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02-09-2012, 11:21 PM #11
DHS appoints public advocate for illegal immigrants
Thursday, February 9, 2012 - by Peter Bell
Illegal 1) adj. in violation of statute, regulation or ordinance, which may be criminal or merely not in conformity. Thus, an armed robbery is illegal, and so is an access road which is narrower than the county allows, but the violation is not criminal. 2) status of a person residing in a country of which he/she is not a citizen and who has no official permission to be there. (Dictionary law.com)
CHICAGO, February 9, 2012— President Obama is an attorney. He graduated from Harvard Law School, one of the preeminent law schools in the nation. The president edited the putatively eminent Harvard Law Review. President Obama taught at the University of Chicago Law School, another prominent legal institution. He even dabbled in the practice of law for a time.
In some rarified circles, the president is considered an intellectual and the smartest guy the world.
One would think that this attorney, a trained, intellectual, and legal scholar, would know the difference between two simple words- legal and illegal. Even the most illiterate know the difference.
Under some convoluted logic, the administration appointed a public advocate for illegal immigrants and their lobbyists. The Department of Homeland Security, which oversees U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, touted the appointment as a positive move for the “stakeholders.”
Andrew Lorenzen-Strait was appointed as the public advocate to handle questions and issues regarding the “stakeholder community involved in immigration policy and enforcement...Engaging stakeholders and building partnerships to facilitate communication, foster collaboration and solicit input on immigration enforcement initiatives and operations.” (ICE press release)
The “stakeholder community” who entered the country or reside here illegally now have their very own public advocate. The agency that is supposed to enforce the laws of the land against them gave the stakeholder community an ombudsman.
Maybe the government should have public advocates for other “stakeholder communities” such as organized crime, drug cartels, major street gangs, biker gangs, and other organized perpetrators of illegal activity.
They are all “stakeholders” who have real interests and valid concerns about the policies of law enforcement agencies.
Aren’t other illegal “stakeholder” communities entitled to partnerships to facilitate and foster communication, collaboration, and to solicit input? Doesn’t any stakeholder community that willingly violates the law deserve its own ombudsman?
Since when does our government lobby on behalf of illegal activities? "Advocate" is just a palatable word for lobbyist. Advocates work on Main Street instead of K Street, or in the case of ombudsmen, in bureaucracies.
By the way, immigrants, legal and illegal, already have public advocates and ombudsmen. They are the consulates and embassies of their native lands.
For too many decades advocates, on both sides of the political spectrum, have been pushing for an immigration policy. We do not need another new policy, transformational or not. We already have a policy.
The policy is the federal statutes, also known as laws. It is the legal system, which enforces, prosecutes, and adjudicates laws. What we need to do is utilize the system we already have in place.
The United States is turning into a nation of politically palatable policy debates instead of a nation of laws.
Laws are supposed to be enforced by the government. Illegal immigrants, who cross our borders, overstay their visas, or come here under false pretenses, know they are committing illegal acts. They are well aware they are violating our laws. They do so willingly and sometimes cheerfully.
The people who hire them also violate the law willingly and cheerfully, while feigning ignorance with a wink and a nod.
Many illegal immigrants break more of our laws by obtaining fake Social Security numbers through identity thieves or other means, so they can work, open bank accounts, and obtain credit.
When illegal aliens are caught, they demand mercy, pity, and amnesty for themselves and their families. Their extenuating circumstances, excuses, and cries for social or moral justice must be considered. They are entitled to solicitude.
There is no such thing as social, economic, or moral justice except in ethical or philosophical debates. We do not have systems with those appellations. There is only the legal system of criminal and civil justice. Giving voice or an advocate to people who break our laws threatens the very foundation of our legal system.
It is a foot in the door for any illegal group to seek redress from the government instead of enforcement and punishment.
This administration will pander to any group in return for adulation, votes, and campaign contributions. They will always put politics before the country. They create more useless government jobs to appease more voting blocs.
The Obama administration merrily does whatever it wants. They just don’t care. If they can squeeze a vote or a dollar out of the lowest common denominator, they will do it.
Illegal immigrants and their lobbyists do not need a government public advocate. They did not play by the rules, obey the laws, and earn entitlements. They broke the rules, disobeyed the laws, and should suffer whatever consequences befall them.
They are illegal immigrants. They are not undocumented workers, families, children, or undocumented Democrats.
Appointing an advocate for the stakeholders of an illegal group sets a bad precedent and is poor public policy. It is good politics. That is all this administration really cares about.
Peter V. Bella is a retired Chicago Police Officer, freelance writer and photographer, cook, and raconteur. He likes to be the sharp stick that pokes, prods, and annoys. His opinions are his and his alone.
DHS appoints public advocate for illegal immigrants | Washington Times Communities
02-09-2012, 11:45 PM #12
Immigration and Customs Enforcement Hires Officer to Chat With Detainees
February 9, 2012
In a time when America’s immigration system is swamped – when illegal immigrants are routinely caught and released, many of whom are dangerous – it seems that one of ICE’s top priorities is public relations with illegal immigration advocates. Yesterday, Andrew Lorenzen-Strait announced via the Department of Homeland Security website that he had been named ICE’s “first-ever public advocate.”
according to ICE Enforcement Director John Morton: he’ll have to explain to all of us why ICE lets illegal immigrants off the hook.
What did Lorenzen-Strait used to do? He’s been with ICE since 2008. Before that, he was a pro bono attorney in Maryland, doing child advocacy and divorce work via Community Legal Services. How does that qualify you for working in immigration, exactly? And then there’s the question of money spent. It’s more and more obvious these days that working for the government is the quickest road to a healthy paycheck – and Lorenzen-Strait’s salary proves it. In 2010, he was paid $112,224 by the feds. We can only imagine that the salary has risen since then. Not bad for being a public relations officer who does nothing to actually enforce immigration law.
We’re constantly hearing that the government has trouble finding places to cut spending. This seems like a good place to start.
» Immigration and Customs Enforcement Hires Officer to Chat With Detainees - Big Government
08-27-2013, 02:46 PM #13
DHS Rebrands Illegal Alien Advocate to Avoid Congressional Ax
August 27, 2013
As Congress moves to defund President Obama’s special advocate for illegal immigrants at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the title has been quietly rebranded to protect the position, according to internal agency documents obtained by Judicial Watch this week.
It’s simply part of the president’s well-established pattern of abusing his authority to blow off Congress, especially when it comes to immigration. Early last year the DHS agency charged with finding and deporting illegal immigrants—Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)—announced that it had named its first-ever “Public Advocate” to deal with the concerns and recommendations of community and advocacy groups.
It was immediately evident that the ICE Public Advocate was essentially created to serve as the lap dog of the increasingly powerful open borders movement. In fact, the advocate (Andrew Lorenzen-Strait) confirms it in a blog post shortly after he was named to the position: “My staff and I will serve as a point of contact for individuals, including those in immigration proceedings, NGOs, and other community and advocacy groups, who have concerns, questions, recommendations or important issues they would like to raise.” In a Spanish announcement DHS calls Lorenzen-Strait the people’s counsel.
Lorenzen-Strait wasted little time before meeting with leftist groups known to represent the interests of illegal immigrants in a series of “community roundtables.” Participants included El Centro Hispano in Durham North Carolina, the Massachusetts Immigration and Refugee Advocacy Coalition in Boston and the International House in Charlotte, North Carolina. Not coincidentally, the Obama administration released thousands of illegal immigrants from detention facilities throughout the U.S. after the meetings.
Some members of Congress became outraged that American taxpayer dollars were being used to fund a Homeland Security position that advocates on behalf of illegal immigrants. A Tennessee congresswoman introduced a widely supported measure to prevent ICE from funding the position of public advocate, reminding that when Congress established DHS it created an advocate position for immigrants in the legal immigration process but specifically declined to create one for illegal immigrants.
The Obama administration responded by simply changing Lorenzen-Strait’s title to one that apparently can’t be defunded by Congress. No press releases were issued announcing the sneaky move but JW has obtained internal DHS correspondence that shows Lorenzen-Strait’s title at ICE was recently changed to Deputy Assistant Director Custody Programs and Community Outreach. The title was included in an agency file associated with the Obama administration’s new directive protecting the illegal immigrant parents of anchor babies from deportation.
08-27-2013, 02:51 PM #14
Added most recent article above to the Homepage:
09-04-2013, 10:49 PM #15
Administration rebrands controversial immigration post to skirt funding cut-off
By Barnini Chakraborty
Published September 04, 2013
The Obama administration is being accused of trying to pull a fast one on lawmakers by re-branding a controversial immigration job -- a "public advocate" for both legal and illegal immigrants -- after Congress explicitly voted to defund it.
The administration over the summer quietly changed the name of the position, first created in February 2012, from "public advocate" to deputy assistant director of "Custody Programs and Community Outreach." It was a change in name only. The administration kept the person in charge and the job description the same.
By doing so, the White House has been able to keep the post off the congressional chopping block – a move Judicial Watch called “sneaky” in a recent report.
“It’s simply part of the president’s well-established pattern of abusing his authority to blow off Congress, especially when it comes to immigration,” the conservative government watchdog group said.
Andrew Lorenzen-Strait was appointed by Obama as the new public advocate for Immigration and Customs Enforcement in February 2012.
The position was created to serve almost like an ombudsman, to help both legal immigrants and illegal immigrants facing removal proceedings. At the time, Obama had come under fire from his base for backpedaling on a campaign promise to enact comprehensive immigration reform. He responded by naming Lorenzen-Strait to the position.
That didn’t sit well with lawmakers like Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., who said the new position wasted taxpayer money by using it to advocate for people breaking the law.
In 2012, Black proposed a House measure to defund the job she called “an ill-conceived lobbyist position.”
“Using taxpayer dollars to fund a position whose primary purpose is to advocate on behalf of individuals who have broken our laws and entered our country illegally is ridiculous and certainly a waste of precious taxpayers’ money,” Black told FoxNews.com. “This is why language was inserted into the Continuing Resolution that was passed through the House and the Senate and signed into law last March that defunds the Public Advocate position.”
The provision, which is part of the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013, reads: “None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to provide funding for the position of Public Advocate within U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”
Black said the administration is "setting a dangerous precedent by breaking the very law he signed, and this kind of abuse of power will only undermine his agenda by destroying his credibility with Congress and the American people."
Chris Crane, president of the National ICE Council, the union which represents 7,600 ICE officers and agents, has called the public advocate position “nothing but waste, fraud and abuse.”
Others, like Illinois Democratic Rep. Luis Gutierrez, disagree.
“The only hope for recourse when enforcement goes bad is to call on the ICE Public Advocate, which seems to me like an essential tool in holding ICE accountable to the public,” Gutierrez told The Washington Times.
ICE defended Lorenzen-Strait’s position and told FoxNews.com that “community outreach remains a necessary function at ICE in order to explain the agency’s mission and to be responsive to the needs of the public.”
ICE also credited him as “a career civil servant who serves as Deputy Assistant Director of Custody Programs and Community Outreach, has helped lead the agency’s public engagement and detention reform portfolio since being hired by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in 2008 during the previous Administration.”
Lorenzen-Strait began working for ICE in 2008. Prior to his government job, he worked as a lawyer in Maryland where he received awards for his pro bono work in Prince George’s County.
Calls from FoxNews.com to several immigration advocacy groups were not returned. The National Immigration Forum told FoxNews.com it was too busy working on immigration policy issues to comment.
05-08-2014, 05:38 PM #16
DHS Illegal Alien Advocate Office Still Open, Featured at ICE Employee Event
MAY 08, 2014
Nearly a year after Congress defunded President Obama’s special advocate for illegal immigrants at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), a source inside the agency tells Judicial Watch the official is still in charge of the office which was quietly rebranded to protect it from the chopping block.
In fact, later this month the illegal alien advocate office—renamed Office of Community Outreach—will participate in a special agency open house at the Washington D.C. headquarters of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the DHS agency charged with finding and deporting illegal aliens. Scheduled for May 16, the event aims to provide ICE employees an opportunity to learn more about ICE programs and activities, according to an announcement provided by JW’s source. More than a dozen booths will feature the agency’s various divisions, including the new Community Outreach and Community Hotline, which used to comprise the Public Advocate office charged with helping illegal aliens.
In 2012 ICE proudly announced its first-ever “Public Advocate” to deal with the concerns and recommendations of community and advocacy groups. It was clear from the start that the ICE Public Advocate was appointed to meet the demands of the increasingly powerful open borders movement. In fact, the advocate (Andrew Lorenzen-Strait) confirms it in a blog post shortly after he was named to the position: “My staff and I will serve as a point of contact for individuals, including those in immigration proceedings, NGOs, and other community and advocacy groups, who have concerns, questions, recommendations or important issues they would like to raise.” In a Spanish announcement DHS calls Lorenzen-Strait the people’s counsel and a direct line to ICE leaders in expressing concerns about unfavorable measures and decisions related to immigration.
Lorenzen-Strait immediately met with leftist groups known to represent the interests of illegal immigrants in a series of “community roundtables.” Participants included El Centro Hispano in Durham North Carolina, the Massachusetts Immigration and Refugee Advocacy Coalition in Boston and the International House in Charlotte, North Carolina. Not coincidentally, the Obama administration released thousands of illegal immigrants from detention facilities throughout the U.S. after the meetings.
Some members of Congress became outraged that American taxpayer dollars were being used to fund a Homeland Security position that advocates on behalf of illegal immigrants. A Tennessee congresswoman introduced a widely supported measure to prevent ICE from funding the position of public advocate, reminding that when Congress established DHS it created an advocate position for immigrants in the legal immigration process but specifically declined to create one for illegal immigrants. The same lawmaker, Diane Black, wrote DHS a letter demanding to know why it continued ignoring the law prohibiting the agency from funding the position of Public Advocate.
Nearly a year later the story has practically fizzled away yet American taxpayers keep funding this outrageous office that works on behalf of illegal immigrants and their supporters in the U.S. Lorenzen-Strait’s title was simply changed to Deputy Assistant Director Custody Programs and Community Outreach, but he continues working on behalf of illegal aliens, according to JW’s inside source. None of the functions of the supposedly defunct Public Advocate office have stopped, the source confirms. Only the name has changed.