July 30, 2014

Sasse says Obama could end migration of unaccompanied minors

Republican United States Senate candidate Ben Sasse says the immigration problem that has brought nearly 60,000 Central American children to America illegally can be solved.

Sasse says too many families in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala believe if they can get their children to America they will automatically receive amnesty.

“That’s not true and President Obama could fix it and could stop the bleeding and he’s passive in this,” Sasse tells Kevin Thomas, host of Drive Time Lincoln on Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN. “He should get on a plane and fly to Honduras and Guatemala and make a speech and clarify that there’s no automatic amnesty for a kid to arrive here and their parents will stop sending them. This is a soluble problem and our president is just way too passive.”

Sasse is critical of the president for taking time to raise money for Democratic candidates, rather than aggressively addressing the border crisis.

“His job is not to be a partisan fundraiser full-time. He should be solving problems like this. This is a place where his pen and his phone, mainly his megaphone, could fix a problem,” Sasse says. “He could go to Central America and he could make a speech and people would understand that this 94% misperception, that anybody who arrives at the U.S. southern border now gets automatic citizenship, he could fix it. I don’t know why he doesn’t do it.”

Sasse refers to the U.S. El Paso Intelligence Center report that 94% of the minors traveling to the United States unaccompanied by adults say they believe the United States will grant them amnesty, then allow their families to receive citizenship to the U.S.

Sasse dismisses claims that violence in Central America has driven the children to seek sanction here.

“Nothing new is happening with their violence to drive these migrations,” according to Sasse. “What’s driving migration is an assumption that you get automatic amnesty. President Obama could fix it and he should. It is an executive function.”

Sasse has been critical of the president in the past for his frequent use of executive orders, which Sasse has characterized as presidential overreach. On this issue, the president has the power and the right to use executive action and he should use it, according to Sasse.

Party candidates claim they don’t mind competition in US Senate race (AUDIO)

Our choices for United States Senate have expanded and those representing the traditional choices claim they don’t mind.

Not one, but two independent candidates have made the November ballot for United States Senate. Jim Jenkins of Callaway was the first to qualify after submitting more than enough signatures to make the ballot. He was followed by Todd Watson of Lincoln, who also submitted more than the threshold needed to place his name before voters.

Nebraska voters now can vote for the Republican nominee, Ben Sasse, the Democratic nominate, Dave Domina, or one of two independents.

Both Sasse and Domina claim they don’t mind the competition.

Sasse says he understands voter unrest and their inclination to break tradition.

“And I think they’re fed up with both parties and I am as well and I think that is some of what you see in voters saying, ‘Give us more choices, because we’re sick with business as usual our of both of those DC parties,” Sasse tells Kevin Thomas, host of Drive Time Lincoln on Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN.

As for Domina, he claims to welcome the additions.

“The more choices people have, the more points of view we have, and the more thorough the debate, the better, frankly,” Domina tells Nebraska Radio Network.

All seek to replace Sen. Mike Johanns, a Republican, stepping down from public office.

AUDIO:  Brent Martin reports [:45]

Anti-gambling group files suit to keep historic horse racing off ballot

An anti-gambling group wants historic horse racing thrown off the November ballot.

Gambling with the Good Life Executive Director Pat Loontjer says the group has filed a lawsuit, contending the issue placed on the ballot by legislators violates the state constitution.

“We feel that it’s blatantly unconstitutional. It violates the single-subject rule and it needs to go,” Loontjer tells Nebraska Radio Network affiliate KLIN.

Loontjer contends the proposal asks voters two questions: whether a new form of gambling should be approved and how proceeds from the races should be spent. The state constitution limits ballot issues to one subject.

“By constitution, you can only ask the voter one question at a time. This paragraph, in ballot language, is asking at least two questions and really many more.”

State legislators placed the issue on the ballot. It would allow betting on historic horse races at the state’s five licensed tracks in Omaha, Lincoln, Hastings, Grand Island, and Columbus. Historic horse racing replays videos of past races with enough information withheld to conceal the outcome.

Loontjer insists the legislature put too much into one measure.

“It’s asking the voters to say yes to expanded gambling, in the form of horse slots, and also it’s asking the voters how the money should be spent if there is any moneys left,” according to Loontjer. “And that’s two subjects. It needs to be split into two different questions.”

Supporters of the measure see it as vital to keeping horse racing viable in Nebraska.

Jane Monnich, KLIN, contributed to this article.

Another independent qualifies for US Senate ballot in November

We have another independent candidate for United States Senate.

The Secretary of State’s office reports Todd Watson of Lincoln has qualified for the November ballot, joining Jim Jenkins as alternative candidates to those nominated by the two major political parties.

More than 4,000 signatures for Watson to be placed on the ballot have been verified.

Watson submitted more than 5,000 signatures. Independent candidates need at least 4,000 signatures of registered Nebraska voters to qualify for ballot status. At least 750 of those signatures must come from each of the state’s three congressional districts.

Watson and Jenkins will be listed on the November ballot as “by petition”. They will join Republican Ben Sasse and Democrat Dave Domina on the November 4th ballot.

U.S. Sen. Mike Johanns, a Republican, decided to retire rather than run for re-election.

Congressman Terry: emotional release to not have Maxwell in the race

Congressman Lee Terry expressed surprise and relief at the announcement by independent candidate Chip Maxwell that he would drop out of the race and not challenge Terry this fall.

Maxwell, a supporter of the Tea Party, collected the needed signatures to get his name on the November ballot, but decided to exit the race instead.  Maxwell says he became concerned that if his name appeared on the ballot, it would divide the Republican vote leaving Democrat Brad Ashford with the advantage in the race.

Congressman Terry reacted with overall relief at Maxwell’s announcement, “I’ve always considered Chip as a friend so it is an emotional release for me not to have Chip in the race.”

Before the primary election, Maxwell stated he would not endorse Terry and backed his opponent, Dan Frei.

Terry says while he wasn’t exactly pleased with those comments, he chalked them up to politics and insists he didn’t take them personally. He says he hopes to work with Maxwell in the future on important issues that impact Nebraskans.

Terry says he is also pleased it will be more of a traditional election in November. He believes that voters will judge both candidates on their track record.