.

   
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Arizona State Senator Quezada Should Stop Stalking Teen Daughter and Exploiting Photo Of His Opponent

POSTED ON
August 05

For Immediate Release

August 5, 2016
 

Arizona State Senator Quezada Should Stop Stalking Teen Daughter of His Opponent

 
Phoenix, AZ -- Somos Independents is a Mexican-American woman-led organization that focuses on signaling to key swing independent voters towards moderate / centrist views.  We take issue with Senator Martín J. Quezada who is sinking to another new low stalking and posting photos of his opponent's teen daughter.  Former Arizona State Representative Lydia Hernandez is running against Quezada for a state Senate seat, and he should direct his attacks against Lydia -- not her family and teen daughter.  Quezada's actions are representative of the Bernie Bro male chaunivist behavior.

Quezada did not support Hillary Clinton during the Arizona Presidential Primary election, and though it appears he was not ready for Hillary to make U.S. "her"story (on track to become the first woman to lead our Nation), he should also remember that the State of Arizona will generally spit out extremist socialist ideas we know he supported when he helped Bernie. As a result of Bernie Sanders losing the Presidential Primary elections, Quezada blamed the Secretary of State for Bernie's loss only to later vote against adding more polling places.   Somos Independents could not support self proclaimed socialist  Bernie Sanders for President in light of making socialist Eugene Debs his hero.
 
Professional decorum is in order from the state senator.  We cannot support Quezada in light of formal complaints made to the Arizona State Attorney General for breaking Arizona law, but attacking teen young ladies is reminiscent of what we saw from the Bernie Bros who attacked Hillary Clinton for being a Barry Goldwater girl when she was a teenager.  
 
We are also pleased to announce that Somos Independents will be working with Arizona Republican voters to continue the Never Trump campaign.
 
 
 
Screen shot of Quezada reposting his opponent's teen daughter FB post.
 
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Arizona State Senator Quezada Behavior Likened To Bernie Bros Attacking Hillary Clinton for being the Barry Goldwater girl

POSTED ON
August 05

Arizona State Senator Quezada Should Stop Stalking Teen Daughter of His Opponent

Somos Independents is a Mexican-American woman-led organization that focuses on signaling to key swing independent voters towards moderate / centrist views.  We take issue with Senator Martín J. Quezada who is sinking to another new low stalking and posting photos of his opponent's teen daughter.  Former Arizona State Representative Lydia Hernandez is running against Quezada for a state Senate seat, and he should direct his attacks against Lydia -- not her family and teen daughter.  Quezada's actions are representative of the Bernie Bro male chaunivist behavior.


Quezada did not support Hillary Clinton during the Arizona Presidential Primary election, and though it appears he was not ready for Hillary to make U.S. "her"story (on track to become the first woman to lead our Nation), he should also remember that the State of Arizona will generally spit out extremist socialist ideas we know he supported when he helped Bernie. As a result of Bernie Sanders losing the Presidential Primary elections, Quezada blamed the Secretary of State for Bernie's loss only to later vote against adding more polling places.   Somos Independents could not support self proclaimed socialist  Bernie Sanders for President in light of making socialist Eugene Debs his hero.
 
Professional decorum is in order from the state senator.  We cannot support Quezada in light of formal complaints made to the Arizona State Attorney General for breaking Arizona law, but attacking teen young ladies is reminiscent of what we saw from the Bernie Bros who attacked Hillary Clinton for being a Barry Goldwater girl when she was a teenager.  
 
We are also pleased to announce that Somos Independents will be working with Arizona Republican voters to continue the Never Trump campaign.
 
 

 

 
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Fundraiser To Help Maryvale, AZ Murder Victim's Family Members

POSTED ON
July 13

Former Arizona State Representative Lydia Hernandez of Maryvale, AZ, is helping family members who are related to the victims of the #‎Maryvale murderer by promoting and giving to this fundraiser.   Maryvale is in Lydia's district and she is now running for Arizona State Senate in LD 29.

Here is the information:

Date:  July 17, 2016

Time:  8 am - 10 am

Place:  Applebee's 2180 E. Baseline Road, Phoenix,AZ

Tickets:  $7.00

 

 

 

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Independent Voters Applaud Sen. Jeff Flake Urging Trump to Stop Attacking Mexicans

POSTED ON
July 07

Somos Independents is a woman-led organization that focuses on signaling to key swing independent voters towards moderate views.   Our 60,000+ national member organization is also Mexican-American led and we want to take a moment to applaud Arizona Senator Jeff Flake for urging the Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump to stop attacking Mexicans. Organizing independent voters is a difficult task but we keep slowly building our organization in light of our centrist views.  We do not embrace bigotry and misogynist views.

According to the Washington Post:
Flake stood up to Trump by urging him to stop attacking Mexicans. Trump predicted that Flake would lose his reelection, at which point Flake informed Trump that he was not on the ballot this year, the sources said.
We also want to applaud the Gang of 8 Senators for revisiting fixing the clearly broken immigration system and for promoting legal immigration reform.
According to POLITICO:
Several members of the group that fell short of getting immigration reform into law are ready to try again.
We have warned the Republican leadership for years that their continued rhetoric against immigrants and Mexican American Chicanos would cost them elections as it did in 2012 when they lost the Presidential race. We know we must work on increasing our voter participation during off-election years, however, we know we do very well during Presidential election cycles. In order for the Republican Party to begin repairing themselves, they must begin with rooting out the cancer that began with Kansas Kris Kobach when the GOP adopted an anti-immigrant platform under the leadership of the RNC Chairman Reince Preibus.  The anti-immigrant platform adopted 2012 helped to produce their 2016 Republican nominee Donald Trump who is anti-Semitic, anti-Muslim, anti-woman, anti-Mexican and more.
We urge the Republican leaders to look into Trump's ties whom we believe is tied directly to NumbersUSA and other John Tanton networks. Numbers USA has approximately 600,000 due paying members who appear to have a loud bark in off-election years and are organized enough to send political leaders phone calls and emails to stop legal immigration reform, however, they have a little bite when it comes to the on-election year election cycles, and they do not represent the vast majority of American voter views. Americans want legal immigration and we want to repair the broken system.  We are happy to hear prominent Republicans are getting behind Secretary Hillary Clinton for President, and especially after learning disturbing news when Trump praised Saddam Hussein yesterday.  Trump's praise of Hussein confirms to us he has zero experience in foreign policy because evidently Trump did not know that Hussein paid suicide bombers to kill Jewish peoples.

 

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Why is Donald Trump Rewarding Saddam Hussein Who Paid For The Jewish To Be Killed?

POSTED ON
July 06

Just in case Trump never received the memo, Israel is a United States ally.

Last week we witnessed the Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump attack Hillary Clinton with an anti-Semitic angle. According to the Huffington Post:

Donald Trump tweeted a blatantly anti-Semitic image Saturday morning, causing an immediate backlash online and further confirming the Republican nominee is willing to sink to depths well beyond usual, acceptable bounds of politics.

The tweet, posted at roughly 8:30 a.m., featured a picture of Hillary Clinton pasted over a backdrop of $100 bills with a six-pointed star — the Jewish Star of David — next to her face.

 

Today on CNN, we witnessed Trump giving Saddam Hussein praise for "Killing Terrorists," but what Trump doesn't know is Saddam Hussein paid suicide bombers to kill the Jewish people.

According to CBS News:

Iraqi President Saddam Hussein has raised the amount offered to relatives of suicide bombers from $10,000 per family to $25,000, U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Wednesday.

Since Iraq upped its payments last month, 12 suicide bombers have successfully struck inside Israel, including one man who killed 25 Israelis, many of them elderly, as they sat down to a meal at a hotel to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Passover. The families of three suicide bombers said they have recently received payments of $25,000.

Palestinians say the bombers are driven by a priceless thirst for revenge, religious zeal and dreams of glory — not greed.

Mahmoud Safi, leader of a pro-Iraqi Palestinian group, the Arab Liberation Front, acknowledged that the support payments for relatives make it easier for some potential bombers to make up their minds. "Some people stop me on the street, saying if you increase the payment to $50,000 I'll do it immediately," Safi said. He also suggested such remarks were made mostly in jest.

Saddam has said the Palestinians need weapons and money instead of peace proposals and has provided payments throughout a year and a half of Israeli-Palestinian battles. "I saw on Iraqi TV President Saddam saying he will continue supporting the (uprising) even if it means selling his own clothes," said Safi.

Whomever is advising Donald Trump appears to be anti-Semitic as all hell.  I believe Trump's anti-Jewish message is linked to the John Tanton Network.

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Kudos to bipartisanship and Sens. Chuck Schumer & John McCain for Reviving Immigration Reform

POSTED ON
July 06

Registered independent voters, take note that fixing the broken system has been needed for decades.  Thank you Sens. Chuck Schumer and John McCain.

From POLITICO:

Lindsey Graham doesn't sugarcoat his prediction: Republicans are going to get thrashed in the November election, especially among Latinos. And it’s going to trigger another run at immigration reform in Congress next year, the South Carolina senator says.

“I’ll tell you what I’m going to do in 2017,” the plainspoken GOP deal maker said in a recent interview. “I’m going to take the Gang of Eight bill out, dust it off and ask anybody and everybody who wants to work with me to make it better to do so.”

Graham isn't the only one eyeing a revival of the Gang of Eight, the bipartisan group of senators that shepherded a sweeping immigration bill through the Senate three years ago only to watch it stall in the House a year later. Propelled by a Republican establishment eager to make inroads with minority voters after losing them by steep margins in the 2012 election, it was the closest Congress came in a generation to overhauling the nation’s immigration laws,

Several influential lawmakers see another opening for immigration reform in 2017, especially if Hillary Clinton wins and the GOP takes another hit among Latinos. Mitt Romney was hammered for his “self-deportation” rhetoric four years ago. But that pales in comparison to Donald Trump’s vow to remove 11 million immigrants here illegally and calling Mexicans who cross the border illegally “rapists” and “murderers.”

Gang of Eight leader Chuck Schumer is poised to become majority leader if Democrats take the Senate this year. And the New York senator already said immigration reform would be a top priority, most recently in an interview last week. The recent Supreme Court deadlock that left President Barack Obama’s controversial executive actions on hold demonstrated that, for now, major changes to the nation’s immigration policy will have to come from Capitol Hill.

Republicans are also under increasing pressure to act. Several GOP senators from Latino-heavy states — such as David Perdue of Georgia and Thom Tillis of North Carolina — were elected in 2014 and are eager to dig into the issue.

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SOMOS INDEPENDENTS
An Independent American Voter Group merging Tip O'Neill Democrats and Ronald Reagan Republicans.