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Daily News Digest – June 18, 2018

Good morning! Here’s your Daily News for Monday, June 18, 2018. 

1. The intended and unintended consequences of “zero tolerance” 

“To those who wish to challenge the Trump Administration’s commitment to public safety, national security, and the rule of law, I warn you: illegally entering this country will not be rewarded, but will instead be met with the full prosecutorial powers of the Department of Justice.”

  • Adults who are caught crossing the border illegally are prosecuted. Because children are not allowed to accompany adults through a criminal prosecution, they are taken into the custody of Health and Human Services to await the proceedings.
  • This “separation” of families is unseemly, mostly because it is now happening on a large scale due to the large number of immigrants crossing the border illegally.
  • Should those caught attempt to apply for asylum, it can drag out the proceedings – and the separation – considerably.
  • AG Sessions and the Trump Administration have succeeded in achieving an immigration policy that prosecutes illegal entries and truly serves as a deterrent to future border crossings.
  • They’ve also managed to dust up a public relations mess, the likes of which Republicans rarely win.

Read more:

2. What’s next on immigration.

  • In about 33 hours, President Trump will meet with Republican Members of Congress to talk immigration.
  • The situation at the border certainly adds a sense of urgency to the immigration debate (ten days ago, few thought immigration legislation had a chance this year).
  • But will it change the policy outcome?
  • Republicans have a draft proposal (path to legal residency, no more separating immigrant families, $25 billion for a border wall) and seem ready to act.
  • But will the hard core base accept anything short of deportation of Dreamers? The base will support anything Trump wants, so, yes.
  • Can they earn support from Democrats amid such an emotional outpouring ? It’s hard for Dems to say yes when Jimmy Kimmel is crying on TV.
  • The answers might come down to politics. If Democrats think this situation helps them win Congress in the fall, they have no political incentive to help Republicans by supporting a compromise plan. Likewise, no Republican in a midterm primary wants to look weak on immigration right now.
  • One to watch is Alabama’s Sen. Doug Jones, who is having a bit of a moment on this issue.
  • Jones has been willing to buck his party in the past. Will he and other Democrat Senators like Joe Manchin (WV) and Heidi Heitkamp (ND) be willing to side with Republicans on a big immigration package?

3. Alabama workforce at a ten-year high.

  • Good news: Alabama’s wage and salary employment reached 2,042,400 in June.
  • That’s the highest it has been since December 2007, when we had 2,045,800 in the workforce.
  • Here are the numbers that matter: Compared to last year, 21,000 more Alabamians are working. That includes 4,600 in manufacturing, 4,400 in leisure / hospitality, and 4,000 in professional / business.
  • Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington said the positive numbers have continued to increase “month after month.”

“This month’s count is the second largest we’ve ever recorded, yielding only to pre-recessionary numbers. It represents the most jobs our economy has supported in more than a decade.

Employers are hiring in Alabama, jobs are available in Alabama, and people are working in Alabama.”

  • Read more from the Birmingham Business Journal HERE and straight from the Department of Labor HERE.

4. Campaign trail update. 

  • The Montgomery Advertiser’s Brian Lyman takes an early look at the governor’s race, with help from political consultants Lance Hyche and Zac McCrary. His article “A highway for Ivey, a path for Maddox” is worth your time this morning.
  • Melissa Brown profiles Tabitha Isner, the Democratic nominee for Congress in AL-2 who is awaiting the winner of the Roby-Bright runoff. Give her story a read HERE. Also, a heck of front page (below).
  • Speaking of AL-2, there are lots of runoff stories. The Dothan Eagle’s Jeremy Wise offers a profile of the race HERE.  Pro-life group Susan B. Anthony’s List is going to bat for Roby in YellowHammer News. And Roll Call explains why most Republicans on the national level aren’t that worried about the AL-2 runoff.
  • Lt. Governor candidate Will Ainsworth picked up some endorsements in South Alabama late last week. The coast is a battleground for the runoff, and Ainsworth must do significantly better in both Mobile and Baldwin Counties to have a shot against Twinkle Cavanaughwrites Will Whatley of the Alabama Daily News.
  • Attorney General Steve Marshall’s lawsuit (along with Congressman Mo Brooks) to stop the practice of counting illegal immigrants toward states’ congressional allotments is getting more attention and could play a bigger role in his reelection efforts as other candidates start to respond. John Sharp writes for

5. Headlines

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Hundreds of children wait in Border Patrol facility in Texas.  

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Family separation policy starts dividing Republicans.

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Former state employee pleads guilty to ethics charge. 

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – State Park system to allow some shark fishing.

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Doctor comes home to hardscrabble Birmingham neighborhood. 

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Scuttled ship to add to Alabama offshore reef. 

ALABAMA DAILY NEWS – Ainsworth collects south Alabama endorsements. 

MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – A highway for Ivey, a path for Maddox. 

MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – The next hurdle: Tabitha Isner runs for Congress in AL-2.

MONTGOMERY ADVERTISER – Facing death, educator, Christian, father figure John Geiger reflects on life.

YELLOWHAMMER NEWS: Jeff Poor: Elon Musk: “I’m a socialist”

YELLOWHAMMER NEWS – DC favoritism could threaten 600 Alabama jobs. 


DAILY MOUNTAIN EAGLE – Parrish eliminates jail, dispatch.

SELMA TIMES JOURNAL – Columnist Bill Whaley:  Open Meetings Act vital to effective journalism.

TROY MESSENGER – Runoff election voting begins soon.

ANDALUSIA STAR NEWS – Local poverty rates lower in 2018.

LAGNIAPPE – State bar releases documents on Zeigler’s license surrender.

AL.COM – Alabama lawsuit tip of the spear over “weaponizing” 2020 census.

AL.COM – Documents shed little light on Jim Zeigler’s law license surrender.

AL.COM – Could poop train return to Alabama? Residents near landfill concerned.

AL.COM – Distinguished Young Women ready to meet Mobile.

AL.COM – Archibald: Teach a kid to fish and you teach him more than fishing.

AL.COM – Sen. Doug Jones says he’ll sponsor “Keep Families Together Act.”

AL.COM – NASA in the park a big success.

AL.COM – Auburn University raises tuition, following across-the-board increases in state.

AL.COM – 46 percent of Republicans agree with Trump policy of separating families, poll shows.

AL.COM – Columnist Dana Hall McCain:  The problem with Pence.

AL.COM – Columnist Roy Johnson:  Father’s Day 2018: Fatherhood is forever, and altering the future of black boys takes us all.

WASHINGTON POST – Democrats intensify fight for immigrant children — and bludgeon Trump and Republicans ahead of midterms.

WASHINGTON POST – Contributor Laura Bush:  Separating children from their parents at the border ‘breaks my heart’.

NEW YORK TIMES – Safety Concerns Grow as Inmates Are Guarded by Teachers and Secretaries.

NEW YORK TIMES – Trumpism Finds a Safe Space at Conservative Women’s Conference

NEW YORK TIMES – Major Study of Drinking Will Be Shut Down

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