Miami Herald: Debbie Wasserman Schultz vows to fight Trump's immigration policies

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Fort Lauderdale, FL, February 23, 2017 | comments
U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz vowed to fight back against President Donald Trump's immigration orders and criticized Miami-Dade County commissioners for caving to Trump on sanctuary cities. Wasserman Schultz, a Weston Democrat, met with city and county officials in Broward on Thursday morning after she held a closed-door briefing with federal immigration officials from multiple agencies including Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Wasserman Schultz sought the ICE briefing to gain more clarity about the administration's immigration plans, but said she walked away with scant information. "In my 24 years in office I have rarely had a more evasive briefing than the one I just had," she told local government officials who met with her at a Sunrise government building.
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Miami Herald

Debbie Wasserman Schultz vows to fight Trump's immigration policies

U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz vowed to fight back against President Donald Trump’s immigration orders and criticized Miami-Dade County commissioners for caving to Trump on sanctuary cities.

Wasserman Schultz, a Weston Democrat, met with city and county officials in Broward on Thursday morning after she held a closed-door briefing with federal immigration officials from multiple agencies including Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Wasserman Schultz sought the ICE briefing to gain more clarity about the administration’s immigration plans, but said she walked away with scant information.

“In my 24 years in office I have rarely had a more evasive briefing than the one I just had,” she told local government officials who met with her at a Sunrise government building.

But Wasserman Schultz said that it was clear that the Trump administration plans to “dramatically expand the number and type of undocumented immigrant that is targeted for deportation.”

This week the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced rules expanding the categories of people prioritized for removal. It is a broader policy than the one carried out by the Obama administration, which deported more people than previous administrations but prioritized deporting violent criminals.

As a Democrat in the minority in Congress, Wasserman Schultz has little power to fight Trump’s immigration plans. But she said she would fight against funding Trump’s order to hire 10,000 more ICE agents to add to its existing 20,000-member force.

About 450,000 unauthorized immigrants reside in the greater Miami-West Palm Beach area, the fifth-largest undocumented population in the United States, according to a new analysis by the Pew Research Center based on 2014 government estimates. Wasserman Schultz’s district stretches from western Broward to northern Miami-Dade.

Wasserman Schultz said that Trump’s plans to increase immigration enforcement have provoked fear in the community and could cause undocumented immigrants to avoid law enforcement — for example, to report domestic violence — out of fear that contact with government officials will lead to deportation.

“It's going to take us back to the days where undocumented immigrants who are here just to take care of their families and to make their lives better for themselves are going to go back into the shadows,” she said.

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