Exclusive: ICE National Council President Calls on Issa to Drop Legalization Plan
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) National Council president Chris Crane, an ICE agent and former marine, told Breitbart News exclusively on Thursday that Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) should drop his plans to introduce a bill that would legalize America’s at least 11 million illegal aliens and focus instead on investigating the Obama administration’s non-enforcement directives.
Such non-enforcement directives include the executive order DREAM Act or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which Obama announced last summer in a Rose Garden speech at the White House.
“We strongly support all of the investigations that Congressman Issa and all of the others up on the hill are engaged in,” Crane said in a Thursday phone interview. “However, tell me how many people have died as a result of the IRS scandal? Tell me how many kids have been raped as a result of the IRS scandal?"
"These things are happening every day because immigration is not being enforced," he claimed. "Human lives are being impacted in the most serious ways and Congress is turning a blind eye to this because dirty money, dirty votes and dirty politics. That’s where we stand on this.”
No one from Issa’s personal office or his committee, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, have reached out to Crane to speak with him about this matter. “Never,” Crane answered when asked if Issa or his staffers ever called him.
Crane said he would love it if Issa did extend an offer to the law enforcement community for a meeting. “Absolutely” he would meet with Issa, Crane said. “We’ve been begging to meet with everyone and anyone that would sit down and meet with us.”
Issa’s lack of focus on the law enforcement community in this debate in contrast to extensive focus on what special interests and lobbyists from the tech and business communities need, Crane said, is very similar to President Barack Obama’s lack of law enforcement focus. Obama gave a speech in the East Room of the White House on Thursday morning and did not mention that any law enforcement officials were present. But Obama did tout the special interest groups in the room with him. “Today I’m here with leaders from business, from labor, from faith communities who are united around one goal--finishing the job of fixing a broken immigration system,” he said in his speech.
Crane said he saw a picture of who was with Obama during the speech, and “when I looked at that picture I said to myself: ‘I hope America takes note that this president has purposely, for the last year or so, excluded ICE agents and officers from this entire discussion while actually bringing in illegal aliens, activists that support them, big business, and big unions.’"
"I hope that’s a wake-up call for America that this president is not sincere about fixing this immigration problem, and that this is just about votes," he continued. "This is about building political parties and building votes. He’s not serious about reforming our immigration system in the best interest of our country because if he was, within that group, there would be immigration agents that do these jobs every day and know more than any of those folks what our enforcement problems are. We’re not there in the picture. And we never are.”
Crane said that ICE agents, and agents from other agencies, could offer a lot to lawmakers who say they are trying to reform America’s immigration system.
“We don’t believe that we have all the answers,” Crane said. “But, everything we’ve seen in immigration reform legislation, none of it really addresses the problems we’ve needed reformed. We believe that the common sense thing for America that Americans wanted to see was a top-to-bottom review of all the laws that we currently have, the loopholes, the problems, the inefficiencies within all of the different federal agencies that are involved. None of that has ever happened.”
Specifically, as the chairman of the House oversight committee, Issa is in a unique position to make what Crane is calling for happen. He could hold hearings and launch investigations into what Obama is doing in ICE, the Department of Homeland Security, the Border Patrol, and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), among other agencies. Issa’s committee has broad jurisdiction and if he wanted to fix these problems through oversight, he could.
“A 13-year-old would approach this better and it’s just ridiculous how people up on the hill are approaching this by ignoring the review of the law in a common-sense basic approach that we need to take,” Crane said. “We need to slow this whole thing down and do it right before we just throw billions of dollars at a system that is probably going to just ruin our entire immigration system forever, basically is what we’re looking at here.”
While Issa and House Judiciary Committee chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) have specific and unique jurisdiction from their respective committee chair slots, Crane said he thinks the review of the law and oversight of the administration is the responsibility of every member of Congress in both the House and the Senate. “Every one of these folks is going to be voting on something here at some point in time,” he said. “They need to be sure that we have an immigration system in place that first and foremost protects public safety, national security, and does it in a way that’s most cost-efficient for our nation, especially with the economic problems that we now face.”
But, Crane said, “none of that is happening.”
“They’re just coming up with crazy laws from special interest groups, big business, big unions, big money, and really just ignoring the real problems that we face and that are in need of reforms,” he stated.
On Wednesday, Breitbart News confirmed with Issa’s staff that he is in fact drafting a legalization bill that would grant legal status to at least some of America’s 11 million illegal aliens.
“It’s halfway – and it always has been – halfway between full amnesty and simply rejecting people,” Issa said, according to Politico. “I think if we’re going to break this logjam that’s occurred for my whole 13 years I’ve been in Congress, we have to find middle ground.”
Issa spokesman Frederick Hill responded to Crane’s call by saying Issa “appreciates Mr. Crane's words of support about his investigative efforts and certainly does not sense that his comments about the IRS targeting investigation are intended to diminish its importance.”
“Rep. Issa has been a leader in seeking public input through the Internet on policy proposals and certainly welcomes any such input,” Hill said. “While he has not yet completed a draft text or released a public outline of his proposal, he looks forward to the discussion ahead. Security concerns related to illegal immigration are, of course, important and need to be addressed.”