Swalwell crosses the aisle to support Kate's law--UPDATED | Tim Talk | Tim Hunt | DanvilleSanRamon.com |

Local Blogs

Tim Talk

By Tim Hunt

E-mail Tim Hunt

About this blog: I am a native of Alameda County, grew up in Pleasanton and currently live in the house I grew up in that is more than 100 years old. I spent 39 years in the daily newspaper business and wrote a column for more than 25 years in add...  (More)

View all posts from Tim Hunt

Swalwell crosses the aisle to support Kate's law--UPDATED

Uploaded: Jul 11, 2017
Josh Richman, the communications director for Rep. Eric Swalwell, reached out to me to point out that this was the first time Kate's law came to a vote. In the prior Congress, it was referred to the House Judiciary Committee and never advanced to the floor for a vote.

My statement that he previously had voted against the bill was in error and I apologize.

Here's the link:

You have to wonder how the political calculation changed for U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Dublin). When Kate’s Law came before the House of Representatives a year ago, Swalwell joined his fellow Democrats in opposing it. With President Obama in the White House, it had no chance of becoming law. The law is named for Kate Steinle, who grew up in Pleasanton and knew Swalwell. She was killed while walking with his father on a San Francisco pier and a five-time deported illegal immigrant is awaiting trial this year.

This time around the House passed “Kate’s Law” easily and Eric joined with 23 other Democrats to easily pass the bill with wide-spread Republican support. The law would increase punishments for criminal offenders who re-enter the United States illegally after being deported.

In a statement, Swalwell wrote, “I knew Kate Steinle growing up and remain in touch with her family, who live in my congressional district. Her heinous murder was a tragedy and we still grieve today, wishing she was still with us. Sadly, we can't bring Kate back, but lawmakers can work to try and better protect our communities from criminals hurting people."
"This bill is not perfect, and it's shameful that the Republicans did not allow any debate in the Judiciary Committee, on which I sit, or on the House Floor to improve it. But it does improve our ability to punish individuals who repeatedly break the law and to deter those who may do so," he wrote.
Fair comment, but it is interesting how the Democrats continue to focus on process without regard to any progress.
The House also passed a bill cutting off some federal funding for so-called sanctuary cities such as San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley. Of course, the Dems in Sacramento have declared the entire state a sanctuary. It’s about time that local elected officials choosing to pander politically understand that federal law is not something you obey only when you agree.
Try that on a traffic cop.

Based on a recommendation from a friend and personally intrigued, I popped for matinee tickets for “A Night with Janis Joplin” at ACT’s Geary Theater in San Francisco. There were precious few people under 60, more like under 70, in the crowd. We felt like the younger folks—like when we vacation in the Coachella Valley during the winter months.
Having qualified for Social Insecurity a couple of years ago, I will still a high school student when Joplin and the Summer of Love were being celebrated in San Francisco. The 1967 Summer of Love brought an estimated 100,000 young people to the Haight Asbury and overwhelmed social and other city services.
For me, tie-dye and protests were far removed from my life sheltered life in Pleasanton—I would encounter them a year later when I attended one of the most disruptive academic years that UC Berkeley has ever seen.
The conclusion, after the show, that my wife and I mutually reached—we’re a bit too young to really enjoy what was a well-staged production with excellent singers and musicians. We only knew two songs—although I must confess I was singing “Lord won’t you buy me a Mercedes Benz” as I drove my first Benz home in 1975.


Posted by Scott Hale, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 10:36 am

Scott Hale is a registered user.

Now if Congress can just get anything else done......that would nice.

Posted by Voter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 12:54 pm

In 2012 then Candidate Swalwell was a tough talking "former prosecutor" who felt that we needed stronger deportation capabilities and methods to deal with repeat criminal offenders who were in the US illegally.

Now Congressman Swalwell has been irresponsibly absent on this issue that is widely supported throughout District 15. If he felt that a better Bill was possible then why didn't he sponsor his own version? Rather he does nothing and says nothing for two years only to bash the work done by other members of Congress when progress is made. That's not leadership.

The headline is misleading. Swalwell didn't cross the aisle, he fought this vote with his silence and his prior track record of voting against previous bills. The voters of District 15 are educated and intelligent. They know that his vote was a political maneuver and not a genuine reflection of his beliefs.

Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 2:28 pm

@Voter :"They know that his vote was a political maneuver and not a genuine reflection of his beliefs."

Don't know what you mean by "political maneuver". Maybe you just mean that he voted according to the wishes of the people who he was elected to represent? What's wrong with that? No elected official is going to have personal opinions which are in 100% agreement with the people who he represents.

Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 3:45 pm

Swalwell is an embarrassment to all attorneys and all constituents in his district for his Nancy Pelosi agenda of supporting the non-following of actual Federal laws on immigration. As an Attorney and as a Congressman he took an oath to follow and uphold the U.S. Constitution, not the Pelosi Constitution. If he has a problem with a Federal law, he needs to get the law changed. His position that people can unilaterally decide what Federal laws they want to follow is a threat to the authority of the rule of law that separates our great nation from Banana Republics.

Please, Catherine Baker, an Attorney who actually follows the rule of law, and respects the U.S. Constitution, run for this district seat against Swalwell. You will get amazing support from Republicans, Independents, and Democrats, who are fed up with Swalwell and his blind devotion to Nancy Pelosi and her extreme agenda.

Posted by Voter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 4:14 pm

@Sam: It is fair to say he eventually voted in alignment with the Districts desires.

What concerns me is the double talk. He would talk about how much he supported the bill when he's in local town halls, but then in DC he's silent and does nothing. This is a bill named after a young woman who was raised in Pleasanton. Yet, it is being championed by Republicans from other states. That's just simply an embarrassment.

He should have been taking the lead and acting as a vocal advocate. That's what leaders do. Again, I think the district is quite educated and understands that Swalwell was sheepish and worried about going against the party line. He's quite focused on developing his political career, and less focused on the issues of District 15.

Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 4:26 pm


Swalwell also supports Sanctuary Cities, which is the ultimate betrayal of following the rule of law, and leads to anarchy, and the destruction of the U.S. Constitution. Once again, supporting the right to unilaterally decide which Federal laws are to be followed is a threat to the stability of our country. If you do not like the Federal law, you get it changed. You do not have the right to simply unilaterally decide which Federal law you want to follow, and to have an attorney and congressman support this lawlessness of Sanctuary Cities is inexcusable and he needs to be voted out of office NOW.

Posted by Voter, a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 4:43 pm

@ American: Baker would be smart to hold onto her state assembly seat. Her status as a Republican (as moderate as she may be) would hurt her in the mid-terms in the current environment.

If she were to run and lose it would be the end of her political career. Also realize that the GOP party will not place $ in this district when they don't see it as a district that is in play. They will spend their dollars in districts they feel they need to defend or in areas where they might pick up.

Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jul 11, 2017 at 5:22 pm


Baker must be frustrated in state assembly as her common sense votes mean nothing as Democrats control Sacramento & she is tilting at windmills. She should go to DC where her votes actually mean something.

Posted by Sue Thayer, a resident of Birdland,
on Jul 12, 2017 at 11:33 am

Mr. Swalwell has been re-elected twice, with 73% and 76% margins. Good luck with that project, fellas. Say, maybe Condoleeza Rice could move to the district? Web Link

Catherine Baker's best chance would be to change Parties and primary him.

Posted by DKHSK, a resident of Bridle Creek,
on Jul 12, 2017 at 3:18 pm

DKHSK is a registered user.

Gee, a politician who changes his vote to suit political winds instead of his core philosophy, call me shocked.

Although I vehemently disagree with every core policy Swalwell stands for, that he changes his vote on literally the same bill means he is nothing but a tool.

And citizens (and non-citizens btw) consistently vote for these idiotic politicians.

When on earth are we going to learn?

Follow this blogger.
Sign up to be notified of new posts by this blogger.



Post a comment

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Stay informed.

Get the day's top headlines from DanvilleSanRamon.com sent to your inbox in the Express newsletter.

Burning just one "old style" light bulb can cost $150 or more per year
By Sherry Listgarten | 12 comments | 3,227 views

Premiere! “I Do I Don’t: How to build a better marriage” – Here, a page/weekday
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,543 views

Community foundations want to help local journalism survive
By Tim Hunt | 21 comments | 1,133 views