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CNN Analyst: After Texas Shooting, Biden Should Suspend Immigration Enforcement in Area

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In the wake of Tuesday’s mass shooting that claimed the lives of 19 children and two adults in the town of Uvalde, Texas, the last thing on most people’s minds was suspending enforcement of immigration laws in the area.

Most people, alas, aren’t Juliette Kayyem.

In the hours following the shooting at Robb Elementary School, Kayyem — a former assistant secretary of the Department of Homeland Security during the Obama years — said President Joe Biden should stop immigration enforcement, citing the large number of Hispanic residents and “political issues in Texas.”

(As developments in the Uvalde shooting unfold, The Western Journal will be staying on top of it with news and analysis — as well as calling out those who try to use the shooting to advance their political agenda. We’ll keep bringing America the facts. If you support our mission, please consider subscribing.)

In her appearance on CNN, Kayyem noted that the school district is 80 percent Hispanic.

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“So the most important thing for the federal government to do right now is to say there will be no immigration enforcement during this period in that area,” Kayyem said.

“It has a large immigration population. You want parents with their kids; you don’t want people hiding right now, and we need to make that clear ASAP because of the political issues in Texas.”

Some time later, she insisted that the situation required the White House come out and say everyone had “safe harbor” no matter what their immigration status was.

“Again, I don’t know motives; we don’t know motives. I am just telling you demographics,” she said. “It is a predominantly Hispanic population with a large immigrant community relatively near San Antonio.”

“We need the federal government to say right now: Everyone is essentially safe harbor right now in terms of immigration status,” she continued.

“We need people to come forward, not to be fearful of immigration status, get their kids, get their family members, because what happens in incidents like this is we’re going to have a strong police presence, a strong federal presence. We know this.

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“A lot of people do not react, especially if their status is unknown, do not react to police presence as you or I may, and we want to make sure that they know, despite all the politics going on in Texas right now, it’s the federal government that’s in charge of immigration enforcement,” she added.

“And people are safe: Get your kids, get your families together, do not hide. The White House just needs to say that right now.”

It’s worth noting that as Kayyem said this, the suspect had already been shot and killed — by a Border Patrol agent, one of the guys in charge of immigration enforcement.

Would this idea just politicize the Uvalde shooting even more?

As for an impetus for hiding, Kayyem didn’t make that clear, nor did she make clear what “political issues in Texas” had to do with a mass murder.

However, Kayyem, who mounted an unsuccessful campaign for Massachusetts governor in 2014, was more than willing to opine on “political issues in Texas.”

She suggested GOP state Attorney General Ken Paxton had talked about arming students after he made a statement regarding armed defenders in classrooms and that arming teachers is “so defensive … You’re just going to play defense all the time?”

One of the reasons Uvalde might be considered “political” when it comes to illegal immigration, as the Daily Wire’s Hank Berrien noted, is that it’s been a major release point for illegal immigrants because of overcrowded border detention facilities.

(In fact, Texas Gov. Greg Abbot said at a news conference Monday that the idea of busing illegal immigrants from Texas to Washington, D.C., arose at a meeting in Uvalde about the toll the border crisis is taking on the community.)

“I got here at 7:40 am and they were already out,” Uvalde Mayor Don McLaughlin told Austin’s KEYE-TV in March after immigrants were released from the Uvalde Customs and Border Protection station before eventually being bused to San Antonio.

“People in our community are fed up with it,” McLaughlin said. “And it’s not like we want to dump ’em on San Antonio but you have thousands more resources than we do here in Uvalde.”

The problem has persisted, with McLaughlin telling Fox News just days before the shooting that, “The Hispanic community is fed up with this. We have a lot of great Hispanic families in our community, their parents came over the right way.”

As it turns out, the border crisis and the Uvalde shooting appear to be entirely unrelated, but it seems curious Kayyem wanted the president to suspend immigration enforcement under the bizarre supposition it would be helpful.

As a tragedy of sickening proportions unfolded, CNN gave its airwaves over to a political operative who couldn’t wait even hours to exploit a national tragedy and push her preconceived panaceas for America’s ills, no matter how useless they may be.

It says a lot about the analyst, sure — but a lot more about the network that was putting her on air.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture