POLITICAL INTELLIGENCE According to a recently released final report by the Government Accounting authored by then-Congressman Phil Gramm, caused serious hardship for many working recipients of Aid to Families with Dependent Children act decreased the national monthly caseload by 442,000. The GAO found “no strong evidence that the OBRA changes made welfare more attractive than employed self-sufficiency. However, one-and-one-half to two year later, those who had lost AFDC . . . experienced substantial losses in real income, and many were without health insurance after their loss of Medicaid.” Following a preliminary version of this report in 1984, medicaid coverage was extended to those who lose AFDC, but only temporarily. The GAO concluded that adequate wage level and employment opportunities were “as important as program incentives for enabling recipients to gain independence from welfare.” In other words, contrary to the contentions of sponsors of the Reconciliation Act, those receiving welfare are all too happy to leave those rolls when offered employment at decent wages. Drugs to Avoid Researchers this month estimated that women using the anti-acne drug Accutane during the first weeks of pregnancy are 25 times more likely than normal to bear a malformed infant. The Wall Street Journal reported that scientists from the government’s Centers for Disease Control, from the drug’s manufacturer, Hoffmann-La Roche, Inc., and from several university medical centers studied the outcome of pregnancy in all 159 cases of prenatal Accutane exposure reported to the company and the Food and Drug Administration up to July 5, 1984. The findings, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, reveal that of the 159 women who had taken the drug during pregnancy, 95 had elected to have abortions and the effect on the fetus wasn’t known. Of the remaining 59 women, only 26 bore normal infants. There were 12 miscarriages and the birth of 21 malformed infants. Three of the malformed Political Intelligence is reported by Richard Kallus and Jeff Ruoff infants were stillborn and nine died in early infancy. Malformation of the head, face and ears was a common defect. Heart and central nervous system defects also were common. Swamp Rock for Kathy Check these lyrics from Houston Mayor Kathy Whitmire’s new campaign song: “Standin’ by the bayou waitin’ for the evenin’ rain, with the Houston skyline in our eyes. The Gulf Coast is the best coast, you know it ain’t hard to figure out; there’s a world class city happenin’ here, that the world can’t help but talk about.” Then the chorus kicks in: “Houston was the first word heard from the surface of the moon, and Kathy, we’ve come too far to turn back now.” The new commercial, according to the Houston Post, sounds a lot like one of those stirring Springsteen anthems replete with wailing saxophone, expansive piano work, and bad grammar. Richard Ross, Whitmire’s ad man, said “That’s the idea. I told Gary [Tigerman, the song’s author] I wanted a song that would make you drive fast.” Not on the Houston freeways, we presume. Immigration alarmists get a lot of mileage out of the widespread assumption that economic chaos is bound to break loose when undocumented workers spill into a community. But it isn’t necessarily so, according to a recent study by the Urban Institute, a Washington, D.C., research group. As reported in the Wall Street Journal, the study focused on the recent influx of Mexicans into Southern California and found “few of the problems that are supposed to dog the trail of immigration en masse.” Thomas Espenshade, an author of two Urban Institute research papers on Southern California, said: “The bottomline consensus on the impact of Mexican immigrants on Los Angeles and the surrounding region is that, on balance, they are an economic benefit.” Loeffler’s Orientation I.Fresh from his dinner with the World Anti-Communist League, U.S. Rep. Tom Loeffler continued his courtship with the extreme right, announcing that Houston City Council member John Goodner was supporting him in his bid for the Republican nomination for governor. Goodner led the fight in Houston \(TO, in overturning a City Council resolution banning discrimination based on sexual orientation. Shortly after President Reagan promoted Margaret Heckler from her post as Secretary of Health and Human Services to a position as ambassador to Ireland, Hispanic leader Raul Yzaguirre wrote to the President suggesting that he promote Secretary of Education William Bennett to a position as ambassador to Antarctica. Yzaguirre, president of the National Council of La Raza in Washington, D.C., was steamed over Bennett’s recent remarks that bilingual education programs were a failure and that he did not intend to implement the terms of the 1984 Bilingual Education Act. The Committee for a Sane Nuclear Policy is running a “citizens’ appeal” campaign to urge Reagan and Gorbachev to agree on a comprehensive nuclear testing ban at their November summit. The Washington-based peace group is soliciting signatures on cards asking the superpower leaders to make the summit a “historic turning point for world peace.” The National Roster of Hispanic Elected Officials reveals that Texas has seen more growth in Hispanic officeholders than any other state up from 1427 elected officials in 1980 to 1475 in 1985. The Roster also shows that Hispanic women are more likely to run for office than women of other groups, according to NALEO \(National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed sourcebook. Texas Senators v The U.S. Senate voted 86 to 13 in September to reauthorize the superfund program to clean up toxic waste dumps. $7.5 billion in funding will be provided to continue the program through 1990. Senator Lloyd Bentsen voted for the proposal, while Senator Phil Gramm voted against it. Both senators voted against an experimental project to compensate victims of exposure to hazardous waste; that $30 million-a-year project was defeated 49 to 45. V Columbia University plans to divest itself of almost all of its approximately $39 million of common stock in compa THETEXAS OBSERVER 13
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