"DHS Border Patrol Arrest Statistics Underestimate Illegal Immigration"

Hi Gang:

I have been asked to provide a regular column at Fox News Latino and I am happy to be able to provide my perspectives concerning immigration.

I am providing you, below, with my most recent column for the Fox News Latino website.

What is impossible for me to understand is how the enforcement of our immigration laws has become such a controversial and divisive issue.  In my view, the immigration laws have goals that should be the goals of every American leader and every American citizen- those goals, as I noted in my commentary today, are to save American lives and to save American jobs.

Our immigration laws are utterly and totally blind as to race, religion and ethnicity.  While those of us who favor the enforcement of our immigration laws and the securing of our nation’s borders as being “Anti-Immigrant,” nothing could be further from the truth!  Those same immigration law enable more than 1.1 million immigrants from countries across our planet, to legally immigrate to the United States each and every year!  They are issued Green Cards to signify that they are, indeed, lawful immigrants and are, as of the day that they are granted lawful immigrant status,  placed on the pathway to United States citizenship!

The controversy about immigration is an artificially created controversy contrived by those who seek to gain from the importation of cheap and exploitable labor.  It is also in the best interests of unscrupulous politicians to portray immigration enforcement and border security as being race-based.  This is an example of the age-old strategy of divide and conquer!  I have written and extensive article for “The Social Contract” that will be published later this month or early next month that I entitled, “Immigration: The Modern-Day Gold Rush!”  You may be startled to find out just how many people and organizations are literally and figuratively “making out like bandits” because of the massive number of aliens being enticed into our country!

As the saying goes:  “Follow the money!”

The reason that employers intentionally hire illegal aliens is to exploit them!  There is nothing magical about the work illegal aliens do, it is just that they are vulnerable to exploitation.  To link the plight of illegal aliens with the Civil Rights Movement that addressed the outrageous treatment of black American citizens is insane and trivializes landmark legislation that addressed a series of moral wrongs committed by our nation when segregation and other examples of insanity passed for “business as usual” in the South!

Additionally, it is important to remember what history should have taught us.  The Amnesty of 1986 provided nearly 4 million illegal aliens with lawful status (the estimates of the number of illegal aliens who would avail themselves of the amnesty program was fewer than 1.5 million).  Those of us who worked at the INS came to believe that there were two reasons for the huge underestimate of the numbers of aliens who would participate in the program.  First of all we believed that the politicians intentionally down-played the numbers to help them “sell” the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) that provided amnesty to those millions of illegal aliens.  Second, we believed that many aliens actually entered the United States after the cutoff date that the law established by which time the aliens had to have entered the United States in order to be eligible to participate in the program.  Fraud permeated the entire program- I participated in a number of investigations into the fraud issue which, as it turned out, had severe national security implications.  Several of the terrorists who attacked our nation at the World Trade Center in 1993 had made false claims in order to acquire lawful status in the United States as an embedding tactic- enabling them to hide in plain sight as they went about their preparations to plant explosives in the garage of the World Trade Center complex.

Furthermore, once those aliens were granted lawful status they approached their employers and demanded that they no longer be exploited.  They demanded that they be paid prevailing wages with the sort of benefits that are customary and required by our labor laws.  In many, many instances these newly legalized aliens were fired by the unscrupulous employers who simply hired the next wave of illegal aliens leading us to where we are today!  

“Cooking the books” is a common practice in many industries and in many different ways.  Our government has become particularly adept at this form of chicanery!  As the saying goes, “Figures don’t lie, but liars can figure!”
The solution to the presence of millions of illegal aliens in our country is not to offer to put them on a pathway to citizenship-  which would create a national security nightmare, and entice God knows how many million more illegal aliens to run our borders with the hope and expectation that ultimately they will some day also be offered amnesty, but to provide greater resources to effectively enforce the immigration laws.  
Show me a politician who refuses to enforce the immigration laws or attempts to trivialize these laws, and I will show you a politician who needs to find out what it is like to stand on the unemployment line!

Benjamin Franklin, in discussing our then fledgeling nation. said that they had given us a republic if we could keep it!

What he was making clear was that this democratic republic required that its citizens take their citizenship seriously and keep the political leaders accountable.

It is time for the citizens of our nation to make certain that our nation’s leaders, on all levels, to come to terms with the fundamental fact that the purpose of our immigration laws is to protect our nation and our citizens from aliens whose presence has the potential to have a serious adverse impact.  Ignoring those laws exposes our nation and our citizens to a variety of serious threats and challenges ranging from national security and criminal justice and public safety to the economy, the environment, healthcare and education!

A country without secure borders can no more stand than can a house without walls!


our country is to survive and if our children and their children are to get their share of the “American Dream” the citizens of this nation must take their citizenship seriously!

We the People must be the best citizens we can be, citizens who are worthy of the gallantry demonstrated by our valiant men and women in the military, law enforcement and firefighters, who routinely go in harm’s way in defense of this nation and our citizens.  

My goal in writing this and other commentaries is to point out our nations many failings before more victims pay the ultimate price for the incompetence and ineptitude of our government.

The first step in problem-solving is to first identify the problems and vulnerabilities and then devise strategies to overcome them.

If you find yourself to be in agreement with this commentary, I ask that you forward it to as many of your friends and family members as possible and encourage them to do the same.  We need to create a “Bucket Brigade of Truth!”

The practice of good citizenship does not end in the voting booth, it only begins there.

For far too long our citizens demonstrated apathy which emboldened elected representatives to all but ignore the needs of the average American citizen in a quest for massive campaign funds and the promises of votes to be ostensibly delivered by special interest groups. 

It is therefore understandable that the politicians of both parties, are greatly concerned about the demonstrations currently sweeping our nation just as did the creation of the Tea Party.  Clearly  more and more of our fellow Americans are demonstrating that they are not as dumb as the politicians from both parties had expected us to be!

I am encouraged that more and more of us, We the People, are not willing to simply sit on the sidelines anymore!

I believe our nation’s is greatly benefited by the rich diversity of our people which is why I could never imagine living anywhere except New York City, arguably the most diverse city in our nation if not, in fact, the world.  However, my idea of diversity most certainly does not include members of MS-13, the Mexican drug cartels or members of other transnational gangs or members of al-Qaeda!

I also believe that the original purpose of our nation’s immigration laws need to be be brought “front and center” to make certain that our nation does not permit the entry of aliens into our country whose presence in our country is problematic for the citizens of our nation and that if such aliens do succeed in entering our country that our nation have the resources, integrity and dedication to do everything possible to make it impossible for such aliens to function within our country so that even if they are not apprehended, they will find it pointless to remain in the United States.
As I have noted on a number of occasions, “No one would break into the amusement park if they could not get to go on the rides and no one remains in the amusement park at the end of the day when they turn shut down the rides and turn off the lights!” 

If our government’s failures to secure our nation’s borders and effectively enforce our immigration laws concerns you or especially if it angers you, I ask you to call your Senators and Congressional “Representative. This is not only your right- it is your obligation! 

All I ask is that you make it clear to our politicians that we are not as dumb as they hope we are!

We live in a perilous world and in a perilous era. The survival of our nation and the lives of our citizens hang in the balance.

This is neither a Conservative issue, nor is it a Liberal issue- simply stated, this is most certainly an AMERICAN issue!

You are either part of the solution or you are a part of the problem!

Democracy is not a spectator sport!

Lead, follow or get out of the way!

-michael cutler- 

Please check out my website:


On Friday evenings from 7:00 PM until 8:00 PM Eastern Daylight Savings Time, I my show, “The Michael Cutler Hour” on the USA Talk Radio Network on Blog Talk Radio.

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DHS Border Patrol Arrest Statistics Underestimate Illegal Immigration

JUNE 10: A Mexican National lays out on the beach along the U.S. and
Mexico border wall June 10, 2007 in San Ysidro, California. (Photo by
Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images) (2007 Getty Images)

Recently published reports have focused on a letter submitted on
March 1st by Congressman Darrel Issa to Secretary of Homeland Security,
Janet Napolitano.
Issa is the Californian Republican who chairs the House Committee on
Government Reform and Oversight. His letter demanded Napolitano address
claims that the Border Patrol has been “cooking the books”–distorting
the true number of undocumented immigrants who are apprehended along our
nation’s southwest border. Issa’s letter to Napolitano was predicated
on information that insiders at the DHS have purportedly provided to
Issa’s office.

These statistics are extremely important because they have not only
been used by the administration to reflect on how secure our border is,
but also used to support the contention that because arrests along the
border are down, that the number of undocumented immigrants present in
the United States is also down. 

This claim has a number of potential benefits for the administration,
especially as the upcoming election looms closer on the horizon.

It used to be said that Social Security
was the “Third Rail” of politics. Today you could say that immigration
and border security constitutes the so-called “Third Rail,” and this
third rail has lots of political juice running through it.  

Some Liberals have tried to demonize anyone who seeks to enforce the
immigration laws and secure our borders while Republicans like to
portray themselves as being tough on law violators and want to be
perceived as being in favor of the “Rule of law.”

In order to win the upcoming election, current administration would
like to be able to say that the immigration problem is correcting
itself, thereby placating voters on both sides of the issue. By touting
reduced arrest statistics, the administration could lay claim to
securing our nation’s borders and convincing everyone that immigration
is no longer a problem. This would enable the president to be in two
places at one time.

Clearly if the arrest statistics being reported are false, then all
suppositions based on those doctored statistics would be false.  As the
folks in the computer field would say, “Garbage in – Garbage out!”

However, as a former INS Special Agent, I have been more than a bit
skeptical about the validity of using Border Patrol arrest statistics to
determine how many undocumented immigrants are actually present in the
United States. There is lots more to the immigration system than the
Mexican border.

On December 21st I was a guest on Neil Cavuto’s program on the Fox Business Network.
Neil noted that it is believed that because of the economic situation
in the United States that fewer undocumented immigrants were seeking to
come to the United States to seek employment. I commented that
“Attempting to determine how many illegal aliens are present in the
United States by simply looking at arrest statistics were a bit like
taking attendance and asking those not present to raise their hands.”

There is no definitive means of determining what percentage of
undocumented immigrants are actually arrested and what percentage evade
the Border Patrol. Additionally, undocumented immigrants do not only
enter the United States by running our nation’s border, that is supposed
to separate the United States from Mexico

Our nation also has a border that separates the United States from Canada that is nearly twice as long as the U.S.-Mexican border.

Additionally, our nation has some 95,000 miles of coastline and seaports and marinas to be found all along that huge coastline.

While the extreme porosity of the U.S. borders creates a huge problem
for the United States in terms of national security, crime and other
factors to be associated with the lack of border security, it is
estimated that some 40 percent of all undocumented immigrants in the
United States did not run our nation’s borders at all, but entered the
United States through the inspections process and then, in one way or
another, violated the terms of their admission into the United States.  

Still more aliens have been granted immigrant visas and work visas
who committed fraud in order to game the system. This not only impacts
national security but costs American workers jobs, especially in the
high-tech fields.

On March 6, 2012 the Washington Post published an article
entitled: “Illegal immigrants with long-expired visas remain tough to
track 10 years after 9/11 attacks.” That report addressed how a would-be
terrorist, Amine El Khalifi had been living illegally in the United
States for more than a decade, an issue that became the basis for a
hearing conducted by the House Homeland Security Committee.

“The criminal case against Amine El Khalifi, 29, of Alexandria, Va.,
has renewed the debate about how the U.S. government — a decade after
the terror attacks of 2001 — routinely fails to track millions of
foreign visitors who remain in the country longer than they are
allowed,” the article reads.

“A House Homeland Security subcommittee is conducting an oversight
hearing Tuesday. The panel’s chairwoman, Rep. Candice Miller, R-Mich.,
said El Khalifi ‘follows a long line of terrorists, including several of
the 9/11 hijackers, who overstayed their visa and went on to conduct
terror attacks.’ His tourist visa expired the same year he arrived from
his native Morocco as a teenager in 1999,” the piece continues.

This is not a newly discovered problem.  Nearly six years ago, on May
11, 2006, I testified before a Congressional hearing entitled “Visa
Overstays: Can We Bar the Terrorist Door?” that was conducted by the
House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations of the Committee on
International Relations.

Finally, while so many politicians talk about the need to create
jobs, just about no one talks about the need to liberate jobs by
effectively enforcing our nation’s immigration laws from within the
United States.

The point is that by attempting to keep everyone’s attention focused
on the Mexican border, many of the other components of the immigration
system are being ignored.

It is important and commendable that Rep. Issa continues to demand
accountability where the DHS is concerned, but neither he nor anyone
else should lose sight of the fact that where immigration is concerned,
we are dealing with a system with many moving parts, and all are
critically important.

Simply stated, our immigration laws are intended to save American
lives and American jobs and no politician from either side of the aisle
should lose sight of those two incredibly vital goals.

Michael Cutler is a retired Senior Special Agent with the Immigration and Naturalization Service. 

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