The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) announcement that it will release thousands of illegal immigrant detainees has led left-wing activists to criticize the administration’s immigration policy and suggest the announcement was political in nature.
The criticisms mirrored those leveled by opponents of amnesty proposals and pro-enforcement advocates, signaling a broad ideological opposition to the move.
The DHS announcement that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) must reduce its illegal immigrant detainee populations by 26 percent sparked major pushback among lawmakers and immigration policy groups, forcing the White House to deny any prior knowledge of the decision.
While groups on the left and right objected to different aspects of the administration’s policy on immigration, dissatisfaction with that policy spanned ideological lines.
Both sides of the political spectrum suggested that the administration used the release of illegal immigrant detainees to bolster its political case against impending sequestration cuts, which DHS cited as the impetus for those releases.
Illegal immigrants “are now being used as a weapon in the debate over the federal budget,” said Van Le, a spokesperson for America’s Voice, a group that advocates granting citizenship to all illegal immigrants.
That statement echoed comments by Pinal County, Ariz., Sheriff Paul Babeu, whose vocal opposition to illegal immigrant amnesty policies and support for stronger enforcement measures make him an unlikely ally of left-wing immigration groups. ...
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