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President Donald Trump has repeatedly claimed that the Democrats are impeding his efforts to reform immigration and address the crisis at the southern border.
Republican lawmakers such as Sen. Ted Cruz, Rep. Dan Crenshaw and Rep. Matt Gaetz have joined the president in criticizing their political opponents’ disingenuous exploitation of the issues.
And they are telling the truth.
A recent report from National Review quoted Nancy Pelosi giving advice to illegal immigrants on how to avoid arrest and deportation.
“An ICE deportation warrant is not the same as a search warrant,” Pelosi said at a press conference. “If that is the only document ICE brings to a home raid, agents do not have the legal right to enter a home. If ICE agents don’t have a warrant signed by a judge, a person may refuse to open the door and let them in,” Pelosi continued.
If that wasn’t bad enough, Pelosi went on, behind closed doors, to explain her “know your rights” campaign for illegal immigrants.
If the fact that the Speaker of the House is advising illegal immigrants on how to avoid apprehension from Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers doesn’t sit well with you, you aren’t the only one.
Former Florida Rep. and retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel Allen West responded with the serious charge that Pelosi’s actions bordered on treason.
“Unless I am grossly mistaken, Ms. Pelosi just violated her oath of office and has committed a high crime and misdemeanor,” West tweeted.
— Allen West (@AllenWest) July 12, 2019
“High crimes and misdemeanors” is a classification of offense for which Art. II, Sec. 4 of U.S. Constitution provides grounds for impeachment.
And West may be right.
According to Jon Roland of the Constitution Society, high crimes refer “to those punishable offenses that only apply to high persons, that is, to public officials, those who, because of their official status, are under special obligations that ordinary persons are not under, and which could not be meaningfully applied or justly punished if committed by ordinary persons.”
Put another way, “a high crime is an affront to the state, to the people, the body politic,” as Jeffrey A. Engel, director of the Southern Methodist University Center for Presidential History, says.
West’s accusation could be true if Congress found Pelosi’s statements and actions constituted “violations of public trust.”
Congressional action against Pelosi is extremely unlikely, but her words and conduct reveal how far the Democrats are willing to go to resist immigration reform.
While one can stand for both American sovereignty and reasonable reform for immigration policy, you can’t be pro-America and champion complete disregard for the rule of law all while thwarting enforcement of current immigration standards.