It’s official. Liberal Democrats can’t do law enforcement. And when they try, they make a mess of things.
Here’s why: They feel that they need to be extra tough to counter the stereotype that they’re soft on crime. And sometimes, they wind up being so tough that they cross the line and violate due process. That causes them to get blowback from their left-wing base, and they respond either by retreating from their hard-line or by hiding in a fog of confusion.
If you doubt it, just look at the messy way in which the Obama administration has handled what should be a cut and dried process: the deportation of illegal immigrants.
In the nearly three years since Barack Obama took office, his administration has fired up the engines and deported a record number of illegal immigrants — more than 1.2 million. The president reached this milestone not to please Republican lawmakers in Congress, as suggested by the conventional wisdom in Washington, D.C. He did it to calm those elements of his own Democratic base — unions, African-Americans, blue collar workers, etc — that have come to feel threatened by illegal immigrants and the cheap and dependable labor they provide. You wouldn’t know it from listening to the liberal media, but illegal immigration is no more popular among Democrats in the Rust Belt states than it is with Republicans in the Deep South.
But all those deportations didn’t come without a price. Latinos are not happy. Granted, a small percentage of that population favors an open border and opposes deportations all together. But that’s the fringe. The more common view in the Latino community is that the power to deport individuals, and rip them from their families, should be wielded with extreme caution. And it’s obvious that Obama is not doing that.
According to polls, most Latinos favor removing criminal aliens — that is, illegal immigrants who have committed actual crimes (murder, assault, robbery, rape, drunk driving etc). in addition to the civil infraction of entering the country illegally. No surprise there. No one cares about criminals. They’re the low-hanging fruit of the immigration enforcement debate.
And officials in the Obama administration were banking on that distinction when they concocted an elaborate lie — and began to push it as hard as they could.