From ‘Yes we can’ to ‘Because I want to’

Barely 48 hours after President Barack Obama unilaterally granted amnesty to 5 million illegal immigrants, “Saturday Night Live” satirized the move in a remake of an old “Schoolhouse Rock” educational cartoon.

In the sketch, Obama repeatedly shoved legislation (“Bill”) down the steps of the Capitol, displaying his contempt for the legislative process. Regrettably, the comedy writers at NBC have a better grasp on how a bill becomes a law under the U.S. Constitution than does the president of the United States.

Viewers could be forgiven for barely recognizing the president who previously shouted “Yes we can!” to adoring crowds, but now says “Because I want to” when explaining his actions.

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Re-elected Rep. Lou Barletta released from hospital after surgical procedure

U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta on Wednesday was released from hospital, two days after undergoing emergency surgery to remove a blockage from a carotid artery.

Barletta communications director Tim Murtaugh said Barletta, 58, had been released from Hershey Medical Center and was resting comfortably in his Hazleton home.

“He is doing just fine and is fully able to continue to serve the people of the 11th District following his re-election last night,” Murtaugh said.
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House Republican asks if administration is preparing new green cards

Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.) asked the Obama administration to confirm whether it requested stock for new green cards in anticipation of an executive action on immigration.

In a letter made public Friday to USCIS Director Leon Rodriguez, Barletta questioned whether the Obama administration could actually keep up with the number of work permits, noting that it approved about 1.5 million requests for employment authorizations in 2013.

“Issuing work permits and green cards at these advertised levels would represent an astounding increase in immigration,” Barletta wrote.

He argued that the U.S. government would not be able to keep up with background checks for that number of work permits.

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U.S. Rep. Lou Barletta touts his public record in Washington and Hazleton

WILKES-BARRE — Seeking his third term in the U.S. House of Representatives, Lou Barletta says he has already compiled a solid record of accomplishment.

 

Barletta, 58 of Hazleton, said in his “two short terms” in Congress he has:

 

• Reduced the interest loan rate for victims of the 2011 flooding.

 

• Exempted volunteer fire departments from the insurance requirements that were originally part of the Affordable Care Act.

 

• Eliminated millions of dollars in federal spending for buildings by consolidating and selling off excess property.

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Former Hazleton mayor Barletta out to save government money

Lou Barletta, R-11, has been a Congressman for four years, but he still economizes like he did as co-owner of a highway marking company and mayor in Hazleton.

“Hopefully, I can earn my pay and save the government some money,” Barletta said.

Last year after becoming chairman of the House Transportation Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management, Barletta looked for savings.

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Immigration, education tackled at candidate forum

Candidates speaking at the Carlisle Fire & Rescue Services building Thursday evening agreed on one thing: the United States’ government is broken. Each offered their ideas about how to begin fixing it.

Barletta and Ostrowski spoke next, tackling immigration and education early on. Barletta re-affirmed his belief that immigration reform is needed and that those in the country illegally should be deported. He also said he is working to save taxpayers money.

“I realized that Washington is broken in so many ways that they don’t realize what it’s like on our streets,” he said. “My short time in Washington I’ve been very frustrated by a lot of things going on, but I’ve stood up for everything that I believe in.”

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Barletta: Search for bipartisanship continues in Washington

Rep. Lou Barletta said his record on fighting the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is without question. He’s voted more than 50 times to “defund, derail, dismantle” President Obama’s signature law reforming health care.

But what Barletta wasn’t willing to do, he said, was shut down the government if the president didn’t repeal the law, as the more conservative wing of his party pressed for last year.

“It had no chance of passing – it had no chance – so why would we shut the government down to try to get the president to do something when it’s not going to happen?” Barletta asked during a campaign interview last week at The News-Item. “I wanted no part of it.”

What he did do is consult with a handful of like-minded House GOP members who then reached out to some House Democrats who also wanted to try something to stop the developing do-or-die scenario. The group, 10 or 12 at first, put leadership aside and began meeting secretly, Barletta said.

“We had no idea what was going to happen,” he said. “But we sat across the table and asked, ‘What can we do to stop this?'”

The group, which grew to 30 or 40, came to a consensus: its Republicans members would work to prevent a government shutdown if the Democrats would push to repeal the medical device tax from the ACA. They thought they had the votes to get it through the House, and the Senate.

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Obama Cancels Trip to Review Ebola Effort

WASHINGTON—The White House on Wednesday acknowledged shortcomings in the administration’s response to Ebola after a second Texas health-care worker was diagnosed with the virus.

Mr. Earnest said the U.S. isn’t currently considering a travel ban on flights originating from West Africa, where Ebola has become an epidemic. Rep. Lou Barletta (R., Pa.) was among the lawmakers on Wednesday who reiterated calls for such a ban.

“Unless we take the basic step of controlling access to this country, we are inviting trouble by simply asking travelers how they feel and taking their temperature,” Rep. Barletta said.

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