Senate President Therese Murray today joined the parade of usual Patrick Administration allies expressing puzzlement at the Governor’s refusal to enact the Secure Communities program to share arrest data with federal immigration authorities. In her typical, plain-spoken style during a radio interview on WATD, the Senate President eviscerated the Governor’s position with this seventeen word distillation of delicious common sense:
“I don’t understand why you wouldn’t check the status of people coming into your criminal justice system.”
Here’s a little more meat from the State House News Service (hold your breath waiting to see a story on Boston.com. If you want to die blue-faced, that is).
Senate President Therese Murray on Thursday questioned Gov. Deval Patrick’s hesitance to embrace Secure Communities, a federal program to cross-check the immigration status of arrestees and queue up serious undocumented offenders for deportation.
“I’m really not sure. I have not had a full discussion with him on it,” she said. “We have to do it anyway. All of the states have to do it by 2013.”
During an appearance on Marshfield-based WATD-FM, Murray pointed to a weeklong crackdown by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement that concluded Wednesday and resulted in the arrest of 2,900 “criminal aliens” around the country, including dozens in Massachusetts.
“I think that this roundup they just did really points that we have a problem,” said the Plymouth Democrat. An aide later confirmed she supports the activation of Secure Communities in Massachusetts.
Murray also said she agreed with a group of Republican county sheriffs pushing for tools to perform immigration checks on inmates, adding that most county jails already implement a “system of biometrics” to verify the status of prisoners.
Et tu, Terry Murray?
Earlier this week Governor Patrick accused the aforementioned Sheriffs of pulling a “publicity stunt” by calling attention to the rash of crimes recently committed across the state by illegal immigrants with prior criminal records. Surely at the earliest possible opportunity some reporter will ask the Gov whether Senate President Murray’s position is also a “stunt”?… MORE ON SECURE COMMUNITIES at CriticalMASS