Keep Our Communities SafePosted by Randy | June 21, 2011
In 2001, the Supreme Court ruled that under current law, immigrants who had been admitted to the United States and then ordered to be removed, often for criminal reasons, could not be detained in the U.S. for more than six months. Then, in 2005 in the case of Clark v. Martinez, the Supreme Court expanded its 2001 decision to apply to illegal immigrants.
Unfortunately, not every criminal immigrant who is ordered to be removed can be. Many countries are unwilling to issue travel documents necessary for these individuals to return to their countries, especially for those individuals who have committed a crime.
As a result, the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security have had no choice but to release thousands of criminal immigrants into American communities. In the last two years alone, close to 10,000 immigrants with orders of removal were released because their own countries refused to take them back, including rapists, murderers and other dangerous criminals.
There is simply no reason an arbitrary six-month limit should put our communities and families at risk.
Just last week, I cosponsored the Keep Our Communities Safe Act to allow the DHS to detain dangerous criminal immigrants beyond six months. The bill would allow the detentions for criminal immigrants who are under orders of removal but cannot be deported, as long as certain conditions are met, such as if the immigrant is an aggravated felon, has committed a crime of violence, or is a threat to national security.
One of the most fundamental obligations of the federal government is to protect its citizens. There is no reason to leave uncorrected a law that forces the release of some of the most dangerous criminals in federal custody.
Read more about the Keep Our Communities Safe Act here.
I want to know what you think. Is it important that we correct a law that forces the release of criminals into American communities?
What do you think? Weigh in: