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Governors demand Biden take action on the border

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Mission, Texas – Gov. Greg Abbott – along with nine other governors – demanded Wednesday that President Biden take action regarding the spiraling crisis at the U.S. Mexico border. Abbott warned that the administration’s failure to address the crisis it created is threatening the nation’s national security. He also revealed that the White House has yet to respond to a letter sent by 26 governors on September 20, requesting a meeting with the administration to seek solutions to curtail a tsunami of migrants expected to reach the U.S. border before the end of the year.

The governors stood side-by-side in a open field at Anzalduas Park, in Hidalgo County, Texas. The group spoke of how the crisis is effecting their states from the rise in drug addiction and deaths to the increase of human trafficking. Under a blazing Texas sun in an area near the Rio Grande River in Mission, Texas – known for significantly high illegal border traffic – the governors reiterated that the resolution to the crisis must be non-partisan. They also asked why neither Biden, nor Vice President Kamala Harris have done anything to resolve the situation but instead establish policies that make it worse.

The governors were flanked by dozens of National Guard personnel, who positioned their combat vehicles – Humvees and trucks – in a semi-circle around the lawmakers. Officials with the Texas Department of Public Safety, U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents and local law enforcement also stood by as each politician made their case for more enforcement and federal assistance.

Abbott, along with Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, as well as governor’s Mark Gordon of Wyoming, Brian Kemp of Georgia, Brad Little of Idaho, Kim Reynolds of Iowa, Greg Gianforte of Montana, Pete Ricketts of Nebraska, Mike DeWine of Ohio and Kevin Stitt of Oklahoma spoke to the press.

“The Biden Administration’s open border policies have led to complete chaos at the southern border, and pose a threat to the safety of Texans and all Americans,” said Abbott. “Texas has stepped up to keep our communities safe and mitigate this crisis ourselves, and our efforts have been made stronger by the support and assistance of governors from across the nation.”

He also unveiled a 10- point plan to mitigate the crisis.

  • Continue Title 42 public health restrictions
  • Fully reinstate the Migrant Protection Protocols
  • Finish securing the border
  • End catch and release
  • Clear the judicial backlog
  • Resume the deportation of all criminals
  • Dedicate federal resources to eradicate human trafficking and drug trafficking
  • Re-enter all agreements with our Northern Triangle partners and Mexico
  • Send a clear message to potential migrants
  • Deploy more federal law enforcement officers 

Texas resources have been stretched thin and the White House has failed to protect the American people, surmised Abbott. He, along with Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, said Biden doesn’t need Congress to enact any immediate border security measures, suggesting that with “the stroke of a pen” he can protect the country.

Ducey told me shortly after the press conference that they are sending “a direct and clear message to President Biden that this is a federal issue.” He added that “the resources have to come from the federal government…when is Washington going to wake up and pay attention?”

“It’s not just a border crisis, it’s a national security crisis,” said Ducey, just before boarding a Texas DPS armored boat patrolling the Rio Grande. “Border security is national security.”
Ducey is right. The porous border has led to an extraordinary increase in the trafficking of the deadly narcotic Fentanyl into the United States. Fentanyl deaths are up

In the September letter, the governor’s noted the “the negative impacts of an unenforced border policy on the American people can no longer be ignored.”

“Border apprehensions are up almost 500% compared to last year, totaling more than 1.3 million—more people than the populations of nine U.S. states,” the letter stated. ” Approximately 9,700 illegal apprehensions have prior criminal convictions. Cartels and traffickers are making $14 million a day moving people illegally across the border. More fentanyl has been seized this fiscal year than the last three years combined—almost 10,500 pounds of fentanyl when only 2 milligrams prove fatal. This is enough to kill seven times the U.S. population.”

At the end of the letter the governors requested that “due to the emergent crisis, we respectfully request a meeting as soon as your schedule allows within 15 days. While we know your responsibilities as Commander in Chief are substantial, ending the national crisis and securing our states must be a priority.”

Texas DPS Director Steve McCraw said at the press conference “when we see this type of mass influx of migrants to our state, the cartels profit by exploiting the situation. Unless we act, there is no stopping them from reaching communities across the country with their drugs and violence.”

Neither Biden, nor Harris, who was appointed the border czar to resolve the crisis by Biden, responded to the letter.

You can follow Sara A. Carter on Twitter @SaraCarterDC

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Immigration

Is DACA a Trojan Horse? Multiple Criminal Juveniles Slipping Through

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Southern Border Patrol illegal immigrants

“Despite claims that DACA doesn’t allow for criminals to come into the country, the program has nonetheless allowed in many youths with gang affiliations and criminal records.”

Just The News put out an in depth analysis on a report highlighting how many criminal immigrant youths qualify for DACA but face few consequences. The report was released this week by George Fishman of the Center for Immigration Studies.

Democrats and immigration activists have long claimed that amnesty for illegal immigrants who came to the U.S. as children wouldn’t include young people with a criminal history, but many of the juvenile beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) were affiliated with gangs and had arrest records when granted the program’s benefits, according to the report.

“Despite the successful framing of Dreamers and DACA recipients as young people with no criminal records, it turns out that many were affiliated with gangs and many had arrest records when granted DACA benefits, and many others saw their DACA status terminated because of criminal activity,” the report states.

Just The News details:

The publication comes as Democrats in Congress are preparing a legislative push before they lose control of the House early next year to provide a pathway to citizenship for recipients of DACA. The Obama administration established the program in 2012 to grant protection from deportation for so-called “Dreamers,” illegal immigrants brought to the U.S. as children.

Proponents of DACA and the Dream Act, a longtime legislative proposal to grant amnesty to Dreamers, have consistently said the program won’t help people with criminal records.

Only “young people who are poised to contribute to our country and have met strict requirements regarding moral character and criminal history would be eligible,” said then-Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano in 2011, for example.

“These individuals do not pose a risk to public safety,” Napolitano emphasized. “They do not pose a risk to national security.”

Since then, numerous Democrats and immigration activists have expressed similar sentiments, claiming those with a “criminal history” or “criminal record” don’t benefit from DACA.

The DACA application form asks if the potential beneficiary has ever been a member of a gang, killed or seriously hurt someone, committed sexual assault, or “ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of a felony or misdemeanor, including incidents handled in juvenile court, in the United States?”

However, “in actuality, the DACA program is more lenient,” according to the report, which noted certain misdemeanors aren’t deemed significant enough to bar someone from DACA eligibility. Plus, the form’s instructions state that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an agency under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), may consider granting DACA protections even if someone was arrested or detained and charges were filed.

“If USCIS determines that you have been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors not occurring on the same date and not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme of misconduct, or that you otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety, USCIS is unlikely to defer action in your case, except where DHS determines that exceptional circumstances exist,” the instructions continue.

Of this standard, the Center for Immigration Studies report quips, “It is certainly comforting to know that, despite Secretary Napolitano’s assurances, USCIS reserves the right to grant DACA to an alien who poses a threat to national security or public safety, who has been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors.”

Over the years, Republican senators have penned multiple letters to DHS about alleged DACA recipients arrested or charged with serious crimes such as murder and sex trafficking.

In 2017, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced a major operation targeting gang members and associates involved in transnational criminal activity, noting three of those arrested had been DACA beneficiaries.

That same year, the Washington Examiner reported that 622 DACA recipients had their status revoked that year due to criminal activity and that a total of 2,139 had their status pulled from 2013-2017.

“It confirms that the DACA screening process was woefully inadequate,” Jessica Vaughan of the Center for Immigration Studies told the Examiner at the time. “The eligibility bar was set very low, explicitly allowing people with multiple misdemeanor and certain felony convictions to be approved. Only a handful of the applicants were ever interviewed, and only rarely was the information on the application ever verified.”

According to data provided in 2018 by USCIS to lawmakers, hundreds of individuals who obtained DACA benefits that were later revoked due to criminal and/or gang involvement were still living in the country and at large. The data also included a list of more than 45 gang affiliations of the ex-DACA criminals.

USCIS released data in 2019 indicating 7.8% of all approved DACA applicants had an arrest record — 59,786 individuals, of whom 53,792 had a record before approval and 7,814 had a later arrest. The agency also noted about 1% of approved DACA applicants have an arrest in any given year, many for severe crimes.

“The truth is that we let those with criminal arrests for sexually assaulting a minor, kidnapping, human trafficking, child pornography, or even murder be provided protection from removal,” said former USCIS Director L. Francis Cissna.

The new report noted that juvenile adjudications aren’t treated as deportable convictions under immigration law.

The USCIS states in its policy manual for adjudicators that “findings of juvenile delinquency are not considered criminal convictions for purposes of immigration law.”

Regarding DACA specifically, the manual states: “With respect to juvenile delinquency records … USCIS does not consider a juvenile delinquency determination a conviction for immigration purposes, consistent with longstanding DACA policy and [Board of Immigration Appeals] precedent. Also consistent with longstanding DACA policy, USCIS does not consider juvenile delinquency adjudications as automatically disqualifying for DACA.”

Still, young immigrants adjudicated as delinquent can face consequences. As the USCIS policy manual for adjudicators states:

[While] findings of juvenile delinquency are not considered criminal convictions for purposes of immigration law … certain grounds of inadmissibility do not require a conviction. In some cases, certain conduct alone may be sufficient to trigger an inadmissibility ground. Furthermore … USCIS will consider findings of juvenile delinquency on a case-by-case basis based on the totality of the evidence to determine whether a favorable exercise of discretion is warranted.

According to Fishman, lawmakers and federal agencies should be focusing on setting clear guidelines and ensuring consequences for criminal activity.

“Regardless of one’s views as to the ‘deservingness’ as a general matter of illegal aliens brought to the U.S. as minors by their parents, brought to the U.S. by smugglers paid for by their parents, or who simply came to the U.S. on their own accord, those who are criminals (whether convicted in criminal court or adjudicated delinquent in juvenile court) should surely face immigration consequences,” the report declares. “The lasting devastation to the lives of crime victims and their families is not wiped away simply because the perpetrators are minors, even if those minors were ‘brought to the U.S. through no fault of their own.'”

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