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Joe Biden’s ‘sanctuary nation’ policies made Laken Riley’s death possible
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Joe Biden’s ‘sanctuary nation’ policies made Laken Riley’s death possible

Nothing is worth fighting for if conservatives don’t make the nursing student’s murder our George Floyd moment to stop the invasion on the southern border.

When George Floyd died under disputed circumstances in 2020, a spontaneous, rapturous global movement emerged to lionize him and use his death to demand changes to our policing and criminal justice system. The movement succeeded, and it resulted in the worst crime wave in a generation.

Laken Riley, a young nursing student in Georgia, was brutally murdered last week, allegedly by an illegal alien from Venezuela. Where are the cries of “justice for Laken”? Where is the serendipitous political movement to use her memory to shut down the invasion at the border?

The crime wave we face is unimaginable but also completely avoidable.

Even if George Floyd truly died at the hands of a police officer and not from a drug overdose, his death was not evidence of pervasive, racist police violence. Police are not killing black men wantonly. The same may not be said of the prevalent and completely avoidable trend of illegal alien violence. We all saw the images of Venezuelan migrants beating police in New York City. We all watched the Venezuelan criminal released from prison and flipping the bird at the American people. We saw the four Venezuelan punks who robbed an American on a Chicago train.

We’ve long endured an underreported illegal alien crime wave, but this wave of Venezuelan invaders is qualitatively the worst we have ever faced. According to CWB Chicago, Chicago police as of the end of November had arrested nearly 700 self-identified Venezuelan nationals, up from 26 in 2022 and just six in 2021.

Which brings us to Jose Antonio Ibarra, 26, a Venezuelan national illegally paroled by Joe Biden’s Department of Homeland Security in 2022, who is now charged with the murder of Riley on UGA’s Athens campus after the nursing student’s body was found brutally beaten in the woods.

Ibarra is the new face of our Venezuelan problem, but he’s one of thousands. As Fox News reports, recently arrived Tren de Aragua gang members are terrorizing cities including New York and Chicago.

The Border Patrol reported roughly 335,000 encounters with Venezuelan nationals during the 2023 fiscal year, in addition to the 470,000 granted temporary protected status by Biden. This doesn’t include apprehensions from the previous two years, nor does it include the “gotaways.” Yet only 834 Venezuelan nationals were deported in 2023.

The crime wave we face is unimaginable but also completely avoidable. Unlike some other political causes born out of a gush of emotion from a highly visible murder or death (such as Floyd’s), this is a problem that is 100% redressable if our government actually met its obligation to protect citizens from foreign threats.

Just consider the magnitude of what we face. According to ICE, as of FY 2023, there were a whopping 6,199,629 foreign nationals (mainly illegal, but also criminal legal aliens) in its “undetained” docket. These are people who have been targeted by ICE for removal, which most likely means the overwhelming majority have criminal records in addition to immigration violations. Just 37,000 of them are currently in custody. That means more than 6 million criminal aliens who were dangerous enough to attract ICE’s attention remain in the country indefinitely without being deported.

Just how prevalent is the crime problem? In fiscal year 2020, during Trump’s last year when we were still making an effort to deport people, among those arrested by ICE were illegal immigrants with criminal histories that included:

  • more than 1,800 homicide-related offenses,
  • 1,600 kidnappings,
  • 3,800 robberies,
  • 37,000 assaults,
  • 10,000 sex crimes.

In total, there were more than 374,000 criminal convictions and pending charges — an average of four per illegal alien. This is just among those authorities found with very limited resources and with sanctuary cities shielding a large number of them. And, of course, it was before Biden allowed more than 7.2 million people to invade the country.

Nothing is worth fighting for if conservatives don’t make Laken Riley’s death our George Floyd moment. This means Republicans must refuse to fund the budget at the end of the week without provisions defunding the border invasions. But it must also mean states begin assuming responsibility for deportations.

The Constitution itself allows states to fight an invasion. But even if it did not, the Constitution is not a suicide pact. With 6.2 million undetained illegal aliens that even Biden’s ICE has targeted for removal, there is no way states can sit by while federal authorities do nothing.

Every day, there are millions of ticking time bombs among people who should not be here. It turns out Laken Riley’s alleged murderer was arrested by the NYPD in September and charged with “acting in a manner to injure a child less than 17 and a motor vehicle license violation,” according to a statement by ICE. As is the case with all sanctuary cities, Ibarra was released by the NYPD before a detainer could be issued.

Jose Antonio also has an older brother, Diego Ibarra, who is another example of Biden’s lax border policies. He was arrested three times between September and December 2023 in Athens, Georgia, for various crimes but was released every single time.

The first time an illegal alien is caught for a crime should be the last time he commits a crime in this country. This is a sanctuary city problem, but it is also a sanctuary nation problem. But ICE often refuses to apprehend those who only committed “low-level offenses,” such as drunk driving or theft. Given that the feds refuse to deport, it is incumbent upon the states to identify the citizenship of every individual arrested and ensure that deportable aliens are not released onto our streets. Justice for Laken Riley and countless others like her demands no less.

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Daniel Horowitz

Daniel Horowitz

Blaze Podcast Host

Daniel Horowitz is the host of “Conservative Review with Daniel Horowitz” and a senior editor for Blaze News. He writes on the most decisive battleground issues of our times, including the theft of American sovereignty through illegal immigration, theft of American liberty through tyranny, and theft of American law and order through criminal justice “reform.”
@RMConservative →