South Carolina officials want a federal appeals court to overturn a judge's order putting parts of the state's tough new immigration law on hold. Attorney General Alan Wilson made the request in papers filed with the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
In December, U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel blocked sections of the new law, and other parts of the law took effect Jan. 1. Gergel has delayed a lawsuit over the law pending the outcome of a U.S. Supreme Court decision on a similar challenge in Arizona.
Vilsack Reiterates President's Commitment to Rural America
Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack spoke with reporters Wednesday morning after the President's State of the Union Address. Vilsack says he agrees with President Barack Obama that the government should do no more for people than that which they cannot do for themselves:
“We’re not going to be able to build by ourselves a road, or a bridge or an airport or a railroad system; we need to collectively do that. We’re not going to be able to create a fair trading system without our government making sure that trade agreements are enforced properly. We’re not going to be able to have the private sector fully and completely provide broadband access to remote areas without some assistance and help to make the numbers work.”
But Vilsack noted that residents in rural areas should not be treated as second class citizens when it comes to broadband technology - and he says the president acknowledged that.
Southern Drought Creates Feed Issues for Livestock Producers
Across Texas and Oklahoma the drought has burned up pastures and made hay very expensive. Oklahoma Livestock Relief Coalition Spokeswoman Dr. Carrie Floyd says there has been a big increase in abandoned livestock:
“We are receiving phone calls about animals that are starving, basically, people don’t have any hay, there isn’t any pasture; quite a few horses, but we’ve also had instances with cattle.”
Earlier this week, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin announced a program to help local law enforcement agencies pay for care of abandoned animals.
Regulators Taking a Looking at Forcing Bank of American to Dismantle
Federal regulators have the power to break up big financial institutions under the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law, and a group of academics, economists and consumer advocates say they should use that authority to break up the giant Bank of America. Public Citizien's David Arkush says the bank is particularly vulnerable because of mortgage losses associated with its 2008 purchase of Countrywide:
Those advocating a Bank of American bailout are filing a petition with the Federal Reserve and other regulators urging them to carve up the bank into smaller and safer pieces.