Olayemi Olurin, a New York public defender, mentioned in a Twitter thread she’s been “lawfully in America” since 2008. “I’ve attended highschool, faculty + legislation faculty right here. I’ve handed + been admitted to the bar,” she mentioned. “I’m a public defender defending peoples constitutional rights. I nonetheless haven’t any path to citizenship besides marriage. Be sincere about immigration.” Olurin mentioned she is sick of the “fable which you could determine you wish to stay in America and also you fill out some paperwork and also you’re carried out … False,” she tweeted. “It’s HARD to get to America legally and it is even tougher to remain.”
Alejandra Caraballo, a civil rights lawyer and former workers lawyer with the LGBTQ Regulation Mission at New York Authorized Help Group, tweeted: “That narrative of tremendous educated individuals simply getting in wants to finish. I do know pals doing post-docs at Ivy who’ve hassle getting immigrant visas as a substitute of J-1s. Since when did immigration require a grad diploma in any case? We must always welcome all no matter training.”
Sarah Wealthy, a senior supervising lawyer with the Southern Poverty Regulation Middle, mentioned in a statement launched on Wednesday that “looking for safety from violence and persecution is a basic human proper, and the best to hunt asylum is protected by U.S. and worldwide legislation.” Wealthy mentioned Harris’ remarks “fly within the face of the best to hunt asylum within the U.S. and point out a disturbing continuity between the Trump administration and the Biden-Harris administration.”
Wealthy added in her assertion:
“The Vice President’s remarks ignore our nation’s lengthy historical past of meddling in Central America’s affairs and supporting right-wing governments that massacred their very own residents and embezzled public cash. The SPLC represents asylum seekers, and we all know that individuals who flee for the relative security of the U.S. accomplish that as a result of they worry for his or her lives and time will not be a luxurious they’ll afford.
“SPLC has been litigating a case difficult turnbacks of asylum seekers on the southern border for the reason that Trump Administration, and the courtroom has already dominated that U.S. legislation mandates that immigration officers examine and course of all individuals arriving at ports of entry to hunt asylum, fairly than summarily turning them again. Vice President Harris’s public promise to show again asylum seekers on the border ignores this authorized obligation.
“Whether or not the Biden-Harris administration desires individuals to flee Central America or not, they’ll proceed to take action, and the U.S. authorities ought to welcome them with humane insurance policies that affirm their dignity and adjust to the legislation. This administration promised a break from the racist, xenophobic, and anti-immigrant insurance policies of President Trump and Stephen Miller — however the place asylum is worried, the Biden-Harris Administration’s insurance policies are simply extra of the identical. It’s crucial that the Biden-Harris administration abandon the hateful anti-asylum insurance policies of the prior administration and reaffirm its dedication to human rights.”
Rep. Raul Ruiz, chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, told The Hill he understood Harris’ warning as “a compassionate, humanitarian plea due to the hazards of taking the lengthy trek up north … She has a tough process and she or he’s very able to attaining the target of understanding the foundation causes of why households are leaving, and put collectively a complete plan to construct hope for individuals to remain and flourish of their dwelling international locations,” he added.
Julian Zelizer, a Princeton College public affairs professor, advised the political information web site what Harris says “gained’t be as necessary as whether or not she will put ahead an general resolution to the immigration challenges going through the nation … Alongside the best way, there are ups and downs, gaffes and accomplishments,” Zelizer added. “However what she will likely be evaluated on is the larger image: Is immigration dealt with in a greater style by the point her time period as VP is over?”