Hundreds of illegal immigrants are being released from detention centers. It is part of a controversial, cost savings move.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement says the prisoner release does not have anything to do with the sequester spending cuts expected tomorrow, they say it is strictly budget cuts for their department.
ICE won't say how many people are out or where they took place, but immigration advocacy groups say illegal immigrants were freed from Alabama lockups. The cases against the immigrants haven't been dropped; ICE officials say they are on supervised release. ICE says the detainees released are low-risk offenders who do not have serious criminal records. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill feel blind-sided.
"This is a very deliberate effort on the part of many departments to try to pick high profile ways to suggest somehow that instead of making the tough decisions about cutting spending, that they should force tax increases again on the American people," said Representative Bob Goodlatte of Virginia.
Other Republicans shrugged off the releases. They say its just an attention-grabbing action and they are prepared for more in the coming days. Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions calls the move an excuse to bow to political pressure from the amnesty groups.
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