Rep. Lofgren on Homeland Security Inspector General's Secure Communities Reports
emToday Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), the top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on Immigration Policy and Enforcement, released the following statement in response to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) reports on Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Secure Communities program:
"I am frankly disappointed in these reports from the OIG. After a long wait for the report, it is surprising to find that the OIG simply failed to provide answers to key questions.
"The OIG found Secure Communities effective in finding and removing immigrants with criminal convictions. That wasn't the question. Does the program also ensnare victims and others with no criminal history? Is it susceptible to racial profiling? Does it ultimately undermine community policing efforts‹leaving us all less safe?
"The OIG also fell short in its review of whether agency personnel intentionally misled government officials and the public with respect to the ability of States and localities not to participate in the program. Although the OIG does find that DHS and ICE botched up communicating with program participants by making numerous conflicting and misleading statements and ultimately failed to address the resulting confusion, we already knew that. The OIG failed to specifically address internal ICE email exchanges indicating that some of those misleading statements may have been made intentionally. The OIG doesn't say whether DHS or ICE provided misinformation through incompetence or dishonesty. That leaves me concerned about the thoroughness of this review.
"After reading these reports, it still appears that fundamental changes must be made, in consultation with State and local officials, to ensure that Secure Communities advances immigration enforcement priorities without undermining public safety. Unfortunately, this lengthy review provided no meaningful information that was not already available."