Deval Patrick refuses to join Secure Communities (federal immigration enforcement program, Massachusetts)

Massachusetts joins the growing list of localities who don't want to get involved in Secure Communities, a program from the Department of Homeland Security that checks the immigration status of those arrested. Governor Deval Patrick's complaints about the program are the same as others [1]. His office claims the program hasn't focused only on deporting those convicted of serious crimes, and his office also claims that the program might deter some crime reporting. Regarding his complaints, see the notes here. For how this yet again illustrates how comprehensive immigration reform would act in practice, see the notes here.

This would be a good opportunity for concerned citizens (such as the tea parties) to discredit Patrick on his various immigration positions, except those who are loudest (the teapartiers) aren't willing or capable. A handful of mayors and governors across the U.S. are corrupt supporters of illegal immigration, and if few are willing to help discredit them to their supporters they're going to get away with it.

[1] From this:

In a letter to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Massachusetts Public Safety Secretary Mary Beth Heffernan said Patrick won't sign any memorandum of understanding for the state to join the federal Secure Communities program.

...In the letter, Heffernan said that while Patrick believes that serious criminals who are in the country illegally should be deported, he does not believe that the Secure Communities program accomplishes that objective.

Heffernan cited statistics from the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement office that she said shows only about one in four of those deported since the start of Boston's pilot participation in the program were convicted of a serious crime.

More than half of those deported were identified as "non-criminal," she said.

"The governor and I are dubious of the commonwealth taking on the federal role of immigration enforcement," Heffernan wrote in the letter dated Friday and released by the administration Monday. "We are even more skeptical of the potential impact that Secure Communities could have on the residents of the Commonwealth."

..."We are reluctant to participate if the program is mandatory and unwilling to participate if it is voluntary," she wrote.