Nancy Pelosi, Chris Van Hollen, Nita Lowey

(House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., discusses the unfinished work of Congress at a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite))

Pelosi: Obama should stop ‘totally unjustified’ deportations, focus on worst felons

The government should limit deportations to those who have committed serious crimes and not those whose only violation is being in the country illegally, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in an interview with Telemundo’s Lori Montenegro.

“It breaks your heart to see what is happening.  It’s not the right thing.  It’s not who we are as Americans,” Pelosi said,   The congresswoman told Montenegro that coming from California, specifically San Francisco, “we have seen deportations that were totally unjustified.”

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“And if they need any more justification or documentation, we have been providing it.  We stand ready to continue to provide it.  We would frankly, though, like to move on and pass comprehensive immigration reform so that the problem is put to rest.  In the meantime, 1,100 people, on average, a day. It’s just wrong.”

Pelosi and other immigration reform advocates have been urging the administration to reduce the number of deportations as Congress ends the year without immigration legislation. Pelosi spokesman Drew Hammill said Pelosi was restating “her long-held belief that being an undocumented immigrant is not a basis for deportation.”

When asked whether she expects legislation next year, Pelosi said if it happens, it would come before June.

Some immigration advocates and as string of Democrats in Congress have been pressuring Obama to use his executive authority to suspend deportations, which President Barack Obama has said he cannot do.

 

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