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ASA HUTCHINSON MEETS HOT TALK

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By Michelle Malkin  •  July 9, 2004 12:23 AM

And gets burned big time. Dale Franks at QandO has a great summary and analysis of the Homeland Security Undersecretary’s appearance yesterday on KFI-AM’s John and Ken show in Los Angeles. These guys are doing what the Los Angeles Times editorial page ought to be doing: holding government officials accountable when they make pander-driven decisions that jeopardize public safety and encouraging citizens to get involved. (Guess the Times is too busy spreading disinformation and issuing non-apology apologies to pay attention to anything that actually matters to Californians.) KFI listeners have apparently burned up DHS phone lines and forced the bureaucracy to respond to questions about the department’s lack of support for southern California Border Patrol illegal alien sweeps. In an interview yesterday, John Kobylt pressed Hutchinson hard on why DHS has retreated on interior enforcement. Hutchinson squirmed.

Dale reports:

A month ago, immigration activist groups like La Raza (The Race. How’s that for a nice inoffensive name?) were howling in uproar because the 12 Border Patrol officers of the Temecula office were conducting sweeps in Temecula, Escondido, and Corona, all of which are cities located in Riverside and northern San Diego counties.

Complaints about these sweeps aroused the ire of not only the activists, but the Mexican government, whose LA consulate expressed its displeasure in no uncertain terms. Members of Congress also got involved, berating Homeland Security for the sweeps as well.

About a week after the complaints, spokesmen for the Border Patrol said that Asa Hutchinson the undersecretary responsible for the BP, ordered them to stop the sweeps. So, John got an interview with Hutchinson, which aired live this afternoon in the 4:00 hour.

John, who is not a tactful guy, bluntly asked Hutchinson why he ordered the patrols stopped. Hutchinson began droning on about the need for coordination, and about how many illegals (16,000 per week, according to Hutchinson) were being stopped from coming into the country in Arizona.

John cut him off and began demanding to know how many illegals were being rounded up in California. Hutchinson didn’t know. John then began grilling him about how many employers had been indicted in Southern California for hiring illegals. Hutchinson said he didn’t know. (John did. The answer: 0) John asked if interior enforcement sweeps would begin again. Hutchinson said he couldn’t give away specifics about planned operations, for, you know security reasons.

John then pointed out that, if we were unable to stop economic refugees from pouring across the border, how could we possibly stop al-Qaida? Hutchinson said that, yep, that was a pretty important question. You betcha. John asked how Hutchinson planned to react when, after the next 911, we learn that the terrorists came through the Mexican border in California. Hutchinson said that it was really important to stop them.

At the end of the interview, John kept demanding a yes or no answer to the following question: “Can I tell my listeners that Asa Hutchinson assured me that the interior sweeps by the border patrol would begin again?” Hutchinson refused to answer.

In a white-flag response to non-enforcement advocate Rep. Joe Baca, Hutchinson ingratiatingly assured him “that we will enforce these laws in a reasonable manner and will consider the sensitivities associated with interior enforcement of our immigration laws,” he said.

Invertebrate!

Just a reminder that there are a mere 2,000 interior enforcement agents assigned to enforce the law against upwards of 13 million illegal aliens. Across the country, local and state cops are handcuffed and barred from assisting in interior enforcement by open-borders city councils, mayors, and governors. If the Border Patrol can’t help out with interior enforcement, it’s not going to get done.

If President Bush expects to convince voters that he is better on national security than the John-Boys, not enforcing the law out of deference to “sensitivities” is a funny way to prove it.

Update: American Patrol has put up links to the interview on RealPlayer and Windows Media. Excerpt:

Kobylt: You want intelligence tips? We have your telephone number and e-mail address. I can have thousands of intelligence tips sent to you in minutes. Everybody knows where the illegal aliens are and everybody knows where the employers are. But no employers have ever been indicted in California in my memory for harboring illegal aliens and for employing them. You simply have chosen not to enforce this,

Hutchinson: You know…I…

Kobylt: Facts are facts. I’m sorry, facts are facts and they are not going to go away. You haven’t indicted any employers. You stopped the Border Patrol in Temecula.

Hutchinson: That’s an incorrect… That’s an incorrect statement.

Kobylt: What’s an incorrect statement? It’s in all the news stories!

Hutchinson: That we haven’t indicted the employers.

Kobylt: In California, where? Are you going to tell me about the Eastern European janitors back east again for Wal-Mart? OK, We’ll grant you that. Now in the state of California. California-based companies. California illegal aliens. Because you didn’t round up any illegal aliens here in California at those Wal-Marts.

Hutchinson: Well, let me just first of all assure you interior enforcement is a priority for us. Protecting the border is a priority for us. We’re allocating…

John: Those are words. Those are words. I’m talking about actions. Where are the actions?

In the 10+ years I’ve been writing about illegal immigration, this is the best interview on the topic I’ve heard. Listen to the whole thing while you surf the Net.

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Categories: Border Patrol, Feature Story, Homeland Security, Immigration