The following is a statement from Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice, regarding today’s Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing on the Department of Homeland Security’s efforts to reunite families:
The Trump administration – in our name, with our taxes, and by our government agents – has been responsible for a moral travesty of historic proportions. They have seized, separated and traumatized thousands of innocent children. Up until today, no administration official had taken responsibility and the Republican Congress had exercised no oversight. Finally, the Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing today. One hearing.
Did we get to hear from leading officials such as DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen or Attorney General Jeff Sessions? No. The White House, no doubt under orders from White House aide Stephen Miller, sent lower level aides to take the heat. Did those testifying take responsibility for the moral scandal still unfolding? No, not at all. The DOJ, CBP and ICE officials spewed bureaucratic doublespeak, refused to admit that anything had gone wrong, and fell back on testimony that sounded a lot like ‘just doing our job,’ ‘just enforcing the law’ and ‘nothing to see here.’
Instead of responsibility, accountability and contrition, we heard testimony and responses that smack of the ‘banality of evil:’ we were just following orders.
Despicable. Un-American. Unacceptable.
And so, we join the call of Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), who, at the hearing, said the following:
In the name of the 711 lost children, the families that have been “deleted” by her agency, and common decency, I’m calling on Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, the architect of this humanitarian disaster, to step down.
We agree. Nielsen should resign.
But that is not all. Congress should launch a full-scale investigation into what happened so that something like this never happens again. If they don’t, let’s elect a Congress that will.