In response to President Trump's announcement that he is winding down the Obama-era DACA program, Democratic congressman and outspoken Hispanic Caucus member Luis Gutierrez (IL) launched into a shameful rant about White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, who the congressman said was a "disgrace to the uniform he used to wear." Gen. Kelly, said Gutierrez, should be "drummed out of the White House along with the white supremacists and those enabling the President’s actions by ‘just following orders.'"
Gutierrez has been one of the most vocal pro-illegal immigrant activists in Congress and has often spouted hyperbolic rhetoric, but this is perhaps his most over-the-top and over-the-line diatribe yet. According to Gutierrez, who has never served, Gen. Kelly, who served a distinguished 46-year career in the armed forces and whose son gave the ultimate sacrifice for his country, has nullified those decades of service because Trump has decided to phase out Obama's executive overreach on illegal immigration.
"General Kelly is a hypocrite who is a disgrace to the uniform he used to wear," said Gutierrez in a statement issued shortly after Trump's announcement of the six-month end-date on DACA. "He has no honor and should be drummed out of the White House along with the white supremacists and those enabling the President’s actions by ‘just following orders.'"
Gen. Kelly, claims Gutierrez, had promised to protect the so-called "DREAMers" — illegal immigrants who entered the country as children and were granted temporary amnesty, social security cards, and access to welfare benefits by Obama's executive fiat.
"General Kelly, when he was the head of Homeland Security, lied straight to the faces of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus about preventing the mass deportation of DREAMers," Gutierrez alleged. "Now as Chief of Staff, this former general is executing the plan to take away their lifeline and taking steps to criminalize young people who live and work here legally."
What Gutierrez fails to acknowledge in his inflammatory and hysterical statement is that Obama — by his own standard — overstepped his authority and bypassed Congress on an issue that falls under the legislative branch's purview, not the executive branch. Gutierrez also fails to mention that Trump's six-month wind down is designed to allow Congress to choose how to handle the DREAMers. No one is actually talking about "mass deportation," as Gutierrez and his fellow illegal immigrant activists repeatedly scream.
Gutierrez is also blaming the wrong person. Gen. Kelly no longer runs the Department of Homeland Security. He serves now as Trump's chief of staff and thus plays no role in policy-making. As for Kelly supposedly "lying straight to the faces" of Congressional Hispanic Caucus members, that seems highly unlikely. As Ed Morissey documents here, Kelly never made any public statement making a hard and fast promise to protect DACA.
Gutierrez is the true disgrace here. He should apologize to the man whose sacrifice and record puts the petty, partisan congressman to shame. If his party has any sense of dignity left, it should demand he publicly apologize immediately — and then do us all a favor and find another job.