Does Obama have it out for his countrymen, or does he simply not give a damn about his fellow Americans? This inescapable question occurs in light of his release of 66,565 convicted illegal-alien criminals over the past two years. Rather than deport these often-violent lawbreakers to their homelands, Obama sets them loose on U.S. streets.
According to data that Immigration and Customs Enforcement delivered to the House Judiciary Committee last month, ICE released 30,558 illegal-alien criminals from federal custody into the general population in fiscal year 2014. To use more-sensitive language, these undocumented crime workers collectively were responsible for 79,059 convictions. These included 13,636 convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol, 1,346 for domestic violence, 1,194 for battery, 373 for sexual assault, 186 for kidnapping, and 86 for homicide.
This outrage followed an even larger, lawful jailbreak in fiscal year 2013, when Obama freed 36,007 illegal-alien thugs. They jointly shared 87,818 convictions. Among them: 15,635 for drunk driving, 1,317 for domestic violence, 1,267 for battery, 426 for sexual assault, 303 for kidnapping, and 193 for homicide.
Moreover, federal facilities for holding illegal-alien hoodlums are barely three-quarters full. Thanks, in part, to Obama’s unconstitutional decrees on immigration last November, “the average daily population [ADP] of aliens in detention facilities has declined to approximately 26,000 beds,” U.S. House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte (R., Va.) said at an April 14 hearing. “This has occurred despite a mandate in law that requires ICE to maintain a 34,000 ADP in detention facilities.”
“The nonsensical actions of this administration demonstrate its lack of desire to enforce the law, even against unlawful aliens convicted of serious crimes,” Representative Bob Goodlatte observed.
“Whereas some ICE offices once processed as many as 100 illegal aliens a day for removal,” reports Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies for the Center for Immigration Studies, “now these same offices often process fewer than five per day, with the same staff.” So, law-abiding Americans are in jeopardy of being hurt or killed by convicts who should be booted from this country. Meanwhile, taxpayers suffer as the same number of ICE staffers get paid for handling one-20th of their previous deportation workload.
As usual, Team Obama blames others for this fiasco. They point to Zadvydas v. Davis, a Supreme Court decision that requires release from custody for aliens whose deportation proceedings are scheduled for no time soon, whose home countries will not take them back, or both. “However,” as Goodlatte explained, “the total number of convicted criminal aliens released based on the Zadvydas decision totaled 2,457 in fiscal year 2014, representing only 8 percent of the releases.” Obama owns the other 92 percent of these illegal-alien criminal releases and whatever consequences they trigger.
The ugliness already has begun.
Illegal alien Apolinar Altamirano was in ICE custody after being convicted for a gang-related felony burglary. Regardless, ICE freed him in 2013, pending a deportation hearing to which he was expected to self-report. Altamirano now is locked up again on suspicion of murdering Grant Ronnebeck, a 21-year-old Mesa, Ariz., convenience-store clerk.
Arizona officials say that Apolinar Altamirano, a convicted illegal-alien criminal released by Obama in lieu of deportation, fatally shot convenience-store clerk Grant Ronnebeck.
Despite a record of gang membership and drug arrests, Emmanuel Jesus Rangel-Hernandez received amnesty under Obama’s 2012 decree that benefits “Dreamers” brought unlawfully to America as children by their illegal-alien parents. Rather than deportation, Rangel-Hernandez received two years of legal status and a work permit, the Washington Times reports. He blew it and is behind bars. Police say he fatally shot four people in North Carolina, including Top Model TV-show contestant Mirjana Puhar.
“When aliens released onto the streets go on to commit additional crimes, yet could have been placed in ICE custody, this administration is responsible,” argued Ira Mehlman of the Federation for American Immigration Reform.
Evidently exasperated, Representative Goodlatte observed, “The nonsensical actions of this administration demonstrate its lack of desire to enforce the law, even against unlawful aliens convicted of serious crimes.”
All of this confirms the negligent – if not malevolent – unseriousness that defines Obama.
A version of this piece previously appeared on National Review Online.