Now that the dog and pony show of community forums is over, Deval Patrick has declared he “will refuse to sign the controversial federal Secure Communities program, which refers illegal immigrants arrested even for minor crimes to federal immigration officials for deportation.” With those forums apparently serving their purpose of providing our Governor with enough pretext to complete this “major turnaround,” the Governor has once again gone back on something he previously promised to do.
It is unclear why it took the Patrick administration months to come to this conclusion, since the statistics were available in media reports since last year.
The Secure Communities program is now in 42 states, according to ICE. Since it began in October 2008 through April 30, 2011, ICE has deported more than 77,000 criminals; less than half were convicted of aggravated felonies such as murder.
Governor Patrick continues to set himself up as the Obama’s national spokesman to the left and far left while the President continues to try and capture the middle. His decisions as our Governor continually set him up perfectly in that vein even though they contradict the campaign persona he created last year to capture the middle himself. It’s painfully obvious that he’s going to spend the next 2 years working to secure the President’s re-election, and use Massachusetts to do so. From his earlier decision to join “National Standards” and abandon the MCAS, to his non-starter of a budget submission, and now to his recent flip on Secure Communities, Massachusetts is losing out as the Governor works to raise his national profile.