Sunday, December 28, 2014

Transparency? An alien concept

Senator Menendez has some explaining to do

Transparency? An alien concept

U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez.
U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez.

Here’s some news we should have had weeks ago, that the government apparently had weeks ago, that Homeland Security had weeks ago.  No, it has nothing to do with another Petraeus lover, or the fact that Al Qaeda was responsible for the Benghazi massacre.

This has to do with Bob Menendez.  That’s Senator Bob Menendez to you and I.  And one of the reasons that he is still Senator Bob Menendez is that he just won re-election.  Of course, he won re-election before the incident that I’m about to tell you about happened.

According to AP reports, one of Menendez’s interns, an 18 year old Peruvian national, was just arrested for being illegally in the United States.  He entered legally, but allowed his visitor’s visa to expire.  In addition to being what some call ‘undocumented’ and others call ‘illegal,’ this young man named Luis Abraham Sanchez Zavaleta is reported to be a registered sex offender.

His job with Menendez?  Counseling on immigration matters. I kid you not.

The arrest for the immigration violation occurred on December 6, which for those who keep calendars is exactly one month after the election.  However, Zavaleta’s immigration and criminal status were apparently known to DHS well before that date, which leads to the conclusion that his arrest was delayed so as not to negatively impact Menendez’s election chances.

Given the fact that his challenger was unlikely to unseat him, it is upsetting to think that the government would conspire to change the timeline on an arrest so that a Democratic Senator could continue being a Democratic Senator. So far, it's just a thought, until it's confirmed.  But it's a troubling one.

As someone who deals with DHS and it’s sub-office ICE on a regular basis, I have a great deal of respect for the agents in the field who arrest and process immigrants.  It is highly unlikely that any of the low-level individuals who do this work had any hand in the decision-making, since their only concern is dealing with cases in an effective and expeditious manner.

If the AP's story is correct, the people who are responsible for this would be the politicos at the top of the administrative pyramid.

Menendez denies knowing about the intern's immigration or criminal status.  Quizas?

We'll have to watch this one play out.

About this blog
See Christine Flowers on Channel 6's "Inside Story" Sunday at 11:30 a.m.

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Christine M. Flowers Daily News Columnist
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