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Political Landscape:

Obama stops short in Turkey

April 11, 2009

It is that position that has angered Armenians, who say the issue of genocide has long been settled, so advocating for a historical commission “is just a delay tactic by the Turkish government,” said Zanku Armenian, chairman of the Armenian National Committee Glendale chapter.

“President Obama missed an opportunity to speak truthfully about the Armenian Genocide when he was in Turkey and help them face their past,” he said. “However, we believe President Obama is a man of his word, and hope that he will stick by his past words, as he said he would in Turkey, when it comes to April 24 in a White House statement.”

If he doesn’t, Schiff said, it could be a potential “game-changer” for his genocide resolution, which is approaching 100 co-sponsors in the House.

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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in 2007 was set to bring the resolution up for a full vote before 24 of its 235 backers withdrew support following then-President George W. Bush’s opposition. With support for the resolution weakened, Schiff and his co-sponsors requested that it be tabled until political conditions improved.

Similar resolutions failed to even get that far after passing the House Foreign Affairs Committee in 2000 and 2005, and supporters did not want to risk a no vote.

“It will be heavily influenced by what [Obama] does,” Schiff said.

Burbank Dems to host Liu and Krekorian

Assemblyman Paul Krekorian, together with state Sen. Carol Liu, are scheduled to field questions at an event in Burbank on the upcoming slate of statewide ballot measures that lawmakers put forth as part of a hard-fought plan to bridge a $42-billion deficit.

Several of the six proposed propositions on the May 19 ballot would pump nearly $6 billion into the state’s 2009-10 budget, but even if that money were approved, officials have already forecast an additional $8 billion gap as a result of declining sales and property tax revenues.

If the ballot measures fail, that gap could grow to roughly $14 billion, they warn. If Proposition 1A fails, the deficit could grow by an additional $16 billion, according to the California Legislative Analyst’s office.

That, in turn, could spell deeper cuts in transportation, education, health care and other public services.

Nearly all of the ballot measures have trailed heavily in recent polls.

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