Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.), one of President Barack Obama’s most vocal critics on immigration, was sitting at dinner with his family a couple of weeks ago when his youngest daughter began talking about the president’s “terrible” deportation record. “If they invite us to the White House, I won’t go,” the 24-year-old said, according to Gutierrez. His wife, though, summed up the family’s mixed feelings on the president and immigration. “Yes — but you should clarify that notwithstanding that, we’re all voting for him,” his wife said, according to the congressman. “We can be angry, but we cannot vote for” Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee. To many supporters of immigration reform, Obama has been a major disappointment.
Obama administration officials have announced that a contentious fingerprinting program to identify illegal immigrants will be extended across Massachusetts and New York next week, expanding federal enforcement efforts despite opposition from the governors and immigrant groups in those states. In blunt e-mails sent Tuesday to officials and the police in the two states, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said the program, Se Communities, would be activated “in all remaining jurisdictions” this Tuesday. Last June, Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts declined to sign an agreement with the immigration agency to expand Se Communities beyond a pilot program in the Boston area since 2006. Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York said he wanted to suspend the program, which had already been initiated in a number of counties.
The expected Democratic candidates for mayor may have their differences, there but they are unified in their opposition to New York City’s participation in Se Communities, there a controversial fingerprinting program meant to identify illegal immigrants. Last week, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials announced that they planned to extend the program across New York and Massachusetts on Tuesday, despite opposition from the governors of both states. The program requires the fingerprints of anyone arrested by the local or state police to be checked against databases of the Department of Homeland Security, which include immigration violations. If someone is found to be in the country illegally, immigration officials may ask the police to hold the person to be picked up by federal agents.
I found last week’s Supreme Court argument in the Arizona immigration case utterly depressing, and I’ve spent the intervening week puzzling over my reaction. It’s not simply that the federal government seems poised to lose: unlike the appeals court, the justices appear likely to find the heart of Arizona’s mean-spirited “attrition through enforcement” statute, S.B. 1070, permissible under federal law.
Poring over the argument transcript and the briefs, what finally came through as most deeply troubling was this: the failure of any participant in the argument, justice or advocate for either side, to affirm the simple humanity of Arizona’s several hundred thousand undocumented residents.
Ramiro Gomez says he’s wanted to place his cardboard paintings of Latino domestic workers and gardeners in front of locations that President Obama has visited but it’s just never worked out. But this time around it was different. Obama is expected to arrive in Los Angeles Thursday evening to attend a fundraiser at George Clooney’s…
Video by Dennis Gilman
video by Dennis Gilman
A Quick Guide to Racial Profiling for Sheriff Arpaio.