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Senator Bob Menendez uses alleged ICE abuses to hamper immigration enforcement (SPLC, NYT)

Senator Robert Menendez is a racial demagogue who supports massive Hispanic immigration (of any kind) in order to obtain political power. His latest trick to oppose immigration enforcement was a speech he gave on the Senate floor last week [1] in which he made several inflammatory statements about the government he supposedly works for and highlighted rare examples of abuses - some merely alleged - by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He also promised legislation concerning this issue. You can view the speech here and here.

From the inflammatory side of things, he refers to agents who "stormed" a house; he claims that there are "US citizens who are targeted because of their race, targeted because of their color"; he claims that "their accent, their name, the color of their skin, the place where they lived would have put them at risk" and that "fundamental Constitutional rights still might not apply to them, in today's America"; and that the "authorities harass U.S. citizens of Hispanic descent in other ways". And, much more. It won't be surprising that the New York Times editorial board calls it a "brave" speech (link). From Menendez' summary of the speech:
This afternoon, U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) took to the floor of the Senate to deliver a major speech on immigration raids and detentions. He cited the numerous incidences of American citizens and legal permanent residents of Hispanic or other minority descent getting swept up in raids and the fear this has engendered in minority communities. Senator Menendez, who is the Senate sponsor of legislation to ensure basic medical care for detainees, also announced that he will be introducing legislation to prevent the unlawful detention of American citizens and permanent residents.

"The legitimate desire to get control over our borders has too often turned into a witch-hunt against Hispanic Americans and other people of color," said Senator Menendez. American citizens "are targeted because of their race, targeted because of their color--denied every fundamental right guaranteed by the United States Constitution. Common sense repeatedly loses out to hysteria, and agents of intolerance repeatedly jump over the legal protections to which every single American is entitled."
Consider this anecdote from his speech:
Another U.S. citizen named Gladis was at her home one day when eighteen vehicles drove into her front yard, and twenty agents jumped out.

Agents banged on the door and threatened to throw gas inside the house if they didn't let them in. While the children in the house ran and hid in the bedroom, the agents broke down the door.

One of the agents grabbed Gladis and attempted to handcuff her.

Gladis said she could prove her citizenship, and gave them her social security card. After interrogating Gladis and her family for twenty more minutes, the agents left as fast as they came - they had no warrant, no probable cause, no reason for their actions besides suspicion about someone's name, their accent, and the color of their skin.
What Menendez forgot to state is that that incident occurred during the raid in Stillmore, Georgia. In addition to raiding the chicken processing plant in that town, ICE also arrested illegal aliens in residential areas, and they claim that they visited specific locations in those residential areas based on information they obtained during the main raid. She and others are part of a lawsuit [2] brought by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a group indirectly linked to the Mexican government. See this for a description of the raid, with an ICE statement at the end. See the attempted class action complaint at [3]. Some abuses may have occurred, or the plaintiffs could be telling tall tales; in any case the situation is mitigated by the facts that Menendez didn't reveal. And, it's worth noting that after the raid the plant was forced to raise wages in order to hire legal workers; whose side is Menendez on?

Like others, Menendez also brings up the case of Pedro Guzman, a mentally impaired U.S. citizen who was deported to Mexico and only made it back three months later. He also discusses the recent Washington Post series, which is disputed by ICE.

And, he brings up the case of Maria Argueta, who's also currently suing ICE. She makes some generally unbelievable claims (link):
Once inside, the agents asked Argueta about her immigration status, and when Argueta presented her Temporary Protection Status documents, they tossed them aside without looking at them, the suit alleges.

According to the lawsuit, Argueta was taken to a detention center in Elizabeth, where agents mocked her with a popular Latino song "Maria Has Gone," and was later transferred to a Newark facility, where she was held for nearly 36 hours. Argueta was held without food or water for the first 24 hours after her arrest, the lawsuit claims.
Once again, while I'm sure that ICE abuses do occur, I tend to doubt her version of events.

[1] menendez.senate.gov/newsroom/record.cfm?id=299036
[2] splcenter.org/legal/news/article.jsp?site_area=1&aid=221
[3] splcenter.org/pdf/dynamic/legal/manchaICE.pdf

Immigration2008a · Mon, 06/16/2008 - 12:03 · Importance: 4

Tue, 06/17/2008 - 00:22
Leave it to Beaner

Lying and lawbreaking scum are what our President wants to and currently is replacing our legal citizens with. WTF is wrong with this picture? Oh yeah......it's the money!! It's always the money isnt it?

Tue, 06/17/2008 - 02:17
Mary

I wouldn't be suprised if the gas crisis was implemented to hide the continued erosion of the country. The Prez (slimebag) pulls guard off the border as Americans frantically try to survive .Crime excalates as jobs disappear due to illegals . Washington is especially bad. One can hope that some of these slimebag politicians will be victimized by the very people they are importing into this country.Live by the asword-die by the sword.

Tue, 06/17/2008 - 06:44
anonymous

'he will be introducing legislation to prevent the unlawful detention of American citizens and permanent residents' That ought to be interesting. Legislation for something which is already illegal? Surely whatever measures he proposes won't also make it harder to detain illegal aliens too, of course not. Menendez's language isn't always clear, perhaps intentionally. He pays the usual lip service to the legitimacy of enforcement...then opposes it--supposedly only because it's not being done right. Is it ever? It's like when they're against E-verify supposedly only due to the error rate being too high. He's accusing ICE of racial animus but it's unclear whether he means ICE in general, e.g. broad ICE policy coming down from the top, or just isolated incidents of abuse. Either way, how does he know it's motivated by racial animus? Answer: he just assumes it and by keeping things vague maybe the agency and their general mission can be discredited to some degree. Notice you don't hear 'So we must be on guard for abuses BUT THE MISSION MUST STILL BE FULFILLED. No, ICE-weakening legislation will be proposed soon. In a hate crime trial, you have to prove the animus. You'd think it would be pretty serious for a U.S. senator to charge a federal law enforcement agency of being racist. Instead, it's just applauded by the usual suspects without concern that just maybe he's making accusations he can't support. By support, I don't mean sensational accusations from undecided suits either. 'they had no warrant, no probable cause, no reason for their actions besides suspicion about someone's name, their accent, and the color of their skin.' I hear that all the time and the impression is that ICE is conducting dragnets and random searches. It's often left out that there is nothing random about who was searched (as part of their criminal alien program) and I can't count the number of times there's an ICE rebuttal where it's later claimed they DID have a warrant. Has it ever occurred to those who accuse ICE of a racial witch hunt that perhaps the majority of illegal immigration law enforcement comes against Latinos is because they are the majority of illegal aliens? It's ridiculous to just jump to the race with hunt conclusion without considering that fact.

Tue, 06/17/2008 - 15:23
Leave it to Beaner

Very well said. [above] So if I understand you correctly.....what your saying is that Menendez is nothing short of a mexican senator who only cares about non citizens and should be on the "Top 10,000" list to be executed for treson?

Tue, 06/17/2008 - 15:24
Leave it to Beaner

Treason rather

Tue, 06/17/2008 - 16:42
mary

menedez is just one more HISPANIC whose blood is thicker than his allegiance to his country. Like Geraldo, Linda Chavez, Guitterez (Sec of Commerce) and Rubin Navarette to name a few, they give one reason to believe the RECONQUISTA movement is more widespread than many believe. To them the only good Illegal is an hispanic illegal.

Wed, 06/18/2008 - 02:41
Fred Dawes
www.myspace.com/freddawes1776

mary is dead on and if you just stand by and watch we will all be dead, and understand your targets, work as one but do not work together until the time to do the right thing, if you know what i mean?