Governor Greg Abbott is trying to block some children from being able to go to school to get an education. The Texas Republican says he will challenge the Supreme Court to overturn its 40-year-old decision that requires states to pay for the public education of all children, regardless of citizenship status.
Legal experts and others are blasting Abbott.
The Governor says it’s just too expensive for Texas to pay to educate undocumented children. Last month he spent billions of taxpayer dollars on what was decried as “an expensive campaign prop,” and a “stunt,” to “inspect” every truck crossing the border. His antics cost American companies an estimated $9 billion in just ten days.
Abbott’s border stunt isn’t quite over. He’s redirecting half a billion dollars more to fund it, with money from his Health and Human Services Commission and the Texas Department of Public Safety.
But Abbott says there just isn’t money to educate children who are undocumented.
In 1982 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Texas law, in Plyler v. Doe, finding that states must educate undocumented children. As The New York Times reports, Abbott sees the far-right conservative Supreme Court’s apparent decision to overturn Roe v. Wade as an opening to have the court overturn other decisions he does not like.
“I think we will resurrect that case and challenge this issue again, because the expenses are extraordinary and the times are different than when Plyler versus Doe was issued many decades ago,” Abbott told far-right radio host Joe Pagliarulo, known as “Joe Pags,” the Austin America-Statesman reported.
University of Alabama law professor, MSNBC/NBC News legal analyst, and former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance is blasting Abbott.
“Plyler v Doe is long-standing precedent from 1982 that holds all kids, regardless of citizenship status, are entitled to a K-12 education on 14th Am[endment] equal protection grounds. There is no pending case, no jurisprudential reason to reverse Plyler. It’s race to the bottom stuff,” Vance tweeted Thursday.
Pointing to the Supreme Court’s ruling itself, she calls the attempt to deny children an education “cruel.”
2/2 The 5th Circuit ruled that Texas (the state that tried in the original case to deny kids who weren’t citizens an education) couldn’t keep them out of schools. The reasoning lays bare just how cruel that effort was & is today. pic.twitter.com/sPAWje8jvs
— Joyce Alene (@JoyceWhiteVance) May 5, 2022
On Friday, Vance doubled down on her condemnation, noting: “The cruelty has no bottom.”
“I know Plyler, the education case TX Gov Abbott opposes [because] it was implicitly at issue when we challenged Alabama’s 2011 anti-immigration law. That law tried to deny even citizen kids education by collecting data on parents’ citizenship. The cruelty has no bottom,” she said.
Vance was responding to a tweet from Santiago Mayer, the founder and Executive Director of Voters of Tomorrow:
Greg Abbott is now saying the state shouldn’t provide public education to kids. He’s going to SCOTUS over this.
They are coming for your fucking kids.
— Santiago Mayer 🌻 (@santiagomayer_) May 5, 2022
Attorney Matthew Cortland says “Abbott wants SCOTUS to declare undocumented immigrants to be un-people, without ANY protections.”
Plyler v. Doe stands for the proposition that undocumented immigrants are persons protected by the Due Process Clauses of the 5th and 14th Amendments to the US Constitution
Abbott wants SCOTUS to declare undocumented immigrants to be un-people, without ANY protections. https://t.co/bEK8gj9SWF
— Matthew Cortland (@mattbc) May 5, 2022
Journalist and political analyst Ron Brownstein adds:
Abbott’s indication he wants to deny TX public school ed to kids of undocumented immigrants & Louisiana pushing bill to prosecute women on abortion underscore 1 likely effect of #SCOTUS revoking Roe: emboldening red states to push envelope on other fronts https://t.co/vQ0rYUNufd
— Ronald Brownstein (@RonBrownstein) May 6, 2022
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Second Most-Powerful Senate Republican Says Bill to Fight Domestic Terrorism After Buffalo Is Too ‘Partisan’ to Pass
Senate Republican Minority Whip John Thune of South Dakota immediately poured cold water on a just-passed House bill to help fight rising domestic terrorism, in the wake of his past weekend’s massacre of ten Black people in Buffalo by a self-avowed white nationalist and antisemite and a California church shooting deemed a “politically motivated hate incident” by local law enforcement.
The House bill passed with all Democrats and just one Republican voting for it. 203 Republicans voted against the legislation that would establish new offices across three federal agencies to help identify and combat domestic terrorism. Three of the Republicans who voted against the legislation are original co-sponsors of the bill, and many who voted for a very similar bill two years ago voted against this bill Wednesday. The final tally was 222-203.
CNN’s Manu Raju reports Senator Thune, the second-most-powerful Senate Republican, is “skeptical the domestic terrorism bill that passed the House will get 10 GOP senators,” which it would need to pass, assuming all 50 Democrats vote for it.
“He noted that it was a ‘pretty party-line vote.’ Said he had not studied the details of the bill yet but noted the outcome in the House makes him think it is ‘largely a partisan bill.'”
Republicans have a long history of blocking any attempt to curtail or get out in front of preventing domestic terrorism, despite – or because of – the vast majority of extremist-related murders are committed by right-wing extremists.
Republicans’ opposition to addressing right-wing extremism and domestic terrorism goes back at least as far as 2009, when, as Wired reported, “an analyst at the Department of Homeland Security focusing on far-right extremist groups” published this report about the danger of right-wing extremism. Outrage was so dramatic DHS was forced to retract it.
In 2016 Politico reported Congressional Republicans also in 2009 “succeeded in pushing to shut” down a DHS program, an intelligence unit “called the Extremism and Radicalization Branch.” Its mission? “Studying and monitoring sub-sections of the population for potential signs of ideological and political radicalization.”
Buffalo Killer’s Worldview Has Become ‘Increasingly Central to the Identity of the Republican Party’: NYT Editorial
The twisted view of the world that spurred the 18-year-old gunman to seek out and murder Black people in a Buffalo supermarket increasingly is at the core of the Republican party’s identity, argued a scathing New York Times editorial on Tuesday.
The New York Times editorial board is calling out GOP politicians, especially those in leadership positions, for amplifying the false white supremacist conspiracy theory that there is an orchestrated effort is underway to displace white Americans.
The newspaper points out that a recently published poll revealed that almost half of all Republicans believe there is a concerted effort by a group of powerful people in this country who are trying to permanently alter the culture and voting strength of native-born Americans by bringing in large groups of immigrants.
Just like Payton Gendron, those who committed mass killings in recent years in El Paso, TX, Charleston, SC, Pittsburgh and elsewhere all shared the same racist worldview, the newspaper notes.
“American life is punctuated by mass shootings that are routinely described as idiosyncratic,” the editors write. “But these attacks are not random acts; they are part of the long American history of political violence perpetrated by white supremacists against Black people and other minority groups. Politicians who have employed some of the vocabulary of replacement theory generally do not make explicit calls for violence. The office of one of those politicians, Rep. Elise Stefanik of New York, said in a statement that the Buffalo attack was an ‘act of evil’ and that she ‘has never advocated for any racist position.'”
But as the Times points out, in September, Stefanik’s re-election campaign “paid for a Facebook ad that combined imagery of immigrants with the accusation that ‘Radical Democrats are planning their most aggressive move yet: a PERMANENT ELECTION INSURRECTION.’ Ms. Stefanik’s ad continued, ‘Their plan to grant amnesty to 11 MILLION illegal immigrants will overthrow our current electorate and create a permanent liberal majority in Washington.’”
The Times editorial underscores what Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney, who was kicked out of a GOP leadership role after denouncing former President Donald Trump and the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection, tweeted on Monday: “The House GOP leadership has enabled white nationalism, white supremacy, and anti-semitism. History has taught us that what begins with words ends in far worse. @GOP leaders must renounce and reject these views and those who hold them.”
‘Feel of Disgraced General Going on the Attack’: Former Prosecutor on Mike Flynn’s Alleged $50 Million Claim Against DOJ
Disgraced Trump National Security Advisor turned QAnon promoter Mike Flynn has allegedly filed a $50 million claim against the U.S. Dept. of Justice, alleging “malicious prosecution” and “emotional distress” despite having repeatedly confessed, including in court before a federal judge.
Glenn Kirschner, a former United States Army Judge Advocate General (JAG) prosecutor and federal prosecutor is weighing in on the news.
Flynn is a retired United States Army lieutenant general who grew close to Donald Trump during the 2016 campaign while being paid to lobby for the benefit of the government of Turkey. He served in the Trump administration for just 22 days.
He was forced into retirement in 2014 while serving in the Obama administration, and outgoing President Barack Obama reportedly cautioned Trump against allowing him to serve in the White House, a suggestion Trump ignored.
Flynn resigned after allegedly lying about conversations he had with the Russian Ambassador to the United States, Sergey Kislyak. Flynn agreed to a plea deal with Special Counsel Robert Mueller to plead guilty to “willfully and knowingly” making false statements to the FBI. He was never sentenced and President Trump pardoned him before leaving office.
Now Flynn is a QAnon conspiracy theorist and Big Lie promoter who as recently as last week claimed “Donald Trump is still the president.”
He has filed a complaint against the government of the United States for $50 million, according to attorney Ron Filipkowski:
Michael Flynn has filed a $50 million claim against DOJ for malicious prosecution. pic.twitter.com/ONqHdS3Mdp
— Ron Filipkowski 🇺🇦 (@RonFilipkowski) May 16, 2022
“Boy does this have the feel of the disgraced general going on the attack because he fears or senses or has been told he’s going to be either indicted in federal court or returned to active duty to be court-martialed,” tweeted Kirschner, who after leaving the Army JAG Corps became an Assistant U.S. Attorney and served under Robert Mueller.
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