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Judicial Watch • Obama Civil Rights Chair Calling to Free Illegal Aliens was on MALDEF Board

Obama Civil Rights Chair Calling to Free Illegal Aliens was on MALDEF Board

Obama Civil Rights Chair Calling to Free Illegal Aliens was on MALDEF Board

SEPTEMBER 22, 2015

There’s enormous controversy surrounding a new U.S. Commission on Civil Rights report calling for the release of illegal immigrants from detention centers nationwide due to widespread “egregious human rights and constitutional violations.”

The commission is an independent and bipartisan federal agency created by Congress decades ago to advance civil rights through “objective and comprehensive investigation, research and analysis.” However, the agency’s chairman, Obama appointee Martin Castro, determined that illegal immigrant detention centers in the U.S. were cesspools of human rights violations before the commission completed its study, according to at least two commissioners on the panel.  This appears to be part of a broader effort by the Obama administration to protect and help illegal aliens at American taxpayer expense.

Long before any evidence was gathered, Castro’s proposal to undertake the study had already concluded that “egregious human rights and constitutional violations continue to occur in detention facilities,” Commissioner Gail Heriot, a law professor at the University of San Diego, writes in a dissenting statement attached to the lengthy report. The commission went into this particular project intent on uncovering a scandal, Heriot writes. “Instead of conducting an actual investigation, it structured its initial fact-finding simply to amplify stale rumor and innuendo. No effort was undertaken to establish whether the allegations— all of which were already public—were fact or fancy.”

This revelation may not seem surprising considering who’s in charge of the commission. Castro served as a national board member of the powerful open-borders group (Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund or MALDEF) that specializes in discrimination lawsuits on behalf of illegal immigrants and has Chicago ties to Obama. In 2011 the president made Castro the first Latino chairperson in the history of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. His commission biography boasts that Castro is the “proud product of Head Start and affirmative action in higher education,” two of Obama’s signature programs for minorities.

“With the full, historic moral authority of this Commission, we identified many serious conditions at detention centers,” Castro said in a statement announcing the report this month. “All people, no matter whether they are immigrants or asylum-seekers, deserve to be treated as humans. The Commission stands strongly behind our recommendation to release unaccompanied minors and families from detention, and encourages DHS to find alternatives to the detention centers. Now, more than ever before, we need to treat fairly and humanely those persons, especially women and children, who are seeking sanctuary from violence and instability in their countries.”

But Commissioner Peter Kirsanow blasted the new report, asserting that the panel’s goal is to obtain citizenship for illegal immigrants at taxpayer expense. In his rebuttal, Kirsanow writes: “The majority’s Recommendation 13 urges that taxpayers pay for attorneys for illegal immigrants. Exactly why a nation that is 18 trillion dollars in debt should pay for attorneys for people who broke its immigration laws is unclear, particularly given that most of those heavily burdened taxpayers want recent border crossers packed off to their countries of origin posthaste. Taxpayer funding for immigration attorneys would, however, be a boon to the immigration bar and to open borders advocates. This report is primarily motivated by the interests of those two groups and the need to provide political cover to the administration’s lawlessness, so perhaps that is the only explanation needed for a recommendation that would extend plundering of taxpayers and gutting of immigration enforcement into a new realm.”

Last year Kirsanow condemned Obama’s amnesty measures, declaring that they have a particularly disastrous effect on the employment of black Americans and disproportionately impact the wages and work opportunities of African-American men. Kirsanow, who is black, has also denounced a new Obama administration policy that says criminal background checks are discriminatory against minority job applicants.


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