immigration

Ben Foster and Being Part of a ‘Continuing Conversation’ About Veterans
Political Theater Podcast, Episode 32

Ben Foster, left, discusses his latest movie "Leave No Trace," with Political Theater host Jason Dick. (David Banks/CQ Roll Call)

“For being an actor, being of the generation of the desert war, these questions are ever-present,” Ben Foster says about a body of work that has seen him portray veterans of America’s current conflicts. For the Boston native, veterans’ re-entry to civilian life is part of what he says is “a continuing conversation” he says is important. His latest movie, “Leave No Trace,” is the story of a veteran who is “slipping through the cracks.” For a country still at war and embroiled in extensive debate about veterans, and their well-being, it is a timely movie. Foster discussed the movie recently with Political Theater. 

Abuse Allegations Loom Over Minnesota Race to Replace Ellison
Female candidates dominate 5th District Democratic-Farmer-Labor primary

Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison vacated his 5th District seat to run for state attorney general. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democratic candidates running for Rep. Keith Ellison’s seat in Minnesota’s deep-blue 5th District are pushing voters to the polls Tuesday, as abuse allegations against the congressman threatened to send them off-message in the campaign’s closing hours.

The three front-runners for the Democratic-Farmer-Labor nod in Tuesday’s primary declined to take sides when asked at a candidate forum Monday about allegations that Ellison physically abused a former girlfriend — which he has denied. The six-term congressman vacated the 5th District seat to run for state attorney general. 

Border Apprehensions Down Two Months Running
Trump administration officials say the dip is directly tied to Trump’s zero-tolerance initiative

A Border Patrol agent Nicole Ballistrea watches over the U.S.-Mexico border in 2014. Since then, border apprehensions have plummeted. (John Moore/Getty Images file photo)

For the second month in a row, the number of individuals caught trying to enter the U.S. illegally at the southwest border declined, drawing praise from administration officials who say it is directly tied to President Donald Trump’s zero-tolerance initiative.

In the month of July, border apprehensions declined by 7 percent, according to data released by Customs and Border Protection on Wednesday. In July, a total of 31,303 individuals were apprehended compared to 34,095 in June and 40,333 in May.

Trump Takes Post-Election Victory Lap Despite Close Races
Experts still forecasting tough races ahead for Republicans

Republican congressional candidate Troy Balderson celebrates after giving his victory speech Tuesday night in Newark, Ohio. He holds a lead, but the race with Democrat Danny O'Connor remains too close to call. (Justin Merriman/Getty Images)

Donald Trump is taking a victory lap after Tuesday’s congressional and gubernatorial elections, but the president’s football-spiking might be premature.

Trump first tweeted Wednesday morning that Republicans went “5 for 5!” In another tweet about 45 minutes later, the president declared GOP candidates “have now won 8 out of 9 House Seats” that have been up for grabs since he took office. He also slammed the “Fake News Media,” contending its coverage would make “you would think we are being clobbered.”

Legal Fight Over DACA Amps Up Pressure on Reluctant Congress
As another court ruling unfolds in Texas, clamor for legislative solution only grows

Dreamers protest outside of the Capitol calling for passage of the Dream Act as Congress works to find a way to end the government shutdown on Sunday evening, Jan. 21, 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Congress could face more pressure to protect “Dreamers” because of court decisions about the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which allows people who were brought to the United States as undocumented children to live and work here temporarily.

Still, even with the additional pressure from the court rulings, lawmakers are unlikely to pass any legislation in the months preceding the November midterm elections.

Why West Hollywood Hates Trump’s Walk of Fame Star
Local city council voted Monday to call for the star’s removal

President Donald Trump walks from the West Wing to Marine One on his way to Joint Base Andrews Friday, July 20, 2018. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The West Hollywood city council stirred up renewed controversy Monday over President Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

The star, installed nearly a decade before Trump’s presidential run, has become a target of animus against the president among his detractors in the famously liberal enclave. 

Abolishing ICE Doesn’t Have to Mean Firing Federal Workers, Advocate Says
Cesar Vargas of the Dream Action Coalition says ‘priorities are terribly misguided’

Hundreds of women crowd the atrium of the Hart Senate Office Building to protest Trump’s immigration policy in June. Capitol Police moved in to make arrests to clear the area. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Abolish ICE movement has split the Democratic Party. Some say the agency, formally the Immigration and Customs Enforcement division of the Homeland Security Department, has lost all credibility for its involvement in separating immigrant families. Others say it’s the policy that is problematic, not the federal workers who carried it out.

Republicans, meanwhile, see it as a boon for their election prospects. President Donald Trump has cited it in fundraising appeals.

Former Maloney Staffer Feels the Pain of New Deportation Policy
Maria Martinez’s family immigration story ended in tragedy

Maria Martinez, second from right, with, from left, her father Martin Martinez, her brother Martin Martinez Jr. and her mother Julia Ochoa. (Courtesy Maria Martinez)

Maria Christina Martinez was 18 years old when nine Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents rolled up in black SUVs outside her family’s Newburgh, New York, apartment at 6 a.m.

They were looking for her father, Martin Martinez.

Ivanka Trump Rarely Breaks With Father in Public, Here’s Where She Does
President’s daughter voiced criticism on media attacks, family separation

Ivanka Trump has made rare public breaks with the president over contentious issues, but largely kept her disagreements private. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Ivanka Trump’s public disagreement Thursday with two of her father’s recent controversies were a rare public rebuke from the president’s daughter and senior adviser, who has said she is “very candid” with her father in private but has largely avoided public criticism.

In response to questions at an Axios event Thursday, Trump said she does not agree the media is the “enemy of the people” and called the aftermath of the administration’s child separation policy a “low point.”

Trump Says He Might Delay Shutdown Showdown Until After Elections
‘I happen to think it’s a great political thing,’ president says of border security

Aurelia Lopez and her daughter Antonia overlook construction of U.S.-Mexico border wall prototypes in October 2017. (Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images file photo)

President Donald Trump signaled Wednesday that he might side with some Republican lawmakers and delay a government shutdown showdown until after November’s midterm elections.

“Now, the shutdown could also take place after the election. I happen to think it’s a great political thing, because people want border security,” Trump said on the Rush Limbaugh radio program.