U.S. Rep. Michael Capuano Voices Opposition to S-Comm
In his weekly "E-Update" my congressman, Michael Capuano (D-MA-8), voiced his opposition to the Secure Communities program, or S-Comm, after having met with the Massachusetts ACLU:
I met this week with a number of constituents who are affiliated with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
We also discussed "Secure Communities." This program, initiated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), requires fingerprints of every person arrested to be sent by local police departments to the FBI and also shared with ICE. I believe that states and cities should not be compelled to do this if local elected officials and law enforcement authorities object. Federal immigration resources should be devoted to the apprehension and detention of dangerous criminals, terrorists, and human traffickers.
Michael Capuano - E-Update (12 August 2011) My Congressman is among the most progressive politicians in Congress, and I have yet to see him take an anti-migrant position on a specific issue. It's hard to ask for much more, but I'm going to complain anyway.
Capuano certainly isn't a leader on immigration issues and he frequently uses language to refer to migrants which makes me cringe.For instance, when I first heard him speak on immigration he railed against migrants waiving flags from their home countries during immigration rallies, as if people of Irish and Italian descent in Massachusetts don't do the same all the time. I also have several letters from him on the DREAM Act which say that while he supports the legislation, he's worried about it "incentivizing" further "illegal immigration."
I tolerate this without raising a stink, because he's extremely progressive on other issues like the war and the economy, and like I said, he has yet to take a position on immigration policy that I don't like. Still, the way he refers to migrant communities is a continual source of annoyance and frustration for me.
He's the first Representative from Massachusetts to speak out against S-Comm like this, though, as far as I know, so he deserves credit for that. I saw U.S. Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA-7) at an event, recently, and he might as well have run the other way when I tried to get him to talk about S-Comm. This, again, was after he gave a great speech on the economy.
I write all this out just to give people a sense of where Massachusetts politicians are on immigration issues. They frequently take the right stances, but after the death of Ted Kennedy, we don't really have anyone that leads. That's a reflection of the power of the pro-migrant movement in Massachusetts as much as it is a reflection of our politicians.
I still have a lot to learn, though, so if people have anecdotes or links that refute my views, I would love to be educated.