Arizona 3rd District Congressional candidate Steve Moak has found one issue that distinguishes him from the rest of the field in the Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District GOP primary.  In fact, Moak’s support for the massive amnesty awarded to illegal aliens under the DREAM ACT pretty much distinguishes him from most Republicans across the entire country.
The legislation Moak supports would be the largest and most open-ended grant of amnesty to illegal immigrants in recent history.  In a June 23, 2010 panel interview before the Arizona Republic, Moak participated with half of the 3rd District GOP field and was the only candidate on his panel who stood firmly in support of the DREAM (otherwise known as the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) Act.  If Moak is able to win the GOP primary, you can be sure that the recorded position with the Arizona Republic will be used against him by his well-funded Democratic opponent.
According to the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, the legislation Moak supports would “create another type of amnesty by opening a wide path to citizenship for any illegal alien who has entered the country before the age of 16, has been in the country for at least five years, and has earned a high school diploma or GED in the United States.” While Moak indicated unhesitating support for the DREAM Act when asked directly by the Arizona Republic writer, others have been highly critical of its impact.  Congressman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) said “The DREAM Act represents a dual assault on law-abiding, taxpaying American citizens and legal immigrants.”
Others have routinely criticized the idea of providing a simple path to legal status for millions of illegal immigrants across America as unfair to those who follow the law.  Critics believe it encourages others to illegally cross the border with the recognition that the prize at the end includes legal status in America for their children.
The heavy financial and human cost of illegal immigration is obviously very familiar to those of us across Arizona.  State and local budgets, health care costs and education costs are being unfairly borne by legal Arizona residents often forced to foot the bill to provide for illegal immigrants.  Moak is apparently unmoved by such costs.  According to the Heritage Foundation, the legislation that Moak supports would increase that burden because it would allow in-state tuition for illegal aliens and actually repeal a 1996 federal law that prohibits any state from offering in-state tuition rates to illegal aliens unless the state offers in-state tuition rates to all U.S. citizens.
If Moak has his way and the DREAM Act is enacted into law, you could very well see federal law providing an opportunity for the State of California to provide in-state tuition to a previously illegal alien to attend a state university, while a legal Arizona resident who has obeyed the law would pay drastically higher tuition rate.  Additionally, if Arizona public universities were to provide in-state tuition to previously illegal aliens, they would forgo full tuition paid by legal Americans who matriculate from out-of-state.  Under the legislation Moak supports, it would be Arizona taxpayers left footing the bill.
The 1996 law that prohibited states from favoring illegal immigrants over legal American citizens was passed in response to efforts by open-border advocates to push for providing in-state tuition to illegal immigrants in states like California.  If the legislation Moak is supporting were to become law, the prohibitions would be repealed and open-border advocates would achieve their dream of in-state tuition being provided to illegal immigrants as part of the amnesty program.
The new immigration policy Moak supports would implement a massive federal amnesty program that would be ripe for fraud and abuse.  According to a Heritage Foundation analysis of the legislation, all amnesty recipients are awarded lawful permanent residence (green card) status.  Millions of illegal aliens across Arizona and the country would receive this status and be provided six years to receive a degree from any institution of higher education, work two years toward a bachelor’s degree, or simply demonstrate that meeting those requirements would prove a hardship to him or his family.
It will be interesting to see if Moak’s pro-amnesty stance plays in an environment where a huge majority of Arizonans are supporting Arizona in their battle with the federal government and co-sponsors of Arizona’s new law are running against Moak. Moak’s campaign has been spending a lot of money touting his support for securing the Arizona border.  Securing the border is a position shared by all of Moak’s opponents. As one 3rd District observer commented “Let’s be honest, it’s not particularly bold of Moak to support securing the border.  Even Hillary Clinton agrees with him on that one.”

It’s been a busy week of revelations about Vernon Parker, GOP candidate for Congress in Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District.  Let’s review where we are in the ongoing “Vernon the Victim” saga.

1.  Parker, through his business VBP Group LLC attempted to use affirmative action laws and become classified through the Small Business Administration’s 8(a) “small disadvantaged business” in an effort to move ahead of others to try to secure a taxpayer-funded $1.25 million contract from the federal government.

2.  It has been reported in the media that Parker’s business did use the preferential treatment to secure that $1.25 million taxpayer-funded opportunity.  Should information become available indicating that Parker did not apply for the preferential treatment under the affirmative action program, we will share it here.  Otherwise, a $1.25 million contract funded by taxpayers is not an opportunity afforded to most.

3.  According to the filings, the government found that Parker was still an employee in the federal bureaucracy when he applied for the position (which is also a taxpayer-funded position).  As reported in the media, it was further alleged that Parker may have falsified records in making this application.  Apparently, Parker disputes that he was an “employee” and claims that he stopped being an “employee” days earlier and became a contractor himself (who didn’t have a contract, still received the same salary and still received the same benefits, according to what was reported in the media).

4.  Parker’s business, if you look at his website appears to essentially be modeled after the idea of revenues ultimately coming directly from the taxpayer-funded government contracts and benefitting from the existence of liberal, big government programs and helping others cash in on taxpayer money.  To date, according to a search for such information, we do not know who Parker’s clients were at VBP Group LLC and whether any of them received or attempted to receive any taxpayer-funded grants, loans or contracts.  Likewise we do not know if any have received or attempted to take advantage of preferential treatment such as that Parker’s business directly attempted to secure.

5.  In what appears to be as much of botched public relations move to obscure Parker’s alleged wrongdoing and efforts to secure $1.25 million in a taxpayer-funded contract, Parker has sued the government and wants the taxpayers to give him and additional $2 million for “injuries sustained” including “past and future medical expenses, lost wages, financial damages, emotional harm and pain and suffering” presumably resulting from the investigation and findings made by the government and termination of Parker’s company from the program that was allowing him to receive preferential treatment.

6.  Despite the obvious problems of filing a lawsuit and claiming to be a victim when you apparently have developed a pattern of behavior designed to benefit from victim status, the effort to secure additional monies from the taxpayers does obscure the underlying issue of what legal activities Parker’s firm was engaged in.  If the public and media focuses on the legal questions, the Parker team is no doubt hoping they won’t ask what other efforts to secure taxpayer dollars or preferential treatment directly or for others the firm might have engaged in.  It will be worth watching to see any such information is publicly disclosed.  It’s hard to imagine voters providing Parker with enough support to win until a myriad of questions are answered.  Did Parker’s business secure the taxpayer-funded government contract?  Have they ever secured any other taxpayer-funded contracts?  Have they ever helped any other entities apply for preferential treatment or benefit from preferential treatment from the government in securing taxpayer-funded grants, loans or contracts?

7.  According to a news report this week, Parker allegedly spread an unsubstantiated rumor that one of the men running against him had previously been charged with sexual assault.

8.  The same news report indicated that despite attempting to secure the benefits of affirmative action at a minimum in the form of a $1.25 million taxpayer-financed contract (separate from additional $2 million Parker is seeking from taxpayers currently), Parker allegedly claimed in an editorial board interview with a Phoenix paper that he did not support affirmative action.

9.  And, Parker allegedly suggested to a newspaper publisher that another man running against him may have been in rehab for drugs and alcohol though there has thus far no basis for spreading such an rumor about another of his opponents.

10.  Operatives and close supporters of Parker have been making efforts to make veiled or implied threats against at least one more of his opponents to get out of the race or become an additional victim untrue and completely unsubstantiated rumors.  It is unclear whether Parker has been informed or directed such efforts or not.

11.   Parker, who has enthusiastically endorsed John McCain’s reelection bid against JD Hayworth, may well be in the process of cutting a political deal with others to secure support in the primary by withdrawing his support from McCain and/or reversing his prior position and endorsing Hayworth.  This will be a story to watch and indicative that a backdoor deal may have been reached with Hayworth operatives to push Parker if he gets on board.  Hayworth has not endorsed anyone to date in this race, nor expressed any preference whatsoever publicly (nor has McCain).

Prior to any news being published about Parker’s efforts to secure an additional $2 million from the taxpayers, an earlier post this week solidly made the case that Parker is one of three center/left candidates in the Republican primary.  Vernon Parker’s long-standing, demonstrated record of seeking taxpayer-funded benefits and building a business model seemingly around others attempting to gain similar benefits or navigate the liberal, social program bureaucracy.  Parker, to our knowledge, has yet to disclose information to dispute those appearances and the appearances come from Parker’s very own business website.

These are the underlying problems beneath Parker’s ongoing legal challenges and his effort to secure an additional $2 million from the taxpayers in contesting the government’s finding that he violated requirements and “falsely certified that he was not a federal employee” and that (according the newspaper report from this week) he actually created after-the-fact invoices designed to make it appear that he had a contract with the government (and was a contractor not an employee) while he admitted (according to the news reports this week) that he had no formal signed contract with the government.

Democrats are no doubt licking their chops and hoping that somehow Parker is able to emerge from the Republican primary because of the swirling legal and ethical questions about Parker’s record (and what we have yet to learn) would be a treasure trove of material with which Democrats could attempt to win this seat.  Congressman Shadegg’s seat has been solidly Republican and it appears to be a good year for Republicans nationally.  Parker as the Republican candidate would clearly give the Democrats the best chance at winning this seat that they have ever seen since the District was created and since it was filled by a conservative, John Shadegg.

There have been no indications to date that Parker is considering dropping out of the race in response to these ongoing legal and ethical lapses that are surrounding his candidacy.

President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have declared legal war on Arizona.  Surely, Republican Presidents have failed to solve our border problems in the past, but none have gone to the lengths of this left-wing administration to disabuse Arizona’s law-abiding citizens.  Ironically, the President and his Attorney General have declared legal and rhetorical war on Arizona, despite the blinding loyalty of Arizona’s Congressional Democrats including Gabrielle Giffords (D-08), Ann Kirkpatrick (D-01) and Harry Mitchell (D-05) to the entire Obama-Pelosi agenda.  Those three vulnerable Democrats chose loyalty to President Obama and what he can do to benefit them politically as a priority over the interests of Arizona’s citizenry which overwhelmingly opposed the federal takeover of healthcare and the myriad of negative consequences that came with it.

Giffords, Kirkpatrick and Mitchell made a choice.  It was undoubtedly both an ideological calculation (these three are leftists outside the mainstream of Arizona political thought) and also it was self-serving politics and choosing to be loyal to and grovel at the feet of our leftist President.  Arizona residents opposed Obamacare.  Overwhelmingly, we oppose most of the effort of Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Barack Obama to model America after increasingly bankrupt European Socialist democracies.  But these three Democrats chose loyalty to the Democratic Party and loyalty to Barack Obama over loyalty to their constituents and loyalty to Arizona.  They assumed the political rewards and efforts of President Obama and Vice President Biden to raise them campaign cash was greater than the political costs of abandoning Arizona.

And what did they get for their loyalty?  They got their Democratic President and his administration and Attorney General and his Homeland Security Chief Janet Napolitano to demonize over 70% of Arizonans (Republicans, independents, Democrats and all types of people) who support the state’s effort to codify federal law into state statute and address the problems of illegal immigration in Arizona.  Even many opponents of the new law would not support the US Government filing suit against the State of Arizona.  This administration, President Obama, Vice President Biden, Attorney General Holder, Secretary of State Clinton and Homeland Security Chief Napolitano have for weeks rhetorically spat in the faces of all Arizonans who support this law and even those who might take issue with the law but are united in calling on our federal government to fulfill their responsibility in securing America’s southern border.   Those leaders even took the side of Mexican President Filipe Calderon when he came to America, to our government and specifically attacked a sovereign American state.

As SB 1070 co-author Senator Pamela Gorman weighed in yesterday.  “President Obama is looking more and more like nothing but a common bully,” said Gorman. “We don’t fear bullies in Arizona in case he hadn’t noticed.”  Well, that’s true except for Giffords, Kirkpatrick and Mitchell.  Gorman has it right.  But, by choosing to put loyalty to the bullying Obama administration and the radical agenda of Nancy Pelosi before the interests of Arizona, these three turncoats in Arizona’s Congressional delegation — Gabrielle Giffords, Ann Kirkpatrick and Harry Mitchell — own this lawsuit.  They must accept responsibility for this attack on Arizona as they chose their loyalty to President Obama instead of Arizona citizens.

As voters, we must never forget.  And as voters, please stand strong, spread the word and let Giffords, Kirkpatrick and Mitchell know that when the die was cast with the United States government against the sovereign state of Arizona, they stood with Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi and against the state and people of Arizona.  They will face the consequences of their choice at the ballot box.