“We cannot sit back and allow Biden to defend the three million deportations and the unprecedented expansion of detention that happened under his watch. We need more from the party that claims to support us.”
President Donald Trump’s openly xenophobic hardline anti-immigration agenda has brought the United States to a “moment of reckoning” on immigration policies that have been in place for decades, a New Jersey-based advocacy group said Wednesday as it led families whose loved ones were deported in a protest at Joe Biden’s campaign headquarters.
The former vice president, the Cosecha Movement said, must apologize for his part in the Obama administration’s separation of thousands of families as it deported more people than ever before in U.S. history. Biden must also commit to ending the detention and deportation of immigrants, the group added.
In a press release, the group noted that the Trump administration’s separation of thousands of families, violent ICE raids, and reports of abuse and neglect in the detention centers where thousands of immigrants are in custody, have called attention to the U.S. government’s treatment of migrants and asylum seekers—but stressed that the Obama administration also separated and detained thousands of families and was complicit in the country’s broken immigration system.
“While Republicans scapegoated immigrants and fanned the flames of white supremacy,” the group wrote, “the Obama administration failed to deliver on the promise of legalization, and instead chose to deport three million immigrants.”
This “false strategy of appeasement to anti-immigrant forces,” the group continued, “resulted in the meteoric expansion of detention and more deportations than ever before in our nation’s history.”
At least six people were arrested for occupying Biden’s headquarters in Philadelphia as the Cosecha Movement held the first public action of its newly-unveiled Dignity 2020 campaign.
Arrests were just made as immigrants and allies continue to demand that @JoeBiden, and all presidential candidates, commit to an immigration platform that ensures dignity for all undocumented people.
➡️ https://t.co/zPLLKiP3Yi pic.twitter.com/llSsvIRWpE
— Movimiento Cosecha (@CosechaMovement) July 10, 2019
Six protestors are taking into custody and are expected to be processed, cited and released soon after briefly occupying the lobby of what’s believed to be Biden’s campaign headquarters, during pro-immigration and anti-deportation protest. pic.twitter.com/AGIdWtqvPz
— Bastiaan Slabbers (@BasSlabbers) July 10, 2019
‼️ 6 people arrested today at @JoeBiden‘s campaign office in Philadelphia as immigrant families confronted the Dem frontrunner over the 3 mil deportations that took place while he was VP. They are demanding an apology and commitment to end all detention & deportation on day 1. pic.twitter.com/vdIPisycom
— Movimiento Cosecha (@CosechaMovement) July 10, 2019
The campaign is calling on all Democratic presidential candidates to commit, should they win the presidency in 2020, to ending all detentions and deportations; reunifying all families separated by the Trump, Obama, and other administrations, either through unjust deportations, family separations under Trump’s so-called “zero tolerance” law, or the lies of immigration officials who told parents that they would see their children if they agreed to return to their home country; and granting legal status to 11 million undocumented immigrants.
The group began the campaign by addressing Biden, who last month defended the Obama administration’s record three million deportations by saying President Barack Obama had done “a heck of a job” in implementing immigration policy.
“We cannot sit back and allow Biden to defend the three million deportations and the unprecedented expansion of detention that happened under his watch,” said Cata Santiago, a leader of the Cosecha Movement. “We need more from the party that claims to support us. It is time [for] Biden to recognize the impact that these policies had on our families and commit to the vision put forth by the immigrant community for what dignity looks like.”
The national grassroots organization CREDO Mobile expressed support for the Cosecha Movement’s public action, tweeting that the Democratic Party owes immigrant families “a moral reckoning.”
There must be a moral reckoning from the Democratic party, which deported 3 million people under Trump and wrote a blank check to Trump’s deportation machine. #DignityNotDeportation
— CREDO Mobile (@CREDOMobile) July 10, 2019
Trump threatened in June to deport “millions” of immigrants in pre-dawn ICE raids across the country, but backed down after criticism. Despite the president’s threats, the administration has not yet surpassed Obama in the number of deportations in a single year: in 2012, Obama deported more than 419,000 people.
Trump’s treatment of immigrants and asylum seekers has opened many Americans’ eyes to the broken system, the Cosecha Movement wrote, and Democrats must use the current moment to demand a humane immigration system.
“Our country has reached a moment of reckoning on the issue of immigration,” wrote the group. “During this primary election, it is time for the public to push the Democratic party to recognize dignity for all, and finally commit to solving the daily crisis our immigrant families have been facing for more than two decades.”
Florida seniors are ‘highly susceptible’ to coronavirus — which could hurt Trump’s reelection chances
On Monday, The Washington Post examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on older voters' politics, and in particular how it is hurting President Donald Trump with the critical demographic in Florida — a state that is almost mandatory for the president to win for a second term.
"While Democrats have worried about Biden’s struggles to excite younger voters, older voters who are upset with the president are poised to be potentially more influential in November, especially in swing states whose populations skew their way, like Florida, Pennsylvania, Arizona, Michigan and Wisconsin," reported Jenna Johnson and Lori Rozsa. "In Florida, more than 20 percent of those who voted in the 2016 election were over age 65, according to exit polls. In 2016, Trump won the Florida senior vote by a 17-point margin over Clinton, according to exit polls. The state ranks as one Trump must almost certainly win to insure his victory, while Biden has other paths to the White House."
Lawmakers discussing possibility that ‘freaked out’ Trump won’t accept election loss
President Donald Trump's increasing attacks on election integrity have raised new alarms about his efforts to delegitimize the results in November.
Just as he did in 2016, Trump has been flinging baseless accusations of "rigged" elections and has, as president, threatened to withhold funding from Michigan and Nevada for going ahead with plans to allow voting by mail during the coronavirus pandemic, reported Politico.
"He is planting the seeds for delegitimizing the election if he loses," said Vanita Gupta, a former head of Justice Department’s civil rights division under President Barack Obama. "It’s from the playbook. It’ll get more intense as he gets more freaked out."
‘Un-American’ anti-lockdown protesters hammered by Army veteran for appropriating military gear to make their point
In a Memorial Day column for the Washington Post, military vet Drew Garza -- who served three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan among other deployments -- hammered anti-lockdown protesters who have appropriated a quasi-military style of dress while sometimes carrying "un-American" flags at lockdown rallies.
According to the U.S. Army vet who is now a Tillman scholar at George Washington University, protesters who adorn themselves in military-style garb while carrying high-powered weapons to protest stay-at-home orders designed to stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic is a personal affront to those who have actually served.