Things That Matter

People Are Wanting To #ImpeachJoaquinCastro After He Tweeted Out A List Of San Antonio’s Top Trump Donors

joaquincastrotx / Instagram

In case you missed it, Democratic Presidential candidate Julian Castro’s twin brother Joaquin Castro recently tweeted out an image listing San Antonio’s top Trump 2020 campaign donors and their employers. He wanted people to know who is financially contributing to “a campaign of hate that labels Hispanic immigrants as ‘invaders.'”The GOP is outraged, with Donald Trump Jr. appearing on television to compare Castro’s tweet to a “hit list.” 

Twitter almost immediately saw #ImpeachJoaquinCastro begin trending and there’s a strange reason why. Joaquin Castro is a member of the U.S. House of Representatives for Texas’ 20th district, San Antonio. It would take a recall election to get him out of office. This story is about as over-the-top as anything Univision could ever put out.

Two days after the El Paso shooting, Joaquin released Trump’s “max” donors from San Antonio.

Credit: @Castro4Congress / Twitter

According to federal finance laws, the maximum individuals can donate to a single campaign per election is $2,800. Any donation that adds up to more than $200 must be reported to the FEC, which is then published on the FEC’s website. 

Most of the donors are retired, but many of them are business owners in the San Antonio area, and that’s important. Many folks choose to vote with their dollars and pocketbooks. It shouldn’t be anything surprising because, well, all political donations are public. It is easy to access records of who donates to what politician. As such, these claims that publishing this information is dangerous is inaccurate since it is already public record.

His tweet sparked a slew of outrage, largely from the GOP.

Credit: @ReenbeanAZ / Twitter

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy tweeted, “Targeting and harassing Americans because of their political beliefs is shameful and dangerous. What happened to ‘When they go low, we go high?’ Or does that no longer matter when your brother is polling at 1%? Americans deserve better.”

That said, Kevin McCarthy believes the problem was that the El Paso shooter just played too many video games.

Joaquin didn’t disclose any new information. He just collected the information that’s relevant to his district.

Democrats and other folks who know a thing or do about civics are pointing out that Castro literally just tweeted out public information. Anyone can find that information because it’s published in a public government database as a means to offer transparency to voters.

Castro isn’t taking the bait.

Credit: @madisonviger / Twitter

Because that’s what it appears to be. In a tweet, Castro called McCarthy out for “trying to distract from the racism that has overtaken the GOP and the fact that President Trump spends donor money on thousands of ads about Hispanics “invading” America.” He also tweeted, “No one was targeted or harassed in my post. You know that. All that info is routinely published.”

Castro will stop talking about campaign donors when Trump stops using their money for “ads that fuel hate.”

Credit: @joaquincastrotx / Twitter

Seems reasonable. Straight up, pastors are tweeting their support for Castro’s actions. “Congressman Joaquin Castro did exactly what democracy demands in releasing public information about donors to Donald Trump: he brought light to a dark place,” tweeted Rev. Dr. Chuck Currie. “Thank you, @JoaquinCastrotx We need to stand united against hate and bigotry.”

In a now-deleted tweet, Trump incorrectly spelled Joaquin Castro’s name all while unleashing condescending attacks on the guy.

Credit: @peterdaou / Twitter

We’re cringing. Trump republished his incorrect sentiments with his misspellings corrected. More shocking than all of this is that some of the campaign donors were max donors to Joaquin Castro as well. Castro put his own campaign on the line to shed light on Trump’s. One donor, William Greehey, donated the max amount to Castro’s congressional campaign in 2013. Greehey also funded his own $100 million into a homeless campus project that largely serves Latinos.

A bot-tracking platform has determined that the hashtag #ImpeachJoaquinCastro was amplified by troll bots.

Credit: @cbouzy / Twitter

The hashtag was likely started by someone who doesn’t understand government and then amplified by bots who are seeking to destabilize our own government. It’s both laughable and alarming. We’re in a novela.

This Twitter user said they were getting calls from Russia and Ukraine.

Credit: @geanpaulojeda / Twitter

Eek. Someone with a lot of power called Russian interference a “hoax.” We have to remain vigilant of the information we’re receiving. According to Bot Sentinel, this user is not a bot. 

While there is a lot of hype around this story, the objective truth is that Joaquin Castro shared public information in an effort to protect Latinos from further hate crimes.

Credit: @EricWolfson / Twitter

Campaign donors are aware that their name and employer will be made public on a federal database. In a new political climate that offers little to no accountability for hate speech, perhaps now its time for Trump donors to be held accountable as well.

READ: We Now Have A Better Look At What Migrants Are Facing In Detention Centers Thanks To Joaquin Castro And A Secret Camera

The Bernie Sanders Campaign Did The Right Thing By Letting DACA Recipients Write His Immigration Policy

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The Bernie Sanders Campaign Did The Right Thing By Letting DACA Recipients Write His Immigration Policy

Ethan Miller / Getty Images

Democratic candidates are in full spring when it comes to releasing their policies and platforms on issues like gun control, climate change and health care, ahead of the 2020 election. One of the most divisive issues in the country right now is immigration and the legal battle over DACA. 

Many Democratic candidates have already released immigration policy plans that would allow  Dreamers, undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally by their guardians, a legal pathway to citizenship.  Just this week, we got a preview of what Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and his campaign team will be rolling in terms of immigration policy. 

Here’s what we know so far about the Sanders immigration plan that will be released “soon.”

In an interview with Hill TV, Belén Sisa, the campaign press secretary, made an announcement that the senator’s 2020 campaign will be releasing an immigration plan in the near future. The policy will be shaped by herself and two other staffers who are undocumented immigrants and recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. 

“We know that we can do better and I think that’s the greatest part of all, is that we have people who are experiencing these struggles that are taking part in that plan,” Sisa told Hill TV about the staffers and people outside the organization that are having input on the plan. 

Sisa, who is a DACA recipient, has been vocal about the expired program and other issues important to the immigrant community. She graduated from Arizona State University in 2018 where she was involved in multiple protests in favor of DACA and abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). 

It’s this commitment and well-documented track record in sticking up for immigrant rights from campaign staffers that Sisa says makes the Sanders campaign stand out from other candidates. 

Credit: @belensisaw / Twitter

According to Sisa, the campaign is going above and beyond when it comes to recruiting volunteers and senior-level staffers that come from the Latino community in the U.S. These recruitment efforts are being conducted through Spanish webinars for those people who are interested in being part of the campaign but can’t speak English. 

“It’s not just about ads, it’s not just about trying to knock on their door right before the primary,” Sisa said. “It’s about putting people who look like them on the campaign, it’s about making them feel like they’re capable.”

While we might not know too much about the entire Sanders’ immigration policy plan, a campaign page for the senator does give some clues. The page indicates that Sanders would grant amnesty to DACA recipients. His campaign would also look to create “a humane policy for those seeking asylum.” 

“Today, we say to the American people that instead of demonizing the undocumented immigrants in this country, we’re going to pass comprehensive immigration reform and provide a path toward citizenship. We’re going to provide legal status to the 1.8 million young people eligible for the DACA program and develop a humane border policy for those who seek asylum. No more snatching babies from the arms of their mothers.” the page reads.

Sanders would also plan to close down all migrant holding centers because of the “barbaric practice of family separation and detention of children in cages.” He also says that proper “independent oversight of relevant agencies within DHS” would be implemented. 

As we await the Sanders campaign immigration plan, we are also looking toward this fall where the Supreme Court is set to decide the future of DACA. 

Credit: @realdonaldtrump / Twitter

The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments this fall that will effectively decide the future of the Obama-era program. The Trump administration has made the argument that the program is unlawful and has questioned the overall legality of it.  

On Friday morning, President Trump tweeted about DACA and the pending case with the Supreme Court that will surely have an effect on the 2020 election. He hinted that if the Supreme Court does indeed end the program, a bipartisan deal would be made between Democrats and Republicans.  

“DACA will be going before the Supreme Court. It is a document that even President Obama didn’t feel he had the legal right to sign – he signed it anyway! Rest assured that if the SC does what all say it must, based on the law, a bipartisan deal will be made to the benefit of all!” Trump tweeted

As more polices are rolled out by presidential candidates, we can only wait and see what unfolds between now and November when it comes to DACA and immigration.  

READ: Arizona’s Republican Governor Applauds New Rule Giving DACA Students Discount On College Tuition

He Was Convicted Of Racial Profiling But Now America’s ‘Toughest Sheriff’ Is Running For His Old Job

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He Was Convicted Of Racial Profiling But Now America’s ‘Toughest Sheriff’ Is Running For His Old Job

Gage Skidmore / Flickr

Self-proclaimed “toughest sheriff in America,” Joe Arpaio, is trying to make his comeback two years after he was pardoned by President Trump for illegal racial profiling of Latinos. 

Former Maricopa County Sheriff, failed U.S. Senate candidate, and habitual abuser of power Joe Arpaio announced he will run to regain his old office in 2020.

Former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio on Sunday announced he would seek another term as sheriff of Maricopa County, two years after President Donald Trump pardoned him. He had been convicted on charges of criminal contempt related to the hard-line tactics he used to crack down on undocumented immigrants.

“After consultation and approval from my wife of 61 years, Ava, I have decided to run to be reelected sheriff,” Arpaio said in a news release Sunday. “Watch out world! We are back!”

“I will continue to stand and fight to do the right thing for Arizona and America, and will never surrender,” he said. “Those who break the law will have to deal with this Sheriff.”

Arpaio and his posse of deputies became famous for illegal and racist policies targeting Latinos.

Arpaio was notorious for using large-scale sweeps of Latino neighborhoods and traffic stops of Latino drivers to round up illegal immigrants. The sweeps drained resources from his department and were abhorred by civil liberties advocates and immigration groups, but they brought the publicity-seeking sheriff to national attention.

In a statement accompanying his tweet, Arpaio said he would reopen his tent city jail and resume immigration enforcement.

“I will continue to stand and fight to do the right thing for Arizona and America, and will never surrender,” Arpaio said in the statement. “Those who break the law will have to deal with this Sheriff.”

Arpaio was first elected sheriff of Maricopa County, Arizona, in 1993 and held the office until he was defeated in 2016. He styled himself as “the toughest sheriff in America” and became known for his “tent city” jail, where inmates wearing old-timey striped uniforms were held in tents in the brutal desert heat.

In a tweet, Arpaio said he already had the backing of “thousands.”

“Thousands want me to run for Sheriff,” Arpaio, 87, announced in a tweet Sunday. “Ready for bruising, bitter campaign. Never back down.”

Following several lawsuits, Arpaio was convicted of unlawful policing techniques and faced six months in prison.

In 2011, the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division released a report finding that the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office “engages in racial profiling of Latinos; unlawfully stops, detains, and arrests Latinos; and unlawfully retaliates against individuals who complain about or criticize MCSO’s policies or practices.” 

For the next five years, Arpaio continued to flout orders by federal judges to improve the conditions inside his jails and cease the unconstitutional racial profiling of Latinos, leading to him being found guilty of both civil and criminal contempt of court in 2017.

Arpaio was also a vocal Trump supporter, and a month after his conviction, Trump returned the favor and pardoned Arpaio.

In fact, Joe Arpaio was one of the first politicians to step forward to support the campaign of then-candidate Trump. Arpaio is also a committed birther.

His “Cold Case Posse,” conducted in partnership with the far-right website WorldNetDaily, spent much of the Obama administration “investigating” the authenticity of the president’s birth certificate.

Reactions on Twitter have been overwhelmingly negative.

Even people in his home state don’t want anything to do with Arpaio. 

Many in his home state are still upset because they’re on the hook as taxpayers paying for his illegal activities.

In 2014, a report noted in Reason that Arpaio’s office “has also been guilty of a litany of shenanigans, including stealing documents from a defense attorney, arresting critical journalists, spying on political opponents—and maintaining such lousy jail conditions that they violate inmates’ rights.”

In 2016, after years of scandals and millions upon millions of dollars in lawsuit settlements, voters replaced Arpaio with a Democrat candidate. Let’s hope they make the right decision in 2020.