Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Purdue Provost and Klinker Support Dream Act

As Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid prepares for a Senate debate of the Dream Act, the bill got some local support.  The Dream Act makes a pathway to citizenship available to young undocumented immigrants who attend two years of college or give two years in military service.  It would make college affordable to them by making them eligible for financial aid and, where appropriate, in-state tuition.  Purdue provost Timothy Sands represented the university at a candlelight vigil in support of the act, arguing that opening doors to students is fundamental to the University's mission.  Senator Richard Lugar has already expressed a willingness to cross party line to vote for the bill.  Read more about the Dream Act rally here.

Recount Commission Meets Sunday on Secretary of State Election

This Sunday at 3 p.m. the Indiana State Recount Commission will meet to consider the petition by the Indiana Democratic Party that asks that Charlie White not be seated as Indiana's secretary of state because of charges that he committed voter fraud by using his ex-wife's address as his own in last May's primary. (The secretary of state is the chief election official in Indiana.)  Democrats argue that Democrat Vop Osili should be seated instead because the Indiana constitution states that in cases where the elected official cannot serve the second highest vote getter for the office should be awarded the office.  You can watch the hearing via streaming video at the Secretary of State's website here.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Klinker Would Support Ban/Moratorium on Death Penalty

The Journal and Courier featured an article today on the costs of the death penalty; the issue had been raised by state attorney general Greg Zoeller who observed that death penalty cases are very expensive and questioned whether such costs were justifiable under current conditions. Death penalty cases cost about $450,000 per case, as opposed to about $43,000 a case for cases applying life without parole.  The J&C put the question to local lawmakers, "Would you support a ban or moratorium on death penalty cases?"  Here's how Rep. Sheila Klinker answered: "I would vote 'yes' on that. In fact, we've been working on that for about 15 years now. The death penalty is very expensive. ... And because of that and other situations (such as cases where people on death row have been proven innocent through DNA-testing), I would support the idea."
You can read more from the J&C here.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cillizza: Indiana Governor's Race a "Marquee"

Washington Post political analyst Chris Cillizza lists the 2012 Indiana governor's race as number two among his "marquee" governors' races. Here's his analysis:
"Democrats are hoping that Bayh makes the race. Bayh's well known name, fundraising capacity and moderate credentials would make him a favorite against almost any Republican. (He also served as governor of the state for much of the 1990s.) Rep. Mike Pence is mentioned on the Republican side but he appears more interested in running for the GOP presidential nod in 2012 than for governor. Lt Gov. Becky Skillman seems like the more likely Republican nominee."
Read Cillizza's entire Post column here.

Bayh Rules Out 2012 Presidential Bid

Senator Evan Bayh told Mark Halperin that he will not seek the Presidency in 2012. He also expressed optimism about President Obama's re-election: "If the economy does begin to come back, as I suspect it will, I think his prospects for reelection are pretty good. He’s focused on jobs and growing the economy. That’s what Hoosiers, regardless of their political persuasion, are interested in."

And would he campaign for Obama in the 2012 election cycle? "If he invites me, I’ll come."

Here's a video clip of Bayh's interview with Halperin from Politico.

President and VP Warmly Received in Kokomo

President Obama and Vice President Biden came to Kokomo to celebrate the turnaround of the automotive industry and the resulting turnaround of a city that was headed toward disaster. Kokomo will reap the benefit of over $800 million in investments by Chrysler in its Kokomo facilities, investments Chrysler was able to make becasue it was supported by the federal government. Here was the conclusion President Obama drew from the turnaround:
"Don't bet against America. Don't bet against the American auto industry. Don't bet against American ingenuity. Don't bet against the American worker. Don't bet against us."
Read more about the President's and Vice President's visit from the Journal and Courier and from Politico. And below is video of their visit.

President Obama's Thanksgiving Message