"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance

 and a people who mean to be their own governors

 must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

Monday, June 25, 2007

Doing What Menendez Does Best - Playing Politics And Raising Money

New Jersey Senator Bob Menendez continues to push his personal story of victimhood. Last week it was in the Star-ledger. This week in a piece by the New York Times:

Mr. Menendez recently challenged a colleague on the floor of the Senate for referring to immigrants as “those people” and said he was personally insulted.

“I’ve heard ‘those people’ before,” he said. “I understand what that means. It’s not abstract.”
Here’s the transcript of the exchange from page S7136 of the Congressional Record of June 6, 2007 between Menendez and Senator Jon Kyl, the chief Republican proponent of the immigration reform bill:

Mr. KYL: It was not easy for some people to agree to allow at least 12 million immigrants who came to this country illegally to stay here and eventually become citizens. That was not easy. One of the bases upon which we were able to do that was to respond to an argument that had frequently been made: Why should we let all those people, is the way it is described, become U.S. citizens and then chain migrate all their family—their uncles, cousins, grandparents, and so on?

Mr. MENENDEZ: One point. Remember how the Senator from Arizona said how all ‘‘those people’’ would be able to claim their families. The Menendez amendment has nothing to do with ‘‘those people.’’ The Menendez amendment has everything to do with U.S. citizens today who have a right under the law. So I hope we do not confuse both of those.

Mr. KYL: Mr. President, I say to the Senator from New Jersey that what he said, as far as he said it, is, of course, exactly correct. What I was talking about was the tradeoff that existed between the accommodation to the 12 million people and--by the way, I don't use that phrase ``those people .'' I hope the Senator understands that I was referring to the criticism of those who say we shouldn't allow the illegal immigrants in the country, especially if we chain migrate their families.
Times reporter, Raymond Hernandez, should have checked the record and called Menendez on it, but he does offer this observation:

Yet as Mr. Menendez tries to remake his image, he finds it hard to avoid being pulled back into what he is known for doing best: playing politics and raising money.
Representing taxpayers and citizens of New Jersey? No, Menendez is looking to “advance his policy objectives” with your tax money. Playing the victim is part of his act.

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