Tag Archives: Mexico

No surprise: After legalization, illegal pot sales boom in California

As reported by Thomas Fuller for the NY Times (via SF Gate): In the forests of Northern California, raids by law enforcement officials continue to uncover illicit marijuana farms. In Southern California, hundreds of illegal delivery services and pot dispensaries, some of them registered as churches, serve a steady stream of customers. And in Mendocino County, north of San Francisco, the sheriff’s office recently raided an illegal cannabis production facility that was processing 500 pounds of marijuana a day.

It’s been a little more than a year since California legalized marijuana — the largest such experiment in the United States — but law enforcement officials say the unlicensed, illegal market is still thriving and in some areas has even expanded. “There’s a lot of money to be made in the black market,” said Mendocino County Sheriff Thomas Allman, whose deputies seized cannabis oil worth more than $5 million in early April.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has declared that illegal grows in Northern California “are getting worse, not better” and two months ago redeployed a contingent of National Guard troops stationed on the border with Mexico to go after illegal cannabis farms instead.

Stepped-up enforcement comes with a certain measure of irony — legalization was meant to open a new chapter for the state, free from the legacy of heavy policing and incarceration for minor infractions. Instead, there are new calls for a crackdown on illegal selling.

Conscious of the consequences that the war on drugs had on black and Latino communities, cities like Los Angeles say they are wary of using criminal enforcement measures to police the illegal market and are unsure how to navigate this uncharted era.

The struggles of the licensed pot market in California are distinct from the experience of other states that have legalized cannabis in recent years. Sales in Colorado, Oregon and Washington grew well above 50 percent for each of the first three years of legalization, although Oregon now also has a large glut of pot.

But no other state has an illegal market on the scale of California’s, and those illicit sales are cannibalizing the revenue of licensed businesses and, in some cases, experts say, forcing them out of business.

Entrepreneurs in the industry, which spent decades evading the law, are now turning to the law to demand the prosecution of unlicensed pot businesses. “We are the taxpayers — no one else should be operating,” said Robert Taft, whose licensed cannabis business in Orange County, south of Los Angeles, has seen sales drop in recent months.

“This is starting to get ridiculous,” he said of the illegal pot shops, including nearby businesses that list themselves as churches and advertise marijuana as a kind of sacrament. “It’s almost like the state is setting itself up to lose.”

California gives cities wide latitude to regulate cannabis, resulting in a confusing patchwork of regulations. Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose and San Diego have laws allowing cannabis businesses, but most smaller cities and towns in the state do not — 80% of California’s nearly 500 municipalities do not allow retail marijuana businesses. The ballot measure legalizing recreational marijuana passed in 2016 with 57% approval, but that relatively broad support has not translated to the local level. Cities like Compton or Laguna Beach decisively rejected allowing pot shops.

Regulators cite this tepid embrace by California municipalities as one of many reasons for the state’s persistent and pervasive illegal market. Only 620 cannabis shops have been licensed in California so far. Colorado, with a population one-sixth the size of California, has 562 licensed recreational marijuana stores.

But the more fundamental reason for the strength of the black market in California — and what sets the state apart from others — is the huge surplus of pot. Since medical marijuana was made legal in California more than two decades ago, the cannabis industry flourished with minimal oversight. Now many cannabis businesses are reluctant to go through the cumbersome and costly process to obtain the licenses that became mandatory last year.

Of the roughly 14 million pounds of marijuana grown in California annually, only a fraction — less than 20% according to state estimates and a private research firm — is consumed in California. The rest seeps out across the country illicitly, through the mail, express delivery services, private vehicles and small aircraft that ply trafficking routes that have existed for decades.

This illicit trade has been strengthened by the increasing popularity of vaping, cannabis-infused candies, tinctures and other derivative products. Vape cartridges are much easier to carry and conceal than bags of raw cannabis. And the monetary incentives of trafficking also remain powerful: The price of cannabis products in places like Illinois, New York or Connecticut are typically many times higher than in California.

The state’s illicit cannabis exports appear to be increasing even now, well into California’s second year of legalization. New Frontier Data, a data research company that specializes in cannabis, calculates that high demand and more advanced growing techniques will contribute to approximately half a million pounds more illicit cannabis this year compared with 2018.

The federal government still considers marijuana illegal, and the Drug Enforcement Administration says it still investigates marijuana-related crimes. But a spokesman, Rusty Payne, said the agency has a bigger crisis to attend to.

“We’ve got our hands full with the opioid epidemic to be honest,” Payne said. In wildland areas, seizures of illicit pot by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife more than doubled in 2018, the first year that recreational cannabis was legal.

The department destroyed 1.6 million marijuana plants in 2018, up from 700,000 in 2017 and 800,000 the year before — all of them illegally grown.

“There’s a subset of people who are just refusing to get into the process,” said Nathaniel Arnold, the department’s deputy chief of enforcement.

Read the whole story here.

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Hypocritical left call for boycott of Tucker Carlson, ignore racist/homophobic comments by lefty pundits

Of course proggies are calling for a boycott of Fox News’ Tucker Carlson but they said absolutely NOTHING about Don Lemon’s blatantly racist comments or MSNBC’s Mika Brzezinski homophobic slurs to attack Mike Pompeo.

So typical of their double standards.

From MSN: At least 18 advertisers have now dropped “Tucker Carlson Tonight” after the Fox News host said in a show last Thursday that immigrants to the United States made the country “poorer” and “dirtier.”

As of Wednesday morning, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company, CareerBuilder, TD Ameritrade, Just For Men, United Explorer credit card, ScotteVest, Voya Financial, Zenni Optical, Pacific Life, Indeed, Bowflex, SmileDirectClub, NerdWallet, Minted, Ancestry.com, IHOP, Jaguar and SodaStream had all told TheWrap or stated publicly that they plan to suspend advertising on the program.

“SodaStream has asked Fox to remove us from the time slot,” the company said in a tweet Wednesday.
A spokesman for Takeda Pharmaceutical Company told TheWrap in a statement: “We have pulled our advertising off of Tucker Carlson’s show.”

On Monday, Carlson addressed the growing boycott campaign against his sponsors over his on-air remarks about immigration, telling viewers that he would not be intimidated.

“You’ve seen it a million times, it happens all the time,” he said. “The enforcers scream ‘racist’ on Twitter, until everyone gets intimidated and changes the subject to the Russia investigation or some other distraction. It’s a tactic, a well worn one. And it won’t work with the show, we’re not intimidated. We plan to say what’s true until the last day.

The pressure, however, has only grown with each defection, as liberal pressure groups like Media Matters for America and Sleeping Giants have kept up the pressure on Twitter. Activists like Jordan Uhl and Judd Legum posted real-time updates to their massive followings of companies whose ads appeared on Monday night’s show.

“We cannot and will not allow voices like Tucker Carlson to be censored by agenda-driven intimidation efforts from the likes of Moveon.org, Media Matters and Sleeping Giants,” a spokesperson for Fox News told TheWrap in a statement Tuesday afternoon. “Attempts were made last month to bully and terrorize Tucker and his family at their home. He is now once again being threatened via Twitter by far left activist groups with deeply political motives.

The statement continued: “While we do not advocate boycotts, these same groups never target other broadcasters and operate under a grossly hypocritical double standard given their intolerance to all opposing points of view.”
The flap began when Carlson remarked on Thursday night that immigrants have made the United States “poorer and dirtier and more divided.”

“As a company, we strongly disagree with Mr. Carlson’s statements. Our customer base and our workforce reflect the diversity of our great nation, something we take great pride in. We will not be advertising on Mr. Carlson’s show in the coming week as we reevaluate our relationship with his program.”

The boycott metastasized from there.

“We are actively working with our media buyers to confirm that SmileDirectClub is no longer running our ads around any political opinion shows,” the company told TheWrap on Monday.

Employment giant Indeed said Monday it has stopped advertising on Carlson’s show and has “no plans to advertise on this program in the future.”

Indeed responded in messages to several Twitter users that the company hadn’t run ads on “Tucker Carlson Tonight” for “over a month now.”

Read the whole story here.

FYI proggies: How’d that call for boycott (driven by Media Hogg) of Laura Ingraham’s show work out?

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Woman impaled by rebar while trying to enter US illegally

US Customs and Border Patrol photo

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes.

From NY Post: A mother attempting to climb over a fence on the US-Mexico border fell and was impaled on a steel bar in front of her children, officials said.

The 26-year-old woman from Guatemala pierced her side and buttocks when she landed on pieces of rebar Friday night near the San Ysidro Port of Entry, a border crossing between San Diego, Ca., and Tijuana, Mexico, US Customs and Border Patrol officials said in a statement.

Border Patrol agents in San Diego rescued the woman and she was taken to a hospital with minor injuries, the statement said.

Her two children, ages 3 and 5, were also taken to the hospital and later released into Border Patrol custody, officials said.

San Diego Sector Chief Patrol Agent Rodney Scott blasted the woman’s actions as “not only dangerous, but also very foolish.”

“This woman placed her own life and her children’s lives in peril,” Scott said in the statement.

The woman told agents she wasn’t part of the migrant caravan that’s made its way from Central America to the Mexican border town of Tijuana. Some migrants traveling with the caravan tried to breach a border fence on Sunday and were fired at with tear gas by US agents.

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ACLU sues Montana sheriff for denying illegal alien bond and honoring ICE detainer

Lincoln County Sheriff Roby Bowe

From KPAX.com: The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office is currently facing a lawsuit from the ACLU and the ACLU of Montana regarding a current inmate at the Lincoln County Detention Center.

Agustin Ramon, a dual citizen of France and Mexico, was arrested on Aug. 3 for a criminal burglary charge and his bond was posted at $25,000.

The ACLU lawsuit says that when Ramon tried to pay his bond he was told that because of an ICE detainer Lincoln County could not release him. Once an immigrant posts bond the ACLU of Montana argues that the immigrant must be released according to state law.

They argue that Lincoln County Sheriff Roby Bowe must act within state law and the ACLU of Montana hopes that the class-action lawsuit will end the use of ICE detainers in Lincoln County and around the state.

The ACLU also hopes that the lawsuit bring compensation for Ramon’s false imprisonment.

The Lincoln County Detention Center confirmed that they do have Ramon in their custody and that he is being held on a $25,000 bail for a criminal burglary charge and a border patrol hold.

Lincoln County Sheriff Roby Bowe could not be reached for comment.

According to the Missoulian, the ACLU believes that Sheriff Bowe is overstepping his boundaries by holding the illegal alien on suspected immigration violations, which would be a civil matter. The bond for burglary is a criminal matter.

The illegal alien moved to Montana in April and married his wife in May. An immigration rights attorney is assisting the suspected burglar and his wife with their immigration options.

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Libtard Jennifer Lawrence’s Dior campaign celebrating Mexican heritage slammed for cultural appropriation

Dior Instagram photo

Proggies always got their panties in a wad about something…

From Yahoo: Dior is facing backlash for cultural appropriation in campaign using Jennifer Lawrence.

In brand posts about the Dior Cruise 2019 collection, Lawrence is seen being photographed in the hills of California and heard talking about the indigenous people who motivated the brand’s designs. Although the campaign images are aesthetically pleasing, most people are displeased with Dior’s inability to secure a different face for the collection — namely, comedian Phoebe Robinson who took to her Instagram to make a statement against the brand.

Dior and Jennifer Lawrence wanna celebrate traditional Mexican women riders thru a ‘modern lens’…by having a rich white woman named Jennifer be the face of this campaign? And like they couldn’t think of a better landscape to shoot than in California?!” the 2 Dope Queens actress wrote. “The audacity to call this s*** modern because it’s worn by a white woman is ignorant and gross, but unfortunately, not surprising.”

Other Instagram users have commented on the post to echo Robinson’s statement. “I’m extremely disappointed that yet again, major brands are using a rich white woman to promote other cultures. This is cultural appropriation not appreciation. Do better,” one person wrote. Another said, “My understanding of the word celebrate is different than Dior’s.”

However, others are praising Dior for celebrating another culture and acknowledging where the inspiration came from. Some have even pointed out that Lawrence has had a contract with the brand for years.

“The company is Dior and their brand ambassador is Jennifer Lawrence. They are honoring another culture with love and admiration! Nothing wrong with that!” someone said. “It is 2018 and people should know how fashion works. The woman is just doing her job and good on her too. Maybe if a woman with Mexican heritage was the brand ambassador for Dior then she would have represented this campaign,” wrote another.

Dior has yet to publicly respond to the controversy and didn’t immediately reply to Yahoo Lifestyle’s request for comment.

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Illegal alien killed three people after release from sanctuary county in New Jersey

Illegal alien Perez got a free pass in Middlesex County/AP Photo

From Fox News: An illegal alien accused of a triple murder in Missouri was previously jailed and released in New Jersey on domestic violence charges, authorities said, putting the spotlight on the conflict between local and immigration authorities nationwide.

Luis Rodrigo Perez, 23, a native of Mexico, is charged with fatally shooting two men and wounding two others on Nov. 1 and fatally shooting a woman the next day.

He was being held on domestic violence charges at the Middlesex County Jail in New Jersey in December 2017 and was released in February, NJ.com reported.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials said they placed a detainer on Perez while he was in custody, but the request was not honored nor was the agency notified when he was let go, said Corey Price, acting executive director of ICE.

“Yet again, an ICE detainer was ignored and a dangerous criminal alien was released to the streets and is now charged with killing three people,” Price said. “Had ICE’s detainer request in December 2017 been honored by Middlesex County Jail, Luis Rodrigo Perez would have been placed in deportation proceedings and likely sent home to his country – and three innocent people might be alive today.

“It is past time that localities realize the perils of dangerous sanctuary policies and resume their primary goal of protecting their residents,” Price added.

In an email to the Associated Press, Middlesex County officials said the detainer wasn’t honored because it didn’t meet the necessary criteria. “This order would have authorized Middlesex County to turn over custody of Mr. Perez prior to, or upon completion of his sentence,” they wrote. “Instead ICE officials chose to do nothing, which places all responsibility of Mr. Perez’s actions squarely upon ICE.”

The county said it adopted a policy last year of honoring detainer requests from ICE if the inmate has convictions for first- or second-degree offenses or is ordered deported by a federal judge.

During Perez’s stint in jail, ICE never requested an order of deportation against Perez, county officials wrote.

Missouri law enforcement officials believe Perez and Aaron Anderson, 19, killed their ex-roommates Steven Marler, 38, and Aaron Hampton, 23, after they were kicked out of their Springfield home.

Perez is also accused of killing a 21-year-old Sabrina Starr the next day at her house. He is charged with eight felony counts in the shootings.

Read the whole story here.

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Sanctuary Oregon: ICE put hold months ago on illegal alien now accused of killing his wife

Free to roam in sanctuary Oregon: Illegal alien Gallardo/Clackamas County Sheriff’s photo

From Oregon Live: Federal officers say they placed an immigration hold in March on a man facing domestic violence allegations but the Multnomah County jail wouldn’t recognize their civil detainer.

The man is now accused of killing his wife and dumping her body in a ditch near a summer camp outside Sandy in Clackamas County.

The case is the latest to shine the spotlight on Oregon’s controversial sanctuary law just as voters in next week’s election will decide whether to repeal the law.

The matter goes to the heart of the debate over the 31-year-old law, a major thorn in the side of the Trump administration’s crackdown on illegal immigration. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has singled out Oregon and other states with similar laws as a haven for criminals who don’t belong in the United States.

It also exposes the fraying relationship between the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The latest case has both agencies accusing the other of not protecting the Portland community.

ICE officials said they put a hold on Martin Gallo-Gallardo on March 6 after he was arrested and accused of felony fourth-degree assault in the alleged abuse of his wife. The agency provided The Oregonian/OregonLive with a copy of the receipt from the fax they sent to the Sheriff’s Office.

Gallo-Gallardo, a Mexican citizen, illegally entered the U.S., according to ICE. Border Patrol officers had previously apprehended him multiple times, federal officials said.

ICE wanted the county jail to alert immigration officers before Gallo-Gallardo’s release so they could pick him up and hold him for deportation proceedings.

County sheriff’s officials said they didn’t get the ICE request but wouldn’t have followed it anyway. They argue that the detainers are administrative requests, not criminal warrants, and don’t meet state and federal law.

Gallo-Gallardo, 45, posted bail and prosecutors soon dismissed the felony assault allegations when his wife and a daughter wouldn’t cooperate in the case and a grand jury didn’t return an indictment, according to court records and investigators.

This week, Gallo-Gallardo was charged with murder, accused of fatally stabbing his wife, Coral Rodriguez Lorenzo, 38.

An ICE spokeswoman suggested if Multnomah County had alerted the federal agency so its officers could pick up and hold Gallo-Gallardo before he was released from jail, he probably wouldn’t have returned to his family.

“ICE maintains that cooperation by local law enforcement is an indispensable component of promoting public safety,” said Tanya J. Roman, a spokeswoman for the ICE regional office that covers Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Alaska.

“It’s unfortunate that law enforcement agencies like the Multnomah County jail refuse to work with ICE to promote public safety by holding criminals accountable and providing justice and closure for their victims,” she said.

Sheriff Mike Reese has said his deputies will hold a person for ICE only when they receive a federal criminal arrest warrant signed by a judge, and won’t share information with federal immigration authorities.

The Sheriff’s Office said it never received the civil detainer for Gallo-Gallardo, though it wouldn’t have kept him on an administrative immigration hold in any case, said Sgt. Brandon White, sheriff’s spokesman.

The Sheriff’s Office pushed back at ICE in a scathing response Friday. “ICE is putting our community at risk with their failed enforcement strategy of not using the authority the agency already has to hold people accountable,” the office said in a statement.

“No Oregon jail can hold someone on a civil detainer based on the federal court case Miranda Oliveras v. Clackamas County. The U.S. Attorney’s Office knows this, ICE knows this, but they persist in pursuing this failed strategy. Federal officials had ample time to do their job. They had his name, address and his telephone number.

Read the whole story here.

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Sanctuary Oregon: Young couple killed on motorcycle by drunk illegal alien

Illegal Vargas (l) free to roam sanctuary Oregon/Breitbart photo

What say you sanctuary-lover Gov. Brown, about the permanent separation of these parents from their three children?

From KATU: Police identified the motorcycle riders who were killed by a suspected DUII driver on Highway 22 early Sunday morning.

Initial reports state Eduardo de la Lima Vargas was towing a horse trailer in his pickup when he ran a red light and hit a motorcycle carrying Logan and Jessica Wilson, ages 34 and 32, as they were making a lefthand turn onto the highway.

The Wilsons were taken to the hospital and were later pronounced deceased.

The motorcycle ended up underneath the pickup, and both vehicles caught fire. Emergency responders managed to get the horse out of the trailer. It is unhurt and staying with Polk County Search & Rescue for the time being.

According to investigators, Lima Vargas had a blood-alcohol content of .10 percent, which is above the legal limit.

The 39-year-old was booked into the Marion County Jail on two counts of manslaughter, reckless endangering, reckless driving, and DUII.

Family and friends created a GoFundMe account to help the Wilson’s three children who lost their parents. If you’d like to donate, click here.

What the KATU article doesn’t mention is that the perp is an illegal alien. From Daily Caller:

“Additionally, Vargas is now the subject of a federal immigration detention request. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) confirmed the detainer Aug. 24 in a statement to Salem-based crime researcher David Olen Cross, who shared it Thursday with TheDCNF.

On August 23, 2018, ICE deportation officers lodged an immigration detainer with the Marion County Jail on Eduardo De la Lima Vargas, following his arrest for DUI resulting in death,” agency spokesperson Lori Haley said in a statement, according to Cross. “Mr. De la Lima Vargas is a citizen of Mexico illegally residing in the United States.”

h/t Breitbart

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Separated families: MS-13 gang members, including 10 illegal aliens, charged in death of Virginia teens

dead teens mendez and triminio fairfax county police dept photo

Permanently separated from their families: Mendez (l) and Triminio (r)/Fairfax County Police Dept. photo


From Fox News: Eleven MS-13 gang members – all of whom are illegal immigrants aliens except one – are facing life in prison after being charged in the kidnappings and deaths of two teens whose bodies were dug up in a Virginia park last year.
The ages of the male gang members charged Friday ranged from 20 to 27. All of them are from El Salvador and only one – who is believed to have fled the country – is not in police custody, according to NBC Washington.
Police uncovered the bodies of 17-year-old Edvin Escobar Mendez and 14-year-old Sergio Arita Triminio at Holmes Run Park in March 2017 after receiving a tip. The two teens disappeared just weeks apart the prior year.
After Mendez vanished and was reported missing by his family, his brother tracked down Triminio – one of his friends – who revealed to him that Mendez was “abducted or killed” because the MS-13 members thought he was allied with a rival gang.
Two days after that reported conversation, Triminio, who lived near Holmes Run Park, disappeared while taking out the trash. “He never came back,” his mother said.
Investigators believe Triminio was killed because the MS-13 members thought he was working as a police informant, a federal indictment said. A court-ordered electronic monitoring device that Triminio was wearing, per his probation orders, stopped working the day he vanished, the documents added.
All but one of the men facing the conspiracy to kidnap charges are reported to be illegal immigrants aliens, and one suspect is facing a conspiracy to commit murder in aid of racketeering charge.
The names of those charged are Elmer Zelaya Martinez, 27, Erick Palacios Ruiz, 20, Ronald Herrera Contreras, 20, Josue Vigil Mejia, 21, Henry Zelaya Martinez, 24, Oscar Contreras Aguilar, 20, Yonathan Melgar Martinez, 21, Pablo Miguel Barrera Velasco, 20, Anderson Villatoro, 21, Francisco Avila Avalos, 20 and Fredys Baires Abarca, 20. Their gang member aliases included nicknames such as “Killer”, “Horror” and “Lil Clandestino”.
All of them are charged with conspiracy to kidnap, while Aguilar is also charged with conspiracy to commit murder in aid ofracketeering.
MS-13 was started by Central American immigrants, mainly from El Salvador, in Los Angeles in the 1980s and has expanded to include Hondurans, Guatamalans, Mexicans and other Central and South Americans.
President Trump’s Justice and Homeland Security Departments have made targeting the gang a top priority. The president himself has used the word “animals” to describe the gang.
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Washington state governor gives $1.2 million taxpayer dollars to assist illegal aliens

gov insleee
Don’t let the lack of the word “illegal” in this story fool you. Gov. Inslee has, in effect, turned Washington state into a sanctuary state.
From MyNorthwest.com: Just hours after President Trump signed an executive order to keep families together at the U.S.-Mexico border, Washington state Governor Jay Inslee called the policy child abuse and announced he will give $1.2 million to support Northwest Immigrant Rights Project’s civil legal aid services.
The money will be used to defend immigrant rights and to help families reunite.
“We know that this was an intentional infliction of abusive behavior to punish innocent children,” Inslee said. “It is a form of child abuse.”
The governor said that everyone is entitled to a fair and due process, and to be treated with dignity and respect.
As for Trump’s executive order, Inslee said it’s too late. The damage has been done. “We have more than 2,300 children separated from their parents today,” Inslee said.
The governor said Trump’s administration has lied about the separation of children from their parents, why they did what they did to the children, lied about who is responsible, and lied about what it will take to reunite families.
Inslee and state Attorney General Bob Ferguson sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Department of Homeland Security head Kirstjen Nielsen for answers about why the policy was enacted and about the location of the children and parents. He said they have not received answers.
Trump said on Wednesday, “We are keeping families together.” But he added the “zero tolerance” policy will continue.
Vice President Mike Pence added that they are calling upon Congress to change the laws. Trump added that the word “compassion” comes into it.
The president has been trying to win over congressional support on immigration amid a crisis along the border involving the separation of immigrant children from their families.
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