“Did Obama Confuse Illegal Alien CROSSINGS With ARRESTS In Debate Claim?”
Which, allow me to answer that for them. No. Obama didn’t “confuse” the numbers. He lied about that. Because that’s what he does.
In last night’s debate, Pres. Obama repeated the claim that the number of illegal aliens entering the U.S. is at a 40 year low, apparently citing a DHS report of the number of arrests. But, saying arrests equal crimes is like saying people didn’t drink during Prohibition because the cops looked the other way.
“Number two, we do have to deal with our border. So we’ve put more Border Patrol on than anytime in history, and the flow of undocumented workers across the border is actually lower than it’s been in 40 years,” Obama said during last night’s presidential debate.
Pres. Obama made a similar claim on June 15 of the year when he announced a plan to use “discretion” to stop prosecuting some illegal aliens and to grant them waivers to avoid deportation:
“Today, there are fewer illegal crossings than at any time in the past 40 years.”
But, using the number of arrests as a proxy for the number of crimes committed is dubious:
- If a football referee misses or ignores a foul and neglects to throw a flag, that doesn’t mean the player didn’t commit an infraction – just that he wasn’t caught and punished for it,
- Arrests only equal illegal border crossings if 100% of the people illegally crossing the border are all arrested. Obviously, this is not the case.
- Decriminalizing something may decrease the number of arrests for doing something, but that doesn’t mean fewer people are doing it.
Besides, even the Government Accountability Office reports that the border patrol lacks actual “outcome-oriented measures” and, thus, must rely on arrest data:
“In the interim the Border Patrol is using the number of apprehensions on the southwest border as its primary performance measure, which is being reported out in the department’s annual performance report.”
And, Rand says no reliable methods of measurement even exist:
“Commonly reported border control measures, such as numbers of illegal migrants apprehended or miles of border under effective control, bear only an indirect and uncertain relationship to the border control mission, making them unreliable management tools. Fundamental to the question of border control effectiveness is the proportion of illicit border crossings that are prevented through either deterrence or apprehension. Estimating these proportions requires knowing the total flow of illicit goods or border crossings, but compelling methods for producing such estimates do not yet exist.”
So, claiming that illegal border crossing are at a 40 year low because arrests are at the low is a little dicey, especially when the federal government is fighting tough state immigration laws and eschewing prosecutions.
That last point is the most important: first, to base the claim of a decreased flow of illegals on arrests — having first worked to make sure there are fewer arrests, even going so far as to sue border states for trying to enforce immigration law — is not only statistically absurd, but it is rhetorically and intentionally dishonest. It is meant to create an impression of competent border security while simultaneously allowing for a compromise of that security insofar as a defense of the current Administration policy, coupled with such massaged (and irrelevant) numbers, argues aggressively for the status quo. Which the border states are finding it increasingly difficult to live with.
If Obama wanted to be honest — and he doesn’t, because to do so would reveal his policy failures and expose him for the faculty lounge radical demagogue he is — he would point out that any decrease in the number of illegal border crossings would more likely be attributable to a bad economy here in the US. But even on that account, Obama and the left have worked to recruit illegals by actively soliciting them, often through foreign governments, to join the welfare rolls in the US, this despite extant immigration laws that require immigrants to show an ability to provide for themselves.
And that’s for legal immigrants.
So again, no, Obama didn’t “confuse” anything: he obfuscated and he lied. And because he has some Republican backers for his immigration policy (with Jeb Bush being among the most notable), he understands that he can get away with many of his lies and distortions by pointing to bi-partisan support for his quasi-amnesty policy.
Which is why establishment Republicans like Jeb Bush are so particularly harmful to a free country: they provide cover for constitutional oversteps in the name of demographic pragmatism.
Somebody really should smack Jeb across the face with a bag of rancid churros.