Immigration is one of the most sensitive issues for both major parties. Democrats try to appeal to the families of illegal immigrants while Republicans court the vote of Americans who have been professionally displaced by foreign labor. Not surprisingly, Trump’s decision to end DACA has spurred emotional reactions from both sides of the political aisle.
As Fox News reports, Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) issued a statement in which he criticized the White House for rescinding DACA and specifically attacked President Trump’s Chief of Staff, former-General John Kelly, whom Gutierrez accused of being a “disgrace to the uniform.”
Gutierrez apparently took aim at the Chief of Staff because the retired Marine Corps General and former Secretary of Homeland Security once told Latino lawmakers during a closed-door meeting that he was supportive of DACA–although he admitted the program was illegal.
The Illinois Congressman released his statement on the House.gov website shortly after the much-anticipated DACA announcement was made by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. In his remarks, Gutierrez calls the President’s cabinet “white supremacists.”
He also accused the President of organizing “mass deportations.” However, Breitbart notes that DACA beneficiaries have the next six months to renew their work permits. If approved, these permits will grant them an additional two years in the country, which would presumably allow them time to put their affairs in order.
Gutierrez wrote: “Immigrant youth, immigrant families, and our allies in all sectors of American life are here to stay, regardless of the President’s mass deportation fantasies and objectives. Americans will not let this President dictate the fate of the immigrants who have placed so much trust in their country.”
It was after a few more passages criticizing the President that Gutierrez set his sights on Kelly, making disparaging remarks about his military service and saying he “lied” to the House of Representative’s Hispanic Caucus.
“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. 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.
“General Kelly is a hypocrite who is a disgrace to the uniform he used to wear. 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.'”
As CNN notes, Kelly has spent nearly all his adult life in military service. He had only been retired from his role as a Marine Corps General for eight months before President Trump brought him into the administration as Secretary of Homeland Security. Prior to that, Kelly had served in various positions of military leadership, including chief of Southern Command.
As reported by the Washington Post, Kelly’s son, Robert, was killed by a landmine while on a tour of duty in Iraq in 2010. It should be noted that Rep. Luis Gutierrez has never served in the military.
Many people took to Twitter to criticize Gutierrez for having called Kelly a “disgrace to the uniform.” At this time, the Illinois Congressman has not issued an apology for his statement.