Past Features

December 29, 2015

Major 2016 Issue Emerging
Honesty in border reporting

NPR -- December 29, 2015  
Immigration Emerging As Top Issue In 2016
    The Obama administration's move to deport Central American families who have not complied with removal orders has immigration advocates seething --- and has placed 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in an awkward position.
    A spokeswoman for Clinton said the former secretary of state "has real concerns about these reports." As immigration advocate Frank Sharry, president of America's Voice, told the Washington Post: "She'll have to choose between protecting refugees from Central America --- a demand of the Latino community --- or standing with the law-and-order position of Obama and Republicans."
    The proposed deportations, first reported in the Post last week, are to take place as the number of Central Americans crossing the border into the United States has spiked. Part of the administration's response to the arrival of some 100,000 Central Americans in 2014 was to build family detention centers, where migrant children who had arrived with a parent were held, in some cases for more than a year.
    A judge ruled this past summer that the administration's approach violated standards for holding underage migrants. Earlier this month, the administration filed a motion with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to expedite its appeal of that ruling. As things stand now, the appeal will not be heard until 2017.
    Meanwhile, two of President Obama's moves benefiting migrants who lack long-term legal residency could be imperiled. Republican presidential candidates --- including Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, who historically has been supportive of immigration overhaul --- have said they would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, if they win the White House next year. DACA allows certain immigrants who entered the country illegally before age 16 a chance to apply for temporary legal status.

Glenn Spencer -- American Border Patrol   
My Challenge
    As we enter the election year of 2016, I challenge the media to report on the work of American Border Patrol. I challenge them to tell the American people about how Operation BEEF proved that our government lied about the border fence. I challenge them to show how we proved that the Department of Homeland Security refuses to accept the legal definition of its job. I challenge them to show how the technical people at CBP have had one failure after another. I challenge them to report on how technology we call the Sonic Barrier could help secure the border very quickly.
    Finally, I challenge them to report how Barack Obama is breaking our immigration laws to “completely transform” America.
    After thirteen years of documenting media reporting of border issues, I don't expect them to meet this challenge.
    There is, however, someone whose last name begins with a “T”, who may well do the job for them.