In this March 30, 2012 photo, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents take a suspect into custody as part of a nationwide immigration sweep in Chula Vista, Calif. Federal officials say they arrested more than 3,100 immigrants convicted of serious crimes and fugitives in a six-day nationwide sweep. Officials at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement say the sweep included every state and involved more than 1,900 of the agency�s officers and agents.\nCredit: AP\n
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"...increasingly officers feel they have become the enemy of this administration."
President Barack Obama and his administration appear to care about satisfying "special interest groups" within the Democratic base more than protecting the lives of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers, the ICE union boss told lawmakers Tuesday.
"Internally, the agency, in my opinion is falling apart. Morale is at an all-time low, according to recent federal surveys. The agency refuses to train our officers on these new policies, resulting in mass confusion and frustration… nobody really knows what's going on," Chris Crane, president the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council, told the House Judiciary Committee.
He went on: "As our officers are investigated by ICE for enforcing U.S. immigration law as they see other officers threatened with suspensions for lawful arrests, increasingly officers feel they have become the enemy of this administration."
Watch a portion of Crane's testimony below:
Crane said ICE agents have been "essentially prohibited" from enforcing U.S. immigration law. He said agents are unable to arrest illegal aliens who are in the country illegally or immigrants who have overstayed their visas. "It's basically not illegal anymore, generally speaking, not unless the alien has been convicted of a criminal offense."
He said ICE agents are being forced to accept any illegal alien's claim as to whether he or she graduated or is attending high school or college, thus qualifying them for Obama's “deferred action for childhood arrivals” (DACA) privileges. Agents are "powerless" in requiring illegal aliens to prove they actually qualify.
“Death or serious injury to ICE officers and agents appears more acceptable to ICE, DHS, and Administration leadership, than the public complaints that would be lodged by special interest groups representing illegal aliens," Crane said, according to a report by the Washington Examiner.
Several ICE agents have filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration over policies that prevent immigration officials from enforcing federal immigration law.
Featured image via AP
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