Week in Politics

By on March 15, 2015
Yucaipa Politics March, 2015

Gov. Jerry Brown traveled to Washington, D.C. this week for meetings at the White House. At a media availability Friday he positioned California as a leader in the discussion on immigration reform.

“It’s all good. It’s human rights, it’s decent, it’s Christian and I just think some of these Republican governors should be ashamed of themselves,” he said.

Brown announced his support for President Barack Obama’s executive action on immigration. The action has sparked outrage from conservatives and a lawsuit from House Republicans. The Republicans charge that the action violates the Constitution.

Brown called Obama’s action legal and wise. On Thursday California and 14 other states filed an amicus brief that expressed support for the president’s actions. Currently Obama’s actions are being blocked by an injunction issued by a federal judge in Texas.

Brown also wanted other states to see California as a model for immigration action.

“California has been very positive in recent years in regards to our immigrants, and those even who are not documented,” Brown said. “And we found it has been very positive, there is no burden at all being inflicted by anybody. It’s all good.”

It is estimated that California is home to approximately three million undocumented immigrants.
Washington, D.C.

This week President Obama outlined a series of principles in his weekly address that would help recent college graduates. He cited the need for a good education in the current information economy, and said that higher education is the most powerful ticket to the middle class. That ticket is getting more and more expensive though. The average student graduates with approximately $28,000 in student loan debt. The president thinks that more can be done to help students.

“In America, a higher education cannot be a privilege reserved for only the few,” he said. “It has to be available to everybody who’s willing to work for it.”

With that in mind, Obama announced his Student Aid Bill of Rights

“It says that every student deserves access to a quality, affordable education,” he said. “Every student should be able to access the resources to pay for college. Every borrower has the right to an affordable repayment plan. And every borrower has the right to quality customer service, reliable information, and fair treatment, even if they struggle to repay their loans.”

He believes that if colleges, lenders and businesses rallied around these principles, recent graduates would find themselves in a better position.
Critics disagree and say that the ideas will do little to change the higher education industry.

“All that would do is push more families into the borrowing system,” Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said in a statement emailed to the New York Times. “And while ‘enhancing’ the borrowing experience is all well and good, our goal should be helping parents and students avoid it as best they can.”

The president is calling on Americans to support the Student Aid Bill of Rights and sign onto it.