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  • Questions for Secretary Napolitano: Workplace Enforcement

    DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano is tentatively scheduled to testify before the United States Senate Judiciary Committee about DHS immigration enforcement policies on May 6, 2009. Given Secretary Napolitano’s novel interpretations of federal law, the Heritage Foundation will be posting a series of questions (and suggested answers) for the Secretary.

    Question # 3: What is the Obama Administration policy on workplace raids – will raids continue and will both employers and illegal employees be prosecuted?

    When the Bush Administration began enforcing immigration laws, the frequency of worksite arrests jumped from 845 in fiscal year (FY) 2004 to 6,287 in FY 2008. Worksite raids have been extremely controversial, greatly tainting overall perceptions of immigration enforcement, even though they affect only a minuscule percentage of aliens arrested. In FY 2007, only 4,940 of the 1,210,772 total illegal immigrants detained in 2007 were arrested through worksite enforcement. The media has covered ICE raids with much consternation, primarily due to the humanitarian concerns about families being separated by deportation. The worksite raids can cause the detainees’ children, most of them U.S.-born citizens, to suffer when their parents are detained and deported.

    The worksite raids also disrupt local communities because of the large number of people arrested. ICE has been conscious of this and has attempted to find ways to target egregious abusers of illegal workers while being compassionate toward the families hit by deportation. ICE has started several initiatives to allow families to stay together during the deportation process, including opening the T. Don Hutto Residential Detention Center, which is a 512-bed facility that allows the family to stay together during the detention and removal process. In addition, ICE allows the release of sole caregivers from deten­tion facilities.

    However, because ICE prefers to keep families together, some parents do not report to ICE officers that they have children for fear of the children also being deported. A study found that half of detainees have children, making this a serious concern for ICE. To ensure a proper degree of care and compassion, ICE must coordinate with the local community before and after raids, including working with schools, social services, and churches to ensure that no children are being left behind, and quickly release sole caregivers to minimize the time that children of single parents are left in the care of others.

    Despite these negative aspects of worksite enforcement, however, these raids are critical elements of the federal governments renewed commitment to enforce existing immigration laws. Along with the enhanced security operations on the border and other interior enforcement actions, workplace raids send a clear message to both the scofflaw employers who hire illegal labor and to those illegal immigrants already here or considering coming here that America’s jobs are for its citizens and legal immigrants.

    The vast majority of illegal immigrants come for a job, not to commit crimes. By failing to conduct workplace raids or only punishing employers, you are signaling to employers that they should continue to hire illegal labor, safe from the uncertainty of a workplace raid and you are signaling to immigrants to continue to come illegally.

    Secretary Janet Napolitano recently changed the policy on workplace raids. It is worse than the old “catch and release” policy. The new policy goes one step beyond “catch and release” — or takes two steps back from where we are — by giving illegal immigrants Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) (i.e, work permits) to stay and work. These permits are substantively no different than the permits given to law abiding people who follow the rules and wait their turn to obtain a green card or citizenship.

    The policy came to light following an employer raid in Bellingham, Washington that caught 28 illegal immigrants. DHS gave these illegal immigrations the EADs in “exchange for cooperating with an ongoing investigation of their employer” and the EADs expire once the case against the employer is over. There is a real risk that this new policy will result in a functional return to the “catch and release” era. This new policy undermines all of the hard work and effort spent over the last four years to put teeth in our immigration policy.

    For more information on Heritage Foundation’s views on internal immigration enforcement, check out a recent backgrounder by Diem Nguyen, Matt Mayer, and Jim Carafano, Next Steps for Immigration Reform and Workplace Enforcement.

    Posted in Legal [slideshow_deploy]

    9 Responses to Questions for Secretary Napolitano: Workplace Enforcement

    1. Jennifer- Florida says:

      Janet- Illegal Immigration is against the law! What in the world is the matter with you? The children of Illegals should be kept with their families and they all should be deported to their point of origin. This is not a grey issue to be bantered about. They are illegal and they should be deported. The end! Can't you understand that?

    2. Alex Cardona says:

      Dear Janet Napolitano, I was a T.S.O in 2007 at the O'hare airport and during my o.j.t, I was a victim of harrasment from our coworkers. I notified my managers,supervisor,hr department,EOE

      and the umbudsman but I did not receive a responce from the last two about my problem and I was treated unjustly from the other departments like I was not worthy of discussing my situation. I wish I was approached by someone who could have talked to me about my options but I guess I was hired so as to waste tax payer dollars instead of

      keeping me on to become a vital asset to our country. But I will be sure to let other public officials know about this type of harrasment.

      thankyou

    3. seven says:

      Why are things so simple. There is nothing in American law or jurisdiction that dissalows a family for example from Mexico living together in peace as a family in Mexico. In america there are many peopkle in jail for crime and not allowed to live with their family at home. That is a reason to not break the law and to stay out of jail.

    4. Deport Deport says:

      If Ms. Napolitano refuses to do her job enforcing our immigration laws and keeping our homeland safe, then she should just resign. Deport those who do not belong here and jail employers who hire illegals. The time for coddling illegals should be over !! Americans are hurting and she is more concerned about illegal aliens. Do your job or step down.

    5. Spiritof76, New Hamp says:

      Who authorized (Did Congress pass legislation?) the nut job Napolitano (who thinks conservatives and returning soldiers are terrorists in the making while telling the whole world that there is no such thing as terrorists outside of USA)to issue work permits to illegal aliens? Everyday, we hear about wanton disregard for rule of law from DC that makes me bristle with anger to what they are doing to our country. I can not recognize it any longer.

    6. Barb -mn says:

      Please Janet Napolitano, be the first one of Obama's administration to do your job!

    7. Ernie McLoney , Vero says:

      Please note:

      Although the following text is written by Jonah Goldberg it reflects the opinion of thousands of conservatives across the country.

      Ernie McLoney

      Verona Ky

      April 17, 2009 12:00 AM

      (Right) Winging It at the DHS

      What’s the real threat to our country?

      By Jonah Goldberg

      The Extremism and Radicalization Branch of the Homeland Environment Threat Analysis Division of the Department of Homeland Security issued a report last week. It’s called “Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment.”

      I had no idea there even was an ERBHETAD of the DHS working on the RECEPCFRRR.

      Who among us doesn’t feel safer already?

      The problem with it is that it makes little effort to document or demonstrate its contention that “extremist” groups are resurgent, that they are right-wing, or that they may be formed from the ranks of “disgruntled military veterans.” Worse, it’s very sloppy about what qualifies someone as “extremist” in the first place. Basically, it’s fancy bureaucratese for: We’re guessing bad people will do bad things because the economy is bad and the president is black. But we have no real evidence.

      For instance, the report insists that returning “disgruntled military veterans” from Iraq and Afghanistan are recruitment fodder for extremist and terrorist groups.

      But, if you follow the footnotes, as John Hinderaker of the Powerline blog did, you’ll discover that, according to the FBI, only 19 Iraq or Afghanistan war vets have joined the “extremist movement” (and some of them may have lied about their service). More than half of America’s 1.4 million active-duty military personal have served in Iraq or Afghanistan (and there are roughly 23 million veterans in the United States). Any way you slice it, 19 yahoos amount to statistical noise so faint you would need one of those UFO-hunting dishes to pick it up.

      My objection to the DHS report — and DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano’s thumbless grasp of why the report bothers people — isn’t that the agency is concerned with domestic terrorists. It should be, even though it rankles a bit that this administration is so squeamish to describe Islamic terrorists as “terrorists” but is promiscuous with the T-word when it comes to right-wing Americans.

      The evidence that al-Qaeda & Co. are terrorists is widely available, but Napolitano boasts that she calls attacks such as those on 9/11 “man-caused disasters.” She says she doesn’t want to fuel “the politics of fear.” But her own department dubs nebulous and ill-defined groups of Americans as terrorists even though DHS has “no specific information” that they’re plotting any attacks.

      My real objection to this report is that its source material amounts to “everybody knows.” Everybody knows the right is full of whack-jobs, hatemongers, and killers, and if we don’t remain vigilant, bad things will happen.

      Just look at the coverage of these tea parties. To watch CNN, you’d think these were beer-hall putsches, as if emulating the Boston Tea Party and demanding less government were straight out of Mein Kampf.

      I wrote a book on fascism which tried to show that what everybody knows isn’t necessarily true. The idea that soldiers will return from war and become right-wing militants? Well, that has its roots in Fascist Italy, where veterans returned as black-shirted shock troops of “Il Duce,” Benito Mussolini. The only problem with this theory is that what they clamored for was socialism — the socialism of the trenches! — and their leader had earned the title “Il Duce” as the leader of the Socialist Party.

      The idea that American “hate groups” are right-wing and bristling with vets got new life with JFK’s assassination at the hands of a disgruntled vet named Lee Harvey Oswald. Everybody knew right away that Oswald was an agent of “hate” — and hate was code for right-wing and racist. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren summed up the instantaneous conventional wisdom when he blamed the “climate of hatred” for Kennedy’s death. Everybody knew that the Right was involved.

      There was just one inconvenient truth: Oswald was a Communist who, according to the Warren report, had “an extreme dislike of the rightwing” and had actually tried to murder a right-wing former Army general.

      For instance, the report insists that returning “disgruntled military veterans” from Iraq and Afghanistan are recruitment fodder for extremist and terrorist groups.

      But, if you follow the footnotes, as John Hinderaker of the Powerline blog did, you’ll discover that, according to the FBI, only 19 Iraq or Afghanistan war vets have joined the “extremist movement” (and some of them may have lied about their service). More than half of America’s 1.4 million active-duty military personal have served in Iraq or Afghanistan (and there are roughly 23 million veterans in the United States). Any way you slice it, 19 yahoos amount to statistical noise so faint you would need one of those UFO-hunting dishes to pick it up.

      My objection to the DHS report — and DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano’s thumbless grasp of why the report bothers people — isn’t that the agency is concerned with domestic terrorists. It should be, even though it rankles a bit that this administration is so squeamish to describe Islamic terrorists as “terrorists” but is promiscuous with the T-word when it comes to right-wing Americans.

      The evidence that al-Qaeda & Co. are terrorists is widely available, but Napolitano boasts that she calls attacks such as those on 9/11 “man-caused disasters.” She says she doesn’t want to fuel “the politics of fear.” But her own department dubs nebulous and ill-defined groups of Americans as terrorists even though DHS has “no specific information” that they’re plotting any attacks.

      My real objection to this report is that its source material amounts to “everybody knows.” Everybody knows the right is full of whack-jobs, hatemongers, and killers, and if we don’t remain vigilant, bad things will happen.

      Just look at the coverage of these tea parties. To watch CNN, you’d think these were beer-hall putsches, as if emulating the Boston Tea Party and demanding less government were straight out of Mein Kampf.

      I wrote a book on fascism which tried to show that what everybody knows isn’t necessarily true. The idea that soldiers will return from war and become right-wing militants? Well, that has its roots in Fascist Italy, where veterans returned as black-shirted shock troops of “Il Duce,” Benito Mussolini. The only problem with this theory is that what they clamored for was socialism — the socialism of the trenches! — and their leader had earned the title “Il Duce” as the leader of the Socialist Party.

      The idea that American “hate groups” are right-wing and bristling with vets got new life with JFK’s assassination at the hands of a disgruntled vet named Lee Harvey Oswald. Everybody knew right away that Oswald was an agent of “hate” — and hate was code for right-wing and racist. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren summed up the instantaneous conventional wisdom when he blamed the “climate of hatred” for Kennedy’s death. Everybody knew that the Right was involved.

      There was just one inconvenient truth: Oswald was a Communist who, according to the Warren report, had “an extreme dislike of the rightwing” and had actually tried to murder a right-wing former Army general.

      For instance, the report insists that returning “disgruntled military veterans” from Iraq and Afghanistan are recruitment fodder for extremist and terrorist groups.

      But, if you follow the footnotes, as John Hinderaker of the Powerline blog did, you’ll discover that, according to the FBI, only 19 Iraq or Afghanistan war vets have joined the “extremist movement” (and some of them may have lied about their service). More than half of America’s 1.4 million active-duty military personal have served in Iraq or Afghanistan (and there are roughly 23 million veterans in the United States). Any way you slice it, 19 yahoos amount to statistical noise so faint you would need one of those UFO-hunting dishes to pick it up.

      My objection to the DHS report — and DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano’s thumbless grasp of why the report bothers people — isn’t that the agency is concerned with domestic terrorists. It should be, even though it rankles a bit that this administration is so squeamish to describe Islamic terrorists as “terrorists” but is promiscuous with the T-word when it comes to right-wing Americans.

      The evidence that al-Qaeda & Co. are terrorists is widely available, but Napolitano boasts that she calls attacks such as those on 9/11 “man-caused disasters.” She says she doesn’t want to fuel “the politics of fear.” But her own department dubs nebulous and ill-defined groups of Americans as terrorists even though DHS has “no specific information” that they’re plotting any attacks.

      My real objection to this report is that its source material amounts to “everybody knows.” Everybody knows the right is full of whack-jobs, hatemongers, and killers, and if we don’t remain vigilant, bad things will happen.

      Just look at the coverage of these tea parties. To watch CNN, you’d think these were beer-hall putsches, as if emulating the Boston Tea Party and demanding less government were straight out of Mein Kampf.

      I wrote a book on fascism which tried to show that what everybody knows isn’t necessarily true. The idea that soldiers will return from war and become right-wing militants? Well, that has its roots in Fascist Italy, where veterans returned as black-shirted shock troops of “Il Duce,” Benito Mussolini. The only problem with this theory is that what they clamored for was socialism — the socialism of the trenches! — and their leader had earned the title “Il Duce” as the leader of the Socialist Party.

      The idea that American “hate groups” are right-wing and bristling with vets got new life with JFK’s assassination at the hands of a disgruntled vet named Lee Harvey Oswald. Everybody knew right away that Oswald was an agent of “hate” — and hate was code for right-wing and racist. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren summed up the instantaneous conventional wisdom when he blamed the “climate of hatred” for Kennedy’s death. Everybody knew that the Right was involved.

      There was just one inconvenient truth: Oswald was a Communist who, according to the Warren report, had “an extreme dislike of the rightwing” and had actually tried to murder a right-wing former Army general.

      CONTINUED 1 For instance, the report insists that returning “disgruntled military veterans” from Iraq and Afghanistan are recruitment fodder for extremist and terrorist groups.

      But, if you follow the footnotes, as John Hinderaker of the Powerline blog did, you’ll discover that, according to the FBI, only 19 Iraq or Afghanistan war vets have joined the “extremist movement” (and some of them may have lied about their service). More than half of America’s 1.4 million active-duty military personal have served in Iraq or Afghanistan (and there are roughly 23 million veterans in the United States). Any way you slice it, 19 yahoos amount to statistical noise so faint you would need one of those UFO-hunting dishes to pick it up.

      My objection to the DHS report — and DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano’s thumbless grasp of why the report bothers people — isn’t that the agency is concerned with domestic terrorists. It should be, even though it rankles a bit that this administration is so squeamish to describe Islamic terrorists as “terrorists” but is promiscuous with the T-word when it comes to right-wing Americans.

      The evidence that al-Qaeda & Co. are terrorists is widely available, but Napolitano boasts that she calls attacks such as those on 9/11 “man-caused disasters.” She says she doesn’t want to fuel “the politics of fear.” But her own department dubs nebulous and ill-defined groups of Americans as terrorists even though DHS has “no specific information” that they’re plotting any attacks.

      My real objection to this report is that its source material amounts to “everybody knows.” Everybody knows the right is full of whack-jobs, hatemongers, and killers, and if we don’t remain vigilant, bad things will happen.

      Just look at the coverage of these tea parties. To watch CNN, you’d think these were beer-hall putsches, as if emulating the Boston Tea Party and demanding less government were straight out of Mein Kampf.

      I wrote a book on fascism which tried to show that what everybody knows isn’t necessarily true. The idea that soldiers will return from war and become right-wing militants? Well, that has its roots in Fascist Italy, where veterans returned as black-shirted shock troops of “Il Duce,” Benito Mussolini. The only problem with this theory is that what they clamored for was socialism — the socialism of the trenches! — and their leader had earned the title “Il Duce” as the leader of the Socialist Party.

      The idea that American “hate groups” are right-wing and bristling with vets got new life with JFK’s assassination at the hands of a disgruntled vet named Lee Harvey Oswald. Everybody knew right away that Oswald was an agent of “hate” — and hate was code for right-wing and racist. Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren summed up the instantaneous conventional wisdom when he blamed the “climate of hatred” for Kennedy’s death. Everybody knew that the Right was involved.

      There was just one inconvenient truth: Oswald was a Communist who, according to the Warren report, had “an extreme dislike of the rightwing” and had actually tried to murder a right-wing former Army general.

      When Hollywood filmed the Tom Clancy novel The Sum of All Fears, it changed the real villains from jihadi terrorists to a bunch of European CEOs who were secret Nazis. Because “everybody knows” that’s where the real threat lies.

      Sen. John Kerry belonged to an organization of vets that considered assassinating American politicians. (Kerry denied participating in those meetings.) Barack Obama was friends with, and a colleague of, a terrorist whose organization plotted to murder soldiers and their wives at a social at Fort Dix. A young Hillary Clinton sympathized with the Black Panthers, a paramilitary gang of racist murderers and cop killers.

      Bring that up and you’re a paranoid nutcase out of Dr. Strangelove.

      But if you’re terrified of a bunch of citizens who throw tea in the water and demand lower taxes and less government spending, well, that’s just a sign of political seriousness.

      Because everyone knows who the real threat to the country is.

    8. Arthur Cote Peoria, says:

      Dear Ex-Governor, Illegal immigration IS a crime, otherwise, it would not be illegal! Do not go too far to the left; most of us in America are moderates, we do not support extremes of either party. In fact, I wish the extremes all over the world would go for a long swim.

    9. C. Hatcher, Tx. says:

      As a veteran, who supports and believes in the constitution, the bill of rights, is anti-abortion, and pays my taxes, (which negates me from any possition in this administration). I have more to fear from my government than does an illegal allien…..I think the wheels have come off the track.

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