Brooklyn Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke on Wednesday strongly criticized United States President Donald T. Trump’s plan to deport millions of undocumented Caribbean and other immigrants.
“We have a Bigot-in-Chief who is overstepping his authority in his role as president pushing to deport immigrants from America,” said Clarke, the daughter of Jamaican immigrants. “It’s clear that he has one objective: to whitewash America. But that’s not who America is; we are a nation built by immigrants.
“I will continue to push back on Trump as he tries to instill fear in and bully our immigrant neighbors, friends and family,” added the representative for the predominantly Caribbean 9th Congressional District in Brooklyn. “As a second-generation Jamaican American, I know how immigrants contribute to our local and national economies by working jobs that pay taxes while also adding to the cultural fabric of our communities, making America the country we know and love today.”
Clarke said her legislation, the Dream and Promise Act, which recently passed the US House of Representatives, will provide 2.5 million beneficiaries of Temporary Protected Status (TPS), among others, a pathway to citizenship and the opportunity for legal residency.
“We must urge our colleagues in the Senate to also pass this historic legislation,” she said.
Late Monday night, Trump tweeted that the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency will next week “begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States.
“They will be removed as fast as they come in,” he tweeted.
But a US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told ABC TV News that the deportations described by Trump are not imminent.
Separately, however, a Trump administration official said Tuesday that enforcing final deportation orders “is a top priority.”
“Countless illegal aliens not only violate our borders but then break the law all over again by skipping their court hearings and absconding from federal proceedings,” the unidentified official told ABC TV. “These runaway aliens lodge phony asylum claims only to be no-shows at court and are ordered removed in absentia.
“There are more than 1 million illegal aliens who have been issued final deportation orders by federal judges yet remain at large in the country,” the official added. “These judicial removal orders were secured at great time and expense, and yet illegal aliens not only refuse to appear in court, they often obtain fraudulent identities, collect federal welfare and illegally work in the United States.
“Enforcing these final judicial orders is a top priority for Immigration and Customs Enforcement,” the official continued. “Willful defiance of our laws, and the defrauding of the American People with fraudulent asylum claims, will not be tolerated.” the official said in a statement.
Clarke, other elected officials and immigration advocates say, since taking office, Trump has deported more Caribbean and other immigrants than any other president in recent American history.