Ahead of President Barack Obama’s highly anticipated immigration speech in primetime, Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones recorded a blistering message to the president urging him not to continue “deferring the crisis.”
In the video message, Jones begins by highlighting the tragic murders of Sacramento Sheriff Deputy Danny Oliver and Placer County Sheriff Detective Michael Davis Jr. by an illegal immigrant suspect who had been removed from the U.S. and returned repeatedly without “consequences.” The suspect, who has an extensive criminal history, also reportedly shot a civilian in the face.
“I am going to implore you to address an issue that only you can address: Immigration reform,” Jones said. “And while Congress as a body, both Democrats and certainly Republicans, share the blame for their failure in this part, only you are singularly responsible for the hands-off policy that exists in Homeland Security and it subsidiaries, including Customs and Border Protection.”
“Mr. President, they don’t need a raise to improve morale in that organization, they need to be allowed to do their jobs,” he added.
Watch the full video below:
The White House on Thursday announced Obama's planned unilateral actions to spare 5 million people, mostly parents and the young, from deportations. The administration is also setting new enforcement priorities that could make it easier for many more people in the U.S. illegally to stay in the country.
The moves mark the most sweeping changes to the nation's fractured immigration laws in nearly three decades. Republicans are expected to quickly mount legal and legislative challenges, setting the stage for a bitterly partisan fight consuming the final two years of Obama's presidency.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.