The Trump Administration, along with many Republican legislators, are still looking for “creative” ways to get funding for the border wall. Even though it appears President Donald Trump has sort of forgotten about it — at least according to his budget outline — there’s still a couple of go-getters who think they have the solution to bring in the big bucks for the big wall.
Now, Mike Rogers, a Republican congressman from Alabama, is proposing a bill that would enforce a remittance tax and use those funds towards building the border wall. So, basically, money being sent to other countries via wire transfers from the United States would have an additional tax. Guess who sends the most money from the United States to other countries: LATINOS.
Mexico gets the biggest chunk of change from United States citizens, documented and otherwise. The World Bank reports that the remittance flows in 2015 for Mexico was $28.5 billion.
The World Bank has stated that remittance tax is not good for a variety of reasons. One of them is that it affects the poorest communities.
“Since the income of migrants has, in principle, already been taxed in the host country, taxing remittances amounts to double taxation for tax-paying migrants,” Dilip Ratha, lead economist at the World Bank, writes. “Since remittances are usually sent to poor families of migrants, the tax would be born ultimately by them and therefore it is likely to be highly regressive.”
Ratha also states that even if this bill is approved, migrants will find other creative ways to get money back to their people in Mexico.
Just when we thought Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D–N.Y.) couldn’t shake up the D.C. scene more than she already has, it turns out the congresswoman has a new trick up her sleeve.
Earlier this year in January, news surfaced that the congresswoman had adopted a French bulldog by the name of Deco. In a post to her Instagram page, the progressive Democrat welcomed the pup into the world with a post writing “Hey boo boo! Hi, welcome to our family.”
Now it turns out, AOC’s new pup is meant for the community, so you might have a chance to hang with him if you’re in his side of the hood
Responding to a question on Twitter about whether she intended to bring the dog to work, AOC said Deco is meant to be a dog about town.
“The goal is to train him to be a community pup,” she shared in a post that featured him taking a nap in her lap. “Ideally we want to work to the point where he can enjoy town halls, be an Amtrak pup, come to the office, etc. But first, naps.”
According to People.com, AOC’s new Frenchie had been nameless for a few weeks and the congresswoman eagerly collected name suggestions from her followers on twitter.
“He doesn’t have a name yet!,” Ocasio wrote in an Instagram in January. “We are thinking something Star Trek-related or Bronx/Queens/NYC/social good related.”
Ultimately Ocasio-Cortez did pick a name from suggested from her community.
“As we took [the dog] for a walk…a neighbor suggested we name him after an artist,” AOC explained in an Instagram story. Ultimately the congresswoman and her boyfriend Riley decided to not go for an artist’s name but one inspired by the early 20th-century art deco movement. “We loved the idea, and decided to name him after one of Riley & I’s favorite design styles: Art Deco — which also is inspired by themes of optimism & social and technological progress, and is a fixture in iconic NYC architecture,” she later explained said.
Turns out, AOC’s new French is rocketing to stardom just like his mother.
Earlier this week, Representative Ayanna Pressley (D–Mass.) shared a photo of herself hanging out with Deco for the very first time and used it as a chance to hype up AOC.
“Making the Capitol better one puppy snuggle at a time: @AOC & Deco,” Pressley tweeted in a post
President Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union address on Feb. 4. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tore up her copy of the speech and conservative radio personalist Rush Limbaugh being awarded the Presidential Medal of Honor. There were also several responses to the SOTU, including Representative Veronica Escobar, who delivered her rebuttal in Spanish.
President Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union on Tuesday night.
Fact-checkers have combed through the speech and determined the lies and misleading information peppered throughout. The speech, according to NowThis, contained one lie every 2.5 minutes. The SOTU made the news for multiple reasons, but most notably, people have been talking about Nancy Pelosi tearing up a copy of President Trump’s speech.
Democrats have taken their time responding to Trump on social media.
Senator Chuck Schumer took to the Senate floor on Feb. 5 to address one inaccuracy he found in President Trump’s SOTU. The New York senator called out Trump on his claims of the growing economy is his own. While the Trump administration has seen economic growth, charts and trends show the positive nature of the economy to be residual effects of Obama’s policies that wrangled in the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
One response to President Trump’s SOTU was from Rep. Veronica Escobar.
Rep. Escobar, who represented Texas’s 16th congressional district, delivered a SOTU response in Spanish to include more people in the conversation. There are 32 million Latinos who are eligible to vote in the upcoming presidential election. A large number of Latino voters are concentrated in California, New Mexico, and Texas.
Rep. Escobar used the beginning of her speech to address the need for accessible and affordable healthcare.
Rep. Escobar delivered her SOTU response from the El Centro de Salud Familiar La Fe, a clinic that serves her community in El Paso. The representative used the setting to address the attack on health clinics by the Trump administration. Rep. Escobar highlighted the Republicans claiming that they are fighting to protect Americans’ healthcare but their actions say otherwise. In the House of Representatives, 183 Republicans voted to block legislation that protected coverage from healthcare providers for pre-existing conditions.
Even people who do not support the Affordable Care Act have found some common ground with the representative.
“Democrats are fighting back. In the first year of our House Majority, Democrats passed sweeping legislation to dramatically reduce the price of prescription drugs, shore up protections for people with pre-existing conditions and crack down on shoddy short-term health insurance plans – what we call ‘junk plans,’” Escobar said in her response.
“In contrast to the Republicans, we know that health care is a right for all, not a privilege for the few.”
The representative also spoke about the tragic El Paso shooting that rocked the Latino community.
Rep. Escobar used the moment to address the contentious debate on gun control raging between the two parties.
“On August 3rd of last year, El Paso suffered from the deadliest targeted attack against Latinos in American history,” Rep. Escobar said during her speech. “A domestic terrorist confessed to driving over 10 hours to target Mexicans and immigrants. Just before he began his killing spree, he posted his views online and used hateful language like the very words used by President Trump to describe immigrants and Latinos.”
“That day, the killer took 22 innocent lives, injured dozens, and broke all of our hearts.”
“Incidents of gun violence take place in our schools, places of worship and neighborhoods every single day.”
“Democrats understand that this is a matter of life and death. As one of our first actions, our Majority passed legislation that would strengthen background checks and save lives, which is supported by an overwhelming majority of the public.”
Latinos were appreciative to hear a response to the SOTU address in their native language.
A study by Latino Decisions found that the use of Spanish-language ads increases voter turnout. In markets with Spanish-language ads, the number of Latinos who turned out to vote increased from 49.8 percent to 60.2 percent. The study also showed that 68 percent of people relied on Spanish-language news or ads on a daily and weekly basis.