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Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal

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  1. Immigration Lawyers Sue Obama Admin for Blocking Access to Court

    by , 04-17-2014 at 08:39 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    Yesterday, April 16, 2014, the Obama administration's Federal Protective Service blocked immigration lawyers and their clients from entering the Denver Immigration Court unless they presented government-issued ID and were willing to submit to a National Crime Information Center background check.

    Immigration lawyer David Kolko, his client Luis Alberto Rojas Gomez, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Colorado Chapter filed suit seeking an emergency temporary restraining order arguing that the detention pending the background check violated the 4th Amendment, and the 14th and 5th Amendment against unwarranted intrusions on privacy.

    Click here to read the entire Petition.

  2. ALL Individuals at Denver Immigration Court Subject to Federal Background Check TODAY

    by , 04-16-2014 at 09:28 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The Police State comes to the Denver Immigration Court TODAY, April 16, 2014. Federal Protective Services (FPS) will subject EVERY individual entering the Byron G. Rogers Federal Building at 1961 Stout Street to a National Crime Information Center (NCIC) background check. This includes attorneys, Respondents, witnesses, EVERYONE entering the Court building.

    This is all part of "Operation Shield" euphemistically described as "a comprehensive operation that combines physical security expertise and law enforcement authority into an enhanced security team to provide a visual deterrent at FPS-protected facilities." The "goal" of Operation Shield is to demonstrate the "preparedness and agility of FPS’ response to the current threat environment within federal community" by reducing "social and physical disorder" that will "enhance the quality of life for employees, visitors, and community members."

    Click here
    to find out more about how the Federal Government is "enhancing your quality of life" by doing a comprehensive background check on you for the singular reason that you walked into a Federal office building.

    Updated 04-16-2014 at 12:27 PM by MKolken

  3. Congressional Women Leaders Visit “Women’s Fast for Families”

    by , 04-09-2014 at 07:49 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    I received the following press release from the office of Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, Chair of the Congressional Women’s Working Group on Immigration Reform.

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
    April 8, 2014
    CONTACT: Matt Lee
    (202) 225-1766

    Congressional Women Leaders Visit “Women’s Fast for Families”

    Call for House Vote on Bipartisan Immigration Reform Legislation

    Washington, DC – Today, women leaders in Congress visited the “Women’s Fast for Families” on the National Mall and met with the more than 100 courageous women who are fasting for 48 hours to protest the Republican Leadership’s failure to bring HR 15, a bipartisan immigration reform bill, to the House floor for a vote. This event is the culmination of a month of fasts and other activities held across the country to highlight the impact of our broken immigration system on women and emphasize the urgent need for reform.

    “I’m proud to support the brave women who are fasting on the National Mall to bring attention to the pain and suffering caused by our broken immigration system,” said Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard(CA-40), Chair of the Congressional Women’s Working Group on Immigration Reform. “The sacrifices made by these women to come to Washington D.C. speak to the fear they experience everyday of being permanently separated from their children and families. All they are asking is for the Republican Leadership to allow a simple up-or-down vote on immigration reform. Let’s give these courageous women the opportunity to realize the American Dream.”

    “We thank all these great women as they unite here in DC to continue to bring attention to immigrant women suffering due to the Republican Congress’ failure to bring a comprehensive reform bill to the floor for a vote,” said Rep. Grace Napolitano (CA-32). All women must unite in the quest for our true American values to be adhered to, ensuring equality and respect for immigrant women and their families.”

    “Being a representative of a district with such a great diversity, with constituents from near and far, I will stand with the more than 100 women fasting for a vote on bipartisan immigration reform,” said Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18). “These courageous people, people that have sought opportunity in this great country and those that have strived to make a better life for their families through immense sacrifice deserve justice – they deserve comprehensive reform now.

    “We cannot ignore the women who are fasting to bring a human face to the problems with our broken immigration system,” said Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27). “They show us the suffering of countless families splintered by our failing system. Nearly 70 percent of all women immigrants who have legal status came here through the family immigration system, and right now they face a 4.3 million-person backlog. This burden falls disproportionately on women and children, and fails our ideals as a nation. It’s time to put an end to this national disgrace and bring immigration reform to the finish line.”

    “I’m proud to join these courageous women in fasting to draw attention to the overwhelming need for comprehensive immigration reform in this country,” said Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01). “I was honored to meet with these women this morning, who are fighting to keep their families together and ensure fair treatment of all immigrants. The time to act is now and to have an up-or-down vote in Congress.”

    “I’m here today to join these women in saying enough is enough - the American people demand a vote on comprehensive immigration reform,” said Rep. Loretta Sanchez (CA-46), a member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and the Homeland Security Committee Border Subcommittee. “It’s been almost a year since the Senate passed a bipartisan package and too many families are being torn apart or living in fear waiting for the House Republicans to take action now.”

    "The women fasting here today do so in the long tradition of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. who put the cause of justice ahead of their own needs,” said Rep. Dina Titus (NV-01). “It is time for Congress to follow their example and act to pass comprehensive immigration reform immediately. In Southern Nevada, so many immigrant women work in back-of-the-house jobs and in the informal economy, cleaning and caring for children. This work has been neglected and devalued for too long. The millions of immigrant families across the country, including the 200,000 undocumented immigrants in Nevada, cannot wait any longer."

    “I stand in solidarity with the women who are fasting in Washington, and I join them in demanding a vote on comprehensive immigration reform,” said U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (NY-6). “I applaud the sacrifice they’re making in order to keep the light shined on the need to overhaul our nation’s immigration laws. It is well past time to fix our broken immigration system that has hurt too many people for far too long including women, children and families. The time for comprehensive immigration reform must be now.”
  4. The Grey Lady Wakes up from her Nap

    by , 04-07-2014 at 02:24 PM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The New York Times reported a "scoop" today that has taken social media by storm. After sifting through the records they found that: "two-thirds of the nearly two million deportation cases involve people who had committed minor infractions, including traffic violations, or had no criminal record at all. Twenty percent — or about 394,000 — of the cases involved people convicted of serious crimes, including drug-related offenses, the records show."

    These statistics are in direct contradiction to the President's claim that his administration is targeting “criminals, gang bangers, people who are hurting the community, not after students, not after folks who are here just because they’re trying to figure out how to feed their families.”

    Regular readers of this blog are already well aware that the President habitually mischaracterizes his deportation record, but for those that need to get caught up click here to read more old news from the Grey Lady.

    Stay here to keep current.
  5. The Untenable Cost Of Doing Nothing On Immigration Reform

    by , 04-03-2014 at 07:31 AM (Matthew Kolken on Deportation And Removal)
    The following was originally published on Fox News Latino:

    This past week House Democrats introduced a discharge petition, which if successful would force a vote on previously stalled immigration reform legislation. Most acknowledge that the strategy has been employed for the singular purpose of shaming House Republicans for their inaction on immigration reform, and has virtually no chance of success. In sum, Democrats are engaging in thinly veiled political gamesmanship motivated by the desire to score points in advance of the midterm elections. Most see through the charade.

    Cristina Jiménez, Managing Director of UnitedWeDream.org, the nation’s first and largest national immigrant youth-led organization, has outspokenly scolded House Democrats for chasing rainbows while refusing to press President Obama to stop his record deportations. Ms. Jiménez observed that this is nothing more than a distraction, stating “political maneuvers like the House Democrats' discharge petition are just getting in the way.”

    Immigrant activist Erica Andiola of the DRM Action Coalition agrees, commenting that it is unconscionable to use the lives of millions of undocumented immigrants for political gain. Both agree that President Obama’s two million deportations have created a human rights crisis of epic proportions, demanding immediate action by the Executive Branch. They explain that the immigrant community can no longer wait for the Republicans in Congress to get their act together.

    The Immigration Policy Center’s Walter A. Ewing brings credence to their argument, acknowledging the hypocrisy of the Obama Presidency in a report tracking the growth of the U.S. deportation machine. He points to the administration’s conscious expansion of detention and deportation as a major point of contention, reflecting that "rather than putting the brakes on this non-stop drive to deport more and more people, the administration chose to add fuel to the fire."

    The Pew Research Center’s Hispanic Trends Project has also chimed in releasing a report that found that the deportation machine has been fed by a vast increase in federal criminal prosecutions for immigration related crimes, which has changed the landscape for Federal prosecutors. It did not go unnoticed that at 48 percent, Hispanics make up the bulk of those prosecutions.

    Meanwhile, Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) sifted through the numbers finding that in 2013 there were nearly 100,000 prosecutions for immigration related crimes, an all-time high. TRAC determined that new prosecutions were filed against 97,384 defendants, a 5.9 percent increase from 2012, and a 22.6 percent increase over the past 5 years, resulting in a 76 percent increase in federal criminal prosecutions for illegal reentry since President Obama took office.

    What this translates to is that the Obama administration has made a strategic decision to turn an unprecedented number of immigrants into convicted criminals when their only criminal infraction stems from an immigration law violation. In sum, they have been found guilty for doing everything in their power to try to get back to their family. This policy change has resulted in a padding of the criminal removal statistics that the administration touts in an effort to deflect scrutiny from their 2 million deportations. And at what cost?

    Customs and Border Protections’ Fiscal Year 2013 budget was $11.9 billion. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s budget was increased to $5.9 billion. Another $2.9 billion was spent by Enforcement and Removal Operations in FY 2012. That’s not pocket change.

    It is time to acknowledge that tax paying American citizens can no longer afford to continue writing checks to fund an out of control deportation machine that is disproportionately targeting people of color. Especially since passing immigration reform will actually save the country money. The Congressional Budget Office determined that immigration reform will result in almost a trillion dollar reduction of the nation’s deficit during the next two decades in addition to yielding long term benefits to American workers and the economy. Now we are speaking a language that even the most partisan Republican can understand.

    Case in point, perennial budget hawk Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) has recently acknowledged the inevitability of immigration reform stating reform is a question of when, not if. The problem he notes is that there aren't enough Republican votes to reach a consensus on the issue. The clock is ticking, Congressman.

    In fact, the time has long passed for hyper-partisans on both sides of the aisle to put down their midterm elections swords. Americans are tired of excuses and gamesmanship. Doing nothing to address our immigration crisis to score political points is simply an untenable strategy that is emptying our nation’s coffers while destroying families. It is a strategy that must be abandoned in favor of the adoption of common sense solutions.

    Updated 04-03-2014 at 07:38 AM by MKolken

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