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Council Members Call For More Openness in San Jose's Permit Process

Two San Jose council members say their city makes it too tough on small business owners who want to open shop or expand.

CPUC to File Revised PG&E Penalty

The California Public Utilities Commission is set to file a revised penalty proposal Monday for PG&E’s part in the fatal San Bruno gas line explosion.

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee Responds to 'Sanctuary City' Critics

San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee joins us to discuss a number of pressing issues facing the city: a housing shortage, growing inequity and allegations of police corruption. We'll also talk with him about the current controversy over San Francisco's "sanctuary city" policies, which are receiving national attention after the killing of a woman at Pier 14, allegedly by an undocumented immigrant.

Will the U.S. Supreme Court Reverse California Redistricting?

In 2010, California voters approved a new way of redrawing congressional districts as a way to combat partisan gerrymandering. The state took the power away from the Legislature and put it in the hands of a nonpartisan citizen commission. But California's system could be threatened by a case now pending at the U.S. Supreme Court. On Monday, the court heard arguments in a challenge to Arizona's Independent Redistricting Commission, where Arizona legislative leaders argued that the U.S. Constitution gives state legislatures exclusive control of congressional elections.

PBS NewsHour

Bernie Sanders: U.S. should be prepared to use military force

WASHINGTON — International rivals would be mistaken to assume he wouldn’t be prepared to use military force if that’s what circumstances required, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders said in an interview that aired on Sunday.

The Vermont senator says the United States should have the strongest military in the world. The U.S. should be prepared to act when it or its allies are threatened or in response to genocide.

“Yes, there are times when you have to use force. No question about it,” Sanders said. “But that should be a last resort.”

During his nearly 25 years in Congress, Sanders’ record on authorizing military force is mixed. He voted to send troops to Afghanistan after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. But he voted against going to war with Iraq in 1991 and again in 2003.

Sanders comments came during an interview that aired on ABC’s “This Week.” His campaign has focused on the economy and gained momentum. His chief rival for the Democratic nomination, Hillary Rodham Clinton, served as secretary of state for about four years. Sanders was asked why national security and foreign policy are missing from his campaign’s website.

“In all fairness, we’ve only been in this race for three-and-a-half months. And we’ve been focusing, quite correctly as you’ve indicated, on the economy, on the collapse of the American middle class, on massive income and wealth inequality,” Sanders said.

Sanders cited the war in Iraq as one of the “worst foreign policy blunders we have ever seen” because it led to an enormous destabilization of that region. He also said he believes his vote against the first Gulf War was correct.

“I think we could’ve gotten Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait in a way that did not require a war,” Sanders said. “… Do we need to go to war in every instance or can we bring pressure of sanctions and international pressure to resolve these conflicts?”

Sanders is among of the 31 senators who supports the Iran nuclear deal negotiated by President Barack Obama’s administration and other countries.

The post Bernie Sanders: U.S. should be prepared to use military force appeared first on PBS NewsHour.

Trump’s call for mass deportation reminiscent of Depression-era policy

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump signs autographs during the National Federation of Republican Assemblies
         at Rocketown in Nashville, Tennessee August 29, 2015.  REUTERS/Harrison McClary  - RTX1Q7SM

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump signs autographs during the National Federation of Republican Assemblies at Rocketown in Nashville on August 29, 2015. Photo by Harrison McClary/Reuters

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s call for mass deportation of millions of immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, as well as their American-born children, bears similarities to a large-scale removal that many Mexican-American families faced 85 years ago.

During the Great Depression, counties and cities in the American Southwest and Midwest forced Mexican immigrants and their families to leave the U.S. over concerns they were taking jobs away from whites despite their legal right to stay.

The result: Around 500,000 to 1 million Mexican immigrants and Mexican Americans were pushed out of the country during the 1930s repatriation, as the removal is sometimes called.

During that time, immigrants were rounded up and sent to Mexico, sometimes in public places and often without formal proceedings. Others, scared under the threat of violence, left voluntarily.

About 60 percent of those who left were American citizens, according to various studies on the 1930s repatriation. Later testimonies show families lost most of their possessions and some family members died trying to return. Neighborhoods in cities such as Houston, San Antonio and Los Angeles became empty.

The impact of the experience on Latinos remains evident today, experts and advocates say.

“It set the tone for later deportations,” said Francisco Balderrama, a Chicano studies professor at California State University, Los Angeles.

Two weeks ago, Trump said that, if elected president, he would expand deportations and end “birthright citizenship” for children born to immigrants who are here illegally. Under his plan, American-born children of immigrants also would be deported with their parents, and Mexico would be asked to help build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

“They’re illegal,” Trump said of U.S.-born children of people living in the country illegally. “You either have a country or not.”

Amid his comments on immigration, polls show negative impressions of Trump among Latinos. A Gallup poll released Aug. 24 found that Hispanics were more likely to give Trump unfavorable ratings than favorable ones by 51 percentage points.

Some immigrant advocates pointed to the removal of prominent Latino journalist Jorge Ramos from an Iowa press conference last week as a metaphor for the candidate’s desire to remove Latinos from the United States.

“Mr. Trump should heed the following warning: Our Latino and immigrant communities are not going to forget the way he has treated them,” the Washington, D.C.-based Fair Immigration Reform Movement said in a statement.

Ramos, an anchor for Univision, was escorted out by a Trump aide after Ramos, who had criticized Trump previously, tried to question Trump about his immigration plan. Trump interrupted Ramos, saying he hadn’t been called on, and ultimately told Ramos, “Go back to Univision.”

Ramos was saying, “You cannot deport 11 million people,” as he was escorted away. He was later allowed to return.

Trump has provided few details on how his proposed deportation effort would be carried out. The conservative-leaning American Action Forum concluded in a report it would cost between $400 billion to $600 billion and take 20 years to remove an estimated 11.2 million immigrants living in the country illegally.

The large-scale deportation he envisions would be impractical to enact, due to the extent to which Mexican immigrants have integrated into U.S. society, said Columbia University history professor Mae Ngai.

U.S.-born children of immigrants have been automatically considered American citizens since the adoption of the Constitution’s 14th Amendment in 1868. A Supreme Court ruling in 1898 halted previous attempts to limit the birthright of Chinese-American citizens after the passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act.

The ruling upheld the clause for all U.S.-born children, Ngai said, and there have been no successful challenges to the clause since.

In the 1930s, Balderrama said, officials skirted the issue of birthright citizenship by saying they did not want to break up families.

“But they did break up families and many children never saw their parents again,” said Balderrama, co-author of a book about Mexican repatriation in the 1930s with the late historian Raymond Rodriguez, who testified before a California state committee about seeing his father for the last time at age 10, before the father left for Mexico.

That legacy lingers in songs, often played on Spanish-language radio stations, that allude to mass deportations and separation of loved ones, said Lilia Soto, an American studies professor at the University of Wyoming.

For example, the lyrics to “Ice El Hielo,” by the Los Angeles-band La Santa Cecilia, speak of a community afraid that federal agents about to arrive and launch deportations raids at any moment. The ballad “Volver, Volver,” sung by Mexican ranchera performer Vicente “Chente” Fernandez, speaks of someone vowing to return to a lover despite all obstacles.

“They’re about families being apart,” Soto said. “The lyrics are all indirectly linked to this past.”

The post Trump’s call for mass deportation reminiscent of Depression-era policy appeared first on PBS NewsHour.

Support for Iran nuclear deal rises to 31 in Senate

WASHINGTON — Oregon’s Democratic Sen. Jeff Merkley on Sunday became the 31st senator to announce support for the Iran nuclear deal, as momentum builds behind the agreement the Obama administration and other world powers negotiated with Tehran.

Merkley’s backing puts supporters within reach of the 34 votes required to uphold a presidential veto of a congressional resolution disapproving the agreement, which curbs Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for billions of dollars in sanctions relief.

Republicans are unanimously against the deal. But with an overwhelming number of Senate Democrats in favor, some have now begun aiming to amass 41 yes votes, which would allow them to kill the disapproval resolution outright in the Senate and protect Obama from having to use his veto pen.

A vote on the nuclear deal the U.S. and other world powers negotiated with Iran is scheduled for early September.

Merkley said that while he thinks the deal has “significant shortcomings,” it is the best strategy to block Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon.

“Because of these shortcomings, many have argued that the United States, instead of implementing the agreement, should withdraw from it, persuade our partners to set the agreement aside and work together to negotiate a better deal,” Merkley said in a statement. “However, the prospects for this are slim. All of our partners … believe that the current deal – in regard to its central goal of blocking Iran’s pathways to a nuclear bomb – is sound. They have committed the good faith of their governments behind the agreement and intend to honor the deal as long as Iran does likewise, with or without the United States.”

The post Support for Iran nuclear deal rises to 31 in Senate appeared first on PBS NewsHour.

Walker: Building a wall along the Canadian border a ‘legitimate issue’

WASHINGTON — Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is putting a new twist on the topic of securing the border, a staple among the GOP candidates running for president, by pointing north.

Walker said in an interview that aired Sunday that building a wall along the country’s northern border with Canada is a legitimate issue that merits further review.

Republican candidates for president have often taken a get-tough approach on deterring illegal immigration, but they usually focus on the border with Mexico. Walker was asked Sunday morning on NBC’s “Meet the Press” whether he wanted to build a wall on the northern border, too. Walker said some people in New Hampshire have asked the campaign about the topic.

“They raised some very legitimate concerns, including some law enforcement folks that brought that up to me at one of our town hall meetings about a week and a half ago. So that is a legitimate issue for us to look at,” Walker said.

The U.S.-Canada boundary is the longest international border in the world at 5,525 miles long.

Billionaire Donald Trump is riding the issue of illegal immigration to the top of the Republican presidential primary polls. He has said he would make Mexico pay for completing a permanent wall along the border. He also says he would also end automatic citizenship for those born in the United States, a right guaranteed by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution that was originally added to grant citizenship to freed slaves and their descendants after the Civil War. His positions appear to have pushed rivals to also take strong stands on immigration.

Walker, at one point, echoed Trump’s call for ending birthright citizenship, but later said he’s against any such repeal.

The post Walker: Building a wall along the Canadian border a ‘legitimate issue’ appeared first on PBS NewsHour.