NCDP Clips for Tuesday, January 29, 2013


CBS NEWS – Back on the road, Obama to push immigration reform
When President Obama hits the stage at Del Sol High School in Las Vegas today to talk about immigration reform, he’ll be employing a tactic that he’s made standard practice: Rallying public support for a challenging policy agenda.
This time, however, the situation is a bit different: Unlike issues such as health care reform or tackling the deficit, the subject of immigration reform has lately inspired a significant level of cooperation and agreement. A group of eight senators yesterday unveiled a blueprint for comprehensive immigration reform legislation that they called "a major breakthrough."

THE WASHINGTON POST – Obama to announce his immigration reform plan, said to be more liberal than Senate effort
The Obama administration has developed its own proposals for immigration reform that are more liberal than a separate bipartisan effort in the Senate, including a quicker path to citizenship for illegal immigrants, people with knowledge of the proposals said.
President Obama is expected to provide some details of the White House plans during a Tuesday appearance in Las Vegas, where he will call for broad changes to the nation’s immigration laws. The speech will kick off a public push by the administration in support of the broadest overhaul of immigration law in nearly three decades.

THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER – In N.C., immigration plan receives mixed reviews
As a bipartisan group of U.S. senators released more details Monday about their plan for overhauling the nation’s immigration laws, individuals on both sides of the debate in North Carolina offered mixed reviews.
Lacey Williams, the youth program manager for the Charlotte-based Latin American Coalition, said she was “cautiously optimistic” about the proposal.
“It’s not quite far reaching enough,” she said. “But it is nice to see people of different political backgrounds coming together and actually doing something.”


THE NEWS & OBSERVER – McCrory wants to revamp higher ed funding — takes aim at UNC-Chapel Hill
Gov. Pat McCrory said he would propose legislation to overhaul the way higher education is funded in North Carolina, putting the emphasis on job creation not liberal arts and taking specific aim at the state’s flagship university.
"I think some of the educational elite have taken over our education where we are offering courses that have no chance of getting people jobs," McCrory told conservative talk show host Bill Bennett, the former education secretary for President Ronald Reagan, during an interview Tuesday morning.
McCrory echoed a crack the radio show host made at gender studies courses at UNC-Chapel Hill, a top tier public university. "That’s a subsidized course," McCrory said, picking up the argument. "If you want to take gender studies that’s fine, go to a private school and take it. But I don’t want to subsidize that if that’s not going to get someone a job."
The Republican governor said he instructed his staff Monday to draft legislation that would change how much state money universities and community colleges receive "not based on how many butts in seats but how many of those butts can get jobs."
"Right now we pay based on how many students you have, not how many jobs you are getting people into," he said.


THE CHARLOTTE OBSERVER – Democratic National Convention economic impact: $163.6 million
September’s Democratic National Convention injected $91 million in new spending into the local economy, for a total economic impact of nearly $164 million, according to a consultant’s report released Monday.
The three-day DNC was the city’s largest convention and its most lucrative, local leaders said during a news conference Monday. More than one in five dollars poured into the local economy came from the federal government, through a security grant.
“This is the most direct spending in the history of Charlotte,” said Tom Murray, chief executive of the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority


THE FAYETTEVILLE OBSERVER – North Carolina General Assembly’s chance for openness
Brent Laurenz – The state legislature will reconvene Wednesday in Raleigh to begin this year’s legislative work in earnest after holding a brief, one-day session to elect officers and adopt rules earlier this month. Interestingly, approximately one-third of the entire legislature will be serving their first term. That makes for a lot of new faces in the House and Senate, and maybe a lot of people unfamiliar with the old way of doing things.
The old way of doing things, both when Democrats and Republicans were in charge, too often meant the legislature conducted its business behind closed doors or in the dead of night, away from the pesky, prying eyes of voters who sent them there. Perhaps the most infamous occasion during the last biennium was the "midnight session" in January of 2012.

THE WASHINGTON POST – Can the rising progressive tide lift all ships?
Katrina vanden Heuvel – The growing progressive coalition that helped elect President Obama has emerged at the end of a failed and exhausted conservative era. The media now chronicle the flailings of Republican leaders slowly awakening to the weaknesses of a stale, pale and predominantly male party in today’s America.
But the central challenge to this progressive coalition is not dispatching the old but rather defining what comes next. Will it be able to address the central challenge facing America at this time and reclaim the American Dream from an extreme and corrosive economic inequality?


Clay Pittman
Press Secretary
North Carolina Democratic Party
Twitter: @ClayPittman