Monday, 20 November, 2017

Homeland security chief not on board with Trump administration's anti-marijuana stance

J. Scott Applewhite J. Scott Applewhite
Juana Turner | 19 April, 2017, 01:33

"So when you have that much profit coming out of the United States, and that profit is managed by cartels that are beyond violentm" Kelly said in part. "There are people here who came here illegally many years ago and have married local men and women and had children".

It's a far cry from what Department of Homeland Security Secretary John F. Kelly said about the drug Sunday.

Kelly said it's the law of the land, not the discretion of immigration agents, that carry out deportations. "They have done this in the past, are doing it today, and will do it in the future", he said. He also called for the end of so-called "catch-and-release" policies, which allow illegal immigrants to remain in the USA freely while they await hearings on their legal status moving forward. About a quarter of those arrests were immigrants who had no criminal history, according to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

"They're just waiting to see what actually does happen", he added. During the Obama administration, ICE agents were told to focus strictly on immigrants convicted of serious crimes or those who otherwise posed a threat to public safety. He said unsafe criminals are being arrested or are hiding, fearing that ICE is looking for them.

Trump signed an executive order in February that vastly expands the powers of ICE and other border officials, which has resulted in an increase in the amount of undocumented immigrants arrested during the first few months of 2017.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said last week that 16,600 individuals were apprehended or stopped from entering the USA from Mexico last month, a 64% decrease from March 2016.

He also said President Trump's tough talk on security at the border has "absolutely" caused a drop in the number of immigrants trying to enter the United States.

The head of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) explained during an interview on "Meet The Press" that marijuana is scarcely America's biggest issue along the US-Mexico border.

Kelly, appearing on NBC's "Meet the Press," was discussing his work to stop the flow of drugs into the United States from Central America and Mexico when host Chuck Todd asked whether legalizing marijuana would help or hurt his work. He also noted that "there's about 600 miles of barrier already in place".

Kelly, a retired four-star Marine general, said in 2016 that Trump and his Democratic Party presidential competitor, Hillary Clinton, weren't willing to acknowledge that USA and coalition ground troops would be needed to defeat Islamic State, and that "you're not going to win this thing by dropping bombs".

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