Arizona’s McCain Maverick of Yesterday Attacking Nebraska’s New Maverick Chuck Hagel

POSTED ON
February 17

Have you ever wondered why the Republican Party is attacking Chuck Hagel?  Simply put … the GOP is mad at Chuck Hagel (a Republican from Nebraska) for supporting Democratic Candidate Bob Kerrey instead of the Tea Party extremist Deb Fischer.    Now the Republican Party wants to punish Chuck Hagel for supporting a moderate over the Tea Party extremist.

Hagel puts aside his personal likes and dislikes in order to reach consensus and work across the aisle.  He’s a realist and says what is really happening in the world.    The majority of the people who are attacking him have not served in the United States Armed Forces — except for Senator John McCain who has been in office for too long.  [I do believe in term limits.]  That said, what we are seeing now is the “old maverick” pointing fingers at the “new maverick” via Chuck Hagel and it is quite unfortunate since they used to pal around.  See what politics does?  It destroys relationship, and this is precisely why we need to go back to the days of Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neill.  Reagan was able to maintain his friendship with O’Neill despite their differences … and in fact, they used to play cards together.  Today’s politicians have turned ugly, and it shouldn’t take a catastrophic event to bring them together.  Is that what it is going to take for unity?  A catastrophic event?

Shirl Mora James, a Civil Rights and Immigration Lawyer — now President of SOMOS INDEPENDENTS (formerly the National Tequila Party which is a woman-led counter-movement to the Tea Party) nails it when she states:

The Tea Publicans are in the death throes and they are fighting to stay relevant and keep control of the Republican Party since they have hijacked the GOP.  Independent thinkers such as Ronald Reagan or Barry Goldwater and Chuck Hagel are demonized today – such the reason why Congress cannot get anything done. They have lost their ability to compromise and reach consensus that will help the best interest of Americans.  Unfortunately, the GOP is now the Party of “me” and not “us.”

Failing to recognize the value of inclusion within the GOP, the November 6, 2012, clobbering will be ongoing, if the Republican Party continues to be narcissist in nature.  In order to repair their image, the Republican Party will need to welcome moderate consensus builders into the Party in order to survive in the long term.

Read more by John Avalon on the ugly side of politics below:

The Republicans’ Ugly and Shameful Chuck Hagel Filibuster

GOP senators’ obstruction of a straight vote on the defense-secretary nominee and Rand Paul’s placement of the CIA director nomination on hold amount to a cowardly and cynical political strategy that could compromise national security, says John Avlon.

Since the election, Republican talking points have reflected the fact that they need to reach out beyond their base: to be positive rather than negative; appear more reasonable, less obstructionist.  READ MORE HERE >>>

 

Shirl Mora James, President of SOMOS INDEPENDENTS (formerly the National Tequila Party Movement) with (D) Candidate Bob Kerrey for U.S. Senate of Nebraska and with her is (R) Chuck Hagel. Chuck, a Republican,  endorsed Kerrey for U.S. Senate.  The Tequila Party supported Kerrey instead of Deb Fischer – - Tea Party extremist Republican.

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Mexican-American and Woman-Led Organization Responds to Sen. Marco Rubio’s SOTU Response

POSTED ON
February 13

For Immediate Release

February 13, 2013

Shirl Mora James, President of SOMOS INDEPENDENTS (formerly the National Tequila Party)
Civil Rights and Immigration Lawyer

Mexican-American and Woman-Led Organization Responds to Sen. Marco Rubio’s SOTU Response

 

Senator Marco Rubio failed to heed his mother’s advice in last night’s State of the Union Address Response to the President. He had a wonderful opportunity to recapture the 1950’s Republican Party who used to embrace Mexican-Americans, Cubans, and Puerto Ricans who fought hard for their vote and their loyalty, when the Democrats – especially the Dixiecrats were demonizing all persons of color.

It is highly unfortunate that Rubio did not listen to the wise advice of his own mother instructing to be welcoming to all people including immigrants with or without status and todos los pobrecitos. Rubio did not advocate for the same treatment his own family members received when they arrived as immigrants to the United States.  Under the Cuban Adjustment Act, his family members received amnesty.

It appeared that this was nothing less than an advertisement for the Republican Party – not a solution to America’s problems. The alleged Savior of the GOP now appears to be a false prophet and sniveller when he failed to suggest any type of solutions for America’s problems today.

###

August 24, 1994, Cuban immigrants stranded on makeshift raft float between Florida and Cuba.

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Mexican-Americans (largest group within Latin population) Will See If Rubio Mentions Mexican-American Border Elected Officials of Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, California in His Speech

POSTED ON
February 12

Tonight at 9:00 p.m. EST,  Mexican-Americans will be listening to Cuban-American Sen. Marco Rubio’s State of the Union response on immigration.

Here are the things we will be listening for:

1.  Whether or not Rubio retracts his support for Arizona’s SB 1070 law that has harmed thousands of families and our economy in Arizona.

2.  Whether or not Rubio defers strong leadership to Border State elected officials in Texas, Arizona, New Mexico and California. Will Rubio mention Latin Elected Officials in Texas since Texas has the largest border length, and since Texas knows the ins and outs of border problems and solutions?

3.  Why didn’t Rubio support the DREAM Act in December 2010 when we needed him the most?  Is it because Florida turned ‘blue‘ during the 2012 Presidential election cycle?  Rubio has to support immigration if he does not want to be a one-term Senator.  [This could also explain why we witnessed 'yellow' bellies regarding the Texas GOP leaders Sen. Ted Cruz and Sen John Cornyn (with regard to Super 8 on CIR) because Texas is still 'red' in Presidential cycles.]

I don’t think Rubio  wants to go down in history as being a one-term Senator….and he has to fix the immigration damage he caused since 2010 when he did NOT support the DREAM Act.   If Rubio really cares about the solutions to the border problems….the speech will not be just about himself…he will divert attention to the Border state leaders in Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, and Califas. Keep in mind that ‘Hispanic’ Texas Senator Ted Cruz was not part of the Immigration (Super Eight) leadership even though Texas is the state with the LARGEST border length in the country.

In the meantime, I want to share an op-ed by David Leopold who is the immediate past President of AILA.

    Rubio’s State of the Union Response: An Historic Opportunity to Lead

   “….But Rubio has an opportunity to do much more than mend fences for the Republicans. He has an historic chance to show he is not a merely a politician tasked by party elders to reach out to a disgruntled constituency, but a statesman. He can embody the bipartisan leadership in Congress that our nation needs: senators and representatives who are willing to put politics aside and partner with President Obama in an effort to fix the dysfunctional mess of an immigration system that plagues America, tearing families apart and stifling the economy. He can be the courageous leader the GOP needs, one with the guts to wrench his party out of the dark corner of the anti-immigrant fringe and into an enlightened national conversation on immigration reform. ….
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Bipartisan group of U.S. Senators offer a framework for immigration overhaul

POSTED ON
January 29

By Shirl Mora James, Civil Rights and Immigration Lawyer -- President of Somos Independents

 

Good news, commonsense U.S. Senators recognize the demands of the American people who are saying it is time for Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO), Senator John McCain (R-AZ), Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) are the Group of 8, who are working closely together on a basic framework for America's Comprehensive Immigration Reform.

The 4 main points in their proposal are as follows:

 

1. Create a tough but fair path to citizenship for unauthorized immigrants currently living in the United States that is contingent upon securing our borders and tracking whether legal immigrants have left the country when required;

2. Reform our legal immigration system to better recognize the importance of characteristics that will help build the American economy and strengthen American families;

3. Create an effective employment verification system that will prevent identity theft and end the hiring of future unauthorized workers; and

4. Establish an improved process for admitting future workers to serve our nation’s workforce needs, while simultaneously protecting all workers.

 

See, Group of 8 ProposalSee also, Americans across the political spectrum seek a commonsense immigration process.

Posted by at

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Woman-led Organization Slams Charlie Janssen for Targeting Prenatal Care and Low Income Women

POSTED ON
January 23

Would the Nebraska Senator Charlie Janssen rather undocumented women receive abortions?  Why is Janssen attacking prenatal care given both to the unborn and women who choose to keep their babies?

Make no mistake, we will be hawkish with regard to the National Right to Life and the Nebraska Right to Lifers to see how they are going to handle lawmakers who claim to be pro life but do what is in their power to eliminate prenatal care to the unborn.

Shirl Mora James, Civil Rights and Immigration Lawyer and also President of SOMOS INDEPENDENTS (formerly the National Tequila Party Movement) chimes in and states:

“Sen. Charlie Janssen of Fremont introduced legislation (LB518) Wednesday to repeal a state law that gives prenatal care to women in the country without status.  He is attacking innocents.”

Read the full story By KEVIN O’HANLON / Lincoln Journal Star:

Janssen goes after prenatal care for illegal immigrants

Last session, senators voted 30-16 to override Gov. Dave Heineman’s veto of a bill (LB599) that restored funding for prenatal coverage to low-income women, many of them undocumented, who lost Medicaid coverage for prenatal care in 2010.

The override caused conflict for lawmakers who label themselves pro-life but also oppose people being in the United States illegally.

Heineman said at the time that “providing preferential treatment to illegals while increasing taxes on legal Nebraska citizens is misguided, misplaced and inappropriate.”

The override so infuriated Heineman that he cited that as a reason for campaigning before the November election against a ballot measure that would have given lawmakers a raise. The measure was rejected by voters.

Full Story >>>

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Mexican-American and Woman-Led Organization Responds to Sen. Marco Rubio’s Immigration Reform

POSTED ON
January 16

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 16, 2013

SA@MoraJamesLaw.com

 

Mexican-American and Woman-Led Organization Responds to Sen. Marco Rubio’s Immigration Reform

 

Shirl Mora James, Civil Rights and Immigration Lawyer now President of SOMOS INDEPENDENTS — a Mexican-American and woman-led organization believes Senator Marco Rubio of Florida ought to rescind his support for Arizona’s SB 1070 law in order to be taken seriously.

She states:

In order for Senator Marco Rubio to be the GOP immigration champion, he needs to rescind and retract all previous statements where he showed his support for Arizona’s SB 1070 law and statements made against immigrants and their children.  He has to show strong support for U.S. children and their parents in order to be taken seriously by women and Mexican-Americans.

###

 

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Texas Mexican American Joaquin Castro Speaks On Immigration Reform

POSTED ON
January 16

A favorite Chicano leader of mine is Joaquín Castro of San Antone.  Mexican-Americans tend to trust Mexican-American leaders because the issue directly impacts Mexican-American families.

Kudos to Joaquin….

AUSTIN — U.S. Rep. Joaquín Castro used the scene at the Texas Public Policy Foundation‘s annual conference luncheon to illustrate the importance of immigration policy to a state as ethnically diverse as Texas.

“We don’t know whether the folks here are documented or undocumented, but it demonstrates the hard work ethic of the Latino community and the fact that there is a great need for their work,” Castro said, referencing the banquet servers at the Grand Ballroom of the downtown Hilton, many who spoke Spanish and smiled as panelists debated immigration reform on the dais.

“It’s not a glamorous job, but it’s part of what keeps the economic engine of America running,” said Castro, whose grandmother immigrated to San Antonio from Mexico and found work as a maid.

On stage, Castro laid out policies he plans to take to Washington, calling for “comprehensive immigration reform” to address the presence of an estimated 15 million undocumented immigrants in the United States.

“I think we should pass the DREAM Act,” he said. “We should offer the ‘DREAMers’ a pathway to citizenship, and we should offer other immigrants, who can demonstrate that they’ve worked here and paid taxes, a pathway to citizenship.”

The agricultural industry self-reports that about 50 percent of its workers are undocumented, said Castro, who was introduced as “one of the new stars of Congress.”

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Shirl Mora James: ICE focusing on highest priority in removing criminals from the United States

POSTED ON
January 11

According to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), they have adopted common sense policies that ensure our immigration laws are enforced in a way that best enhances public safety, border security and the integrity of the immigration system. As part of this approach, ICE has adopted clear priorities that call for the agency’s enforcement resources to be focused on the identification and removal of those that have broken criminal laws, recently crossed our border, repeatedly violated immigration law or are fugitives from immigration court.In FY 2012, ICE removed 409,849 individuals. Ninety-six percent of these removals fell into one of ICE’s enforcement priorities, a record high.

 

Shirl Mora James, Civil Rights and Immigration Attorney and President of SOMOS INDEPENDENTS (formerly the Tequila Party a woman-led counter movement to the Tea Party) states:

The Obama Administration needs to ensure that all ICE field offices follow their current directives to focus on high priority removals.  Apparently there needs to be improvement in Arizona, or there would not have been an issue with regard to Erika Andiola and the detention of her mother and brother recently.  The good news is that the current directive did ultimately work in Arizona because her mother and brother have been released.   It is apparent that the Obama administration has redirected their resources to ensure the national security of our country.  (See graph and charts below). 

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Fiscal Cliff Crisis causes more to leave the GOP — On brink of an independent revolution.

POSTED ON
January 03

No Party Preference

 

By Ryan Trabuco

Posted on January 3, 2013

“I am an American; free born and free bred, where I acknowledge no man as my superior, except for his own worth, or as my inferior, except for his own demerit.” — Theodore Roosevelt

220px-President_Theodore_Roosevelt,_1904

My decision. My choice. Certainly, this wasn’t easy. Allow me to think this through.

I’ve always admired Theodore Roosevelt. He fought corruption, spoke out passionately about his beliefs in much-needed reforms, and was noted for his fairness in policy and politics.

Of course, you may also read that folks at the turn of the 20th century considered him belligerent and opinionated. Hell, I’ve been called worse. For every one of his critics, however, there were many more who considered him “the hero America needed” as author Michael L. Cooper penned in his 2009 biography on our nation’s 26th President.

What I admire most about Teddy’s legacy and leadership, was his ability to bring folks together — often transcending partisan politics — and in doing so, for the good of our country.

Many of Teddy Roosevelt’s decisions were not easy, such as leaving the Republican Party in 1912 — a party he was active in and helped lead as a New York Assemblyman, Police Commissioner, Governor, Vice-President, and President. The Republican Party had left him and tacked a hard right turn, and Roosevelt, through the passion of defiance, left the party to continue to champion those reforms, values, and ideas he held dear.

Today, I feel it’s the same path I must take as well. Today, I re-registered to vote as “No Party Preference” (a.k.a. “Independent”).

I assure you, no decision could have been harder for me, personally.

Freedom. Opportunity. Self-Reliance. State’s Rights. Government efficiency.  There’s a sense of tradition and a value system — that I cherish and hold dear — you just don’t find in other political parties.

There’s a proud history of nearly 10 years here registering Republican voters. Volunteering. Fundraising. Knocking on doors, calling voters, doing anything I could possibly do to help Republican candidates win elections — pouring blood, sweat, and often tears into these efforts. Oh Lord, did I mention the tweeting?

For now, in this moment, I just felt it was the right choice to make.

As unfortunate (for a number of reasons) that I felt 2008 was a bad year politically, nothing could’ve prepared me for the slaughter of 2012. Of course, in the heat of election cycles, it’s easy to re-hash the talking points of a campaign, and paraphrase why you feel it’s better that voters should choose your side. There’s facts, graphs, logic, and ideology at play. What’s often overlooked though is governing, and the plan to govern.

There hadn’t been much thought about re-registering until recently, while watching the fiscal cliff debate play out over weeks on end. Speculation. Finger-pointing. The constant will-they-won’t-they approach to politics. Quite honestly, it was sick. For as bad as it was for Democrats, I couldn’t honestly sit back and defend the Republicans’  seemingly hands-off approach to governing.

I kept asking myself, “Where’s the leadership? Where’s the plan?”

Then, allowing the Democrats to figure it out on their own and then dictate the terms of whatever the compromise would be was embarrassing to say the very least. I can’t defend that.

I admit, I said for a long time that wild horses couldn’t drag me from my party — and they didn’t. The selfish behavior of those who would rather bring our country to its’ knees, rather than face the challenges ahead of us have drug the party away from me. The constant kowtowing to the Tea Party and like-minded ideologues have damaged the brand, the mission, and the spirit of the Republican Party.

Look at California. The Republican Party, here, is a mess. Enough said.

In San Diego, it’s not nearly as bad but there’s problems here as well. There’s nothing wrong with good-natured, well-intentioned, and much-needed government reforms, but there is a significant problem when you allow a single elected official — an emotional and personality equivalent to Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride — to dictate the focus of the party, and whether you are or aren’t welcome within the apparatus.

When Nathan Fletcher left the Republican Party last spring, I admit, I was more than disappointed and reflected those feelings to him over the phone. He said he was tired and over the drama. All the critics said it was political. After much soul-searching these last few weeks, I have to say that Nathan was right. I’m tired and over it, too.

All in all, I don’t feel there’s leadership. Or focus. I don’t feel there’s necessary attention being paid to strengthen the Republican Party. All talk, no action. I’ve said for years that the GOP needed to embrace it’s roots founded in the original 1856 Platform — a document that reads more like the blueprint for ideas in freedom and governance, rather than today’s GOP platform which specifically says what you can or can’t do in life.

Where’s the allure? What’s the difference between the Republicans and the Democrats, aside from being polar opposites on the political spectrum? Nothing. God forbid you find yourself in the political center. You have no where to go.

All that said, where do we go from here?

I’m sure folks will say I’ve always been a squish. Not committed. Not conservative enough. That’s fine. That just shows that those folks have very little respect for the consistent work I did all those years. All the more reason for my decision to step aside, and re-register.

I am now a simple, registered voter who states that I have NO PARTY PREFERENCE. That doesn’t change who I am or what I believe. Our spending needs to be under control, I’m not in favor of big government or higher taxes — we need some desperate spending cuts, for sure. However, if I ever served as an elected official, I would have sense enough to know not to bring a government to its knees because of hard-headedness (a heartfelt sentiment to both parties).

Thankfully, I have no designs on political office. I’m too honest for it.

Now, there are good Republicans, and there are good Democrats. I’m honored to know both. It’s the self-interested ones on both sides of the aisle who need to reappraise their purpose in politics.

Hopefully, there will be a time in the very near future when the Republican Party evaluates itself in the tradition of Abraham Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt. I pray it does.  It would be an honor to re-register as a Republican under such circumstances. Until then, I will spend my time focusing on my commitments and service to my community, and encouraging camaraderie among others — no matter what their political persuasion may be.

Teddy Roosevelt once said, “Keep your eyes on the stars, and your feet on the ground.” I’ve always been inspired to reach for the stars, and although I’m no longer a Republican, I feel as grounded as I’ve ever been.

 

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Road to Independents - By Angel Garcia (Arizona Activist and Community Organizer)

POSTED ON
December 06

Road to Independents (3 E’s)

By Angel Garcia

ed·u·cate
to develop mentally, morally, or aesthetically especially by instruction

synonyms: teach, instruct, lesson, school, train, tutor

Question: What (Who) is an (I)independent voter?

1.) Workshops and Seminars (e.g. government 101, rundown of numbers, contacting media, hyper-partisanship and gridlock, etc.) i.e. sharing the knowledge of independence of a party structure.

2.) Informational flyers (e.g. you CAN vote in the primary, you NEED to request ticket by party, etc) i.e. Get out the vote, remind people of legal rights, etc.

en·tice/em·brace
to attract artfully or adroitly or by arousing hope or desire; to take in or include as a part, item, or element of a more inclusive whole
Synonyms: allure, beguile, lure, seduce, solicit, tempt

Question: Why should I become an (I)independent voter?

1.) Build neighborhood teams (recruit community leaders) i.e. recruitment and retention

2.) Flood the media (issue press releases identifying yourself as an independent voter, rallies and protests led by (I)independent community leaders, press conferences, etc.) i.e. Rapid response to keep (I)independents in the media; accountability

em·pow·er
to promote the self-actualization or influence of
Synonyms: accredit, certify, commission, enable, invest, qualify, vest, warrant

Question: Where do I find (I)independents?

1.) Resources (Training, fundraisers, etc.) i.e. What tools are needed to survive politically as an independent here in Arizona?

2.) Independents in office (municipal first, then ‘go for the gold’) i.e. We use a tactic that has already worked for every other group that has power grabbed in the U.S. over the last 200 + years.

3.) Gain ownership of the word (I)independent (not undecided, uneducated, lazy, or waste of time voter) i.e. The parties have gone out of their way to diminish the term independent to mean something derogatory.

*Definitions and synonyms provided by: Merriam-Webster (http://www.merriam-webster.com/)

 

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