New York Governor: US Turning Into Nation Of People Sitting On Couch Waiting For Next Government Check

April 10, 2012

NEW YORK, NEW YORK — Gov. Chris Christie said the country is becoming a “paternalistic entitlement society” this morning in a speech at a conservative conference headed by former President George W. Bush.

Addressing Bush and other national Republicans, Christie said he hasn’t seen a less optimistic period in the country in his lifetime.

“Government’s telling them stop dreaming, stop striving, we’ll take care of you,” he said at a theater at the New York Historical Society. “We’re turning into a paternalistic entitlement society. That will not just bankrupt us financially, it will bankrupt us morally.”

“We’ll have a bunch of people sitting on a couch waiting for their next government check,” Christie said.

Christie and Bush kicked off a day-long conference on pro-growth tax policy run by the President George W. Bush Institute, a group that Bush said allows him to engage in public policy issues behind the scenes.

Speakers throughout the day include Steve Forbes, Congressman Paul Ryan, Karl Rove and several governors. In addition to Bush, Henry Kissinger was in the audience for Christie’s 30-minute speech.

Bush said the topic of the conference is how to grow the private sector. He introduced Christie by complimenting his “enormous personality” and “belief in the individual,” saying even Texans had taken note of the governor.

“We admire the courageous stance you take,” said Bush, who nominated Christie to be U.S. Attorney.

“I was a proud member of the Bush administration for seven years,” Christie said, later adding that Bush “inspired a whole new generation of conservative Republican leaders.”

Christie spent much of his speech recapping his first two budgets, pension and health benefit overhaul for public workers, and the 2 percent cap on property taxes, stressing bipartisanship but also touting his ability to stick to his principles.

“We developed relationships with the other side of the aisle that allowed them to trust us. And that doesn’t happen overnight,” Christie said. “Day after day after day you have to sit with our colleagues and convince them of the goodness of your spirit and of the understanding that compromise is not a dirty word.”

He used his veto of the millionaire’s tax and his current pursuit of a 10 percent income tax cut as examples of the type of pro-growth tax policy that Bush referenced. He said the public sector in New Jersey is smaller, while he has created jobs in the private sector.

“If you can do this in New Jersey, you can do it anywhere,” Christie said. “Most importantly you can do it in Washington D.C. What we need again is some leadership that is not going to take no for an answer.”

Though Christie alluded to national politics, he spent most of the speech on New Jersey issues. Neither he nor Bush mentioned President Barack Obama, or the likely Republican presidential nominee, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.

Christie has endorsed and campaigned for Romney, while Bush has not publicly endorsed any of the GOP candidates.

“I have decided to stay out of the limelight,” Bush said. “I don’t think it’s good, frankly, for our country to undermine the president and I don’t intend to do so. But I do intend to remain involved in areas that I’m interested in.”

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Los Angeles California Police Under Investigation After Crazed Cops Search Section 8 Homes Without Warrants, Seeking To Identify Motorists Who Live In Section 8 Housing

August 19, 2011

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is being investigated for alleged “systemic” civil rights violations during routine traffic stops by trying to identify people who live in publicly subsidized housing, federal officials said Friday.

The U.S. Justice Department is conducting a civil investigation into the alleged discriminatory policing by the sheriff’s deputies in the cities of Lancaster and Palmdale, both in the Mojave Desert’s Antelope Valley, federal officials said.

Deputies from sheriff stations in those two communities also allegedly conducted warrantless searches of African-American families’ homes under the auspices of a housing authority compliance inspection, and housing authority investigators based at the two stations allegedly accompanied deputies during the compliance checks, federal officials said.

Sometimes, the deputies allegedly approached the home of a recipient of what is known as Section 8 subsidies “with guns drawn and in full SWAT armor,” conducted searches and asked questions unrelated to housing programs, Justice Department officials said.

The Justice Department inquiry will focus on whether the two sheriff stations “engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination on the basis of race or national origin,” federal officials said.

“In interviews with affected individuals and community representatives, we heard troubling accounts of allegedly unjustified stops and searches,” Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez said in a statement.

“We will be investigating whether there is a pattern of racially motivated stops and arrests,” Perez said. “We intend to peel the onion to its core, and gain a precise understanding of what is happening in these two areas.”

Sheriff Leroy D. Baca appeared at the news conference Friday with Perez in downtown Los Angeles and said his department is cooperating with the investigation.

“We are not going to enforce the laws on the backs of the poor who are in effect obeying the law,” the sheriff said.

The Antelope Valley has experienced explosive population growth over the past two decades, and African-Americans and Latinos now make up almost 60 percent of Lancaster and almost 70 percent of Palmdale, Perez said.

Justice Department officials will also look at whether leaders in the two communities “adopted a policy or practice designed to drive certain residents out of the community,” Perez said.

The cities of Lancaster and Palmdale don’t have their own police forces, and they contract with the sheriff, Perez said. Federal authorities will investigate allegations of deputies working alongside city officials, Perez said.

Palmdale City Hall was closed Friday, and officials there and in the city of Lancaster couldn’t be reached immediately for comment.

The sheriff stations in those communities show disproportionately high rates of misdemeanor and obstruction arrests in comparison with other stations, federal officials said. Also, the two cities have “unusually high rates of misdemeanor arrests and particularly high rates of arrests of African-Americans,” Perez said.

The federal inquiry is being carried out under a police reform provision enacted in the wake of the Los Angeles police beating of Rodney King in 1991, and the Justice Department now has the authority to investigate “patterns or practices of the deprivation of constitutional rights or violations of federal law,” Perez said.

In a recent e-mailed letter to the sheriff, Perez wrote that the Justice Department will conduct its inquiry in conjunction with another ongoing investigation begun in June into allegations that the cities of Palmdale and Lancaster violated the Fair Housing Act.

The Los Angeles County Housing Authority is also being investigated for an alleged “systematic effort to discriminate against African-Americans and Latinos,” federal officials said.

“We’ve been working with (Justice Department investigators) cooperatively since we were notified on June 16,” said Emilio Salas, deputy executive director of the Los Angeles County Housing Authority.

His agency looks forward to the inquiry and any recommendations that the Justice Department may come up with, he said.

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