Thursday, January 29, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Oval Office ‘spins’ on immigration

navarrette column sig

By
From page A11 | March 20, 2014 |

SAN DIEGO — Barack Obama’s apologists are once again tackling the immigration debate by powering up the fog machine.

This month, they’re trying to divert attention from the fact that the administration will soon rack up its two millionth deportation. This dubious milestone comes courtesy of a president who shamelessly pandered to Latinos by promising to fix the immigration system but turned out to be more skilled at removing the undocumented than he was in finding a way for them to stay and continue to contribute to the United States.

Obama is also good at creating spin, shifting blame and talking down to critics. According to media reports, all three of these things were in evidence last week during a hastily called meeting between Obama and 17 labor and immigration reform advocates. In most cases, make that people who pretend to be “immigration reform advocates.” The real advocates are the folks who will never get invited to those meetings because they’ve criticized the president or can’t be controlled.

One exception was Janet Murguia, the president of the National Council of La Raza, who has said precious little about deportations in the past five years. She was invited despite the fact that she recently called Obama the “deporter in chief.” The president bristled at that characterization, so much so that he went out of his way to refer to himself during a town hall sponsored by Spanish-language media as the “champion in chief” on immigration reform.

Is it April Fool’s Day already?

The White House gathering was described by those who attended as “sometimes tense but mostly cordial,” but the president was characterized as dismissive of participants. One advocate told the Huffington Post: “It had the feel of him schooling us, but it didn’t have the feel of him listening to us.”

If true, it’s not surprising. For Obama, the meeting had three purposes: to re-establish the narrative that the Republicans are to blame for everything that is unpleasant in the immigration mess including the record numbers of deportations carried out by the executive branch; to push back against critics and reassert control over his supporters; and to derail a resolution condemning the deportations that the Congressional Hispanic Caucus was getting ready to pass but ultimately tabled.

How petty can you get?

Obama deserves to be challenged. He has flunked Immigration 101. For the sake of political convenience, and in a misguided attempt to help working-class Americans who feel that they can’t keep up with illegal immigrants, Obama has used the heavy club of a hugely powerful government agency that was designed – after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 – to fight terrorists and protect the homeland. Caught in the dragnet are many individuals who, under previous administrations, would not have been deported because authorities would have used their discretion and common sense to prevent it. Until Obama came along, we didn’t see women selling tamales outside of big-box stores hauled off in handcuffs by federal agents.

This sort of thing is supposed to make us a better country? How many tamale vendors have to be deported before America is safe?

The reality of heavy-handed immigration enforcement under Obama is so bleak that it is no wonder the president and his defenders would much rather live in the land of fairy tales. Champion in chief, indeed.

Meanwhile, two senior administration officials – Valerie Jarrett, senior adviser, and Cecilia Munoz, director of the Domestic Policy Council – are in high dudgeon as they try to protect Obama’s image as a progressive. The tag-team spreads misinformation to advocacy groups and the media. Like the whopper the president was trying to sell at the White House meeting: It’s all the Republicans’ fault. Democrats might control the White House and the Senate, but Republicans control the House of Representatives. The GOP provides the resources that allows Immigration and Customs Enforcement to operate, and so Republicans are to blame for who gets deported.

This might make some sense if the Obama administration had not just submitted a budget request for another $2.6 billion for the “enforcement and removal” of illegal immigrants. Can you hear the president calling out to Republicans from the Oval Office? “Stop me before I deport again!”

When it comes to immigration, President Obama is in the protection business. What he is protecting is the narrative that he has done nothing wrong. It’s a line that is getting harder and harder to sell.

Ruben Navarrette is a columnist for U-T San Diego. Reach him at [email protected]

Ruben Navarrette

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

 
1st release for birds with mysterious goo a success

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Vacaville police seek help to find sex offender

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Sweep by sheriff’s team nets 4 arrests

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3, 1 Comment

 
 
Travis starts work on Functional Fitness Center

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Boy Scouts to screen award-winning film

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3

 
Church makes ready for health, wellness fair

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

4-H Annual Presentation Day returns in February

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Vacaville SWAT team serves search warrant

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

Real estate occupancy continues to climb

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

 
Lights out for proposed electronic sign in Vacaville

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

 
Council backs beer, wine sales for Vacaville store

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3

Suisun City police log: Jan. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
Fairfield police log: Jan. 27, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

.

US / World

Poll: High approval for Gov. Jerry Brown, support for budget

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Air Force probing alleged ‘treason’ remark by general

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Expect tiny tuxes but no real puppy love at doggy weddings

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Violations mount for toxic recycler

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Quake rattles N. California coast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Second arrest in student stabbing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Large salmon release planned

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Marshals track down missing treasure hunter

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

‘Drunk’ excuse falls flat in Vandy rape trial

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Attorney General nominee defends Obama immigration changes

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Police seek law to alter Google app

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Euro coast guards scramble to locate Syrian ghost ship

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Chinese regulators go after online sale of fake goods

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Investigation stems from police-involved shooting outbreak

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Hezbollah missiles kill soldiers

By New York Times | From Page: A6

 
ISIS extends hostage deadline

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Tape: Scientist offers to build nuke bomb targeting New York

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
.

Opinion

A truly misinformed writer

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 5 Comments

 
India now has 322 billion reasons to fix economy

By William Pesek | From Page: A7

Don’t brush off bullying

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A7

 
Editorial Cartoon: Jan. 29, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Just be honest and come forward

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7

.

Living

Today in History: Jan. 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Jan. 29, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Deadbeat boyfriend ruined my relationship with my granddaughter

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

 
Horoscope Jan. 29, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

Theater legend Joel Grey reveals that he is gay

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Super Bowl advertisers aim not to offend

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

.

Sports

Kings center DeMarcus Cousins hoping to make All-Star team

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Rodriguez wrestlers pull out 34-24 win over Wood

By Brian Arnold | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Solano men cruise past LMC for biggest win of season

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

NFL players who started young show more thinking problems

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
GM John Schneider has been architect of Seahawks’ success

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Patriots not dwelling on last Super Bowl loss in Arizona

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Woods returns to Phoenix with plenty of memories

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Tony Stewart acquires national sprint car series tour

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Korda, Lewis, Munoz tied for lead at LPGA season opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Head of NCAA enforcement: Academic misconduct on rise

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Chicago Cubs’ Ernie Banks statue moved downtown for tribute

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Kobe Bryant has surgery, expected to be out for 9 months

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
This date in sports history for Jan. 29, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

Joseph Phillip Raiff

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Dzhon Athanc

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 

Parse error: syntax error, unexpected '<<' (T_SL) in /www/newspaperfoundation.org/html/wp-content/themes/broadsheet/footer.php on line 101