Immigration enforcement officials will move on Sunday to repatriate a group of migrant families who recently lost their pleas for asylum, according to leaks provided to the Washington Post.
The operation is backed by President Donald Trump and will take place amid opposition from Kevin McAleenan, Trump’s acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security:
The “family op,” as it is referred to at ICE and the Department of Homeland Security, is slated to target up to 2,000 families facing deportation orders in as many as 10 U.S. cities, including Houston, Chicago, Miami, Los Angeles and other major immigration destinations, said the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the law enforcement operation.
McAleenan opposes the operation, according to the Post:
Acting DHS secretary Kevin McAleenan has been urging ICE to conduct a narrower, more targeted operation that would seek to detain a group of about 150 families that were provided with attorneys but dropped out of the legal process and absconded.
McAleenan has warned that an indiscriminate operation to arrest migrants in their homes and at work sites risks separating children from their parents in cases where the children are at day care, summer camp or friend’s houses. He also has maintained that ICE should not devote major resources to carrying out a mass interior sweep while telling lawmakers it needs emergency funding to address the crisis at the U.S. border.
The news comes after Mark Morgan, the acting head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, explained the purpose of the operation. “We’re looking at this from a simplistic viewpoint,” Morgan told Fox News June 19:
If you are here illegally in violation of federal immigration law. If you’ve received due process, there should be consequences, including families. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to make sure that we apply the law and we enforce the law across the board … We’re not going to exempt a certain demographic. We need to make sure that everybody that has been here in violation of the law has consequences.
What I’m asking these individuals that have these final orders [is] ‘Come to ICE. Work with ICE in a humane, dignified manner to return you to your country of origin as it’s been ordered.’ That’s what I hope we can do here.
ICE is also trying to minimize the political risk for the administration created by progressives’ massive resistance to the popular immigration laws. Morgan, for example, told Fox News that enforcement officials are trying to persuade the 2,000 illegal migrants to cooperate with their deportation:
We have a demographic that has had an enormous amount of due process. They’ve had access to attorneys. They’ve had access to interpreters. They’ve received a final order of removal from a judge We’ve even sent them letters, saying, ‘You’ve received an order. Come to ICE. We’ll work with you. We’ll give you 30 days to get your affairs in order, and we’ll help you return you to your country.’ Those have been ignored. Those people in those categories, over 90 percent haven’t showed up, and they’ve ignored the order. What I’m trying to tell them, … is ‘Look, as ICE, I don’t want to come to your door. I don’t want to come to your home. I don’t want to come to your workplace.’ What I’m asking these individuals that have these final orders [is] ‘Come to ICE. Work with ICE in a humane, dignified manner to return you to your country of origin as it’s been ordered.’ That’s what I hope we can do here.
Democrats and their pro-migration allies are expected to denounce the law enforcement, even though the deportations are being directed by immigration judges and federal law.
For example, the FWD.us lobbying group created by West Coast technology investors is retweeting activists’ tips on how migrants can dodge law-enforcement:
IMPT: As news breaks that ICE may–per the Washington Post–target up to 2,000 families, please help share this resource on how you can prepare for an immigration raid. N.B. I have no extra info on targeting or # of targets–just passing this article along https://t.co/FTlBCLJFuK https://t.co/i93aiQBYLm
— Todd Schulte (@TheToddSchulte) June 21, 2019
In debates about the migration, Democrats say they are protecting victims of a humanitarian crisis and ignore evidence that most migrants are bringing their children to trigger catch and release rules so they can get U.S. jobs. “We’re dealing with a humanitarian crisis … all because of this president’s very cruel and reckless policy,” Democratic Sen. Patty Murray, from Washington state, said June 19.
But Democrats rarely mention the cost to taxpayers of accepting the huge numbers of migrants into the United States, including increased competition for wages, jobs, classroom seats, and low-cost housing. In May, for example, 144,000 adults and children added themselves to the U.S. labor market, consumer economy, and the housing sector.