ACLU Liberty Watch 2012 is monitoring the presidential and vice-presidential debates, reporting and commenting on the battle of words, from a constitutional and civil liberties perspective. From immigration to LGBT equality, voting rights, women's rights and a safe and free national security policy, this is the place to follow the debates.
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UPDATE 12: 10:48 PM
The debate ends on an important note. Governor Romney said he “was for the 100% of Americans.” His record demonstrates something else.
Are any of the candidates really for the 100%?
We know the Constitution is for the 100%.
Join us and sign on today!
UPDATE 11: 10: 39 PM
Romney: “I care about 100% of the American people.”
What about women, LGBT Americans, and DREAMers? The Constitution is for the 100%
UPDATE 10: 10: 17 PM
Obama: “When it comes to national security, I mean what I say.”
We’re going to disagree on that one. In 2008, you promised to close the prison on Guantanamo Bay – last we checked, it’s still open.
UPDATE 9: 10:15PM
Governor Romney called Arizona’s immigration law a model for the nation.
Arizona's SB 1070, and laws like it, invite rampant racial profiling against Latinos, Asian-Americans and others presumed to be “foreign” based on how they look or sound. They also authorize police to demand papers proving citizenship or immigration status from anyone they stop and suspect of being in the country unlawfully.
Those laws are certainly not for the 100%
. The Constitution is.
UPDATE 8: 10:10 PM
Romney said, “This is a nation of immigration,” and went on to mention his wife's family of Welsh immigrants.
Then he went on to talk about how he’d strengthen E-Verify, the government database which make a list of everyone who is eligible to work. The theory is that this will prevent undocumented workers from getting jobs and end our immigration problems.
Unlikely. What about other immigration policies like the DREAM Act, Governor Romney?
UPDATE 7: 9: 52 PM
Romney: “Every woman in America should have access to contraceptives.”
Huh? That position is news to us! What if I’m a Georgetown law student?
UPDATE 6: 9:48 PM
Obama on women’s reproductive freedom: “These are not just women’s issues, these are family issues.”
The ability to decide whether or not to carry a pregnancy to term is essential to women’s equality, autonomy, and dignity, with implications for every aspect of her life – her educational aspirations, career goals, economic status, and, more broadly, her ability to live the life she planned.
UPDATE 5: 9:46 PM
Thanks to the questioner who asked about equal pay!
In 1963, the year that Congress passed the Equal Pay Act, women earned 59 cents to their male counterparts’ dollar. Although we celebrated the 49th anniversary of the Equal Pay Act earlier this year, the disparity continues: today, women, on average, earn only 77 cents for every dollar their male counterparts take home, and for women of color, the disparity is even greater.
Women need concrete tools to combat wage discrimination. President Obama or Governor Romney, leadership from the Oval Office would be helpful here.
UPDATE 4: 9:39 PM
With all this talk about taxing and spending – you might wonder where the government gets its power to do this? Well, the Constitution, of course. Article I, Section 8
, to be exact.
UPDATE 3: 9:24 PM
Romney: “I will fight for oil, coal and natural gas.”
But will you fight for our civil liberties, Governor Romney?
UPDATE 2: 9:20 PM
Candy Crowley: “Are we looking at the new normal?”
She was talking about energy, but we’re following civil rights. Attacks on reproductive freedom, marriage inequality, and unfair immigration policy are not things we’re planning to get used to!
UPDATE 1: 9:12 PM
For the first question, a student asked about getting a job after he graduates from college. In addition to talking about job creation, Obama said: “I want everyone to get a great education.”
When we hear “everyone” we understand that as EVERYONE – we hope that includes DREAMers.