Undocumented German Homeschooling Family Rick Santorum Didn’t Want Deported Loses Asylum Bid

Earlier in the spring, our publisher wrote a piece about the irony of Rick Santorum hoping that an undocumented German homeschooling family would win an asylum case and not get deported back to Germany.

Santorum

Looks like Santorum’s pleas and the pleas of many U.S. homeschooling families didn’t get heard. Last week the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in Cincinnati, denied the Romeike family a request for political asylum.

A German family seeking asylum in the U.S. so they can home-school their children lost their appeal in federal court on Tuesday (May 14), but their lawyers say they’re prepared to petition the U.S. Supreme Court to take the case.

The German government persecuted the Romeike family for their faith, said Mike Donnelly, a lawyer with the Home School Legal Defense Association, a religious organization that is representing the Romeike family.

“It is treating people who home-school for religious or philosophical reasons differently,” he added.

The Cincinnati-based 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals disagrees. The U.S. grants safe haven to people who have a well-founded fear of persecution, but not necessarily to those under governments with laws that simply differ from those in the U.S., Judge Jeffrey Sutton wrote in the court’s decision.

“The German authorities have not singled out the Romeikes in particular or homeschoolers in general for persecution,” he wrote for the three-judge panel in the case, Uwe Romeike v. Eric Holder, Jr.

Uwe Romeike said in an email on Wednesday that his family began home schooling to protect their children from bullying and teachings they didn’t agree with.

“As we were confronted with opposition to our choice we began to feel more and more that our faith required us to homeschool our children,” he said.

Uwe and Hannelore Romeike moved their five children to Tennessee (a sixth child has since been born) in 2008 to escape thousands of dollars in fines and increasing pressure from local police and education officials to enroll their children in school. All German parents are required by law to send their children to a state-recognized school, whether public or private.

FYI: The Romeikes are still undocumented, not matter how you spin it. Life sure is tough sometimes. Here’s hoping the Romeikes talk about the other stories of undocumented families who face deportation every day when the German family appeals the decision to the Supreme Court. Amazing how they can do that, while thousands and thousands of other families living in the shadows can’t.

Latest CNN Poll Has Rice and Santorum As Top GOP VP Choices Among Republican Voters

This afternoon CNN released the results of a new poll that asked Republican voters whom they think Mitt Romney should choose as his running mate. Former National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice and former GOP candidate Rick Santorum topped the list, with Rice getting 26% of respondents' top choice, while Santorum got 21%. The poll has a +/-4.5% margin of error.

Besides the choices, the sampling of Republican voters were also asked about favorability for each of the names suggested. Rice came in with a whopping 80% favorability rate and Santorum got a 65% favorability rate. In fact, Santorum's favorability rating has been his highest in this poll series. According to the poll, in May 2011, Santorum's favorability was at 26%. However, even though Santorum is at 65% favorable, he also clocked in the highest unfavorable rate, which was 19%. The poll's major findings are posted here.

Santorum Calls Himself “Senador puertorriqueño” at Town Hall Event in Puerto Rico

Let the pandering begin. Just hours after giving an interview where he told a Puerto Rican newspaper that English must be a requirement for Puerto Rico's entry into the Union as a 51st state (even though Santorum forgot that both Spanish and English are the island's two officialk languages), Politco reported that GOP presidential candidate referred to himself as "Senador puertorriqueño" (Senator Puerto Rico) at a town hall event in San Juan.

Here is what Politico writes:

“I was referred to by many in my state as Senador Puertorriqueño. They used to make fun of me, ‘Why are you representing Puerto Rico?’ Well, someone has to because they don’t have a voice,” Santorum said at town hall here.

 

“I felt a responsibility to the island,” Santorum said.

We can no longer make this up. We wish this were a joke. It's not. Ayy, Ricky Sancocho. Or, better yet, Santo Rum (not the rum you want to be drinking). Puerto Rico will be holding the GOP primary this Sunday March 18.

Santorum on Women in Combat and Radical Feminism: And Now He Is the Front-Runner

Say what you want about Rick Santorum, but right now as of the morning, the former Pennsylvania senator has taken the front-runner baton in the GOP presidential race. (Has anyone even seen Newt Gingrich these days?)

The latest polls out of Michigan show Santorum is in a statistical dead heat with Mitt Romney. Michigan is basically Romney's home state. 

In addition, Real Clear Politics posted the latest polls and Santorum right now is leading in both Michigan and Ohio, key swing states.

In the meantime, Santorum continues to offer some strange thoughts. First off, women in combat.

If you're out there, for example, in a group, or just two people, and some people, because of women, have, as you know with respect to physical capabilities, they don't have the same requirements that men do in the military, and may be in a position if someone is injured, has to be brought back.

The other example is the emotions of men, dealing with women in combat, and having men not focusing potentially on the mission but on the natural instinct to protect someone that's a female.

Next up, an appearance on Meet the Press.

David Gregory:  Let me ask you one more question about women. If you are President of the United States, and women want to work in your administration. Do single women without children only need apply? Are you going to respect the decision of women to come work for you if that’s the choice they make, or would they be somehow held by radical feminists?

Santorum: Well, I think if you go back and look at the people who have worked for me you’d find single women, we have married women, you’ve got all sorts of folks. You know, those are decisions I affirm. If women want to come into the workforce, great.  If they don’t, that’s great.  You know, we’re going to look at the best-qualified people and there will be plenty of working moms who will be in our administration and be adding greatly to the conservative cause I believe in.

Finally, Santorum appears on ABC with George Stephanopoulos, when talking about the feminist dilemma and a book Santorum and his wife wrote called "It Takes a Family" (as a response to Hilary Clinton's "It Takes a Village.")

Santorum: Well, that section of the book was co-written, if you want to be honest about it, by my wife, who is a nurse and a lawyer. And when she gave up that practice and she gave up, you know, nursing to raise a family, I mean, she felt very much that society was sort of — in many cases, looked down their nose at that decision.  And all I’ve said is — and in talking with my wife and others like her — who’ve given up their careers that they should be affirmed in their decision like everybody else and that these are choices, and they’re tough choices.

I think it’s important that women both outside the home and inside the home are affirmed for their choices they make, that they are, in fact, choices, and society, you know, treats them in a sense equally for whatever decision they make that’s best for them.”

Stephanopoulos: You say that now, but you also wrote in the book that radical feminists have been making the pitch that justice demands that men and women be given an equal opportunity to make it to the top in the workplace.  Isn’t that something that everyone should value?”

Santorum: Yeah, I have no problem — I don’t know — that’s a new quote for me. I don’t know what context that was given.  But the bottom line is that people should have equal opportunity to rise in the workforce.  And, again, if you read the entire section, I don’t think anyone will have a problem with the fact that what I was calling for — very clearly calling for is the treatment of an affirmation of whatever decision women decide to make.

BREAKING NEWS: Santorum Wins Iowa Caucus

UPDATE 2:50 EST: CNN reported that Mitt Romney called Rick Santorum about the Iowa results. Santorum's campaign it was a concession, but Romney's camp would not confirm this.

Major news outlets are reporting this morning that GOP Rick Santorum has garnered more votes in the January 3 Iowa caucus than the previously declared winner Mitt Romney. Iowa officials have certified the vote and declared that Santorum won the caucus by 34 votes. Romney's camp immediately called the caucus result a "virtual tie" and political scientists have already weighed in, saying that the current result is insignificant.

In the meantime, a Santorum campaign staffer just said on CNN that the result was a "big win" for the former Pennsylvania senator.

 

Here are excerpts breaking news reports from USA Today:

The Iowa Republican Party this morning posted the certified results from the Jan. 3 vote, which were first reported by the Des Moines Register.

While Santorum is officially the winner, political observers say the loser could be the Iowa caucuses.

"This underscores the amateur and volunteer nature of the way the caucuses are run," said Dennis Goldford, a political scientist at Drake University in Des Moines.

"Amateur can be fine but amateurism is something else," he said in a telephone interview with USA TODAY. "The caucuses are bearing a weight that they were never designed to do. This does furnish additional ammunition to those who criticize the impact of the caucuses."

Steffen Schmidt, a political scientist at Iowa State University, said the caucuses are "mostly a media event.

"No delegates are selected," he told USA TODAY in an e-mail. "It's like a very extensive public opinion poll. Yet, we give it huge significance because it is the first event. The probability that Rick Santorum won and not Mitt Romney made no real difference because Romney was the untouchable front-runner in New Hampshire already."

Romney seemed braced for the news, issuing a news release this morning. "The results from Iowa caucus night revealed a virtual tie," he said.

While Cantor Worries About #OccupyWallStreet, Santorum Says Protesters Have “Legitimate Beef”

So the #OccupyWallStreet movement is now becoming a topic of conversation with the nation's politicians weighing in. On Thursday, President Obama said the protests are in essence reflecting the nation's frustration with the economy. Vice President Joe Biden said that the Wall Street movement was similar to that of the Tea Party.

Today, two prominent Republicans leaders shared their views. First off, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

“I, for one, am increasingly concerned about the growing mobs occupying Wall Street and the other cities across the country,” Cantor said. “Believe it or not, some in this town have actually condoned the pitting of Americans against Americans.”

Later in the afternoon on MSNBC, Republican presidential Rick Santorum shared his views.

 

Matthews: Okay. you've never been a rich guy, you've never been driven by that. let's talk about this country's inequality situation. what's happening in new york, on wall street, it's a motley crew, we don't know what they all stand for, some of them may be anarchists, but a lot are just unemployed men and women trying to make some noise about the situation they're in. what's your reaction when you see people in the streets about the inequality of income in country?

Santorum: My reaction is, people going to wall street, have a legitimate reason to beef. that you had a situation where wall street did a lot of things that they shouldn't have done and no one, very few people, lost a lot of jobs in wall street because of that. and we bailed them out. we — not me, but the guys behind you in the white house, president bush and republicans and democrats alike bailed wall street out. and we see them sort of going on their merry way, big bonuses. and i don't — you know people –