The Department of Homeland Security's refusal to cooperate with Arizona's court-tested crackdown on illegal immigration has field agents fuming, FoxNews.com has learned.
Within hours of the Supreme Court on Monday upholding of Arizona's requirement that police officers verify with federal authorities the immigration status of people they stop if suspected of being in the United States illegally, the Department of Homeland Security issued a memo telling agents not to take action unless the people are criminals, have recently arrived or pose a threat to national security.
"Anyone that is determined to be a low-level threat is subject to being released back into the general population since ICE does not view them as criminals," one DHS agent told FoxNews.com. "It saddened me to see that ICE is choosing to operate under a 'business as usual' mind set rather than seeing how they can work with Arizona to accomplish the goals that they both share."
What DHS considers "discretion" in choosing which illegal immigrants to potentially deport is tantamount to a refusal to enforce the law, according to a contingent of Arizona lawmakers, who accused the Obama administration of "declaring war against Arizona" in a letter to ICE chief John Morton.
"Rather than work cooperatively with the states, as federalism requires, the administration unwisely decided to unilaterally and abruptly terminate multiple agreements under a program that fostered federal-state cooperation in tackling a very difficult public safety threat to Americans, reads the letter, from GOP Reps. Paul Gosar, Dave Schweikert and Trent Franks.
The agent who talked to FoxNews.com said his colleagues are as outraged as he is and that federal policy makes it impossible to catch illegal immigrants who are criminals, unless they are caught in the act.http://www.foxnews.mobi/quickPage.html?page=38321&content=75381539