Bob Menendez, Teddy Kennedy still trying to hamper immigration enforcement (S.3594)

Senator Robert Menendez has introduced S.3594, the "Protect Citizens and Residents from Unlawful Raids and Detention Act", co-sponsored by Teddy Kennedy (link). The PCRURDA appears to be as bad as you might expect; some of the differences between his bill and the current law are more in the realm of those who are immigration lawyers. However, some are clearly designed to tie the hands of ICE in order to make immigration enforcement very difficult, which is a recurring crusade by Bob Menendez.

In fact, one of his provisions could undercut enforcement efforts entirely:

In any immigration-related enforcement activity that is expected to target more than 50 individuals, the Secretary of Homeland Security shall... notify State and local child welfare authorities of such immigration-related enforcement activity not later than 24 hours before the commencement of such activity...

In one case, an illegal immigration supporter was proud about being tipped off to a raid by the spouse of a local official. Menendez is proposing what could become an early warning system for illegal aliens and crooked businesses.

He also wants illegal immigration supporting groups like CHIRLA to be involved in the process:

"State and local social service providers to [be allowed to] determine whether nongovernmental organizations may participate in screening individuals detained by the Department for humanitarian purposes"

In addition to being very immigration lawyer-friendly, there's also a sop to another profession:

ensure that not fewer than one independent certified interpreter who is fluent in Spanish or any language other than English spoken by more than 5 percent of the target population of the operation for in-person translation is available for every 5 individuals targeted by an immigration-related law enforcement activity

And, there will be a talk:

[The DHS should] provide a legal orientation presentation for any individual detained through an immigration-related enforcement activity through the Legal Orientation Program administered by the Executive Office for Immigration Review

More on the EOIR here.

He also wants to get the Department of Labor and state counterparts involved, including this wide open provision under which even more illegal aliens could be allowed to remain:

An alien against whom removal proceedings have been initiated pursuant to chapter 4 of title II, and who has filed a workplace claim or is a material witness in any pending or anticipated proceeding involving a workplace claim, shall be entitled to a stay of removal and an employment authorized endorsement unless the Department establishes, by a preponderance of the evidence in proceedings before the immigration judge presiding over that alien's removal hearing, that (I) the Department initiated the alien's removal proceeding for wholly independent reasons and not in any respect based on, or as a result of, any information provided to or obtained by the Department from the alien's employer, from any outside source, including any anonymous source, or as a result of the filing or prosecution of the workplace claim; and (II) the workplace claim was filed in a bad faith with the intent to delay or avoid the alien's removal.

I have a sneaking suspicion that there would be many "anticipated" claims made in entirely bad faith that would clog up the system and let many illegal aliens remain here.

But, wait, there's more. He also wants to:

- extend Miranda-like rights to those caught in immigration raids; note that they'd have to be read those rights in their own language and in some cases that might be an obscure Indian language. Any statements made if they aren't read their rights would be inadmissable in removal proceedings...
- have ICE agents hand out a list of free legal service organizations to detainees...
- allow detainees to be represented throughout the process...
- impose time limits that might result in some illegal aliens being released...
- "An official of the Department of Homeland Security may not issue a detainer unless the official (A) has confirmed that the individual who is the subject of such detainer is not a United States citizen; and (B) notes the information collected regarding the individual's alienage on the detainer." I'm going to guess that that would also result in many illegal aliens being set free...
- the DHS Secretary should "avoid the apprehension of persons on the premises or in the immediate vicinity of day care centers, schools, legal service providers, courts, funeral homes, cemeteries, colleges, victim services agencies, social service agencies, hospitals, health care clinics, and places of worship; and (B) [require agents to] tightly control investigative operations at the places described in subparagraph (A)."
- prevent moving detainees from one facility to another in some cases and weigh a long list of conditions before making a move...


This would be incredibly burdensome to implement, making it impractical. Requiring the government to for a legal orientation presentation and interpretors would be costly. The notification requirement would undermine the purpose of raids. Menendez has been active in the pro-illegal movement and probably hopes to rise to prominence within the party as the Hispanic lobby becomes more powerful. He may view himself as the Hispanic Kennedy, a party lifer with great notoriety.