Inside Opinion

What's on the minds of Tacoma News Tribune editorial writers

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Tag: immigration

July
6th

Immigration, drug cartels and a Lakewood murder

This editorial will appear in Sunday’s print edition.

Still need a reason to look kindly on immigration reform? Would a defeat for Mexican drug cartels do the trick?

Some Americans might still have the perception that Mexico’s depraved drug lords are pretty much preoccupied with fighting each other and their government, with some thuggery spilling over into Arizona and other border states.

If only. Cartel operatives and contractors have thoroughly penetrated the United States, and many of them are Mexican criminals who camouflage themselves as ordinary Mexicans who crossed the border for jobs. The fact that so many of the

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May
28th

UW professor predicts tea party bump won’t last

The tea party has gotten a boost from reports that it was targeted for special scrutiny by the Internal Revenue Service. Support has increased from 28 percent in March to 37 percent in a poll released May 20.

But Christopher S. Parker, the Stuart A. Scheingold Professor of Social Justice and Political Science at the University of Washington, doubts the bump will be long-term. In a new article written for CNN, he says that to remain viable in coming years, the tea party likely will have to play up two issues that resonate with its core: immigration and same-sex marriage.

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March
13th

Wrong year for grants to undocumented students

This editorial will appear in Thursday’s print edition.

Need grants for undocumented students is a good idea whose time hasn’t come. It shouldn’t be holding up other college assistance legislation, as seems to be happening in the state Senate.

The argument against expanding financial aid to young illegal immigrants this year can be summed up in a single word: McCleary.

In last year’s McCleary decision, the state Supreme Court ordered the Legislature to fully fund basic education. Lawmakers already face a projected deficit of nearly $1 billion, and some believe it would take yet another $1 billion to begin meeting

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Jan.
3rd

Headlines we’ll read in 2013, for better or worse

Everyone likes predictions (why else do we read horoscopes?). Here are some from David Rothkopf of Foreign Policy. For the most part, he sees positive developments, particularly for the world economy. But he ends on a sad, pessimistic note.

Headlines we’ll be reading in 2013

By David Rothkopf

WASHINGTON — As that great geopolitical theorist Carly Simon once observed, “We can never know about the days to come but we think about them anyway, yay.” She then went on to say, as ketchup lovers everywhere remember, “Anticipation, anticipation, is making me late . . . is keepin’ me waitin’.”

Of course, the tortures of anticipation are well known to observers of the slow-motion train wreck that has been Washington’s management of America’s financial situation, or the recent, interminable U.S. presidential campaign, or the hideously slow path to oblivion followed by the Assad regime in Syria, or the painfully circular Eurofollies, not to mention the gradual but undeniable degradation of the planet’s environment that goes on year in and year out despite our clear knowledge about how to avoid the damage.

The time has come to say “enough.” We live in an age in which the average consumer expects instant gratification. There is no reason those who are interested in the bigger issues taking place in the world shouldn’t have it too. For that reason, we bring to you the top headlines that you will be looking back at when 2013 draws to a close 12 months from now. Think of it as the year in review, before it happens. Read more »

June
18th

Obama and immigrants: Dubious path to the right place

This editorial will appear in Tuesday’s print edition.

Take politics out of the equation, and Barack Obama’s decision to unilaterally protect young illegal immigrants gets hard to explain.

The president had three-and-a-half years to contemplate whether he had the power to do what he did Friday. As a fervent supporter of the DREAM Act – which would have gone even further – he clearly would have liked to.

Obama aside, it’s hard to understand why anyone wouldn’t sympathize with law-abiding youths and young adults who were smuggled across the border as children. Most of them have grown up thinking of the United States as home; many would be bewildered if they were dumped back in the countries they were uprooted from.

They are here through no choice of their own, and simple humanity argues for keeping them here if they have obeyed the law, stayed in school or served in the military.

But Obama himself has said that he couldn’t simply snap his fingers and nullify immigration law, even a bad one.
“I know some people want me to bypass Congress and change the laws on my own,” he told the National Council of La Raza a year ago. “That’s not how our democracy functions. That’s not how our Constitution is written.”

Yet now – four-and-a-half months from November, with the Hispanic turnout crucial to his re-election – Obama has discovered he can indeed bypass Congress and effectively repeal a law on his own through a broad public proclamation of prosecutorial discretion.
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May
26th

Try reasonable middle way to license illegal immigrants

This editorial will appear in Sunday’s print edition.

One issue that has arisen in the state gubernatorial race is whether people seeking driver’s licenses should have to prove legal residency. Washington is one of only two states – New Mexico is the other – that allows undocumented immigrants to obtain unrestricted driver’s licenses – ones that can be used for personal identification purposes.

Attorney General Rob McKenna, a Republican, wants applicants to show Social Security documentation in order to be licensed to drive. His opponent, Democrat Jay Inslee, isn’t ready to go there.

Inslee is right – to a point. Requiring

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Nov.
7th

Farms need legalized seasonal help, not a handful of felons

This editorial will appear in Tuesday’s print edition.

The connection between illegal immigration and agriculture has been blindingly obvious for decades, but apparently not obvious enough for some.

An apparent decline in the number of migrant farm workers has been hitting Washington orchardists hard – hard enough that Gov. Chris Gregoire has gamely experimented with prison labor. She recently dispatched 105 volunteer inmates from the state’s mininum-security work camp in Clallam County to harvest apples at an orchard in Eastern Washington.

A long-term solution, this is not. Washington’s farmers need thousands, not hundreds, of laborers. For many years, the majority of them have been illegal aliens, mostly from Mexico. Read more »

May
22nd

Too bad parties play political football with DREAM Act

This editorial will appear in Monday’s print edition.

It would be a shame if partisan politics kept Congress from passing at least some version of the DREAM Act, which offers a path to citizenship for young illegal aliens who serve in the military or make significant progress in college.

But that seems to be happening as the legislation becomes a chip in a high-stakes game of brinksmanship over the immigration issue, with both parties using it to score points with their constituencies.

In the meantime, hundreds of thousands of young people who want to contribute to their country through the military or higher education are left in limbo.
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