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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    May 2006

    DHS chief to Congress: I can’t explain surge of illegal immigrant children

    By Stephen Dinan
    The Washington Times
    Tuesday, June 24, 2014

    Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 24, 2014, to testify before the House Homeland Security Committee hearing regarding the growing problem of unaccompanied children crossing the border into the US. Johnson told the committee he would consider "every conceivable, lawful option" to deal with a continuing flood of immigrants crossing the U.S. border illegally from Mexico into southern Texas. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

    Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Tuesday he’s at a loss to explain the recent surge in unaccompanied minors trying to jump the U.S.-Mexico border.

    Testifying to Congress, Mr. Johnson first said he believed most of the children were fleeing horrendous conditions in Central America, but under stiff questioning he acknowledged those conditions have been bad for some years, and can’t explain the surge in the last several months.

    “I’m not sure I have the answer to that question,” he said.

    As the government tries to get a handle on the surge, which could see as many as 90,000 illegal immigrant children traveling without parents be caught this year, and 140,000 caught next year, the causes are a critical question.

    Republicans say the Obama administration must acknowledge its own policies halting deportations for most illegal immigrants already in the U.S. have contributed to the problem.

    “What is new is a series of executive actions by the administration to grant immigration benefits to children outside the purview of the law, and a relaxed enforcement posture,” said House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, Texas Republican.

    Mr. Johnson, testifying to the committee, initially said the chief reason the kids were coming was “the push factor” of violence in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala. But under questioning from Rep. Peter King, New York Republican, Mr. Johnson acknowledged those conditions have been bad for some time.

    Mr. Johnson then said part of the problem is that smugglers are lying to children and families, telling them that if they can get to the U.S. they can get a “permiso” or “free pass.” Mr. Johnson said that’s a misunderstanding of the law, which requires the children be given an immigration court summons, or Notice to Appeal (NTA) — which the families believe to be a free pass.

    Mr. King countered that since the children are being turned over to families in the U.S. and given a chance to fight deportation and potentially disappear into the shadows, that may look like a good option to a Central American family.

    “If I were a parent in Guatemala, wouldn’t I see that as a free pass?” Mr. King said. “To me it is a free pass in that respect.”
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie
    Maybe he can explain the January RFP for escorts for illegal alien minors. Who put that out Jey old boy?

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