The ACLU and NPR are spinning stories from President Barack Obama’s 2014 migrant crisis into new smears against President Donald Trump’s pro-American 2018 policies.
“If the abuses were this bad under Obama when the Border Patrol described itself as constrained, imagine how it must be now under Trump, who vowed to unleash the agents to do their jobs,” says the ACLU posting.
The spin is in the headline too: “The Border Patrol Was Monstrous Under Obama. Imagine How Bad It Is Under Trump.”
The post starts with a narrative about a 15-year-old illegal alien and her a two-year-old child. She said Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents threatened to rape and deport her if she didn’t sign a voluntary deportation document.
If you assumed this abuse happened during the Trump administration, think again. Jahveel was threatened in 2009 by President Obama’s Border Patrol, and her treatment was not an isolated incident. Her case is part of a pattern of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse by Customs and Border Protection officials against child immigrants that existed long before President Trump emboldened the agency by unleashing its officers to enforce his draconian immigration policies.
We have received more than 30,000 pages of internal government documents detailing this abuse between 2009 and 2014 throughout the southern border region. These records, obtained through an ACLU Freedom of Information Act request and subsequent litigation, offer a glimpse into an immigration enforcement system that had been plagued by brutality and lawlessness long before Trump was elected.
CBP denies the claims made in the report.
The stories cited by the ACLU come from a period when tens of thousands of migrants gave themselves up to border guards, while tens of thousands more migrants rushed past the guards into the United States. Obama triggered the rush by relaxing border rules and providing work-permits to hundreds of thousands of migrants who said they were fleeing poverty and crime.
The ACLU’s anecdotes and courtroom claims — even if true — are a tiny percentage of interactions between border agents and migrants who have an incentive to tell stories which help them claim asylum, and from migrants who incentive to evade being caught.
When leftwing National Public Radio (NPR) learned of the report, it also tried to spin an interview with one of the professors who helped produce it to reflect poorly on Trump.
Lulu Garcia-Navarro, host of NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday, acknowledged the alleged abuse, reported mostly by minors, occurred “from 2009 to 2014 under the Obama administration.”
Then she asked University of Chicago School of Law professor Claudia Flores to describe some of the report’s findings.
“Sure,” Flores said. “There were a number of examples of physical abuse, children being punched in the head, kicked in the ribs, stun guns used on them, patrol vehicles running over children, verbal abuse, denial of medical attention to pregnant minors and some sexual abuse of girls by border patrol officers and ineffective sanitation in the cells and in the conditions the children were held.”
Garcia-Navarro then used to the ACLU report to smear the Trump administration, saying;
“As I mentioned, these allegations are coming to light at a time when the Trump administration has a stated policy – a government policy of separating families at the border, leaving kids and, in some cases, infants adrift in a foster system or under custody,” Garcia-Navarro said. “How should we view the alleged abuse under the Obama administration in light of this new policy?”
Flores said things on the border “appear to be getting worse” under the Trump administration.
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