Thursday, December 31, 2015
Democratic Presidential Candidate and Irish Rocker Martin O'Malley
Last week, the Washington Post reported on the Obama administration's plans to employ immigration raids to apprehend and remove undocumented Central Americans. Yesterday, marchers protested the raids plan at the White House.
The Republican presidential candidates might claim that the raids are too little, too late. Not so for the Democratic presidential candidates.
Martin O'Malley and Bernie Sanders criticized the raid plans. O'Malley sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on Wednesday "to respectfully request that DHS reconsider this approach." The letter further stated:
"When, in 2014, tens of thousands of children made the journey to escape death gangs in Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala, we called on Marylanders to step up and help accommodate them. Maryland took action to safeguard more refugee kids on a per-capita basis than any other state in the nation. Thousands of families opened their homes as foster families. We recruited pro-bono legal help for case preparation. And we did all of this at minimal cost to the taxpayer.
Sometimes there appears to be only two speeds in government: on and off. When it comes to life and death matters—keeping families together and offering refuge to people fleeing violence—we need to take a more balanced approach- one that is guided by our values and character as a nation.
Forced deportations of unaccompanied refugee minors and refugee families should be a last resort when it comes to women and children fleeing violence. It is my sincere belief that our nation can handle this situation in a more rational, fair, and humane manner."
Hillary Clinton's campaign more cautiously said that the candidate had "real concerns" about the plan. A Clinton spokeswoman said that the candidate "believes the United States should give refuge to people fleeing persecution, and should be especially attentive to the needs of children."