Sheila Jackson Lee

06/26/2019 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/26/2019 07:33

CONGRESSWOMAN SHEILA JACKSON LEE CONCERNED ABOUT THE STARTING OF MASS DEPORTATIONS AND THE SEPARATION OF PARENTS FROM CHILDREN DURING THESE RANDOM DEPORTATIONS

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Robin K. Chand

June 23, 2019 202-225-3816

Press Statement

Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee Concerned about the starting of mass deportations and the separation of parents from children during these random deportations

Jackson Lee: 'Perhaps most outrageous about these plans is that the tactic is evocative of an unkind country, which we are not. It is inconsistent with our obligation to be the last best hope of the world; a shining city on a hill. I will continue to stand for the rights of all who seek the American Dream, with the knowledge that this country is great, in part, due to the immigrants, who imbue our nation with a sense of renewal that keeps our spirit young, and captures and keeps the imagination of the world. Today's open house seeks to inform and empower all of our brothers and sisters from all nationalities, who believe they have a lawful right to stay in this country, that live in and enrich the nation's fourth largest city, and who help make the beautiful mosaic that is Houston.'

WASHINGTON, DC- Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, a senior member of the House Committees on Judiciary, Homeland Security, and Budget, released this statement on plans that the administration plans to conduct predawn raids of migrant families:

'Since well before the beginning of his presidential administration, the current occupant of the White House has denigrated immigrants. When he began his presidential campaign, he labeled large swaths of immigrants from Mexico as murderers and rapists. Upon taking office, he implemented a ban on an entire religion coming from certain countries. He ended the DACA program, which served to give a reprieve to young people who are American in every way, except for a piece of paper. He shut down the federal government, because the Congress would not fund his monument of xenophobia-a border wall-despite the fact that he campaigned for over a year promising that Mexico would pay for the wall. He instituted a cruel and heartless child separation policy, which continues to this day, despite his denials. Under conditions that have been established while he is head of Article II of the Constitution, six children have died in federal custody. There could be more. We simply do not know. His administration has flouted attempts at legitimate congressional oversight on this and countless other subjects.

'On Friday, this president announced that in ten cities across the United States-including our hometown of Houston and the one that I am honored to represent in the United States Congress-the Department of Homeland Security, by and through the Immigration and Customs Enforcement, plans to execute predawn raids of migrant families who have received deportation orders. Such a tactic is likely to increase the incidences of this administration's horrific practice of family separations. Moreover, directing extensive resources to conduct these raids hollows the administration's claim that resources are urgently needed to devote to the southern border. And these are not just my concerns alone. The current acting secretary of the DHS Kevin McAleenan shares these concerns. Though, perhaps most outrageous about these plans is that the tactic is evocative of an unkind country, which we are not. It is inconsistent with our obligation to be the last best hope of the world; a shining city on a hill. Yesterday, he announced that he would be postponing the execution of this policy by two weeks. This sows chaos among families. We do not know the President's motivations behind these tactics. All we can do is evaluate his words and his actions. We see a President who governs by distraction. He thrives by sowing chaos into the lives of people. He has no regard for the consequences. He seeks only his own political survival.

'As a senior member of the United States Congress, including as a member of the Judiciary Committee, the Budget Committee, and the Homeland Security, I can offer my insight and resources to provide information and assistance to those who believe they have a lawful right to stay in the country. Today's open house seeks to inform and empower all of our brothers and sisters from all nationalities that live and enrich the nation's fourth largest city, and make the beautiful mosaic that is Houston. And, we are able to legislate. The American people have been watching this administration and have been stunned to witness its treatment towards the immigrant community and indeed towards all that are not the wealthiest and most privileged amongst us. In November, voters delivered a resounding message and sent the most diverse class-including the class with the largest group of women-ever to Congress. Democrats were elected because we offered a better deal, for the people.

'A critical priority of this agenda, led by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, was passage of the Dream Act, which I was proud to help do, as a member of the Judiciary Committee-the committee of jurisdiction-where we heard testimony from witnesses impacted by the rescission of the policy, and where we performed a mark-up of the bill, and stopped Republicans efforts to defeat it. And, I was proud to speak in support of our Nation's Dreamers on the floor of the People's ahead of historic House passage of H.R. 6, the Dream and Promise Act. The Dream Act sits in the United States Senate, along with countless other bills passed by the House for the people, awaiting consideration. But the Dream Act need not be the end of what we can accomplish. House Democrats have expressed a willingness to pass further legislation, including much-needed comprehensive immigration reform. In the meanwhile, I will continue to stand for the rights of all who seek the American Dream, with the knowledge that this country is great, in part, due to the immigrants, who imbue our nation with a sense of renewal that keeps our spirit young, and captures the imagination of the world as its last best hope. '

###

Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee is a Democrat from Texas's 18th Congressional District. She is a senior member of the House Committees on Judiciary and Homeland Security.