Columbia and DC Disasters


Today is not only the 15th anniversary of the Columbia disaster that killed all seven astronauts aboard the Space Shuttle, its a District of Columbia disaster on Capitol Hill, where a GOP controlled Congress is plotting at a West Virginia weekend retreat, while the clock continues to tick towards another government shutdown and a March 5 DACA deadline.

Americans commemorate NASA's Kennedy Space Center catastrophe recalling a fateful day in 2003 when after 16 days in space, our spaceship broke apart while re-entering Earth's atmosphere.

So too will our nation remember this day when Republicans and Democrats are settling into a protracted tug-of-war, which could destroy our democracy as we know it?

Democrats want the children of immigrants to stay and object to the #SOTU speech as racially charged, while Republicans are digging into their demands. @POTUS proposed a 10- to 12-year track to citizenship, though he can only serve for a maximum of 8 years, for around 1.8 million younger immigrants protected by DACA. He is seeking $25 billion for border security, including a wall, despite campaign promises that Mexico would fund it. He would end a lottery used to encourage immigration from diverse countries and redistribute some of those visas to applicants with high-skilled jobs.

This increasing standoff leaves serious doubt whether so-called leaders will reach an election-year pact to protect hundreds of thousands of immigrants from deportation, sharpen border security and curb immigration. They have not agreed on a deadline, for this institution that only seems to react under pressure.