Bush to GOP: Give Immigration a Chance

The Atlantic Wire

Former President George W. Bush wants Republicans to consider immigration on its own merits, not just as a party saving piece of legislation, he said during an interview on ABC's This Week. "Sometimes, it takes time for some of these complex issues to evolve. And it looks like immigration, you know, has a chance to pass," Bush said. "The reason to pass immigration reform is not to bolster a Republican Party -- it's to fix a system that's broken. Good policy yields good politics as far as I'm concerned." The bill's uncertain future in the House after the Senate passed it last week is causing some concern. But Bush argues the bill is too important not to pass. "It's very important to fix a broken system, to treat people with respect and have confidence in our capacity to assimilate people," Bush said. "It's a very difficult bill to pass because there's a lotta moving parts. And the legislative process is-- can be ugly. But it looks like they're making some progress."

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Meanwhile, a House representative from Texas said the immigration bill was just the Senate throwing "a bunch of candy" at the border to earn votes. Rep. Mike McCaul told CBS's Face the Nation how displeasing the Senate's immigration bill is. "What the Senate just passed was, again, a bunch of candy thrown down there -- a bunch of assets thrown down there to gain votes but without a methodical, smart border approach. We want a smart border and smart immigration plan, something that makes sense," McCaul said. The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee accused the President of wanting the immigration bill to fail so the Democrats have political leverage heading into the 2014 midterm elections. "The White House would like to see this fail in the House so that [Obama] can blame the House of Representatives for that and then try to take back the House of Representatives and then all bets are off on his agenda," McCaul said.

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Speaking of future elections, Gov. Rick Perry is not hinting he might run for President again despite his last campaign being an unmitigated disaster. On Sunday, Perry told Fox News Sunday that a presidential run in 2016 wasn't completely off the table. "Well, certainly, that's an option out there," Perry said, "but again, we got a lot of work to do in this building right behind me [the Texas capitol] over the course of the next couple of weeks that have my focus substantially more than even 2014 or 2016." Whether or not he'll run for another term as governor, setting up a potential blockbuster showdown against Wendy Davis, Perry said we'll learn the answer on Monday. But first he wants to pass that pesky abortion bill. "I'm going to have an announcement tomorrow," he said. "But we have a special session with some important issues in front of us. We're going to pass some restrictions on abortion inTexas so that Texas is a place where we defend life ...That's the powerful message here. And that's what we're focused on. Politics will take care of itself."

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The chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board went on CNN's State of the Union the morning to update the nation after a Boeing 777 crash landed at San Francisco International Airport. "When we went out there last night and took a look at the aircraft, you can see the devastation from the outside of of the aircraft — the burn through, the damage to the external fuselage. What you can't see is the damage internally, and that is really striking," Deborah Hersman said. She explained what the long investigation into the crash will have to include. "We're going to have to corroborate a lot of information: the radar data, the ATC information and the flight data recorder parameters and also interview the pilots," she said. Hersman also defended the NTSB's due dilligence approach to make sure they come to correct answers. "It's really important to put all you have the pieces of the puzzle together, to not just understand what happened, but understand why it happened so we can prevent accidents like this occurring in the future."

Rep. Mike Rogers, the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, thinks the U.S. should suspend economic support to Egypt, at least temporarily, before ultimately renewing that support, he revealed on State of the Union. Rogers said the U.S. should "not try to circumvent the law by calling this something it is not," referring to the military takeover in Egypt. The U.S. cannot support any government seized in a coup d'etat. But the Muslim Bortherhood was "using the instruments of democracy to try to Islam-Islamize" Egypt, Rogers said. "The irony of us not following the law after the Egyptian crisis would be too much to handle," he continued. "I do believe the law is very clear on this." But Rogers thinks the President needs to pitch the House and Senate about funding Egypt in the future, coup d'etat or not. "The president should come to Congress and make the case — I think there's a great case to be made here...that we should continue to support the military, the one stabilizing force in Egypt, that I think can temper down the political feuding that you're seeing going on now, and then help a process that will allow for multiple factions of parties and beliefs to participate," Rogers said. 

Meanwhile, Sen. John McCain said President Mohammed Morsi's ouster was clearly a coup and that the U.S. must suspend funding immediately. Also, it was a failure of American leadership, he said on Face the Nation. "It was a coup, and it was the second time in two-and-a-half years that we have seen the military step in. It's a strong indicator of the lack of American leadership and influence since we've urged the military not to do that," McCain said. The Arizona Republican admitted it was a messy issue but that, ultimately, the U.S. should suspend aid until there's a free election and a new constitution in place. "Reluctantly, I believe that we have to suspend aid until such time as there is a new constitution and a free and fair election. We can't -- Morsi was a terrible president," McCain said. "Their economy is in terrible shape thanks to their policies but the fact is the United States should not be supporting this coup and it's a tough call." McCain then went ot explain how every problem plaguing the Middle East is the fault of a lack of American leadership. "The place is descending into chaos but so is the entire Middle East because of the total vacuum and lack of American leadership," McCain said. "Whether it be the massacres in Syria; Lebanon is beset by sectarian violence; Jordan is about to collapse under the weight of refugees; Iraq is unraveling; Afghanistan -- we're having grave problems organizing a follow on force in Afghanistan." See, America is the only country in the world who can make decisions about these things, he explained.  "America has not led and, America is not leading. And when America doesn't lead, bad things happen and other people do lead and Egypt is just one segment of a failure of American leadership over the last five years and we need to start being leaders rather than bystanders," McCain said.

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