68,000 illegal immigrants with criminal convictions let go in 2013….

Seems like U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials are pushing back on getting beat up for the record number of deportations they have done during the Obama administration….

“ICE released 68,000 criminal aliens in 2013, or 35 percent of the criminal aliens encountered by officers. The vast majority of these releases occurred because of the Obama administration’s prosecutorial discretion policies,” Jessica Vaughn, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, wrote in a memo summarizing the DHS document.

ICE classifies illegal immigrants as criminal if they have been convicted of a crime, not including traffic offense, Vaughn noted.

Sen. Jeff Sessions (Ala.), the ranking Republican on the Budget Committee, blasted the administration’s record.

“The preponderance of the evidence demonstrates that immigration enforcement in America has collapsed. Even those with criminal convictions are being released. DHS is a department in crisis,” he said in a statement Sunday.

“Secretary Johnson must reject the president’s demands to weaken enforcement further and tell him that his duty, and his officers’ duty, is to enforce the law – not break it,” he added in reference to Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson.

A spokeswoman for ICE did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Advocacy groups on both sides of the immigration debate have fired salvos back and forth over Obama’s track record enforcing the law.

Republicans say they cannot trust Obama to enforce the law and Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) cited that as an obstacle to passing immigration reform through the House.

Pro-immigrant groups argue Obama has enforced the law too zealously.

More…

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