Happy New Year, New York! Meet your newest neighbors. All are in the U.S. illegally, and were on their way to jail and/or facing deportation until Santa Cuomo granted them clemency.
A press release from the governor’s office explains that Cuomo’s pardons are being “extended to individuals convicted of minor offenses” and are intended as a statement of opposition to the Trump administration’s “war on our border against immigrant [sic] communities.”
Pardons and commutations of sentences are, moreover, being “granted to individuals demonstrating remorse, rehabilitation and commitment to their communities.” It’s all very touching.
While many of the criminals (entering the country illegally is a crime, whether Cuomo recognizes it or not) are being pardoned for drug-related offenses, including sale of a controlled substance, some have committed more serious offenses, including robbery, attempted arson, and assault in the first degree.
“Criminal justice reform,” which frees prison inmates convicted of lesser offenses, is viewed as a positive by advocates on both sides of the political spectrum. Even President Trump signed a bill to that effect as one of his last acts of 2018. Releasing non-hardened criminals puts money back in the taxpayer’s pocket.
But when the purpose of such acts is to “help keep immigrant [sic] families together and take a critical step toward a more just, more fair and more compassionate New York,” as Cuomo’s press release states, the greater good of the American people is no longer the guiding force.