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OPINION
January 9, 2013
A report released this week says that the U.S. government spends more on immigration enforcement than all other federal law enforcement combined. That should help silence Republican lawmakers who have steadfastly insisted that the Obama administration is doing too little to combat illegal immigration. Not only has the administration made enforcement the focus of its immigration policy, spending $18 billion last year and deporting more immigrants than any previous administration, but the number of people detained by federal officials nearly doubled from about 200,000 per year in 2001 to close to 400,000 in 2011, according to the study by the Migration Policy Institute, a nonpartisan Washington-based think tank.
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NATIONAL
March 7, 2014 | By Brian Bennett
WASHINGTON -- The head of the U.S. Border Patrol announced new rules Friday to limit agents from shooting at moving vehicles or people throwing rocks or other objects at agents, reversing a controversial policy that has led to at least 19 deaths. Border Patrol Chief Michael J. Fisher ordered customs and border agents not to step directly in front of a moving vehicle, or use their body to block it, in order to open fire on the driver. He also barred shooting at vehicles whose occupants are fleeing from agents.
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OPINION
June 25, 2013
Re "Immigration bill gains support - at a price," June 23 Add 20,000 more Border Patrol officers to protect us from poor people gambling with their lives and freedom, and several more drones to check it all out, and "we've practically militarized the border," according to a pleased Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). Add in the National Security Agency's surveillance of all of us, a "kill list" that our president justifies as the equivalent of a SWAT team responding to a sniper (and that includes American citizens)
NATIONAL
December 16, 2013 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON - The Senate confirmed Jeh Johnson as the next secretary of Homeland Security on Monday, capping a smooth approval process for the high-profile post. The former Pentagon general counsel will take office this week after a 78-16 vote, succeeding Janet Napolitano, who left in September to become president of the University of California system. An array of former officials from Democratic and Republican administrations, including all three former department secretaries, endorsed Johnson.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 10, 2013 | By Richard Marosi, Cindy Carcamo and Molly Hennessy-Fiske
The border barriers rise out of the Pacific Ocean, climb craggy California peaks, streak across Arizona desert valleys and meander through cattle ranches and fields of sorghum and citrus in South Texas. Tall steel fencing separates border communities. Camera towers and bright rows of stadium lights aim at smugglers' enclaves in Mexico. Migrants seeking out traditional crossing routes find them blocked, and many give up. But migrants still get across, by seeking out the one road or one mountain range or one desert trail beyond the reach of the U.S. Border Patrol.
OPINION
May 27, 2010
Even those who are appalled by Arizona's harsh new immigration law — as we are — recognize that the state's misguided decision to take federal matters into its own legislative hands did not come out of the blue. Arizona is the preferred superhighway for drug and human smugglers. Phoenix is the kidnapping capital of the nation, and almost all of those abducted are either illegal immigrants or linked to the drug trade. The recent killing of a rancher in southern Arizona has increased the sense of lawlessness and danger at the border; police believe the killer was involved with drug trafficking.
NEWS
February 13, 2013 | By Brian Bennett
WASHINGTON -- Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano pushed back Wednesday against congressional demands to further boost border security, and said those calls shouldn't delay creating a path to citizenship for up to 11 million illegal immigrants. Testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Napolitano said the Obama administration has doubled the number of border patrol agents and deported a record number of illegal immigrants. The number of illicit border crossings has plummeted, she said.
NATIONAL
August 13, 2010 | By Lisa Mascaro, Tribune Washington Bureau
Congress gave final approval Thursday to a $600-million border security package that President Obama had sought to tighten the border with Mexico — a move supporters hope will open a broader political discussion on comprehensive immigration reform. The Senate gave quick final approval to the measure in an unusual special session that was arranged to rectify an earlier procedural glitch. The House had passed the bill without dissent Tuesday, and Obama is expected to sign it Friday.
NATIONAL
June 22, 2010 | By Peter Nicholas
The Obama administration formally asked Congress on Tuesday for $600 million in emergency funds to hire another 1,000 Border Patrol agents, acquire two drones and enhance security along the Southwest border. The money would also pay for an additional 160 Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents and extra Border Patrol canine teams, according to a senior White House official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly. In a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D- San Francisco)
NATIONAL
February 13, 2013 | By Brian Bennett, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, who sits at the center of the nation's immigration debate, pushed back Wednesday against congressional demands to tighten border security further before creating a path to citizenship for the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. Testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Napolitano argued that border security had "never been stronger. " She said the Obama administration had deported a record number of people, had increased the number of border agents to a record 21,300 and cut illegal crossings to their lowest levels in 40 years.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 27, 2013 | By Cindy Chang
Hundreds of Catholics rallied outside Rep. Ed Royce's office in Brea on Tuesday evening to demand a path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants who are in the country illegally. “I pray that not only he, but other members of Congress, will have a change of heart and quickly enact comprehensive immigration reform for our country,” Dominic Luong, auxiliary bishop of Orange, told the crowd. The windows to Royce's second-floor offices remained dark as the rally concluded with a prayer for "those who come from other lands" and a chant of "Si se puede.
NATIONAL
August 13, 2013 | By Brian Bennett
McALLEN, Texas - When Rep. Leonard Lance, a Republican from New Jersey, toured the U.S. border with Mexico last week, he saw more than 20-foot-high barricades outside San Diego, a surveillance drone base in Arizona and patrol boats on the Rio Grande in Texas. Lance also spotted a body floating in the tall Spanish cane in an elbow of the Rio Grande. Border Patrol agents told him the man may have drowned trying to swim across from Mexico, or may have been killed by cartel members in a drug deal gone bad. "To see a dead body right here," Lance said, "is a dramatic indication that we have to do a better job" on border security.
NEWS
August 1, 2013 | By Marina Villeneuve
WASHINGTON -- Forty protesters, including union leader Eliseo Medina of the Service Employees International Union, were arrested Thursday afternoon for blocking passage outside the U.S. Capitol during a demonstration urging the House to pass comprehensive immigration reform. As they chanted and held up signs saying, “GOP, do you want our vote?” about 200 protesters from pro-immigrant union and community groups called for the House to take up the Senate bill, which passed June 27. The Senate legislation would grant 11 million undocumented immigrants immediate legal status and a pathway to citizenship while adding $30 billion for border security.
NATIONAL
July 8, 2013 | By Joseph Tanfani and Brian Bennett
WASHINGTON - A plan to check fingerprints of foreigners leaving the U.S. is popular in Congress - but not at the Homeland Security Department, where officials say the technology would do little to halt illegal immigration. But thanks in part to lobbying by security contractors, the Senate immigration bill that goes to the Republican-led House this week includes a computerized "biometric" exit system that could cost more than $7 billion. The plan is part of the bill's $46-billion border "surge" of security measures, a 10-year spending gusher that would produce a financial bonanza for some of America's largest aerospace, technology and security companies, as well as some border states.
OPINION
June 28, 2013
Re "Why a border surge?," Opinion, June 26 Robert C. Bonner's suggestions that it would be better and cheaper to boost immigration enforcement by targeting employers is absolutely on target. Most illegal immigrants in the U.S. came here to get a job. If corporate executives knew they would face severe punishments if they employed illegal immigrants, the word would quickly come down to all not to take any chances when hiring. Perhaps this would result in somewhat higher prices for fruits and vegetables, but we would be saving billions on border security, healthcare, public education and more.
OPINION
June 25, 2013
Re "Immigration bill gains support - at a price," June 23 Add 20,000 more Border Patrol officers to protect us from poor people gambling with their lives and freedom, and several more drones to check it all out, and "we've practically militarized the border," according to a pleased Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). Add in the National Security Agency's surveillance of all of us, a "kill list" that our president justifies as the equivalent of a SWAT team responding to a sniper (and that includes American citizens)
NATIONAL
June 15, 2010 | By Ken Dilanian and Nicholas Riccardi
The Republican governor of Arizona, Jan Brewer, calls her state "the gateway to America for drug trafficking, extortion, kidnapping and crime." She blames the federal government for failing to secure the border with Mexico. Her Democratic predecessor, Janet Napolitano, now the country's Homeland Security secretary, counters that the Southwestern border "is as secure now as it has ever been." The dispute over just how much border security is enough looms as the biggest impediment to any attempt by the Obama administration and Congress to overhaul the nation's immigration laws.
NATIONAL
June 21, 2013 | By Lisa Mascaro, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - One is a former farm state governor, one of only two mustachioed men in the Senate. The other is a self-made millionaire whose Southern drawl belies an impatience with the slow-moving Congress. These two senators, an odd couple of sorts, have emerged as unlikely players in the immigration overhaul. Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) and Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) quietly orchestrated the "border surge," a bipartisan compromise that may bring enough Republican support next week to pass a sweeping immigration overhaul - and its path to citizenship for the 11 million immigrants in this country without legal status.
NEWS
June 21, 2013 | By Sandra Hernandez
Supporters of a bipartisan Senate immigration reform bill appeared to have cleared a major hurdle this week after senators agreed to pump billions of dollars into border security programs in an effort to win over key Republican votes. The border security amendment calls for doubling the number of border patrol agents from 20,000 to 40,000, expanding drone surveillance and completing 700 miles worth of fencing along the U.S. - Mexico border. The full Senate is expected to vote on the deal next week.
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