22 senators with the Democratic Party have called the government crackdown on undocumented immigrants from Central America “shocking and misguided” ahead of further planned raids. The 22 senators have called for President Obama to stop the deportation raids as the debate over immigration intensifies in the United States.
A nationwide crackdown on refugees and undocumented immigrants, primarily from countries within Central America, began earlier this month in the United States, with adult and child immigrants whose deportation had been ordered by immigration judges targeted by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
On Friday almost half of the Democrats in the Senate, including Richard Durbin, Elizabeth Warren and Democratic presidential candidate nominee Bernie Sanders, sent a letter outlining “serious reservations” about the continuing raids. The democrats said they hold deep concern that “in its eagerness to deter additional arrivals from this region, the Department [of Homeland Security] is returning vulnerable individuals with valid protection claims to life-threatening violence.”
Using much-publicized raids, which have often taken place in the middle of the night, is “shocking and misguided”, according to the senators, who dismiss the idea that further undocumented immigrants will be deterred from trying to cross the border into the United States by these tactics. “That argument relies on the false premise that most of these people are not fleeing extraordinary danger,” the letter states.
121 undocumented immigrants – adults and children alike – were rounded up to be deported in the first raids earlier this month, with more raids expected soon.