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Archive for February 2nd, 2015

Complaints: U.S. Citizens Increasingly Harassed at Border Patrol Checkpoints

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Jennifer Weaver couldn’t believe what happened when she told a Border Patrol agent at a checkpoint in Texas that she had two pistols in her glove compartment with the proper concealed-handgun license in her purse.

The Arizona Republic reports that Weaver was forced to the ground and was held for an hour while agents ran gun checks and thoroughly searched her vehicle.

The same thing happened two weeks later, she said.

Her complaint is nothing new. The scores of checkpoints on roads and highways near the U.S. are intended to check on the immigration status of passers-by.

But privacy proponents say the checkpoints “have become an invasive catch-all for general law enforcement, and that they subject residents who pass through them to harassment and unconstitutional search and seizure,” the Arizona Republic reported.

 

Washington Post Editorial: GOP Flirts with Disaster by Threatening Homeland Security Funding

By Washington Post
Editorial Board

How far will Republicans in Congress take their reckless flirtation with undermining government this time?

Will they, as seems increasingly likely, fail to pass a bill that the president can sign ensuring adequate funding for the Department of Homeland Security and its 280,000 employees before the agency’s support expires Feb. 27? Are they ready to let funding lapse, secure in the knowledge that Border Patrol officers, Secret Service agents, airport security personnel and other so-called essential employees would still have to report to work — even though they would not be drawing paychecks?

A number of prominent Republican lawmakers clearly believe that denying funding to the nation’s premier organ of domestic security is no big deal, as long as the move expresses the GOP’s anger about President Obama’s executive actions on immigration.

As Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) put it to Politico: Letting the department’s funding lapse would not be “the end of the world.”

Mr. Diaz-Balart’s complacency may come as news to Americans concerned about the risk of terrorism in the wake of attacks in Paris, Ottawa, Sydney and elsewhere. It certainly came as news to Homeland Security SecretaryJeh C. Johnson, as well as his three predecessors — Democrat Janet Napolitano and Republicans Michael Chertoff and Tom Ridge — all of whom have warned GOP lawmakers not to conflate essential funding for the department with the political fight over immigration.

 

House Republicans were deaf to such appeals. Last month, they passed a bill furnishing the department with $40 billion in funding through September, the end of the current budget year. But they attached provisions to that bill, certain to draw a presidential veto, that would kill the administration’s plan to temporarily protect several million undocumented immigrants from deportation and repeal a program, in force since 2012, that offers a similar shield to people brought here illegally as children.

There is room for legitimate debate over the president’s most recent unilateral moves on immigration, which we happen to agree represent executive overreach. If congressional Republicans want to attack those actions responsibly, with discrete legislation, they are free to try — though they are unlikely to muster the votes to override a presidential veto.

However, it is another thing to wield their frustration over immigration as a cudgel, holding hostage an entire department of government that is critical to the nation’s security. That is as irresponsible as it is politically ill advised.

To read more click here.

Democrats Hope to Block Republican Measure to Defund President’s Immigration Plan

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

It’s a big week for Homeland Security.

Funding is on the line as Senate Democrats prepare to block a House-approved measure driven by Republicans to defund President Obama’s executive action on delaying deportation of millions of illegal immigrants, The Hill reports.

The Senate needs 60 votes to advance the DHS bill. The first procedural vote is scheduled for Tuesday at 2:30 p.m.

If Democrats are able to block the bill, Republicans will be forced to craft an alternative plan.

Feds Investigate Homeland Security Agent for Firing Weapon at Man in Parking Garage

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Feds are investigating the actions of a Homeland Security special agent who fired his agency-issued gun after he said he believed he was being carjacked in a parking garage in Wilmington, Del., Philadelphia CBS reports.

The suspected carjacker fled and was later detained.

Wilmington police said there’s not enough evidence to show the 32-year-old intended to carjack anyone.

ICE is handling the internal investigation.

Other Stories of Interest