The economy added 204,000 jobs in October — well above expectations — while the unemployment rate rose slightly to 7.3 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. Dismal numbers were expected after the 16-day government shutdown last month, but the
In this week's Virginia race, the Latino community came out to vote in large numbers and demonstrated that it is a powerful voting block and that candidates running for elected office would be well served to avoid anti-immigrant rhetoric which marginalizes Latinos, according
President Barack Obama is throwing his support behind congressional Democrats' proposal to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 and peg it to inflation, more than a dollar higher than the $9 proposal he made in his State of the Union address in
by David Bacon
OAKLAND, CA (10/21/13) -- This fall, when Congress couldn't pass immigration reform bills -- even ones deeply unpopular among many
immigrants themselves -- one of the most important responses came
from Oaxaca. In the capital of this southern Mexico state a
representative of a Silicon Valley union sat down with a state agency
and an organization of indigenous migrants, and signed an agreement for mutual cooperation.
All three groups pledged to work to protect the rights of Oaxacans
who have migrated to the U.S. -- about 800,000 now live in California
alone. "Our objective," the agreement reads, "is the protection of
the human and labor rights of Oaxacan workers and their families, in the food and commercial industries." It lists a number of shared commitments, including explaining to immigrant workers their labor
rights in the U.S., helping them file claims when they're hurt at work, and advocating for them when they face government agencies
According to Gerardo Dominguez, organizing director for the union
involved, Local 5 of the United Food and Commercial Workers, "we have
a state government in Oaxaca that's willing to do something beyond its borders to help its people who now live here. Our relationship
can grow in ways that will help our union, and give these workers much more power over their own lives." The agreement was signed also
by Rufino Dominguez, director of the Oaxacan Institute for Attention to Migrants (IOAM), and Bernardo Ramirez, the binational coordinator
of the Binational Front of Indigenous Organizations (FIOB).
A sit-in organized by immigration activists inside the Bakersfield office of U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy went deep into the night Wednesday, prompting a police response and, near midnight, a personal visit from the congressman. About a dozen activists showed up at McCarthy's office at noon Wednesday and said they would not leave until McCarthy, the third-most powerful House Republican, signed a pledge to bring to a vote a bill that would grant a pathway to citizenship for the estimated 11 million immigrants living in the U.S. without permission.
McCarthy has been the target of months of intense protest by immigrant and labor groups. During the August congressional recess, roughly 1,000 marchers from across California converged
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) achieved the improbable Tuesday night: a win with female voters, by double digits, up against a female candidate.
The secret, observers and staffers say, lies in Christie's personal appeal and vision for New Jersey. They say his tell-it-like-it-is, no-nonsense personal style, and ability to empathize with voters, helped win him women looking for a new kind of politician. "This election was really about Christie's personality and leadership style on the issues themselves. New Jersey voters largely supported [Democrat] Barbara Buono on the issues," said Ben Dworkin, professor of political science at Rider University. Republicans emerged from the 2012 election suffering gender gaps across the
Despite the growing importance of the Latino vote, the community continues to face a massive obstacle to building its political clout. Just 51 percent of Hispanics are registered to vote, according to a Gallup survey released Wednesday. That number falls way behind the figure for the general public (78 percent), and even farther behind non-Hispanic whites (85 percent) and non-Hispanic blacks (81 percent). It's a problem that may, however, self-correct with time. Gallup attributes the low registration rate to the high number of immigrants in the Latino population, a feature shared with Asian Americans: Asians and Hispanics in large part have lower rates of voter registration overall because many members of these racial and ethnic groups were not born
In what will be seen as another blow to immigration reform's chances, a top pro-reform Republican in the House concedes House Republicans are not going to act on immigration reform this year, and he worries that the window for getting anything done next year is closing fast. "We have very few days available on the floor in the House, so I don't think we're going to be able to do it this year," GOP Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida told me by phone today. Diaz-Balart has been deeply involved in bipartisan negotiations over immigration for years now, and
WASHINGTON -- No, Obamacare didn't almost cost Terry McAuliffe his narrow gubernatorial victory in Virginia. But dodging that bullet shouldn't be much comfort to other Democrats. For one, it's not clear that implementation of the Affordable Care Act is going to improve or that, even if it does, the law will become more popular. Plus, McAuliffe was saved by two factors that Democrats won't necessarily be able to repeat elsewhere in 2014: a monumental cash advantage and a local electorate deeply affected by a federal government shutdown.
The politics of the matter seem virtually beyond dispute: A GOP candidate with more mainstream appeal than Ken Cuccinelli would have beaten Democrat Terry McAuliffe and given Republicans control of the Virginia governorship. All it would have taken was a shift of 27,610 votes out of more than 2.2 million cast. But here is another fact that is all but beyond argument: If establishment Republicans in Virginia and nationally had shown more faith in their candidate, ignored the polls that showed him getting blown out, and ponied up the cash to prevent McAuliffe from outraising him by $15 million,
AUSTIN – Hispanic students in Texas, now more than half of public school enrollment, are falling further behind in reading skills while holding their own in math, according to test results from the "Nation's Report Card" released Thursday. The setbacks in reading for Hispanics on the National Assessment of Educational Progress portend problems for Texas, which at one time put special emphasis on reading over all other subjects in the public schools. New NAEP results show that fourth grade reading scores for Hispanic children have dropped four points from the last test two years ago, while eighth grade scores remained relatively flat.
Texas Hispanic fourth graders tied for 33rd when compared with Hispanics in other states and the District of Columbia, while
National Rifle Association board member and conservative columnist Ted Nugent claimed on a Detroit radio station that he works closely with a number of prominent Republican officeholders, including Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Michigan Gov. John Engler, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott.
During an October 30 Google hangout hosted by 94.7 WCSX, Nugent was asked about his new role as co-chair of Republican Sid Miller's campaign for Texas Agriculture Commissioner. While answering the question, Nugent referenced his close relationship with other conservative politicians, and suggested he played a role in the 2011 showdown between
The nation's biggest labor group is taking its support for an immigration overhaul to the TV airwaves, with Spanish-language ads that hammer Republican House members. One ad uses the words of three GOP members. There's Steve King of Iowa saying: "They're hauling 75 pounds of marijuana across the desert," played after a shot of Latinos at a wedding ceremony. And Alabama's Mo Brooks saying: "I'll do anything short of shooting them," after the image of a soldier hugging his wife. Georgia's Paul Broun is featured saying: "These illegal aliens are criminals and we need to treat as such," after a photo of roofers at work. The spots are running in Atlanta; Orlando, Fla.; Denver, and Bakersfield, Calif. — the districts of Broun, Daniel Webster, Mike Coffman and
Shortly after passing the country's worst voter suppression law, North Carolina Republicans targeted student voting. The GOP-controlled board of elections in Pasquotank County voted to prevent a student at a historically black college from running for city council where he attended school. The GOP-controlled board of election in Watauga County shut down an early voting site at Appalachian State University in Boone and placed the general election polling place at a campus nightclub instead of the student union. Both of these moves backfired badly on the North Carolina GOP in the 2013 local elections. The North Carolina state board of election ruled that Montravias King, a senior at Elizabeth City State University could indeed run for
Following a full week of being battered by mounting reports that he cribbed parts of others' intellectual capital and repackaged them as his own, Sen. Rand Paul appears to have finally found safe harbor in the conservative blogosphere.
(CQ Roll Call Photo Illustration)
The Kentucky Republican has come under fire as of late for liberally borrowing third-party content (ranging from pop culture references on Wikipedia to rhetorical red meat produced by conservative think tanks) to pad his own speeches and publishing projects. After others pointed out that he'd used unattributed material from The Week for a recent Washington Times piece, the Times yanked away his weekly soapbox.
The unrelenting scrutiny appears to be throwing Paul for a loop. The one-time media darling —
The Senate on Thursday approved the Employment Non-Discrimination Act in a tempered win for gay rights advocates who still need a reluctant, GOP-controlled House to take up and pass the bill. In a bipartisan vote, 64 senators supported the ENDA legislation, championed in the Senate by Democrat Jeff Merkley of Oregon. The bill, if it were to become law, would set a federal non-discrimination standard to ensure that private employers cannot fire employees based on their sexual orientation or identity.
Ten Republicans joined all Democrats to pass the gay rights bill, while 32 Republicans voted against the measure. Few opponents rose to speak against the bill, however. As of Wednesday evening, no one had risen to speak in opposition. Sen. Dan Coats was the first to
The White House on Thursday wouldn't confirm a report that the administration was in talks with Yemen to set up a detention facility outside its capital city of Sanaa to house suspected terrorists at Guantánamo Bay and in Afghanistan.
White House press secretary Jay Carney said that the U.S. government continued "to work on transfers" from Guantánamo but that he wouldn't comment on "conversations or negotiations with the Yemeni government."
"It is and remains the president's goal to close the Gitmo facility," Carney said. "That's a goal shared by many, both Democrats and Republicans, including military leaders, because it's in the interests of
In a recent op-ed published by the Washington Post, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) warns us of the dangers of federal overreach. According to Cruz, terrible things could happen if we're not careful: foreign courts could override parents' decision-making regarding the education of their children with special needs; an international tribunal in Hamburg could seize control of U.S. businesses; and the United Nations might just come to your house and take away your guns.
Ignoring that Cruz's protagonist in the article is a person who poured caustic chemicals on pregnant woman – an unsympathetic case study for federal overreach, but not necessarily an invalid one –
America's federal prisons are in trouble. They're so crowded they're endangering the lives of inmates and corrections officers, the director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Charles Samuels Jr., testified at a Senate hearing on Wednesday. And the immense cost of confining so many people is draining vital resources from from other public safety endeavors, including investigations and prosecutions. Politicians across the political spectrum, from Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) to Rand Paul (R-Ky.), increasingly agree that something has to be done. Now, a report from the Urban Institute, a Washington-based think tank for social and
The current federal government shutdown has focused the nation's attention to the status of the U.S. federal government workforce. A few weeks ago, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issued a report on the status of Latino federal employment, their Twelfth Annual Report on Hispanic Employment in the Federal Government. The news it reported was not good --- Latinos continue to be the most underrepresented group in the federal workforce and efforts to address this problem have continued to be ineffective.
Although, according to the US
When César Chávez was asked what he thought about the term la raza, he answered the question with a question, asking, what was wrong with the indigenous race? The word raza was popularized by José Vasconselos who in 1925 wrote an essay titled "La Raza Cósmica" (The Cosmic Race). Vasconcelos was an intellectual and intellectuals at the time took it to mean that Latin American was comprised of races from all over the world, and that the mixture had produced a new people who would transcend the "old world". When César Chávez was asked what he thought
At the center of the current federal government shutdown debate is the future of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. While the argument of those lobbying for its repeal or postponement is the significant lack of widespread support for this law by the American people, according to the polls, this is clearly not the case for the Latino community. As the group with the highest number of uninsured, making up 30 percent the Latino population, support for Obamacare is strong among Latinos. A recent national poll found that only 18 percent of Latinos favored repealing or