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President Trump Was Right to Veto Resolution Blocking His National Emergency Declaration

President Trump's veto sends border security resolution back to the House
“President Trump’s veto Friday of a resolution blocking his declaration of a national emergency on the U.S.-Mexico border showed that he understands he wasn’t elected to appease career politicians in the Senate. He was elected, in part, to secure the southern border and protect American lives,” former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer writes.

“When it comes to protecting the American people, Trump has made clear that there can be no compromise . . . This action is fully within his constitutional powers.”

Pelosi’s effort to overturn the emergency declaration was nothing more than a desperate political ploy to reclaim some of the leverage she lost when the president outmaneuvered her by finding a legal way to build the wall despite her opposition.

The fact that a dozen Republicans in the Senate went along with the effort is testament to the behind-the-scenes political skills Pelosi has honed during her decades in Congress. But it wasn’t enough to keep her from being bested by Trump, a relative political novice who nonetheless found a way around Pelosi’s obstructionism using the very sort of procedural tactic that liberals often praise her for mastering.

There’s no greater duty of the executive branch than to defend the nation from outside harm. Hundreds of thousands of people illegally cross our southern border each year, and too many of those people bring drugs, crime, or disease along with them. This endangers American communities and contributes to thousands of deaths each year due to the epidemic of drug overdoses.

Trump is looking out for the countless citizens all over the country whose communities are being overwhelmed by drug abuse, violent crime, and outbreaks of contagious Third World diseases because the federal government failed to control illegal immigration for so long.

The senators who voted to overturn the president’s emergency declaration were really voting for even more American families to experience this type of suffering.

“Prominent legal scholars agree that our actions to address the National Emergency at the Southern Border and to protect the American people are both CONSTITUTIONAL and EXPRESSLY authorized by Congress,” the President tweeted shortly before the vote, reminding lawmakers that “today’s issue is BORDER SECURITY and Crime!!!”

Publicly, politicians in both parties have agreed that we must secure the border, but behind closed doors, they bickered and dithered without coming up with a realistic plan to do so.

Trump, on the other hand, promised during the 2016 campaign that he would put an end to this madness, and he kept his word by declaring a national emergency after Congress abdicated its responsibility to properly fund border security.

Thanks to a committed core of conservatives in Congress who will ensure that the president’s veto is sustained, the wall is going to be built despite the latest Democratic effort to prevent the enforcement of America’s immigration laws.

Congress had its shot at fixing the problem and failed. The fact that a dozen Senate Republicans supported the anti-wall resolution serves as a reminder of why the president had to use his legal authority to take decisive action to secure the border in the first place.

US job openings rise, outnumber the unemployed by 1 million

“U.S. employers posted nearly 7.6 million open jobs in January, near a record high set in November,” Christopher Rugaber reports for The Associated Press. “The tally of available jobs now outnumbers the unemployed by roughly 1 million. Openings began to outpace the unemployed last spring, for the first time in the 18 years the data has been tracked.”

“The question now is, will workers be increasingly tempted to switch to new jobs or will their current employers raise wages to keep them?” said Nick Bunker, an economist at job listings website Indeed.

The strong job market is already pushing up wages more quickly, with hourly wages rising in February at the fastest pace in nine years.

The report, known as the Job Openings and Labor Turnover survey, or JOLTS, also showed that layoffs declined, a reassuring sign that employers weren’t spooked by the government shutdown, which ended Jan. 25, or the sharp drop in the stock market in December.

Nearly 3.5 million people quit their jobs in January, up 2.9 percent from the previous month. That could force employers to pay more to prevent their workers from quitting.

“The high quit rate is the major source of upward wage pressure, because high turnover costs are a strong motivator for employers to raise wages to retain their top talent,” said Julia Pollak, labor economist at ZipRecruiter.

The economy grew at a healthy clip last year of 2.9 percent, the fastest pace in four years. But trade tensions with China, slowing global growth and signs of caution among consumers have weighed on the economy early this year. Many economists forecast growth could fall below 1 percent in the first quarter.

The JOLTS report suggests the job market remains strong and bolsters most analysts’ expectations that steady hiring and rising wages will support faster growth later this year.

Openings have fallen slightly to 7.58 million since the record high of 7.63 million in November. The data was sharply revised this month to show that there were more open jobs late last year. Before the revisions, the record had been 7.3 million openings in January.

‘The Conveyor Belt’: U.S. officials say massive smuggling effort is speeding immigrants to — and across — the southern border

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“Criminal organizations in Mexico have mounted a lucrative new smuggling operation that uses express buses to deliver Guatemalan migrant families to the U.S. border in a matter of days, making the journey faster, easier and safer,”according to U.S. law enforcement reports and U.S. and Guatemalan officials.

The smugglers entice families with promises their journey will be free of the perils usually associated with travel to the U.S. border, along with assurances that by turning themselves in to U.S. authorities they will be released into the country within days.Nick Miroff writes in The Washington Post. Missing from The Washington Post’s story is that President Trump wants to close the loopholes powering this “conveyor belt,” while Congressional Democrats want to keep them.

Paying up to $7,000 per adult with child, families are transported to staging areas at ranches and hotels in southern Mexico, where they are organized into bus groups and rushed north along Mexican highways, “stopping only for food, fuel and bathroom breaks,” according to the U.S. law enforcement documents.

The model particularly appeals to families by minimizing some of the more intimidating and unsavory aspects of traditional Mexican smuggling operations, known for cramming migrants into squalid stash houses, where Central Americans are regularly abused and extorted for additional payments. The busing system has skirted those dangers, generating few reports of violence or mistreatment, U.S. officials say.

Within 72 hours of leaving the staging areas, the buses arrive at predetermined drop-off points within walking distance of the U.S. border. Migrant families are clustered into groups that have at times exceeded 300 adults and children, and they walk directly across the border, in some cases stepping over barriers in long, orderly lines. They then surrender to U.S. Border Patrol agents and initiate asylum claims.

Previously undisclosed details of the smuggling system are outlined in U.S. law enforcement reports reviewed by The Washington Post. The official who shared them did so on the condition of anonymity to disclose internal operations details. They depict an upstart, highly profitable entrepreneurial operation that is designed to exploit dysfunction in the American immigration system and U.S. court rulings that mandate families be released from custody while their asylum claims are processed.

U.S. Consumer Sentiment Exceeds Forecasts on Income Optimism

Shoppers walk through the Menlo Park Mall in Edison, New Jersey, U.S., on Friday, Nov. 25, 2016. As Black Friday ushers in the year-end shopping rush, chains are touting larger price cuts than in 2015 -- a gamble that maintaining market share is worth squeezing margins.

“U.S. consumer sentiment rose by more than expected as optimism picked up for incomes and the economy, suggesting support for growth in coming months,” Carlyann Edwards reports for Bloomberg. “The University of Michigan’s preliminary March sentiment index advanced to 97.8, the highest this year,”compared with the median forecast of 95.6 in a Bloomberg survey of economists, according to a report Friday. The measure of current conditions increased while the expectations gauge rose to the highest since October.

Key Insights

  • The increase in sentiment reflected a sizable jump in income expectations among middle and lower earners, while a measure of the economic outlook for the next 12 months rose to a four-year high. The report follows Labor Department figures showing average hourly earnings rose last month by the most since 2009.
  • While below the 14-year high reached in 2018, sentiment remains elevated, supported by rising wages, a stock-market rebound, lower fuel prices and the Federal Reserve’s patient approach to raising interest rates.
  • At the same time, a measure of buying conditions for long- lasting goods fell to the lowest since 2015, suggesting consumers are reluctant to tap their rising incomes to make big purchases.
  • Consumers continued to anticipate muted gains in prices. Inflation expectations for the year ahead fell to 2.4 percent, the lowest since 2017, while the rate over the next five to 10 years was seen at 2.5 percent, up from a reading last month that matched a record low. Fed officials closely monitor the inflation results in this poll.

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  • Households in the bottom two-thirds of incomes were more likely to cite net income gains, while upper-income households were more likely to report declines, according to the report.
  • Optimism over the labor market increased, as the share of respondents expecting increases in the jobless rate in the year ahead fell to 21 percent from 31 percent. Respondents saw an average chance of 15.5 percent of losing their job in the next five years, the lowest reading since 2007.
  • Interviews were conducted from Feb. 27 to March 13.

Student Loan Caps Proposed in White House Higher Education Plan

“The White House is urging Congress to set new limits on student loan borrowing by graduate students and parents, as part of a larger package spelling out the Trump administration’s priorities for higher education legislation,” Emily Wilkins reports for Bloomberg Government. “We need to modernize our higher education system to make it more affordable, flexible, and outcomes oriented so all Americans, young and old, can learn the skills they need to secure and retain good paying jobs,” Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump said in statement.

In addition to the higher education proposal, the White House is working on an executive order addressing several higher education topics, including free speech rights, on college campuses.

“We are taking action to provide students, families, and working Americans better and clearer information; encourage innovation and reduce college cost; ensure that students of faith are able to attend schools that reflect their values; and require that institutions live up to their promises regarding campus free speech,” the administration said in the proposal.

Loan Limits

The White House follows in the steps of Republican lawmakers who say limiting the amount of federal student aid will lead colleges and universities to lower tuition.

The administration did not elaborate on what limit should be set on graduate student and parent borrowers, but the programs currently allow for borrowing up to the cost of attendance. Legislation by Rep. Virginia Foxx(R-N.C.) in the last Congress would have limited graduate students to $28,500 in annual loans and parents to $12,500 per student annually.

Foxx’s bill (H.R. 4508) was approved by a House committee in 2017 but lacked support from enough Republicans for a vote on the House floor. Several lawmakers told Bloomberg Government at the time they could not back a bill that ended a loan forgiveness program for public and nonprofit workers, as the Trump administration proposed both in the fiscal 2020 budget and in today’s higher education proposal.

The proposal also calls on Congress to allow financial aid administrators to “help students limit and manage their student loan borrowing.”

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