WASHINGTON, March 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following statement was issued today by Chris Crane, National ICE Council President:
As an ICE officer, and as the union representative for 7,000 ICE agents, officers and support staff, I applaud the Senators who authored the letter to Chairman Leahy regarding the need for an open and thorough committee review of any immigration plan. On behalf of all the law enforcement officers represented by the National ICE Council, I would like to thank Ranking Member Grassley, Senator Hatch, Senator Sessions, Senator Cornyn, Senator Lee and Senator Cruz.
Too often in the immigration debate, no one speaks up for the rank and file law enforcement officers and the citizens we protect. Large business groups and political advocacy groups are invited to the White House and other secret meetings. But those tasked with enforcing the law have no voice in the process.
We have a very real concern that the immigration bill being crafted behind closed doors by a group of eight lawmakers will be rushed to passage without proper public consideration and proper input from the law enforcement community. Our politically appointed leaders, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano and ICE Director John Morton, do not speak for us when it comes to enforcing the law. Secretary Napolitano and Director Morton have repeatedly undermined the ability of our officers to enforce and protect the public safety. We believe the first priority of Congress ought to be ensuring that the immigration laws it has already passed are enforced.
A mass legalization, or amnesty, of millions of illegal aliens, combined with an increase in future immigration, will have profound consequences for every law enforcement officer in the country and especially those who enforce our nation's immigration laws. But we have been shut out of the process.
To the best of my knowledge, the eight lawmakers now meeting have not consulted with our union or with the rank-and-file officers in the field during the drafting of this comprehensive bill. But given the administration's current enforcement record, I have zero confidence any promises of future enforcement will be fulfilled.
It is for all of these reasons I am grateful to these Senators demanding an open and transparent process where our voice, and the voices of all American citizens, can be heard.
SOURCE National ICE Council