Chris Crane, president of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Council, which represents immigration enforcement officers, recently called on Congress to resist immigration reforms that harm his officers’ ability to do their jobs:
ICE officers are being ordered by [Administration] political appointees to ignore the law. Violent criminal aliens are released every day from jails back into American communities. ICE Officers face disciplinary action for engaging in routine law enforcement actions. We are barred from enforcing large sections of the Immigration and Nationality Act, even when public safety is at risk. Officer morale is devastated.
If this were the U.S. Capitol Police, the Secret Service, or the military, Congress would be outraged, the President would react firmly and swiftly, and pundits and groups from across the country would be demanding this problem be fixed. Sadly, though, nothing is being done to fix this broken and dangerous state of affairs.
In fact, the situation is even scarier. As the ICE letter points out, President Obama continues to order ICE officers to ignore ever-growing sections of immigration law and undertake actions that create a risk to public safety. The Senate has passed a gargantuan immigration bill that includes mass amnesty, tons of handouts to special interests, and enough waivers and exemptions to make Obamacare officials jealous.
Notably, the Senate bill does little to actually support the hard-working men and women of ICE and other immigration enforcement agencies. Even worse, amnesty would make the work of ICE even more difficult by encouraging more illegal immigration and adding new classes of provisional immigrants who have special rules that apply to them.
It is sad that it has come to this: “ICE officers are pleading with [Congress] to…stand with American citizens and the immigration officers who put their own personal safety at risk each day to provide for public safety.” U.S. law enforcement officers should not have to beg Congress just to enforce existing laws.
Congress should reject amnesty, which would only further harm our immigration officers’ effort, and instead use the budget process to give ICE and other immigration agencies the resources they need to do their jobs effectively. Then Congress should demand that President Obama uphold immigration law, not selectively enforce it.