Sunday, July 5, 2015

Sunday Globe Special: Rubio's Retreats

Related: Rubio Running Towards 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination

Globe trying to trip him up along the way:

"Senator Rubio falls silent on immigration, his signature subject" by Matt Viser Globe Staff  June 20, 2015

WASHINGTON — Over the first six months of 2013, freshman Senator Marco Rubio shot to national prominence as he took the lead on one of the nation’s most divisive issues, with all the political promise and peril that goes with such a move.

He joined a bipartisan group of senators pushing a law to crack down on illegal immigration while blazing a path for some of the 11 million illegal immigrants already here to achieve legal status.

In that cause, Rubio relentlessly pursued the spotlight. He granted at least 50 interviews on television and radio, many with conservative hosts who adamantly disagreed with his plan and considered him a traitor for working with Democrats. On one Sunday alone, he appeared on seven television shows.

But then, almost as soon as he and his allies finished pushing the bill through the Senate, Rubio walked away from the issue in what, even for Washington, represented a stunning about-face.

Hopes for an immigration overhaul soon fizzled in the House, where the conservative critics vowed to block any bill offering what they consider “amnesty.’’

Now, as Rubio runs for president in the Republican primary, he has almost completely purged his signature issue of two years ago from his political vocabulary.

I'm about to purge all the presidential campaign filler and the agenda-pushing immigration articles from the backlog.

During 2013, he mentioned “immigration” or “immigrant” 135 times on the Senate floor. But over the last two years, he’s only uttered those words two times, according to a Globe review of the Congressional Record. Over those first six months of 2013, his office sent out nearly 150 press releases on immigration. Since then, he has issued just three press releases on the subject.

And on the campaign trail, the subject rarely comes up unprompted. 

Your intrepid Globe reporter on the beat, literally counting words.

The story of Rubio’s shift not only reveals an especially bald political calculation, but also reflects broader Republican ambivalence on an issue that continues to bedevil the party. His Cuban-American heritage, his family story, and his leadership on immigration made Rubio one of the GOP’s most promising political figures to appeal to a growing and influential Hispanic demographic that is increasingly key to the national electoral success.

But now that he seeks the favor of conservative primary voters, Rubio has transformed his calling-card issue into something else — a question mark in his presidential resume.

From Miami, a rising star

Rubio was born 44 years ago in Miami, and his parents’ story is a key component of his own. His father was a bartender, his mother a maid — both immigrants from Cuba who fled political and economic hardships in 1956 and became naturalized US citizens nearly two decades later.

Now that they have the Internet, they can read this.

A politician who rose to speaker of the Florida House of Representatives, Rubio was elected to the Senate with Tea Party backing. He had a bilingual background. In many ways, he was the ideal political leader to help craft an ambitious immigration plan. And Republicans desperately needed one.

Party leaders who dissected the carcass of Mitt Romney’s failed 2012 presidential bid determined that Romney bungled the issue of immigration, particularly when he declared in a debate that undocumented immigrants should engage in “self-deportation.”

You will see him more below.

He won only 27 percent of the Hispanic vote in the general election campaign against President Obama.

It was in this climate that Illinois Senator Dick Durbin, the number-two leader in the Democratic majority, approached Rubio in the Senate gym in December 2012 and implored him to join an emerging bipartisan effort to craft a comprehensive immigration overhaul.


“I went to him and said, ‘I think you should be part of this. But you have to understand that path to citizenship is part of the deal,’ ” Durbin recounted in an interview.

Many conservatives oppose the idea of granting citizenship to those in the country illegally, considering it amnesty. Democrats have resisted the conservative demand that beefed-up border security take priority, but were willing to make a trade.

According to Durbin, Rubio accepted the political risks: “He said, ‘I’m prepared to go forward.’ And he did.”

With Rubio in, the lead backers of the bill became known as the “Gang of Eight” — four Democrats and four Republicans.

Gangs are never good.

Rubio, in a show of his seriousness, expanded his staff, bringing in an immigration expert to help craft legislation. He spoke before groups of white evangelical pastors, quoting Scripture as a justification for the bill, inspiring them with his life story.

The way he spoke of his status as a son of immigrants resonated then, and still does.

“He is connecting the immigrant experience with the American Dream and the larger American story. He does so personally, in a way that connects well,” said Russell Moore, head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission. “When he talks about his Cuban immigrant father working as a bartender — it takes a lot of rhetorical skill to get Southern Baptists to tear up at a bartender. But he’s able to do it.”

It's called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it.

In a dozen interviews with those involved in crafting the Senate plan — including most members of the Gang of Eight — there is universal agreement that Rubio’s intellect and charisma were crucial in both convincing skeptical Republicans and blunting the barrage of criticism.

“I’ve often said he was more important than the rest of the Republicans combined,” said Senator Jeff Flake, an Arizona Republican and one of the other members of the group.

Representative Luis Gutierrez, an Illinois Democrat who has worked for years on immigration reform, recalled walking out of an hourlong meeting with Rubio and his staff, early in the push for the Senate plan, feeling as though they were about to accomplish something historic.

“I couldn’t have walked away from that meeting happier,” Gutierrez said. “I said to him, ‘We’re going to get this done. We’re absolutely going to get this done.’ ”

The Senate bill would have provided a path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, and would also have enhanced border security, adding 20,000 Border Patrol agents and 700 miles of fencing along the southern US border. Under the terms of the bill, the security measures would be completed before any undocumented immigrants achieved legal status.

“During that period, he was engaged in using political capital for the right purpose, from my perspective. And being bipartisan in that engagement. And being willing to argue his case in the most difficult circles,” said Senator Robert Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat. “But maybe there’s a reality to how far their party can go.”

Btw, whatever happened with the investigation, Bob?

Rubio appeared to have moments of doubt that the bill struck the right balance. In public comments, he would express worry over whether border security measures were going far enough.

Other negotiators detected a rift within Rubio’s staff. His policy team was eagerly trying to reach compromise, while his political team seemed to try to derail it.

Rubio would sometimes seem to distance himself, but never for long.

“He always came back,” said one Democratic staffer. “It was kind of like Lassie.”

Rubio’s ambivalence was understandable given the beating he was taking on conservative talk radio.

Glenn Beck called him a “piece of garbage.” Laura Ingraham panned his plan and said Rubio would “rue the day he became the Gang of Eight’s poodle.” Senator David Vitter, a Republican from Louisiana, called his colleague “just amazingly naive” and “nuts.”

“The reaction was pretty harsh,” said Brent Bozell, a prominent conservative activist and founder of the Media Research Center, a conservative media watchdog organization. “It was rather surprising. I was hearing it all over the country.”

After the legislation passed, it was touted as a historic vote. The Gang of Eight had accomplished something few thought they would and, in a valedictory moment, walked off the Senate floor together and into one of the most ornate hallways in the Capitol, prepared to address reporters.

But one of the eight was missing. Rubio, who did vote for the bill, didn’t show.

“It’s hard to explain. He clearly had a change of heart on the issue,” Durbin said. “It’s an extremely controversial position for him. And as he started entertaining the thought of running [for president], I think his visibility on immigration reform diminished. And his interest in our compromise changed.”

Rubio declined requests for an interview. His spokesman declined to comment for this story.

Tempered expectations

A month after it passed, when advocates were hoping to keep pressure on the House to consider the Senate compromise bill, Rubio told Fox News the legislation he helped author wasn’t perfect and he downplayed its importance.

“Look, it’s not the most important issue facing America,” he said. For example, he said, repealing Obama’s health care plan was a higher priority.

In October 2013, he sometimes spoke as as though he and other Republicans had never been part of the bipartisan push that won Senate passage of the bill.

“The House [isn’t] just going to take up and pass whatever the Democrats in the Senate are demanding,” he said on CNN.

Rubio has also directly contradicted some of his previous statements. In June 2013, responding to constituent concerns, Rubio said one of the reasons immigration is so challenging is that all of the issues — border security and pathway to citizenship — have to be handled together.

“It is all interwoven. It’s all related to each other. It’s literally impossible to do one part without doing the other,” he said.

Four months later, he stated virtually the opposite.

“When you try to do something big in Washington, it ends up running into headwinds,” he said on CNN. “Now that’s the direction the Senate went … but I continue to believe that a series of sequential, individual bills is the best way, the ideal way, to reform our immigration system.”

Immigration advocates trying to keep up the momentum for reform were deflated by Rubio’s change in tone.

The Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, the president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, was wowed by Rubio’s early leadership. The conviction with which he spoke about the issue could sway an entire room. Rodriguez misses that voice.

“He was Joshua leading the people into the Promised Land of immigration,” he said. “Then, right when we were on the Jordan River, he pivoted. He looked back to the desert. All of the sudden he pivoted; he took his foot out of the water.”

What is with all the religion in politics?

Now immigration is an uncomfortable conversation for Rubio, said Rodriguez, “a de facto don’t ask, don’t tell.”

“The decibel level is lower. That passion is no longer there. … When you hear him speak now you see his eyes move down a bit, his voice fluctuates a tad,” he said. “It’s not the same convicted Marco Rubio that led the charge back in 2013.

“I believe he hasn’t changed at all in terms of his convictions, but he has changed in his political calculations he believes necessary to win the Republican nomination,” Rodriguez said.

Meaning he has no principals or convictions at all.

“Are we sacrificing conviction and truth at the altar of political expediency? That’s the question that has to be asked.”

Been answered.

A lesson learned

Earlier this year, Rubio drove to suburban Washington and appeared before the Conservative Political Action Conference, the largest annual gathering of conservative activists.

He told them he had been wrong to pursue comprehensive immigration before first securing the border.

The lesson he’s learned from it all, he said, is that comprehensive immigration reform “just really has no realistic chance of passing.”

Outside observers doubt Rubio will make immigration a major focus of his presidential campaign.

Why fall on your sword for immigration when it can’t pass in the House, where conservatives hold even greater sway than in the Senate?

“Young Mr. Rubio is figuring out the hard facts of politics in America,” said Javier Palomarez, president of the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. “Could he have done more? Possibly. But the criticism that he’s changed tacks simply to run for president is overly simplistic. This change in tactic is due to congressional gridlock more than political ambition.”

Palomarez believes Rubio’s shifts on the issue show political savvy.


After all, the passionate conservative opposition to Rubio has dissipated as his rhetoric has shifted, giving him better standing in the GOP primary electorate. 

Except the rhetoric has returned!

And immigration advocates like Palomarez still view Rubio as an ally, someone who could achieve greater gains on the issue from the White House.

“I look at him and say he’s evolving on issues that are important and realizing the landscape he’s working with and the Congress we’ve got,’’ Palomarez said. “It illustrates a savvy businessman who says, ‘To get from point A to point B, I have to adapt.’”


I thought he was running for president; however, I can $ee from where the confu$ion comes:

"GOP hopefuls to court Romney at his exclusive retreat in Utah" by Steve Peoples Associated Press  June 06, 2015

WASHINGTON — Interested in playing flag football with Senator Marco Rubio of Florida?


Maybe you’d prefer skeet shooting with Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina? Or horseback riding with Ann Romney?

Nope. Nope.

All are possible at Mitt Romney’s third annual retreat next week. All you need to get there is a personal invitation from the 2012 Republican nominee, or one of Romney’s top lieutenants, who are eager to help the GOP retake the White House in 2016 and play a role in whom the party picks as its nominee.

I'm crushed I didn't receive one.

‘‘This is an amazingly powerful group of people,’’ said Spencer Zwick, who served as Romney national finance chairman four years ago. ‘‘Some of them have signed up with other campaigns. I would say the great majority have not at this point.’’

Romney, who briefly flirted with a third presidential bid earlier in the year, has shifted from candidate to aspiring kingmaker in the GOP’s 2016 presidential primary contest.

They already have one.

It’s unclear if or when he will make an endorsement, Zwick said. Instead, Romney for now has instructed his network to offer help to several candidates.

The three-day closed-door affair begins next Thursday in Park City, Utah. At least six White House prospects will appear at Romney’s retreat, according to materials distributed to attendees.

In addition to Rubio and Graham, they include Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey, Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Governor John Kasich of Ohio, and former Hewlett-Packard chief executive Carly Fiorina.

Organizers say Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky has been invited but has yet to confirm.

Former governor Jeb Bush, too, was invited, but he will be in the midst of a three-country European tour.

For the 250 guests, it won’t be all politics.

Attendees can start their days hiking with Romney and his wife at 6 a.m.

That's when I go on a Globe run, so no.

There will be several more ‘‘enthusiast sessions’’ offering special activities with presidential candidates and other prominent guests to groups of 20 to 25 attendees at a time. Participants will be selected in a lottery.

Awwww, I didn't win!


See ya' next year! Time to head for New Hampshire!

RelatedMitt Romney carves out a role for 2016

"Romney tries out new role as elder statesman of GOP" by Matt Viser Globe Staff  June 12, 2015

PARK CITY, Utah — If the stakes were not so high, the rivalries not so cutthroat, the high-level Republican gathering hosted by Mitt Romney this week in the mountains of Utah would almost resemble a jolly summer camp. Almost.

Who wants to go skeet shooting with Lindsey Graham? How about sunrise Pilates — or afternoon horseback riding — with Ann Romney?

I already answered those questions!

Romney himself plays the role of head counselor, letting out a loud whistle and telling his guests, “Let’s get started!”

The man behind the scenes?

But beyond the stunning Rocky Mountain setting and the extracurricular activities, the real business of this confab is influence and campaign money. Here is Scott Walker, for instance, spending a full day in private meetings with potential donors.

Romney’s fourth annual Deer Valley gathering marks a renewed effort to cement the 2012 Republican presidential nominee’s status as a GOP elder statesman.


At a time when the 2016 Republican presidential field is fractured among nearly two dozen announced or potential candidates, a parade of hopefuls arrived this week seeking Romney’s political blessing, his connections, and of course, access to his network of wealthy campaign contributors.

Some 250 GOP movers and shakers converged on the Stein Eriksen Lodge, a five-star hotel at the foot of Deer Valley Ski Resort where rooms include hot tubs, fireplaces, and beautiful views.

For all the spectacular natural surroundings, however, money to fuel the presidential campaigns was a central topic of the conversation. More specifically, uncommitted money.

Spencer Zwick, who was Romney’s national finance director, said “We are trying to find our Barack Obama.”


Romney told reporters Friday that he was unlikely to make an endorsement in the primary unless he felt it could make a difference late in the race for the nomination.


Nonetheless, Marco Rubio, the freshman senator from Florida, appeared to enjoy a special role at this gathering. On Friday morning, as attendees sat in a conference room eating scrambled eggs, fruit, and French toast, Rubio sat at a table with Mitt and Ann Romney.

As Rubio spoke later, he tried to charm the crowd with a mixture of foreign policy proposals, references to his youth, and a joke about Democrats sending a drone to record his flag football outing.

As the field’s youngest candidate, who is making an argument that it’s time for a new generation to lead, the 44-year-old Rubio also made an impression on those who played seven-on-seven flag football with him.

Memories of JFK, right?!


In a nominating contest marked by a series of cattle calls — gatherings of candidates in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina — the one Romney convened here was the most exclusive. General Electric Co. chief executive Jeffrey Immelt roamed the hallways. Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates ate lunch on the terrace. Former NBA commissioner David Stern was buttonholed by several Boston-based fans wondering what he would have done with a scandal over deflated basketballs.

LOOK AT NAMES! A bunch of happy and who cares?

Romney also invited several candidates for the Democratic nomination, including Hillary Rodham Clinton, former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, and Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont. All of them declined.

They were stuck somewhere else.

As six presidential hopefuls unspooled their pitches — in ballrooms, in private conference rooms, and on cushy couches next to fireplaces — many attendees were taken with the field.

Graham was the plainspoken, folksy South Carolinian who made light of his bachelorhood (“We tried tall, good looking, smart, nice, great family man. Vote for me, we’re not going down that path again.”)

Yeah, go for it!

Ohio Governor John Kasich was the one who wandered around the stage, imploring his party to do a better job connecting with the middle class.

Walker touted his experience taking on unions in Wisconsin, while New Jersey Governor Chris Christie used his signature blunt style to talk about reform, explain why governors are more qualified than senators, and declare himself “probably the most psychoanalyzed national political figure in the world.”

Walker has been up and running, and Christie just came out of the closet.

Carly Fiorina, who is slated to speak on Saturday morning, said in an interview “Everything about me is different.”

Must be why I like her.

One Republican, however, was conspicuously absent. Jeb Bush was halfway across the world, choosing to take an international trip instead of coming to Utah. Sources close to both Bush and Romney said that Bush tried to figure out a way to attend this conference — and finally sent his son Jeb Jr. instead.

Related: Bush the Guy to Beat For GOP Nomination 

Where was he, Israel?

But the former Florida governor’s absence was another sign of a relationship with Romney that no one describes as warm, and some say is downright tense. Some who have spoken with Romney privately say that he has been unimpressed with Bush, and they remember how Bush was one of the last politicians to endorse him in 2012.

There also are bitter feelings over how Bush started aggressively courting Romney’s donors and campaign aides this year.

Tagg Romney, Mitt’s oldest son, said several Republican candidates who should be asking for his father’s advice are not. “I just don’t think Jeb’s thinking about us a lot. … We lost. He doesn’t want to do the same things we did.”

There is still some wistful longing, as well as some second-guessing of Romney’s public flirtation in January of a 2016 run, which he ended after three weeks of frenzied speculation.

If he had waited, some advisers say, the party might now be turning to him, with such a chaotic field and the establishment favorite, Jeb Bush, unable to establish a clear lead.

“If Mitt had held his fire until now, the hydraulic pressure for him would be enormous,” said a former top Romney aide. 

I think the wife put her foot down -- hard.

But those closest to Romney say they are now resigned to playing a role in a Republican world without him as a candidate (Some are quietly hoping he could become secretary of state in a GOP administration.)

Some are still hoping “Romney to run for president.”


The Globe has gone on the offensive regarding immigration:

"ICE’s sex offender policies under scrutiny; Globe investigation finds many violent sex offenders released but not closely tracked or forced to register" by Maria Sacchetti Globe Staff  June 14, 2015

For years, doctors warned federal immigration officials: Do not take your eyes off Santos Hernandez Carrera.

He had raped a woman at knifepoint and spent roughly half his life in jail, where immigration officials hoped to keep him until they could send him home to Cuba.

Does Trump know about this?

As far as the public knew, the strategy worked: Until last month, the public sex offender registry said Hernandez Carrera, who has been diagnosed with a mental illness, had been deported.

He never was. Instead, the Globe discovered that Hernandez Carrera is in Florida, one of hundreds of immigrants convicted of sex crimes who should have been deported but instead were released in the United States because their homelands refused to take them back.

They are convicted rapists, child molesters, and kidnappers — among “the worst of the worst,” as one law enforcement agency put it. Yet the Globe found that immigration officials have released them without making sure they register with local authorities as sex offenders.

And once US Immigration and Customs Enforcement frees them, agency officials often lose track of the criminals, despite outstanding deportation orders against them. The Globe determined that Hernandez Carrera and several other offenders had failed to register as sex offenders, a crime. By law, police are supposed to investigate if such offenders fail to update their address within days of their release. But local officials said they did not learn that ICE had released the offenders until after the Globe inquired about their cases.

“It’s chilling,” said Thomas H. Dupree Jr., a former deputy assistant US attorney general who led a 2008 federal court battle to keep Hernandez Carrera locked up. “These are dangerous and predatory individuals who should not be prowling the streets. In fact, they should not be in the United States at all.”

Well, you know, putting food on the table.


The immigration agency does not disclose the names of the immigrants in its custody, to protect their privacy.

They care more about the privacy of illegal immigrant criminals than yours. 

Actually, that's not it. If they release the names, it makes government look bad. 

But the Globe obtained the names of Hernandez Carrera and thousands of other released criminals through a federal lawsuit against ICE, arguing that the privacy policy endangered Americans and immigrants alike.

Though the federal judge sided with the Globe, ICE has provided complete records only for the criminals freed from 2008 to 2012, the year the Globe filed the lawsuit. The Globe has demanded a more current list, but ICE has not supplied it.

Well, you know....

Using the 2008 to 2012 list with names of more than 6,800 criminals, the Globe identified 424 released immigrants who had previously been convicted of sex-related crimes, including 209 who had appeared in the national public sex offender registry. Of the 209, 53 failed to re-register after ICE released them — including four from New England.

The Globe could not determine from the information ICE provided whether the remaining 215 criminals convicted of sex-related crimes were legally required to register upon their release. Federal law sets minimum standards, but sex offender registration requirements still vary by state. In Massachusetts, for example, the law requires a sex offender moving here from another state to register within two days.

At least 34 of the 424 released sex offenders — including some who did register with local police — were back in jail as of last month, state records show, some for heinous crimes committed after ICE released them.

Immigration officials tried to deport Luis-Leyva Vargas, 47, to Cuba after he served three years in a Florida prison for unlawful sex with a teen. In 2008, officials released him. Two years later, he kidnapped an 18-year-old in Rockingham County, Va., at knifepoint and raped her. Now he is serving a 55-year prison sentence.

Felix Rodriguez, a 67-year-old sex offender convicted of raping children as young as 4 in the 1990s, was freed in 2009, also because Cuba would not take him back. Months later, he fatally shot his girlfriend in Kansas City. He pleaded guilty and is serving 10 years in a Missouri prison.

Andrew Rui Stanley, convicted in 2000 of multiple counts of sodomizing a child when Stanley was 14, was released in 2009 after Brazil failed to provide a passport needed to send him home. For the next two years, he viciously abused three children in St. Louis and now, at age 31, will be in prison for the rest of his life. 

Costing U.S. taxpayers plenty -- because this government isn't doing its job.

The goal of registering sex offenders is to inform the police, and if required, the public, largely through online sex offender registries, that an offender is living in the community.

But, you know, if they don't get around to it -- it will spark fear over sex crimes when they reoccur and provide a rational for more law enforcement power.

ICE told the Globe in April that federal law historically has not authorized the agency to require someone to register as a sex offender when they are released from agency custody. But ICE said it had been working on a new policy, for a year and a half, to notify states when they identify a sex offender among those to be released.

Then in May, after the Globe identified more unregistered sex offenders released across the United States, ICE signed up for a Department of Justice system that lets them send electronic alerts to law enforcement and state agencies when they release a sex offender.

Since the Globe began making inquiries, ICE has also pledged to warn sex offenders that they must register with local law enforcement after their release, and ICE will demand written proof of that registration within 10 days. Officials will also require that immigrant sexual offenders register in a sexual deviancy counseling program, if their state requires it.

ICE spokeswoman Jennifer Elzea said immigration agents have notified law enforcement of sex offenders’ release “in many cases” in the past, even though they were not required to. But she said the new policy “will serve to enhance public safety by notifying the appropriate authorities in each instance of the release of a sex offender and notifying the offender of their requirement to register.”

The Department of Justice hailed immigration officials’ decision to join the system in May.

“They’re starting to make notifications,” said Dawn Doran, deputy director of the department’s Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking, which runs the system. “This is a step in the right direction.”

ICE is an important part of the registration process, watchdogs say, because it is a federal agency that often moves detainees around the country, sometimes far from where they were living, and may release them in a place where local law enforcement is unaware of their history. 

Think about that for a moment. This government moves them around and them dumps them on unsuspecting communities, hoping nothing happens (or not caring, caring only when they get caught).


Melissa Harrison, the lawyer appointed to represent Santos Hernandez Carrera and Pablo Hernandez in federal court, said it was inhumane and illegal for ICE to jail the men for so many years after they had finished their criminal sentences.

Got guys in Gitmo who never did a thing and will never be released. And they were tortured, too.

But she said she never disputed that both men needed 24-hour supervision.

“I certainly don’t disagree that [they] should have been watched,” she said in a telephone interview from Tennessee, where she now lives. She said her impression from handling the case was that “a lot of things fell through the cracks in the ICE system.”

“It was like a black hole,” she said. 

That's where all the tax loot seems to go.

Should ICE do more?

Some say the Obama administration should do more to force other countries to take back their criminals, such as denying visas to their citizens if they wish to travel to the United States.

Or he could wage war on them.

Otherwise, they say, ICE will continue to have to release dangerous detainees such as Andrew Rui Stanley. His case illustrates just how dangerous it can be when ICE is compelled to release sex offenders back into the general public, even when registration rules are followed.

Stanley arrived at age 14 from Brazil to be adopted, police said, but in 2000, court records show, he was convicted of multiple counts of sodomy against a child in his new family in Missouri.

Immigration officials say they tried to deport him twice, but when that failed, they said they had to release him in 2009 because of the Supreme Court decision. He wore a GPS device, checked in with ICE monthly, and registered as a sex offender.

But that year, court records show, Stanley and his wife began to torture three small children in their home in St. Louis.

He whipped his two stepdaughters with thin electrical wires, battered them with sticks and bats, water-boarded them, and raped the oldest, according to court records. 

(Blog editor overcome with the evil that is out there in this world.)

He forced the girls, 6 and 8 when it started, into the shower and then turned the water freezing cold or scalding hot. He also physically abused his toddler son.

The abuse lasted until late 2011, when a school staff member noticed the oldest girl was in pain and called the police.

In court records, prosecutors called the crimes “cruel, inhuman, grotesque, disgusting, unimaginable and unspeakable.” They said Stanley’s son and stepdaughters were “deeply damaged,” probably for life. 

His problem was he didn't work for the CIA. Then he would have been absolved.

“Had he been deported, then the crime that occurred in 2011 would not have happened,” St. Louis police Chief Sam Dotson said. “The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and the Boston Police Department cannot deport people. That’s ICE’s responsibility and ICE’s job.”

Stanley is unlikely to be deported now. He is serving 160 years in prison.

Costing taxpayers, but $upporting the pri$on-indu$trial complex.

Brazilian consular officials told the Globe in an e-mail Friday that they refused to repatriate Stanley because he was brought to the United States for adoption. Therefore, they said, Brazil’s position is that he should have the “same rights as a biological child.” A US immigration judge disagreed and ordered him deported in 2004.

“The Brazilian Government considers the deportation of individuals who underwent the adoption process as minors to be a clear violation of human rights,” the consulate said in the e-mail. “Therefore, Brazilian Consulates have been instructed not to provide travel documents for the deportation of Brazilian nationals under these circumstances, unless the individual in question demonstrates a clear and unequivocal will to return to Brazil.”

Related: US spy agency targeted top Brazilian officials

Brazil brushed it off like the Globe did.

But the role of ICE in such cases is rarely scrutinized in part because the agency — until the Globe’s lawsuit — had refused to disclose the identities of the immigrants it releases.

For instance, the US Marshals issued a press release in 2013 touting their arrest of Michael Rybkin, a convicted sex offender from Germany, for a parole violation and a warrant from ICE.

Officials said they caught him after he returned to the New York City Public Library in 2010, which had previously banned him, and allegedly masturbated in front of two little girls.

On the surface, catching Rybkin seemed like a great success. With more than 14 convictions for similar offenses since the 1960s, the press release said, he was among the “worst of the worst.”

Well, there could be worse things done to a child. I'm thinking Catholic priests.

Those are exactly the words the new ICE director, Sarah Saldaña, a former chief federal prosecutor, recently used to describe ICE’s top priorities for deportation.

But the Globe’s lawsuit revealed what the press release did not say: ICE had Rybkin in custody in 2008 — two years before the library incident — and then they let him go.

Which strikes me as odd because everyone knows this government is open and transparent about most everything.


That isn't the first time the Globe has tried to initiate immigration reform, but it was the beginning of their latest effort.

"Lawmakers want ICE to notify states on sex offenders; Lawmakers seek immigration agency changes" by Maria Sacchetti Globe Staff  June 16, 2015

Two members of Congress are calling for legislation that would compel Immigration and Customs Enforcement to help register sex offenders, after the Globe detailed that the agency was releasing hundreds of rapists, child molesters, and others without consistently notifying law enforcement the offenders were living in communities across the United States.

And Trump was attacked?

Immigration officials say they already are making the notifications, one of several policy changes following the discovery that the agency was releasing sex offenders without making sure they registered with law enforcement. ICE says it had to release the offenders, and thousands of other criminals, because their homelands refused to take them back.


But Representative Bill Keating, a Bourne Democrat and member of the House committees on Homeland Security and Foreign Affairs, called ICE’s lapses “frightening” in a telephone interview.

It is. You don't know who could be walking down the street anymore.


Also in response to the article, US Representative Jody Hice filed legislation Tuesday to require Homeland Security to ensure that criminals in their custody register as sex offenders. Hice, a Republican from Georgia, said the bill also stemmed from concerns raised at recent oversight hearings about ICE’s failure to notify law enforcement when they release criminals.

“The fundamental responsibility of our government is to protect our citizens, especially those who are most vulnerable,” Hice said in a statement, adding: “If a convicted criminal is released into society after committing a sex crime, I cannot personally sleep without knowing that all measures are being taken to ensure that our neighbors are notified of the danger this criminal poses.”

And as usual, it's failed again.

Federal law calls for prisons and jails to notify state and local law officials before releasing sex offenders so that police and, if required, the public, know they are living in the community, according to the Government Accountability Office, a congressional watchdog.

Federal law also calls for prisons and jails to inform sex offenders that they must register their addresses and other information with local police once they are out; failing to register is a crime, though penalties vary by state.

Federal law does not make the same requirements of ICE, which detains and deports people for immigration violations. But the GAO has been urging ICE since 2013 to do a better job notifying state and local authorities about the release of sex offenders, even if the law does not explicitly require it, in the interest of public safety.

In May, after the Globe’s inquiries, ICE joined a Department of Justice program to start making electronic notifications to state and local authorities when sex offenders are released. And in the past, ICE officials say, the agency did notify local authorities “in many cases” when they released a sex offender, though the law did not require it.

Yeah, they doing a great job.

Now, ICE says it will also warn sex offenders that they must register with local law enforcement after their release and will demand written proof of that registration within 10 days. Officials will also require that immigrant sexual offenders register in a sexual deviancy counseling program, if their state requires it.

On Sunday, the Globe reported that from 2008 to 2012, ICE released 424 people convicted of sex-related crimes in the United States because they could not deport them; they were among 6,800 criminals released during that period. Some 209 convicts were listed in the public sex offender registry, and of these, 53 had failed to reregister after their release, including a diagnosed pedophile in California, a convicted rapist in Florida, and a sex offender who did not register and later raped an 18-year-old woman in Virginia.

The Globe could not determine whether the remaining 215 people convicted of sex crimes should have been required to register in their particular state.

Thousands of foreign-born criminals have been released in the United States since the Supreme Court ruled in 2001 that immigration officials could not jail immigrants indefinitely for deportation if their home countries refused to accept them. Generally, the court ruled, federal officials must release immigrants after trying to deport them for six months.

However, until now the identities of the released criminals have been largely unknown because ICE refuses to divulge their names to protect their privacy. The Globe obtained their names through a federal lawsuit.....

Care more about criminal illegals privacy than yours!


I'm not retreating:

"State revises count of impoverished students; Altered method of counting has fewer deemed in poverty" by James Vaznis Globe Staff  June 22, 2015

Massachusetts has scrapped a decades-old method for defining low-income students in public schools, resulting in a dramatic decline in the number considered to be living in poverty, according to a Globe review of state data.

Now, less than half of Boston school students are regarded as being from impoverished homes, compared with the previous figure of about three-quarters. Chelsea, Lawrence, and other cities also saw big drops. Statewide rates dropped, but less dramatically.

The new approach deems students “economically disadvantaged” if their families receive food stamps or other welfare benefits. Previously, the state used income reported by families on applications for free school lunches to identify “low-income” students.

The new calculations are expected to lead to major changes by the Legislature in the way state aid for needy students is distributed to local schools and could even affect how much school systems receive in state reimbursements for construction projects.

More broadly, the data raise questions about whether some schools should be performing at higher levels if indeed they have fewer poor students than previously thought.

But some educators question whether the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has come up with the best methodology to identify poor students.

Paul Dakin, superintendent of Revere public schools, said he worries that relying only on data from welfare programs could overlook the large number of poor immigrant families who are not tapping those programs, either out of pride or because they are here illegally and fear deportation.

“These folks live under the radar, but we are still legally responsible to educate them,” Dakin said.

Of course, if you say such things and point out the strain they place on schools and hospitals, you are a racist!

Beyond that, what is this all about? Cutting school budgets by rejiggering the numbers. Maybe it's needed, maybe it isn't. Fewer poor with illegals flooding in and a wealth gap yawning wider by the day, hour, minute, second? Doesn't make $en$e to me.


For decades, Massachusetts and other states considered families who qualified for free or reduced-price lunches as the standard for measuring poverty. But many school systems, such as Boston and more than a dozen others in Massachusetts, no longer ask families to fill out applications to receive the perk because they are participating in a special federal program that allows them to offer free meals to all students, regardless of income. 

Have you seen the plates they are serving up?

The intention of the universal free meal program is to increase participation and eliminate the stigma, but it has caused Massachusetts and other states to grapple with finding a new way to measure student poverty.

Jeff Wulfson, Massachusetts deputy education commissioner, said there is no perfect data set.

“There is no single definition of what it means to be poor,” Wulfson said. “These are all surrogate measures.” 

Yup, it's all some nebulou$ my$tery.

He emphasized that the challenges any school faces in educating students remains the same; it’s just the way students are being counted that has changed.

The new methodology is based mostly on families receiving food stamps, but also considers participation in other programs, such as foster care, Medicaid, or transitional assistance for families with dependent children. 

Is it wrong that I'm bored in this class?

The state cautions against comparing MCAS scores, graduation rates, and other performance measures generated for “economically disadvantaged” students against previous data for “low-income” students because the two student groups are significantly different. That will make it hard for the state to judge whether schools are making progress with impoverished students as it rolls out the new methodology.

Massachusetts is at the forefront in changing its methodology, said Mike Griffith, a school finance consultant with the Education Commission of the States, a Denver-based nonprofit that tracks education policy trends. He said many states are looking to develop a methodology similar to the one Massachusetts adopted, but are getting legal opinions on whether their state education departments have the right to use data from their welfare systems.

“There are a lot of family privacy issues,” said Griffith, while other states are weighing whether the approach is too stringent. “Many states err on the side of identifying too many rather than too few students.”

Privacy concerns deterred Massachusetts education officials from tapping state Department of Revenue data.

Whatever individual states decide, Griffith said, will probably have far-reaching consequences on research into the performance of low-income students. Gone will be a fairly consistent definition of low-income students among all the states, making it more difficult to conduct long-term national studies.

But relying on welfare participation might more accurately identify schools that have the highest concentration of students in greatest need and may more accurately reflect child poverty data collected by the US Census Bureau, some education policy experts said.

There have been wide gulfs between the census numbers and free-lunch participation numbers. In Boston, for instance, the US Census Bureau considers 27 percent of all children living in the city to be in poverty. Yet about three-quarters of students in the city’s school system had qualified for free or reduced-price lunches before switching to universal free meals.

Seriously? In that third-in-wealth-inequality city, there are over 1/4 of the kids living in poverty?

Wulfson said he doubts families were providing false information on the lunch applications, noting that the state periodically audits the forms and that in some cases families living above the poverty line qualified for the perk.

State education officials said they will be recalibrating the threshold for what it considers a high-poverty district based on the new data. Officials in many school systems worry about the financial implications of the change.

“We certainly don’t want to undercount the population and lose money because of it,” said Gerry McCue, executive director for administration and finance for the Chelsea schools.

That's what everything comes down to in Ma$$achu$etts.

Interim Superintendent John McDonough said Boston’s school system also raised concerns about losing state aid.

“We have been assured by the state that this will not happen,” McDonough said in a statement.

For those not in the know, he was in charge of the $lu$h fund and he's gone now (Globe thinks you forgot).


Time for Plan B:

"US seeks ‘Plan B’ to deport convicted plane bomber" by Eric Tucker Associated Press  June 22, 2015

WASHINGTON — The federal government has been exploring a ‘‘Plan B’’ to deport a man who placed a bomb on a Hawaii-bound airplane in 1982 and who has remained in immigration custody since being released from prison two years ago.

Mohammed Rashed pleaded guilty in 2002 to his role in the bombing of Pan Am 830, which killed a Japanese teenager and injured more than a dozen others. Under the terms of his plea agreement, the US government said it would work to deport the Jordanian-born Palestinian to the country of his choice after he finished serving his sentence on murder and conspiracy charges. But efforts to deport Rashed have stalled amid diplomatic complications since his March 2013 release from prison. He remains at an immigration detention facility in Batavia, New York, and his lawyer has complained to a judge that the government appears to have failed to satisfy its end of the plea deal.

I'll explain that in a moment.

At a court hearing last month in Washington, Justice Department lawyer Christopher Dempsey said the government was developing a ‘‘Plan B’’ strategy to remove Rashed from the country. The details of that plan were not publicly disclosed in court, and lawyers involved in the case have declined to discuss it.

‘‘The government wants him out of here, and would love it if we could effect his removal,’’ Dempsey said, according to a hearing transcript obtained by The Associated Press.

The AP reported in November, based on documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, that Rashed had requested to be sent to the West Bank, where he has family, and that the Obama administration sought Israel’s permission to send him there via a bridge connecting the territory with Jordan. Israel captured the West Bank in 1967 and controls access into and out of the territory.

But the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a June 2013 memo that Rashed’s Palestinian passport and birth certificate contained ‘‘material discrepancies’’ about his date and place of birth.

Dempsey said in court that even after the US fixed the problem and submitted a correct passport, Israel demanded that Rashed be added to a Palestinian population registry — a step he said was still in progress.

‘‘But we do have a Plan B to remove him, if we can’t get him to the West Bank, to get him to a second location,’’ Dempsey said. ‘‘The problem is we hit a snag with that operation, but it is a temporary thing, not a permanent obstruction. So that will happen. It is just not imminent, but it is certainly foreseeable.’’

This is what came in my printed paper; the rest was found in the web version. I don't know about you, but I see censorship. The print version left you to guess about the snag and problem.

Rashed was a onetime top lieutenant to Abu Ibrahim, a Palestinian bomb maker who formed 15 May — a terrorist faction that took responsibility for several attacks in the 1980s — who was known for making sophisticated plastic explosives that could be smuggled in bags and suitcases. Abu Ibrahim, also known as Husayn Muhammad Al-Umari, remains on the FBI’s list of most wanted terrorists and was indicted in 1987 in the US along with Rashed. 

The attack on the Pan Am jetliner was set in motion when Rashed, on a flight to Japan, tucked a bomb beneath a seat cushion, pulled the pin, engaged a timer and then disembarked when his flight landed in Tokyo. The device exploded as the plane continued on to Honolulu, killing a 16-year-old boy who occupied the same seat on the flight’s next leg.

Rashed was arrested in Greece in 1988 with a phony passport and implicated in the bomb attack. He was prosecuted in that country and released in 1996, but was arrested in 1998 by US authorities in another country and brought to Washington for prosecution.

He pleaded guilty in 2002 and was released from prison in 2013, after roughly 25 years behind bars in both Greece and the United States.


I have no Plan B other than reading and reporting on the pos Globe.

"Newest illegal immigrants face more scrutiny than many criminals" by Maria Sacchetti Globe Staff  July 03, 2015

BURLINGTON — Immigration officials are keeping a close watch on Veronica Morales. Every Monday, she must check in at an office in Burlington. Every Thursday, she waits for hours at home in Lynn in case an immigration contractor drops by. And if that’s not enough, officials attached a GPS device to her ankle.

The single mother from Guatemala has been under 24-hour surveillance because she is one of the federal immigration agency’s new priorities for deportation: the men and women who’ve crossed the border illegally since last year.

But lawyers say the intensive monitoring program, which could dramatically expand next year, is often subjecting asylum seekers to stricter scrutiny than dangerous criminals. The Globe last month reported that US Immigration and Customs Enforcement had released sex offenders and then lost track of them, even as it increased its oversight of immigrants who arrived illegally but have not been charged with crimes.

Well, I guess it's me being hung up on the word "illegal."

Two years ago, most immigrants in the “alternatives to detention” program, or ATD, had criminal records or were facing trial. Now, it is the reverse.

“It’s ridiculous,” and mostly women from Central America. 


Immigration officials say the monitoring system is cheaper than detention, costing $5.34 per person a day compared with $129.54 for jail.

So jails have an economic incentive, huh?

Officials said the program creates room in immigration jails for criminals, ICE’s top priority, while making sure that immigrants here illegally comply with civil deportation orders. A decade ago, the majority did not....

Among the new immigrants in the program is Rosa Maldonado, 39, who said she arrived with her two daughters this year from El Salvador, where they had been increasingly fearful, to join family members in Boston.

She said the GPS device burns her ankle and bruises her skin. Often it screeches in the middle of the night when the battery runs low.

“I begged them not to put it on me,” Maldonado said in an interview....

You see the compassion of this government?

Many of those wearing the devices, including Ruth Marroquin in East Boston, said they fled violence in Honduras and El Salvador, which have high murder rates.

What's odd there is since the U.S.-supported Honduran coup of five years ago, that country hasn't gotten much attention. Just pray for the Salvadorans.

Marroquin, her husband, and their two children abandoned their house in El Salvador last year days after gang members kidnapped and beat her husband, a taxi driver.

“That’s why we came,” said Marroquin, 33. “If not for that reason, we wouldn’t have left our country.”

Meanwhile, the Globe recently found that ICE has released many sex offenders in the United States without monitoring them as intensely.

Officials said they had to release the criminals because their homelands refused to take them back, and the Supreme Court has said they cannot detain them forever.

But, as the Globe reported in June, ICE also lost track of sex offenders such as Pablo Hernandez, a Cuban citizen who molested a 7-year-old boy in New Jersey, and Phuong Huynh from Vietnam, who raped a woman in Randolph.

After the Globe asked about their cases, police arrested both men for failing to register as sex offenders.

Now, both are free again. Hernandez recently served two weeks in jail in San Diego, and Huynh is awaiting trial in Dorchester.

The contrast outrages advocates for immigrants.

I don't blame 'em.


Others say many illegal immigrants also are coming to the United States for economic reasons, competing for jobs with Americans and legal immigrants. They say federal officials should detain immigrants at the border and ensure that they quickly hold asylum hearings instead.

Who says?

“The ideal way to handle these cases would be to complete them quickly and make a decision on whether or not they qualify for admission within days, not months,” said Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies for the Center for Immigration Studies. “Then you don’t have the need for these expensive and uncomfortable monitoring devices.”

But ICE has been under pressure to reduce the number of detained families.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson has urged Congress to spend $122.5 million next fiscal year to dramatically expand the monitoring program for immigrants who pose no threat to public safety. This year so far, ICE has spent $38.2 million on alternatives to detention. 

It's all part of the great control grid being built, and you are part of it.

BI, which runs the intensive monitoring program, is a subsidiary of Geo Group, a private company that runs prisons.

Like I $aid, pri$on indu$trial complex.

But Morales said such monitoring is unnecessary, adding that she has not missed an appointment at BI. One recent day, her daughter snuggled in her lap in the waiting room, Minnie Mouse sandals twinkling.

“We’re not criminals,” Morales, 21, said. “Why are they watching us?”

Welcome to AmeriKa!


"28 new citizens welcomed in July 4 ceremony" by Sara DiNatale Globe Correspondent  July 04, 2015

CONCORD — Alejandro Vainstein, 40, came to America from Venezuela as a gay man seeking acceptance.

Talk about pushing the agenda.

He found it and never wanted to leave, describing Latin America as “not gay-friendly.”

“When I came here, my excuse was college,” he said, “but, really, I came here for freedom.”

I think you will have to go somewhere else then.

And on the day the United States celebrated its 239th year of freedom, Vainstein, who lives in Boston’s South End, celebrated his own. After spending 19 years in America fumbling with school visas, work visas, and a green card, Vainstein became a US citizen Saturday.

I'm not even going to type it.

He could barely compose himself during his naturalization ceremony; so proud, he said, that the country that was his in his heart could be his legally.

Hey, welcome, I'm happy for him, stay out of trouble. As for citizenship, I'm opposed to dual nationals on principle. Can't serve two masters. You gotta pick one.

He and 27 others at Minute Man National Historical Park — not far from North Bridge, where Colonial militiamen were first ordered to fire on British soldiers — said the Oath of Allegiance and became American citizens.

Kind of a Waterloo, huh?

So to whom did jwho swear allegiance?

From July 1-4, judges across the country led more than 4,000 new citizens through the same oath, according to US Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Old Sturbridge Village and the Hampshire Superior Courthouse also held naturalization ceremonies on Saturday, welcoming a total of about 150 new citizens.

Each year, Immigration Services says it naturalizes about 680,000 people.

Marco Osoy, 39, came to Somerville illegally from Guatemala when he was 16 to live with his older brother. He didn’t know any English.

“I left my whole life behind,” he said. “My family, my childhood — everything.”

That is what globalization has done to families and communities -- and then they pose as problem-solvers while stuffing full their pockets.

He was not sure he would ever be able to say he was a legal citizen.

“Today is a dream come true,” he said.

In 1999, Osoy was able to get a work permit under a program for people who entered the country illegally between 1993 and 1995, he said.


He was eventually able to get a green card. At 32, he studied at Cambridge College and got a degree in psychology. He now lives in Everett and works as an outreach coordinator, managing sports programs for Somerville youths.

Not soccer, I hope.

“This is my country,” Osoy said confidently.

The new citizens and their families and friends crowded under a small tent in the park. Before the ceremony began, Kenneth Sherman, director of Boston’s US Citizenship and Immigration Services field office, shared warm wishes with the group.

He said that while it is “a great honor” to become a citizen, each person getting naturalized “is bestowing [their] greatest gift and honor on” America.

Nancy Nelson, superintendent of the park, said she was “moved by the diversity of faces in the crowd.”

Huddled together in rows of folding chairs were people from 21 countries: Algeria, Canada, People’s Republic of China, Colombia, Cuba, Egypt, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Israel, Kuwait, Mexico, Philippines, Portugal, Russia, Sri Lanka, Turkey, United Kingdom, Venezuela, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe.

Sherman said people would leave the ceremony from one country, just as much a citizen as any American.

“There’s just no difference,” he said. “You’re a US citizen.”

The tent was made a legal US district courtroom as the ceremony started. Page Kelley, a US magistrate judge, announced each country represented and asked people to rise for their respective homeland.

A man from India who recently started working for the federal government; a couple from Canada who have four American-born children; a man from Egypt who knew America would accept his family as Christians.

All had their own stories, and as Kelley emphasized, their own struggles.

“You have earned the right to be an American citizen,” she said. 

I wonder how they feel about bills that will absolve illegals with amnesty after having done it the right and legal way and been made to wait.

To become a citizen, applicants must be a lawful resident for at least five years, have good moral character, knowledge of American government and history, and be able to speak and read English, according to Immigration Services.

Vainstein was so moved by the ceremony’s end he could barely speak, amazed that he became a citizen on the Fourth of July. He is ecstatic to live in America, still brimming with pride about the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage ruling.

“This has been an amazing month for me,” he said.


Been a tough year for others:

"A year on, children caught on border struggle to stay, adapt" by Amy Taxin Associated Press  July 04, 2015

LOS ANGELES — A wide-eyed, restless 1-year-old, Joshua Tinoco faces the prospect of deportation to his native Honduras, one of tens of thousands of children who arrived at the US-Mexico border last year.

While his teenage mother has been allowed to stay in the United States and seek a green card under a federal program for abused, abandoned, and neglected children, Joshua has been classified as an enforcement priority by immigration prosecutors, his lawyer said.

‘‘I fought so much for him to be here with me and now they yank him from my hands,’’ said Dunia Bueso, the boy’s mother, now 18. ‘‘How is the child going to go there alone, and with no one to take care of him?’’

You are asking me to make sense of the U.S. government?

Many of the children who arrived from Central America a year ago still have cases churning through the immigration courts. Those fleeing gang violence and domestic strife have applied for asylum or the government’s program for abandoned children, and are waiting for an answer.

Those who have won the right to stay still face challenges in reuniting with family they haven’t seen in years, attending school in a foreign language, and coping with the trauma they fled or debts owed to relatives or the smugglers who brought them.

More than 57,000 children from El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras arrived on the border in the last fiscal year, and since then another 18,000, government statistics show. Immigration courts have fast-tracked the cases in a bid to stem a growing backlog. 

I was told they didn't have enough judges, and Obummer dumped those kids all over the place with who knows what illnesses (and like with the perverts, they didn't even tell you where).

It’s difficult, however, to know how many will be allowed to stay; roughly 6,200 of the children who arrived since last July have been issued deportation orders, mostly for failing to attend court, but just as many asylum applications were filed by children between October and March.

Immigrant advocates fear that too many children are hard pressed to find lawyers, and say that many are bona fide asylum-seekers fleeing gang violence and rape. But border enforcement supporters doubt those given deportation orders will be sent home, as the Obama administration would face political backlash, especially when their family is here.

‘‘Once the kids were let into the United States, the game was up,’’ said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Washington-based Center for Immigration Studies, which wants more limits on immigration.

Bueso can’t believe the United States would send her son somewhere no one will care for him; Joshua’s father is not involved in his life, she said, and her grandmother is ill.

She will, in time.

While busing through Mexico with her infant son was difficult, Bueso said, her future was looking up now that she can stay. She is living with her uncle in a Los Angeles neighborhood lined with liquor stores and bail bond businesses, and attending school for the first time since she was 10.

While legal status is a huge relief for many of the children, it doesn’t solve all of their problems, especially those running from memories of violence.

Elsewhere in Los Angeles, another teen relishes her newfound safety from the drug traffickers who abducted her on her way home from school in Guatemala at age 16, held her for weeks in the forest, and repeatedly raped her until a ransom secured her release. She now has asylum, but sleeps no more than two hours at a time each night due to near-constant nightmares, making it difficult to focus in school.

‘‘I remember something, and my dreams kill me,’’ she said. The Associated Press does not name sexual-assault victims.

Children reuniting with family they haven’t seen in years, and those staying with distant relatives or family friends who expect them to pay their way, may have a hard time adjusting. Some teens strike out on their own or may wind up in a youth shelter.

In Southern California, Marvin Velasco, now 15, was kicked out of a family friend’s home after the man didn’t want to feed him. The Guatemalan teen, who arrived on the border last fall after his parents took him out of school and sent him to work selling clothes, sought help from a local church, and a woman there took him in.

The US government agency that screens sponsors before releasing children to their custody doesn’t track how often family relationships break down. But officials recently started a hot line for children to call if they run into in trouble or have nowhere to stay.

Yes, this government loves you.

Immigration lawyers say they expect more rulings on children’s deportation cases this summer and fall, but are unsure whether that will mean more children returning to their home countries.

So far this fiscal year, the agency has sent 1,325 unaccompanied children, mostly boys in their mid- or late teens, back to their home countries, government statistics show. Most were in the government’s custody since arriving here, or asked to go home, officials said, adding that younger children usually traveled with a teen parent or elder sibling.

More than 95 percent of the children who arrived on the border last fiscal year were released to family or other sponsors, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

So were Joshua and his mother, who were flown to California after a few weeks at a Texas shelter. In June, the year-old boy’s lawyer asked an immigration judge to put his case on hold, especially because Bueso can seek a green card for him in a few years.

For now, Bueso and her uncle must keep going to immigration court hearings to determine the boy’s fate. Joshua, who refused to sit still during his last court appearance, will be allowed to stay home.


We all know what this is meant to advance.

"Man dared police to fire, 2 people say" by Nicholas K. Geranios and Rebecca Boone Associated Press  July 02, 2015

SPOKANE, Wash. — Two witnesses said an unarmed Mexican immigrant fatally shot by police in Washington state fought with an officer, threw rocks, and told officers to shoot him before they opened fire, documents released Wednesday show.

See: Three Slashed Kids

Witness Miguel Estrada, who was interviewed the day after the Feb. 10 shooting in Pasco, said he saw Antonio Zambrano-Montes throw rocks at officers then run away.

In files released by officials, Estrada said Zambrano-Montes yelled “If you are gonna shoot me, shoot me.’’

The death of the 35-year-old Zambrano-Montes was captured on video and sparked months of protests in the agricultural center in Eastern Washington.

A prosecutor is deciding whether the three officers who shot Zambrano-Montes should face criminal charges, a process likely to take months.

Another witness, Chris Pirtle, also told officials Zambrano-Montes dared officers to shoot. ‘‘He kept on throwing the rocks, and the cop was telling him, ‘Hey, put down the rock,’ ’’ Pirtle said.

Zambrano-Montes did not comply, witnesses said. ‘‘He just kept telling him, ‘Shoot me, kill me,’ ’’ Pirtle said.

The newly released data included video from witnesses and raw audio files.

In one audio file, witness Benjamin Patrick told investigators he yelled at officers after Zambrano-Montes was shot. ‘‘Why did you just shoot him?’’ Patrick said he shouted.

Patick later said in questioning that he wanted to apologize to the officers for his outburst.

He did not explain why. 

I think we can guess. 


Well, I've fired off my final shots of this post.

Remember when I said I had only one more month of blogging? 

Seems longer than that now.

NDU: Ted Cruz raises $14 million for presidential bid

Remember the Alamo?