posted at 1:36 pm on July 13, 2010 by Ed Morrissey
How many different ways can the immigration debate backfire on Democrats? Harry Reid may have invented a new way to shoot himself in the foot. When confronted by the CBS affiliate in Las Vegas over Reid’s block of a vote to require e-Verify for construction workers, Reid offered the standard platitude that immigration enforcement can’t be done “piecemeal” but has to wait for an overhaul of laws to replace the laws that the federal government doesn’t feel like enforcing. When pressed on the topic by the reporter, Reid insists that there are no illegal workers in Nevada (via the Boss Emeritus):
The report doesn’t offer the big quote from the interview, however (emphasis mine):
REPORTER: Why didn’t you allow for a vote?
REID: That’s the reason we need to do comprehensive immigration reform. We cannot do it piecemeal.
REPORTER: You go to the unemployment office, though, and there’s many US citizens who are unemployed construction workers and they don’t have specific jobs because, right now, some of those construction companies find it easier to hire undocumented workers.
REID: I think that any information you have in that regard is absolutely without foundation
VOICEOVER: We told Senator Reid of a Pew Hispanic Center study showing 17% of all construction workers are here illegally.
REID: That may be someplace, but it’s not here in Nevada.
VOICEOVER: But their latest 2009 numbers show that Nevada is the state with the highest percentage of unauthorized immigrants in the labor force.
Byron York gives us a great whodunit today, and actually a second Obamateurism of the Day. In his speech on Tuesday, Obama defended his earlier decision to expand off-shore drilling because he had been told that such activity was “absolutely safe.” If Obama actually believed that, then a few people would like to sell him a bridge or two:
There was one particularly striking moment in President Obama’s widely panned Oval Office speech on the Gulf oil disaster. About midway through his talk, Obama acknowledged that he had approved new offshore drilling a few weeks before the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion on April 20. But Obama said he had done so only “under the assurance that it would be absolutely safe.”
Absolutely safe? Even before the Gulf spill, few defenders of offshore drilling would go that far. And when the president announced his drilling plan, on March 31, he said it was “not a decision that I’ve made lightly” and that he and his advisers had “looked at [it] closely for more than a year.” Surely he was told of the possible risks.
posted at 5:30 pm on June 6, 2010 by Ed Morrissey
Perhaps Helen Thomas hoped that her apology would suffice in tamping down the furor over her videotaped rant telling the Jews to “get the hell out of Palestine.” It turns out that even her own agents didn’t buy it. Nine Speaker announced that it has dropped Thomas as a client, while Lanny Davis blasted the doyenne of the White House Press Corps as “an anti-Semitic bigot”:
Senior White House Press Corps member Helen Thomas may have apologized for her recent on-camera remarks calling on Jews to “get the hell out of Palestine” and go home to Europe, but her reputation seems beyond repair amid the abounding calls for her resignation.
In the wake of the incident, Thomas’ agent Nine Speaker Inc. announced that it would no longer represent her.
“It is with a heavy heart that Nine Speakers Inc. announces its resignation as the agent for Helen Thomas, Dean of the White House Press Corps,” wrote Diane Nine, agency president.
“Ms. Thomas has had an esteemed career as a journalist, and she has been a trailblazer for women, helping others in her profession, and beyond. However, in light of recent events, Nine Speakers is no longer able to represent Ms. Thomas, nor can we condone her comments on the Middle East,” wrote Nine.