Reason Podcast

ProPublica's Dara Lind on Trump's Immigration Raids

ProPublica’s Dara Lind on how the president’s workplace raids affect consumers, employers, and immigrants.


Donald Trump launched his presidential campaign by warning that America had become a "dumping ground" for immigrants, and that Mexico in particular was sending criminals and people with "lots of problems." His presidency has been marked by anti-immigrant rhetoric.

In the summer of 2019, President Trump previewed sweeping immigration raids, tweeting that "Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States."

The Trump administration, like the Obama administration before it, had already conducted raids targeting undocumented immigrants, but Trump was promising a series of actions that were intended to at least create the impression of a step-up in immigration enforcement around the country.

That culminated in early August, when Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agents conducted one of the largest worksite immigration raids in U.S. history, arresting nearly 700 chicken plant workers in Mississippi on suspicion of working illegally. The raids, which were conducted jointly with the Department of Justice, left young children separated from their parents.

The Trump administration has defended the raids, saying they had been in the works for over a year—and arguing that the workplaces were exploiting undocumented workers.

Are these raids just for show? Does Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric actually encourage asylum seekers? And what's the connection between the Obama-era raids and Trumps? Reason's Peter Suderman sat down with ProPublica reporter Dara Lind to discuss these questions and more.

Audio production by Ian Keyser.

'Bottom Feeders' by Audiobinger is licensed under CC BY-NC 4.0

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  1. This was lame the first time it was posted.

  2. Good band name

  3. I cannot wait until Democrats regain the White House in 2020. Since the Democratic Party is clearly moving toward the Koch / Reason open borders position, immigration raids and deportation will become a thing of the past.


  4. We already had this discussion. ProPublica is still a terrible rag. And old mexican already proved he is a racist bigot as he threw a temper tantrum.

    1. Actually, Old Mexican has conducted himself exceptionally well lately. He’s one of the most principled libertarians who have posted here, along with Mr. Buttplug and (the unfortunately banned) Michael Hihn.


    2. ProPublica finds and consolidates political donations and some other facts, which is the only good thing that they do.

      As you say, their commentary and articles are as shitty as reason. Which explains why reason invited someone from ProPublica to write here…as if Shikha, Suderman, Eric Boehm on immigration are not bad enough.

  5. Well well. Now we know why John, Jesse & others are describing the El Paso shooting as “violence from the left”.

    1. They are useful idiots that get their marching orders from talk radio. Do you think they come up with these points on their own?

      1. You’ve never offered a valid argument in your life.

    2. Nazism is Leftwing Socialism.

      If the White Supremacist people want to own and control the means of production to keep non-Whites from participating in the economy then its Socialism.

    3. How cute. Jeff sti proves he doesnt read primary sources.

      And what are your thoughts on 4 attacks on ICE centers in the last 4 weeks baby jeffrey? Are those because of democratic rhetoric? Is the dayton shooter still non politic despite his myriad of postings about politics? One day you’ll understand how stupid you are. Probably when your kid hits 5th grade and calls you a dumbass.

      1. Well well, looks like I struck a nerve.
        Looks like Jesse is going for the whataboutism defense.

        1. chemjeff loves it when his lefty boos commit violence.

        2. ‘Whataboutism’…….. what educated people call history.

          But what else would I expect from a Canadian pedophile?

    4. I love how Jeff thinks the left doesnt push narratives of their own. I cant get over how fucking dumb jeffrey is.

      1. I love how Jeff thinks the left doesnt push narratives of their own.

        Umm, I do? Where did I say that I believe “the left doesn’t push narratives of their own”?

        1. You just go right ahead regurgitating them

  6. Has anyone written about the anti-immigrant, pro-populist effects of ignoring the people on immigration law? Because you can see the effects of doing that at the polls in France, Germany, Italy, the UK, and the USA.

    Anybody who whines about anti-immigrant policies and doesn’t account for the pro-populist consequences of elitists ignoring the public’s will on immigration is probably either stupid or being disingenuous.

    Suffice it to say, opening our borders to more legal immigrants will probably only happen at the expense of illegal immigration. Meanwhile, if you don’t want the voters to stack up behind anti-immigrant populists, like they have in France, Germany, Italy, the UK, and the US, you’d probably do better to argue for changing the laws–rather than whining about enforcement.

  7. I stopped visiting this blog a couple of years ago bc of Reason’s open borders Koch-ism. Unregistered as a libertarian over that same issue, after being an L for 20 years. Came back to the blog today and what do I see? Same crap as before, but just a handful of the old commenters. So, I guess…bye again.

  8. Ninth just removed a block on trump’s new asylum rules. Reason writers are about to go apoplectic.

  9. By the way jeffrey, all your memo does is reinforce your own beliefs. The rest of us actually read the manifesto and saw he was a racing lunatic who had more in common with bernie and other leftists. He hated immigration because it would degrade the welfare state he desired. He wanted UBI and was an eco nut quoting Seuss for fuck sakes.

    Honestly how dumb are you to think trump inspired him?

    1. all your memo does is reinforce your own beliefs.

      You mean the memo written by House Republicans? That memo?

      It was a coordinated messaging strategy by Republicans to blame the El Paso shooter on “violence from the left” and you are serving as their useful idiot in this effort.

      The rest of us actually read the manifesto and saw he was a racing lunatic who had more in common with bernie and other leftists.

      Huh I didn’t realize he was a fan of NASCAR. Was that in the manifesto?

      Believe it or not, you are not the only one who read the manifesto. I read it too and I cannot understand how anyone with a straight face can claim that the shooting represents “violence from the left”. I understand why you, John, and Republicans generally do, because they are not interested in truth, only in messaging and narrative pushing. So you emphasize the minor portion of the manifesto dealing with his views on the environment and population control – which are indeed left-wing type views – and you ignore the major part of the manifesto, which dealt with “Hispanic invasion” and “cultural and ethnic replacement” and support for the Christchurch shooter and his admiration of the novel Great Replacement (not exactly a left-wing screed) and worries that Texas would turn blue based on all of the Hispanic immigration (something that he regarded as a BAD THING) and his opposition to miscegenation. A great many of his arguments, quite frankly, are ones that could have been written right here in these very forums by some of our decidedly non-leftist colleagues.

      You are a tribal idiot who can’t see beyond “left wing bad” and so therefore all bad things must be “on the left”.

      And by the way. I don’t even argue that he was “inspired by Trump”. HE HIMSELF doesn’t say that he was, and so I take him at his word. I do think he was inspired by recent right-wing anti-immigrant radicalization which he fused together with left-wing environmental reasons to justify what he did.

      1. If you read it youd know it wasnt only about immigration. Yet you continue to push the democeat and media narrative as you accuse others of pushing narratives. You are literally the useful idiot chipper mentioned.

        If you noticed the date of the memo you would see it was after those of us who read his manifesto began mentioning the UBI and environmental issues of the manifesto you raging retard. So how were we influenced by it, unless you believe in time traveling memorandum.

        1. If you read it youd know it wasnt only about immigration.

          You’re right! It was not ONLY about immigration! But his immigration fears constituted the major part of his manifesto.

          Yet you continue to push the democeat and media narrative as you accuse others of pushing narratives.

          Actually no. Did you read what I wrote? I said HE WASN’T INSPIRED BY TRUMP. What is the media saying? “He was inspired by Trump”.

          Credit where credit is due, no?

      2. Oh no! Republicans did coordinated messaging!

        Now do Democrats and the media.

  10. The question isn’t “why is Trump doing these ICE raids” or “what is the negative impact of ICE workplace raids”…

    The question is, why isn’t this actually being done like it is supposed to be. We collect all this information to enforce residency/citizenship/work permit restrictions. Every time you take a job you have to supply 2 forms of ID from column A, 1 from B, etc.

    The promise was that we’ll grant a 1 time amnesty (for the second time) and then we’ll enforce immigration law on employers and force them to comply with the law and prevent them from hiring illegal immigrants.

    And then that never happened. We put all the procedures in place, HR departments spend tens or hundreds of millions of dollars complying with these restrictions every year… and then nobody checks anything, so illegals can work anywhere they’d like.

    Every workplace should be getting routine audits. Repeat offenders even more so.

    Whether we should have a guest worker visa program, or greatly increase our immigration quotas or take some other action to fill the need for these workers is an entirely separate question. But the last thing we should do is continue failing to enforce existing employer mandates while encouraging illegal immigration. This hurts everyone and creates a second class group of workers. And that certainly isn’t any good for anyone.

    1. That sounds like a whole bunch of big government bureaucracy.

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