Republicans want to deport spouses of Military members


San Jose Democrat Zoe Lofgren, a senior member of the House Judiciary Committee and a key player on immigration policy, on Friday accused House Republicans of moving backwards on immigration reform, despite a trial balloon by House leaders in January laying out the GOP “principles” of an immigration overhaul. These included a pathway to citizenship for “Dreamers,” children brought illegally to the United States by their parents. Our Stewart Powell reportedthat the idea was probably scuttled by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex., but the backtracking is making life hard for California Republicans in heavily Latino districts.

The House on a party line vote instead on Thursday passed legislation to require President Obama to enforce immigration laws, a reference partly to a 2011 administration memo urging immigration agents to use discretion classifying certain removal cases as a “low priority” for removal, and a 2012 executive order removing the deportation threat to Dreamers.

Lofgren said the GOP measure also would roll back a “parole-in-place” policy that allows the immediate family of U.S. military to avoid deportation. Lofgren said in 2010, as chair of Judiciary’s immigration panel, she sent a letter to then Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano, signed by nine Republicans and nine Democrats, that asked that the “parole-in-place” policy be applied to military families.

“Most people don’t believe it’s right to deport the wife of an American soldier in Afghanistan,” Lofgren said.

The House actions came as President Obama, under increasing pressure from Hispanic groups, promised in an Oval Office meeting with top members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, to find more humane ways to handle deportations. Deportations have been far higher under his presidency than under Republican George W.

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