As Hispanics continue to drive the growth in the labor force in coming decades, the recovery from the recession will have immediate and long-term effects for the country’s overall economy.
Several senior Obama administration officials representing the military, health, and the economy gathered on Tuesday at the Center for American Progress in Washington to talk about how the president’s policies have affected Hispanics in the past four years. Those in attendance included Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis; Cecilia Muñoz, director of the White House Domestic Policy Council; and Mayra Alvarez, director of Public Health Policy at the Health and Human Services Department.
Alvarez said that the Affordable Care Act is among the most important laws passed during this administration because Hispanics are more likely than other Americans to be uninsured. Currently there are 9 million uninsured Hispanics.
Also on Tuesday, the White House released a summary of the administration’s strategies that address the needs of some of the nation’s 50 million-plus Hispanics. The booklet, dated Aug. 7, is called “An America Built to Last: President Obama’s Agenda and the Hispanic Community.” It is soon to be available on the White House’s Hispanic website.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the booklet says, has been vital to this community because unemployment rates among Hispanics are higher than the national average. In efforts to strengthen Hispanic education, the $4 billion Race to the Top program was designed to provide incentives to eligible states for improvement in various key areas such as assessment and teacher retention.
The new 11-point agenda supersedes one from March 2011 with nine specific targeted areas. The top six items on the new agenda are strengthening the economy; ensuring access to education; “fixing our broken immigration system”; immigration enforcement; affordable health care; and home ownership.
Since the previous agenda, the administration has added immigration enforcement and improving infrastructure and transportation.
What We're Following See More »
U.S. District Judge William Orrick Tuesday blocked the Trump administration from enforcing part of an executive order calling for the end of federal funding to so-called sanctuary cities. The decision was followed by a scathing rebuke from the White House, a precedent-breaking activity which with this White House has had no qualms. A White House statement called the decision an "egregious overreach by a single, unelected district judge." The statement was followed by an inaccurate Wednesday morning tweetstorm from Trump, which railed against the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. While Judge Orrick's district falls within the jurisdiction of the Ninth Circuit, Orrick himself does not serve on the Ninth Circuit.
"House Republicans are circulating the text of an amendment to their ObamaCare replacement bill that they believe could bring many conservatives on board. According to legislative text of the amendment," drafted by Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-NJ), "the measure would allow states to apply for waivers to repeal one of ObamaCare’s core protections for people with pre-existing conditions. Conservatives argue the provision drives up premiums for healthy people, but Democrats—and many more moderate Republicans—warn it would spark a return to the days when insurance companies could charge sick people exorbitantly high premiums."
President Trump on Wednesday "will order a review of national monuments created over the past 20 years with an aim toward rescinding or resizing some of them—part of a broader push to reopen areas to drilling, mining, and other development." Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke told reporters on Tuesday said he'd be reviewing about 30 monuments.
"An emerging government funding deal would see Democrats agree to $15 billion in additional military funding in exchange for the GOP agreeing to fund healthcare subsidies, according to two congressional officials briefed on the talks. Facing a Friday deadline to pass a spending bill and avert a shutdown, Democrats are willing to go halfway to President Trump’s initial request of $30 billion in supplemental military funding."
The Michael Flynn story is not going away for the White House as it tries to refocus its attention. The White House has denied requests from the House Oversight Committee for information and documents regarding payments that the former national security adviser received from Russian state television station RT and Russian firms. House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz and ranking member Elijah Cummings also said that Flynn failed to report these payments on his security clearance application. White House legislative director Marc Short argued that the documents requested are either not in the possession of the White House or contain sensitive information he believes is not applicable to the committee's stated investigation.