Sunday, January 29, 2006

Ike Skelton - Poster Child for What is Wrong in Politics

Ike Skelton is an old-time, southern Missouri Democrat. In today's Kansas City Star, he voiced the heart of political darkness - the primal source of corruption and the triumph of scandal over idealism.
The first job of a statesman is to get elected,” said the Fourth District Democrat . . . “The second job is to get re-elected.
No, you corrupt vacuum of decency! Your first job is to serve the United States of America. Your second job is to serve your constituents.

I suspect that Ike Skelton has only voiced what most of our elected public servants really feel. But I promise to support any credible candidate, republican, democrat or third party, who challenges Ike Skelton. He has stated quite clearly that he is out for himself first, and second. Missourians deserve better than third place in the hearts and heads of their representatives in Congress.

11 Comments:

Anonymous anonymous me said...

It's reality, my friend, in both parties. Parties exist to win elections, not serve high moral ideals. After all, one can only serve the public if one is elected in the first place. As long as human beings are human beings, this is the way it will be, and no amount of structural reform will ever change it. It's the nature of the beast.

Remember, too, the story is purely about politics, and the realities of dollars to fund campaigning. Whether Skelton serves the US or his constituents is not part of the story; he may, in fact, serve his constituents quite well, but that's not a focus of the story. Keep in mind the writer of the story picked one line out of what may have been a much more substantial interview - and be careful assuming too much from that one line. I don't follow MO politics that much (KS guy) so I don't know much about Skelton or his district; you may.

Just a thought.

1/30/2006 8:58 AM  
Anonymous Rhymes With Right said...

Need I remind you, my friend, that there is an essential truth in what Ike Skelton says -- one that is implicit in what was printed (and may have been explicit in what was cut) -- in order to become a statesman, one must be elected and re-elected to acquire the standing and seniority necessary to become a statesman.

How do you do that? Service to country and constituents, always focussed upon the greater good.

1/30/2006 5:40 PM  
Blogger antimedia said...

It doesn't have to be reality. We, the voters, can change it. Rhymes with right, your point is well taken, but on the other hand, if a politician's first love is the Constitution and his second is his constituents, then elections should take care of themselves.

1/30/2006 9:49 PM  
Anonymous JW said...

I think Ike was just pointing out the real problem with our folks in Washington. That's the real root of this lobbying scandal, and why no amount of lobby reform will solve the problem. Politicians need to be re-elected, and people handing out money facilitate that, so that's why they get time with the Reps. Term limits would do a lot of good in this area... remove the need for re-election. Just go to do some good...

1/30/2006 11:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vote 3rd Party, Maidment 2006 for district 4.

3/13/2006 12:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

http://www.sos.mo.gov/candidates/DisplayCandidatesPlacement.asp?vOffice=2USC04&vElection=P106

3/21/2006 2:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can I suggest reading an article I came across entitled, “Mmmmmm Got Pork” at
http://www.forministry.com/USMOAOGODRLSFU/

This 06 Republican candidate,seems he’s more in the isle than seated right or left, being able to think on his own and has his ducks in a row with a grasp on reality as to what the average person is forced to endure just by reading the bio on his page. I do feel that we need a change NOW, and if it doesn’t come soon we may as well just forget it. Yet, the ball in in the Voters court come August and November, right?

3/23/2006 12:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It’s getting really sad when current incumbent congressmen from Missouri feel they have the election all locked up, to the point they will not answer candidate questionnaires. I thought that Missouri had term limits in regard to our elected congressmen?

4/18/2006 10:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Missouri Democrat Ike Skelton’s Voting Record On Immigration

Voted in 1996 to continue chain migration
Rep. Skelton in 1996 voted for the Chrysler-Berman Amendment to H.R.2202. It was a vote in favor of a chain migration system that has been the primary cause of annual immigration levels snowballing from less than 300,000 in 1965 to around a million today.

Rejected immigration ceiling in 1990
Rep Skelton voted AGAINST the Smith amendment to H.R.4300 that would have maintained hard caps on most categories of immigration.

Voted against American workers by voting in favor of worker-importation program in 2003
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of the Chile Free Trade Agreement, H.R. 2738. The trade agreement would permit an unlimited number of workers in Chile to enter the U.S. each year as "treaty traders or investors" who are coming to the U.S. to carry on trade between the U.S. and Chile or to "establish, develop, administer or provide advice or key technical services" to the operations of a business in which they have invested capital.

Voted against American workers by voting for worker-importation program in 2003
Rep. Skelton voted for the Singapore Free Trade Agreement, H.R. 2739. The trade agreement would permit an unlimited number of Singaporeans to enter the U.S. each year as "treaty traders or investors" who are coming to the U.S. to carry on trade between the U.S. and Singapore or to "establish, develop, administer or provide advice or key technical services" to the operations of a business in which they have invested capital.

Tried to create massive new foreign agriculture worker program in 1996
Rep. Skelton voted IN FAVOR of the Pombo Amendment to H.R.2202. He was voting for a massive new program that would have allowed agri-business to import up to 250,000 foreign farm workers each year for a period of service of less than a year. A bi-partisan congressional commission working with the Bush Administration (1989-93) had concluded that there were at least 190,000 farm workers already in America who were out of work at any given time.

Rep. Skelton has taken no action to reduce the rewarding of illegal immigration by giving citizenship to anchor babies.

Voted on House floor against amendment to clarify local law enforcement's authority to enforce immigration laws in 2005
Rep. Skelton voted against the Norwood Amendment to H.R. 4437, the Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal Immigration Control Act of 2005. The Norwood amendment clarifies the existing authority of State and local law enforcement personnel to assist in the apprehension and detention of illegal aliens.

Voted in favor of sanctuary policies for illegal aliens in 2005
Rep. Skelton voted against an amendment (H. Admt. 138) to H.R. 2360, the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2006. The amendment would deny federal homeland security funding to who refuse to share information with Federal immigration authorities from being states and local governments who refuse to share information with Federal immigration authorities.

Voted against authorizing the use of the military to assist in border control functions in 2005
Rep. Skelton voted against the H. Amdt. 206 to H.R. 1815. The amendment authorizes the Secretary of Defense to assign members of the military, under certain circumstances, to assist the Bureau of Border Security and U.S. Customs Service of the Department of Homeland Security on preventing the entry of terrorists, drug traffickers, and illegal aliens into the United States

Voted against the Rule that incorporated the Manager's Amendment to strengthen some of the key immigration reforms of H.R. 418 in 2005
Rep. Skelton voted against the rule that incorporated the Manager's Amendment to H.R. 418 (H. Res. 75). H.R. 418 was brought to the House floor for consideration under a rule that incorporated an amendment by the bill's sponsor, Chairman Sensenbrenner. Because the rule included the amendment, a vote for the rule did two things: 1) like any rule for consideration, it established the time limits for debate of the bill and permitted the debate to begin; and 2) it added the text of the Manager's Amendment to the original bill. The Manager's Amendment included the following changes to strengthen the provisions of H.R. 418: requires immigration judges to determine an alien's credibility before granting relief or protection from removal; limits deportable aliens' ability to stall their deportation by filing endless appeals in court; and strikes both the section of the bill that explicitly recognizes states' ability to issue "driving certificates" that do not comply with the standards, and the provision that permits the Department of Homeland Security to regulate such alternative licenses. The Manager's Amendment also included a provision to eliminate the cap of 10,000 per year on the number of asylees who may apply for adjustment to permanent resident status after residing in the U.S. for at least one year following the grant of asylum.

Voted in favor of amendment to strip provision to make it harder for terrorists to get asylum in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of the Smith Amendment to strip from H.R. 10 the asylum provision that reaffirmed that the burden of proof is on the asylum claimant, and that the adjudicator may require corroborating evidence "where it is reasonable to expect such evidence." This would have made it harder for terrorists to receive asylum in the U.S. by no longer allowing them to claim that the tenets of a terrorist organization are a "political opinion" for which their home government would persecute them if they are denied asylum.

Voted in favor of amendment to strip expedited removal for illegal aliens from H.R. 10 in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of the Smith Amendment to H.R. 10, the 9/11 Recommendations Implementation Act. The Smith Amendment would have stripped the expanded expedited removal provision from H.R. 10 that requires DHS to utilize expedited removal in the case of all aliens who have entered the U.S. illegally and have not been present in the U.S. for 5 years. This is the provision that had the potential to dramatically increase deportations of illegal aliens by eliminating the appeals process. Somewhere around 2.5 million illegal aliens could be subject to the expedited removal provision.

Voted in favor of a Motion to Recommit with Instructions to strip significant illegal immigration reduction provisions from H.R. 10 in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of a Motion to Recommit with Instructions on H.R. 10, the 9/11 Recommendations Implementation Act. H.R. 10 represented the primary legislative response in the House of Representatives to the recommendations of The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (9-11 Commission). The 9-11 Commission made several recommendations with regard to immigration that, in the Commission's opinion, would increase security and help prevent a future attack. Many of the Commission's immigration recommendations were included in H.R. 10 such as provisions to: prohibit driver's licenses to illegal aliens; expedite removal of illegal aliens; increase Border Patrol and ICE agents; and prevent Federal agencies from accepting or recognizing consular ID as valid proof of identity. The Motion to Recommit, introduced by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), would have effectively stripped ALL of the immigration provisions from H.R. 10, thus removing all of the measures that were based upon the immigration-related recommendations of the 9-11 Commission.

Voted for Motion to Instruct Conferees to strip key illegal immigration reduction provisions from bill in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of a Motion to Instruct Conferees on S. 2845, the National Intelligence Reform Act of 2004. S. 2845 represented the primary legislative response in the Senate to the recommendations of The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (9-11 Commission), however, it contained NO effective immigration provisions. Alternatively, H.R. 10 represented the primary legislative response in the House of Representatives to the 9-11 Commission. It contained provisions to prohibit driver's licenses to illegal aliens; expedite removal of illegal aliens; increase Border Patrol and ICE agents; and prevent Federal agencies from accepting or recognizing consular ID as valid proof of identity. The Motion to Instruct Conferees on S. 2845 encouraged the Conferees to strip the expedited removal, asylum, and secure ID provisions of H.R. 10 from the final bill.

Voted in favor of amendment to strip significant illegal immigration reduction provisions from H.R. 10 in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of the Menendez Amendment to H.R. 10, the 9/11 Recommendations Implementation Act. H.R. 10 represented the primary legislative response in the House of Representatives to the recommendations of The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (9-11 Commission). The 9-11 Commission made several recommendations with regard to immigration that, in the Commission's opinion, would increase security and help prevent a future attack. Many of the Commission's immigration recommendations were included in H.R. 10 such as provisions to: prohibit driver's licenses to illegal aliens; expedite removal of illegal aliens; increase Border Patrol and ICE agents; and prevent Federal agencies from accepting or recognizing consular ID as valid proof of identity. The Menendez Amendment would have stripped ALL of the immigration provisions from H.R. 10, thus removing all of the measures that were based upon the immigration-related recommendations of the 9-11 Commission.

Voted against secure IDs in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted in favor of the Oxley Amendment (H. AMDT 754) to strip the Culberson Amendment from H.R. 5025, the Transportation, Treasury, and Independent Agencies Appropriations bill. The Culberson amendment would have prohibited the Treasury Department from using any of the funding in the bill to publish, disseminate, authorize or enforce regulations that permit or allow financial institutions to accept the Mexican matricula consular ID card. The Culberson amendment was intended to send a clear message to the Treasury Department and to financial institutions that Mexican matricula consular ID card is neither a secure nor acceptable forms of ID. While it would not have actually required Treasury to change the current regulations which permit financial institutions to accept consular ID cards (rules governing amendments to appropriations bills would not permit such a requirement), it would have made those regulations unenforceable, which is a strong incentive for Treasury to change them. Rep. Oxley offered an amendment to strip the Culberson Amendment from the bill.

Voted against enforcing federal laws against sanctuary policies to protect illegal aliens in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted against the King Amendment (H. AMDT 655) to the Commerce, Justice, State, Appropriations Act of 2005, H.R. 4754, that would have increased funding to the Justice Department for enforcing current federal law against sanctuary policies for illegal aliens. Sanctuary policies bar public officials, including police officers, from asking an individual's immigration status to determine eligibility for public services and from reporting illegal aliens to federal authorities. In 1996, Congress passed a law that specifically prohibits state and local governments from enacting sanctuary policies. Despite that, cities such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston, still have sanctuary policies in place. Maine is the only state with a sanctuary policy. The King Amendment would have allowed the Justice Department to more fully enforce federal law against policies that protect illegal aliens, criminal aliens, and, potentially, terrorists.

Voted in favor of sanctuary policies to protect illegal aliens in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted AGAINST an amendment (H. AMDT 583) to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act of 2005, H.R. 4567, that would prohibit homeland security funding from going to states or cities that have violated Federal law by enacting sanctuary policies. Sanctuary policies bar public officials, including police officers, from asking an individual's immigration status to determine eligibility for public services and from reporting illegal aliens to federal authorities. In 1996, Congress passed a law that specifically prohibits state and local governments from enacting sanctuary policies. Despite that, cities such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston, still have sanctuary policies in place. Maine is the only state with a sanctuary policy. The amendment, offered by Rep. Tom Tancredo, would have created a huge incentive to rescind the policies that protect illegal aliens, criminal aliens, and, potentially, terrorists, by denying them some Federal funding.

Voted against authorizing the use of the military to assist in border control functions in 2004
Rep. Skelton voted against the Goode Amendment to H.R. 4200, to authorize the Secretary of Defense to assign members of the military, under certain circumstances, to assist the Department of Homeland Security in the performance of border control functions.

Voted against using the military to assist in border control functions in 2003
Rep. Skelton voted AGAINST the Goode Amendment to H.R. 1588, to authorize members of the military, under certain circumstances, to assist the Department of Homeland Security in the performance of border control functions.

Cosponsored bill to reward illegal aliens with in-state tuition rates and amnesty in 2003-2004
Rep. Skelton cosponsored of H.R. 1684, the Student Adjustment Act of 2003. H.R. 1684 would have granted in-state tuition and amnesty to illegal aliens under the age of 21 who had been physically present in the country for five years and were in 7th grade or above. Such a reward for illegal immigration serves as an incentive for more illegal immigration.

Voted against authorizing the use of the military to assist in border control efforts in 2002
Rep. Skelton voted against H. Amdt. 479 to H.R. 4546, the Department of Defense Authorization bill. The amendment authorized the Secretary of Defense to assign members of the military, under certain circumstances, to assist the Bureau of Border Security and U.S. Customs Service of the Department of Homeland Security on preventing the entry of terrorists, drug traffickers, and illegal aliens into the United States

Voted FOR Section 245(i), a form of amnesty for illegal aliens in 2002
Rep. Skelton voted FOR H RES 365, which was brought up and passed in a new form in March of 2002. The vote in favor of the bill was a vote in favor of rewarding illegal aliens via a four-month reinstatement of Section 245(i). That is an expired immigration provision that allows illegal aliens with qualified relatives or employers in the U.S. to pay a $1,000 fine, to apply for a green card in this country, and to be allowed to stay in this country without fear of deportation until their turn arrives for a green card years, and even decades, later. The illegal aliens also would not have to go through the usual security screening in U.S. embassies in their home countries. The lowest estimate from supporters of the bill was that some 200,000 illegal aliens would benefit. H RES 365 included language that would implement some important visa-tracking regulations helpful to discouraging illegal immigration.

Rep. Skelton was one of 275 Representatives who voted in favor of the 245(i) amnesty.

Voted in favor of a four-month extension of Section 245(i) in 2001
Rep. Skelton voted on the floor of the House IN FAVOR OF a motion to suspend the rules and pass H.R. 1885, a four-month extension of Section 245(i), which is a de facto amnesty in that current federal policy did not deport illegal aliens once they applied for Section 245(i) and allowed them to remain in the U.S. for years until they were allowed to become official immigrants. The vote on the four-month extension represented a compromise of the White House push for a longer extension. Even though the four month extension was better than a year-long or permanent extension, it still would have resulted in at least 200,000 more people being added to the country through illegal immigration.

Voted AGAINST authorizing troops on the border in 2001.
Rep. Skelton voted not to enforce the border by voting AGAINST the Traficant amendment to HR 2586. This amendment authorized the Attorney General and the Secretary of the Treasury, to request that members of the Armed Forces assist the INS with border control duties.

Signed letter to President Clinton supporting an amnesty in 2000.
Rep. Skelton, along with 151 other House Democrats, signed a letter to President Clinton saying he would sustain a veto of an end-of-session appropriations bill if it did not include an amnesty. This was an action in support of Rep. Conyer's amnesty act, H.R.4966, that would have granted amnesty to some 3.4 million aliens from Central America and Haiti. This would have been the largest amnesty in the history of the country -- larger than even the 1986 IRCA Amnesty.

Voted in 2000 against authorizing troops on the border.
Rep. Skelton voted AGAINST enforcing the border by opposing the Traficant amendment to H.R.4205. This amendment authorizes the Secretary of Defense to assign, under certain circumstances, members of the Armed Forces to assist the INS with border control duties.

Voted against authorizing the use of troops on the border in 1999
Rep. Skelton voted against the Trafficant Amendment to H.R. 1401. This amendment authorized the Secretary of Defense, under certain circumstances, to assign members of the Armed Forces to assist the Border Patrol and Customs Service only in drug interdiction and counter terrorism activities along our borders. The Traficant amendment passed by a vote of 242 to 181.

Voted AGAINST killing pro-illegal-alien Section 245(i) program in 1997
Given the chance to vote against a notorious pro-illegal immigration program called Section 245(i), Rep. Skelton declined. The Section 245(i) program dealt with certain illegal aliens who were on lists that could qualify them eventually for legal residency. It provided them a loophole in which they could pay a fee and avoid a 1996 law’s provision that punishes illegal aliens by barring them for 10 years from entering the U.S. on a legal visa as a student, tourist, worker or immigrant. The controversial experimental program was supposed to “sunset” late in 1997 and be automatically taken off the books. But the Senate voted to permanently continue the pro-illegal immigration program by attaching it to an appropriations bill. House leaders, though, refused to include the program in the House appropriations bill. That meant the issue would be decided in a joint Senate/House Conference Committee. Representatives wanting to make sure that House Conferees fought the Senate stance, brought a “Motion to Instruct” to the floor. The motion -- if passed -- would make it clear that the House wanted the Conferees to kill the Section 245(i) program. Immigration lawyers lobbied the House vigorously to keep what to them was a lucrative program. Rep. Skelton was part of a 268 to 153 House majority that refused to “instruct” the Conferees to kill the program. Despite the vote, House Conferees worked hard to kill the program and succeeded.

Opposed mandatory workplace verification programs in 1996
Rep. Skelton voted AGAINST the Gallegly Amendment to H.R.2202. That amendment would have made pilot workplace verification programs (see above) mandatory in five of the top seven immigration states. The amendment failed 86-331 under complaints that businesses and states should have more choice in whether to participate in programs to keep illegal aliens from taking jobs.

5/15/2006 3:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

he was quoting someone, its not his original phrase

idiot

8/30/2007 8:28 PM  
Blogger wireflight said...

As someone else already observed, Skelton's comment wasn't original -- and as another someone else observed, his statement is logically true:

It is an unfortunate reality that public officials are elected, appointed or otherwise hired from among the public:

because thugs generally appreciate the power of organization, they gravitate to positions of official influence.

Therefore, any "public servant" is ordinarily less righteous than any random sampling of the public from which they are hired.

Nevertheless, because each government -- however corrupt or not -- derives from the consent of the governed, it may in every case be truly said that government represents the fundamental character of its People.

And what if one among the People is morally upright, respecting the legal foundations upon which rests the stability of his or her Republic?

Ought he or she impose through force of law his or her personal beliefs on others?

To any honest person and despite their vehement contrary assertions, right-wing liberals, having no genuine conviction regarding who or what "God" is, have struggled to make the USA into a theocracy;

their efforts are not accidental or misguided: they know, as did Marx, that religion is the opiate of the masses.

Whereas Marx sought by cutting the strings of religion to liberate from their overbearing masters the puppet-people, power-mad elitists have seized the real importance of Marx's words:

Religion is simultaneously the perfect organizing force and the perfect disorganizing weapon:

its political master needs merely learn to timely recite the appropriate platitude to drive the herd of unthinking, unprincipled cattle in whatever direction he or she wishes the crowd to go.

What the People never seem to learn is that religion is fungible in a democratic republic:

"Christianity" (long Islamified in the USA) is replaced by "fundamentalist Islam" in one voting cycle -- and why not: the followers of each serve and worship the same god.

That madness cannot be suppressed: the ideology of hate, the laziness of the herd --

the vapidity of "thought" from those having failed to learn from history, whose evidence of education is that of recitation and credential rather than that of critical inspection and reason --

will ensure that civil rights are curtailed, that human rights are ignored, that every good and decent thing is killed.

In Congress, the vote of a single moral person is easily subdued; the opinion of a single voter is even more irrelevant.

THAT is WHY the first job of a statesman (statesperson) is to get elected: to the extent such persons exist, they can modify or direct policy only from the offices to which they are elected.

10/03/2008 7:13 PM  

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