NDLON Reacts to President’s Comments on Immigration Reform to Law Enforcement
Today, President Obama met with representatives from several major national law enforcement agencies, commenting on the possibility of Congressional action on immigration reform and blaming House Republicans for lack of action. His full remarks are available below. In response, NDLON Executive Director Pablo Alvarado issued the following statement:
“The President's remarks on immigration today are more of an indictment of his own policies than of Congress's failure to allow a vote. President Obama's policies, not Republicans in Congress, have led to the Arizonification of the country. It borders on becoming a political crime for President Obama to decry the very status quo he created. While there is unity among immigrant rights advocates on the need for Speaker Boehner to allow a vote, there is equal consensus that the President should end his failed experiment to use police and sheriffs as so-called ‘force multipliers’ for immigration enforcement. That policy has been a catastrophe. Particularly if statutory immigration reform were to be signed into law this year, there would be heightened need for President Obama to end Secure Communities and programs like it in order to ensure immigrants have safe passage on the metaphorical road to citizenship contemplated in the Senate proposal. In related news, Santa Cruz, California is the latest local jurisdiction to rebel against President Obama's signature deportation program."
"The damning report filed in Maricopa County last week had been called for and expected for years. But what the Department of Justice report in East Haven exposes is a national epidemic of civil rights violations that must call into question the federal immigration programs that rely on local police whose enforcement practices are increasingly discriminatory. What else will it take to rethink the strategy of enlisting police as force multipliers in immigration. The recent Department of Justice actions are a warning sign to reverse course on immigration and end programs like Secure Communities immediately."