As has been pointed out, Barack Obama, with one week to go in his administration decided to shut down the “wet foot, dry foot” policy for Cuban refugees. Under the policy, that has been in place for two decades, Cubans intercepted at sea are repatriated, but if they make it to land (which is almost always Florida), they are allowed to stay and get legal status.
Some are arguing it is a good move because it gives Cubans preferential treatment over other countries. That may be the case, but Obama pulling the rug out from people with one week to go in his administration is a bad move on his part, and it plays into the notion he’s playing politics with the incoming administration.
The move is not being well-received, even from some Democrats:
Democratic New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez, a Cuban-American, put out a blistering statement denouncing the move as one that “will only serve to tighten the noose the Castro regime continues to have around the neck of its own people.”
He faulted the Obama administration for not consulting Congress prior to the announcement, adding, “The Obama administration seeks to pursue engagement with the Castro regime at the cost of ignoring the present state of torture and oppression, and its systematic curtailment of freedom.”
What does the President care? He’s leaving in a week. It will be somebody else’s mess to clean up.
Of course, President Obama is happy to employ the policy of sending Cubans back to the dictatorship-led country they risked their lives to escape but provides funds for sanctuary cities who refuse to help federal authorities deport illegal immigrants, including those with a criminal background.
The Washington Examiner reported in July:
President Obama’s Justice Department has coughed up hundreds of millions of dollars to so-called “sanctuary cities” that refuse federal demands for criminal illegal immigrants sought for deportation, according to a new inspector general memo.
In just 10 of 155 jurisdictions reviewed, taxpayers handed over $342.1 million in Justice grants to the law-breaking cities and states that have policies barring jails and police from cooperating with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. The IG said that is 63 percent of the funds available to all American cities.
$342 million. Must be nice.
There are criminals likely hiding out in these cities, knowing the authorities there will not cooperate with federal law enforcement agencies:
There are thousands of illegal aliens charged and convicted of crimes but still roaming U.S. streets. ICE figures show that in fiscal 2015, the agency encountered 152,393 illegal immigrants labeled a criminal threat, mostly in jails, but charged 64,116. About another 88,000 were not processed for deportation and released.
Justice Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz’s memo said that “over 140 state and local jurisdictions” may be receiving Office of Justice Program and Office of Violence Against Women grants, despite a law that demands grant-recipients cooperate with ICE. The Center for Immigration Studies has posted a map of over 300 sanctuary jurisdictions.
So screwing over Cubans who risk shark infested waters to escape a dictatorship is perfectly okay with President Obama as is providing cities with hundreds of millions of dollars to provide safe harbor for violent illegal immigrants.
What a country.