Immigration and Customs Enforcement has a new leader. The Senate confirmed Sarah Saldana as head of ICE, but not before Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) had some choice words about her. He notes Saldana has said illegal immigrants who qualify for executive amnesty have a “right” to citizenship and would help Obama subvert the immigration laws she is supposed to enforce.
Lee said that Obama “subverted” the democratic process and the “constitutional order” with his executive amnesty and declared that it was “incumbent” on Senators to “oppose that usurpation of legislative power” and defend the rule of law.
He said “fulfilling that duty” lead him to oppose Saldana’s nomination, especially because “her commitment to the rule of law may falter” when it comes to the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Lee said that it was an “extraordinarily bold assertion” on Saldana’s part when she told senators that she agreed with Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson that illegal immigrants who are eligible for executive amnesty have “earned the right to be citizens.”
Lee said to “assert that citizenship… is a matter of right and that it has been ‘earned’ by the very act of breaking our immigration laws” is an “unacceptable view” for someone nominated to head ICE. He noted that Saldana, who told Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), and Lee that she supported Obama’s executive amnesty, “affirmatively supports subverting those very same laws that she would be called upon to implement and execute.”
He also accused the Obama administration of putting many illegal immigrants on a path to citizenship by broadly applying “parole in place,” which is intended to be used in limited circumstances such as “an urgent humanitarian crisis.”
Lee said if Obama dislikes the law, he must ask Congress to change it. Instead, the Obama administration has “talked themselves” into ignoring or changing the law “outside the constitutional process,” which Saldana’s nomination would further exacerbate.