Sequester amnesty--Who is responsible?

Jed Babbin:
Because the word “sequester” sounds more like a bronchial infection than a governmental disaster, President Obama failed to terrorize House Republicans into raising taxes in order to avoid it.

They tried everything they could think of to scare us. We’d have meat shortages because federal inspectors would be laid off, long lines at airport security stations would get longer because the TSA molesters would be cut back. Education Secretary Arne Duncanearned four “Pinocchios” from the Washington Post’s Fact Checker column for brazenly lying about teachers he said were already being laid off in West Virginia.

Duncan, for all his faults, is relatively harmless. The same cannot be said about Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, whose department has begun releasing criminal illegal aliens — which for this discussion is not redundant — from the jails where they were being held pending deportation. Even before Friday, when the $85 billion in cuts took effect, Napolitano’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement began releasing criminal illegal aliens among the public.

It’s the Obama administration’s “sequester amnesty,” which endangers the public to make a political point.

Pinal County, Arizona, is about seventy miles from the Mexican border. It’s larger than Connecticut, running south and east from the city of Mesa. It’s sheriff, Paul Babeu, is a tough guy in a very tough place. And both his job and his county are made a lot tougher by ICE’s release of an unknown number of these criminal illegals, people who were held pending deportation because their criminal records made them “inadmissible” into the United States.

Arizona is high on Obama’s list of enemies. It’s the state Obama’s Justice Department sued to set aside the state law that enables the arrest and detention of illegal aliens. The Supreme Court struck down part of the law, but left in place the part that allows state law enforcement officers to check the immigration status of people they’ve stopped for other reasons.


In December 2012, Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency had more than 33,000 illegal aliens in custody pending deportation. These aren’t people who were arrested just because they were illegal aliens. They are criminals, held by ICE because they were convicted of separate crimes, usually serious felonies, and held after they’d served their sentences until they could be deported. Others have long criminal records in their own countries who came here to do more of what they did at home.

Federal law allows these people to be held for up to six months pending deportation. Some, from nations such as Pakistan, are held for that long — and should be held longer - because their country of origin won’t issue travel documents enabling their return. The non-cooperating nations are content to leave their problems with us, be they terrorists or drug traffickers.


I asked Babeu if he even knew who these people were. He said that he’s asked for that information numerous times, including by letter, and ICE has refused to tell him. “These people were released into the community. We don’t know their names, we don’t know what charges they were held on or their criminal history.” He added, “But we do know this: this is the same group that Janet Napolitano and Barack Obama have all agreed that these are the worst of the illegals.”

Napolitano and Obama both act like bystanders to the jail break.  But the fact of the matter is that either could have ordered those under them to expedite the deportation rather than release these crooks.  They could have ordered ICE to continue to hold them while they found other cuts to make.  I think this is part of their pain campaign.  They hope to induce as much pain as possible in order to get a painful tax increase.


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