Ted Cruz lays out the shameful facts behind illegal immigration to Director of ICE

The progressive line claims that a lot of illegal immigrants are hard working people who are just here to help their families and do the jobs Americans don't want to do. Their only crime is entering into this country. When the Director of ICE, Sarah Saldana, tried to spin these talking points to Sen. Ted Cruz, he wasn't having it. Cruz schooled her on the facts behind illegal immigration, and how the Obama administration's actions have endangered the American people.

Listen to the beginning of today's podcast for more:

Below is a rush transcript, it may contain errors:

PAT: Meanwhile, Ted Cruz had sitting in front of him yesterday the director of ICE, Sarah Saldana. And he was talked to her about -- the criminal illegal aliens. Okay. Not the people coming in. Just the good, hard-working, decent human beings trying to support their family. Not to say that the criminal illegals aren't good decent hard-working people trying to support their family. They just happen to do it while they break the law.

STU: Technically, all illegal immigrants whether they're good or not are breaking the law as they're trying to feed their families.

PAT: But that's they didn't have a Post-It note when they should have. Their mom didn't give them the Post-It note that said, my son may cross the border. They didn't have that.

STU: That's the issue. That's the undocumented part of that. But Cruz is specifically talking about something else though. He's talking about people with real criminal activity, not just violations of laws that we don't enforce.

PAT: Right.

TED: In the year 2013, how many criminal illegal aliens did the Obama administration release?

SARAH: In '14, it was a little over 30,000.

PAT: That wasn't the question though. He said 2013. And then she goes, well, in '14, it was 30,000. Keep going.

TED: How many murderers?

SARAH: In that year, sir, I can't remember the number right now, but I know that we had -- the statistic that was said earlier, the four-year period from 2010 to 2014, that there were 121 persons who committed crimes afterwards. But I can't provide you the exact number.

TED: How many rapists?

SARAH: I am not sure right now. I'd have to pull that number.

PAT: Keep in mind, this is important information, Ted Cruz, being a lawyer, knows that you never ask a question you don't already know the answer to. This much he already knows, so just bear that in mind.

TED: How many drunk drivers?

SARAH: Same answer. I can certainly bring that down for you. And, in fact, I think we're working on that right now. It's been requested before.

TED: Yesterday, how many murderers did the Obama administration release?

SARAH: Now, Senator, I don't know the answer to that question, but I want the American people to understand our job and our mission, if I may.

TED: Ms. Saldana, I want to note that your testimony here when I asked you how many criminals ICE released in 2013, you were off by a factor of three. You said 30,000. The correct answer is 104,000. There were 68,000 criminals, criminal illegal alien that ICE declined to begin deportation proceedings against, despite the fact as Senator Sessions observed the federal law that you're holding up there says they shall be deported. The Obama administration refused to deport them. That's 68,000.

In addition to that, there were 36,000 in deportation proceedings with criminal convictions that the Obama administration released, and I would note that among those were 193 murderers with homicide convictions, were 426 people with sexual assault convictions, were over 16,000 criminal illegal aliens with drunk driving convictions released by this administration because this administration refuses to follow the law.

Ms. Saldana, I will note in your opening statement here, you said after listening to the victim's family that you were so sorry for their losses.

And yet the Obama administration keeps doing it. When I asked you how many murderers were released yesterday, you don't know. There is a reason the American people are upset. If President Obama had the courage of his convictions, he would come and look in the eyes of these men and women who have lost their sons, their daughters, their mothers, their sisters, their brothers, and the administration would stop releasing murderers and rapists.

PAT: That's why I love this guy. It's just great. Great.

STU: It's a topic we talked about quite a bit lately. What an interesting way to handle it. What a really, really competent way to handle a difficult issue by Ted Cruz.

PAT: Yeah, there are others that don't handle it that way. I won't name any. But there are others who do not handle it like he did.

STU: What a great way to handle it though.

PAT: It's great. He got an admission by her. I didn't include the whole thing because it's like eight minutes long. But at one point to the 104,000 figure of criminal illegal aliens released by the Obama administration, she said that's absolutely right. That's absolutely right. Fully aware with it.

JEFFY: And yet earlier, we have to break out those numbers.

PAT: Yeah, I don't know what those numbers are. Other people have asked about that. I was going to look at those numbers, and then I didn't. It's 193 murderers. How do you release murderers? How do you do that?

STU: Yeah, we've seen that happen a few times. Dukakis. Huckabee. These things destroyed campaigns when you did one of them that went out and did something. But this administration does it constantly. It's actually policy. And the interesting thing about this -- about Saldana is it's not her fault. I mean, she's the one up there answering for a terrible policy.

PAT: Yeah, but she agrees with the policy. She testified to that.

STU: I think she probably does. But, again, it's the Obama administration responsible for this. If the Obama administration said, hey, look, we need to not release murderers. Zero murderers needs to be the number. She would have to go along with that policy. That's her job or she would quit. One of the two.

PAT: When you ask the question, how many criminal illegal alien murderers did the Obama administration release yesterday? The answer should be zero. None. We didn't release anybody like that. It's a ridiculous question, senator. Zero.

STU: If you can't clear that hurdle. Think of how low that hurdle is. We didn't release any murderers yesterday. If you can't say that, I'm going to go ahead and say your policy isn't working.

PAT: Yes.

STU: Let me ask you this, Pat, personally. How many murderers did you release yesterday?

PAT: Altogether? Are we talking about citizens as well as noncitizens?

STU: Yeah. I'll open it up to that. Citizens and noncitizens, how many murderers did you open up to the public to murder more? Just yesterday.

PAT: Just carry the one.

STU: Don't forget. Remember, this includes brunch.

PAT: Oh. Okay. I'll figure that in. Bring the two. Add the brunch.

None. Yeah, zero.

STU: None? You can say that confidently?

PAT: It's an usual day, but none yesterday.

STU: These are not tough questions.

PAT: They're really not. And somehow we make them really difficult because we have the dumbest immigration policy on the planet. I don't think there's any question that we're the only ones on earth who act this way. Who have these policies. Who allow ourselves to ignore our laws. And just keep going down that same path, even though it's hurt us time and time again. Even though it's causing tragedy after tragedy for our citizenry and costing you see billions and billions of dollars every year. We keep going down the same path. Then what do they say? Well, we need comprehensive immigration reform. No, we don't. Because that's a code phrase for amnesty. And that's not what we need. What we need is to follow the existing laws. If we just did that, we'd be a lot further ahead.

STU: Yeah, that solves 90 percent of the issues. Yes, there will still be some issues you have to deal with. But that gets you 90 percent of the way there.

PAT: It really does. And close the border. Secure it as best you can.

STU: That's part of the law, right?

PAT: We don't follow the law.

STU: When you talk about comprehensive immigration reform, the reason why people say it is because we all -- if you take those words as to the words they actually mean. Like, comprehensive immigration reform. You know what, pretty much everyone on the planet would agree, even people trying to immigrate here. Even people trying to close the border down. Even people who just look at what we're doing now, not enforcing our laws, would agree that we need massive reform of our immigration system. I would completely agree with that general sentiment. But you're right, Pat. That has become code -- comprehensive immigration reform is a phrase that tests well because of what I just talked about.

PAT: Yeah. And it shouldn't.

STU: And it means something different. It means that you're going to give amnesty. It means you'll have all these other crazy policies. New policies. Kind of jammed in there. That's not what we're talked about. You're right. 90 percent of the problem probably goes away if you are just enforce the law.

PAT: Remove incentives, enforce the law, secure the border. It's a fairly simple three-step process. And the comprehensive immigration reform phrase has been around since George W. Bush, by the way. We knew what it meant at that time because they explained. He would talk about comprehensive -- we need comprehensive immigration reform when I come back from Europe, we'll get that done. We need a comprehensive plans. Which means a plan that you can comprehend.

(laughter)

Of course, that's not what it meant. It meant that they were going to grant a pathway to citizenship for 11 to 20 million illegals that are here. They'll go to the front of the line. They're not going to pay -- people talk all the time. Well, they need to pay a penalty. They need to go to the back of the line. That doesn't happen. And we've been down that road with Ronald Reagan in 1986. How is it that we don't learn anything from our mistakes?

STU: Right. And those are typically policies that are, you know, proposed by Republicans. The beginning negotiating point is they'll pay a fine. Which of course, when you start a negotiation with we're going to pay a fine, what basically happens is either that fine will be nonexistent or much, much less. And it's funny because people who deride the way we handle immigration, like myself, would say, hey, we don't treat this as an actual offense. We treat it as a kind of speeding ticket. Well, if you show up and you're not supposed to be here. We'll let you go. Try to show up in court in a couple of months. You don't have to. If you don't do it and we catch you away --

PAT: Wink, wink, nobody does. We don't expect you to come back.

STU: And honestly, of course, it's actually less serious, for that reason, you are expected to show up for your speeding ticket. But the final thing when they get tough on immigration and John McCain and Lindsey Graham tell us how tough they are on immigration, it's pay a fine, which is again like a speeding ticket.

PAT: Yeah.

STU: It really is so minimal as to what we expect out of people who are coming to our country looked for a better life. We have leverage here. We have the awesome country. We have the ones they're trying to get to from the crap heap they're trying to get from. That's what we have on the table. In a negotiation, we're the guys that have all the chips.

PAT: And I'm sorry, what is it that Mexico does according to the former president of that nation when they have illegals there?

VOICE: Of course, if somebody sneaks in from Nicaragua or some other country in Central America through the southern border of Mexico. They wind up in Mexico. They can go get a job. They can work.

VOICE: No, no. If somebody do that without permissions, we send back them.

PAT: If they do that without permissions, we send back them.

JEFFY: How quick he was too. No, no.

PAT: No, no. What are you, nuts? We're not crazy like you morons. More of the Glenn Beck Program coming up with Pat and Stu.

STU: 877-727-BECK is our phone number.

On Wednesday's TV show, Glenn Beck sat down with radio show host, author, political commentator, and film critic, Michael Medved.

Michael had an interesting prediction for the 2020 election outcome: a brokered convention by the DNC will usher in former First Lady Michelle Obama to run against President Donald Trump.

Watch the video below to hear why he's making this surprising forecast:

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On Thursday's "Glenn Beck Radio Program," BlazeTV's White House correspondent Jon Miller described the current situation in Virginia after Gov. Ralph Northam (D) declared a state of emergency and banned people carrying guns at Capitol Square just days before a pro-Second-Amendment rally scheduled on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Jon told Glenn that Gov. Northam and the Virginia Legislature are "trying to deprive the people of their Second Amendment rights" but the citizens of Virginia are "rising up" to defend their constitutional rights.

"I do think this is the flashpoint," Jon said. "They [Virginia lawmakers] are saying, 'You cannot exercise your rights ... and instead of trying to de-escalate the situation, we are putting pressure. We're trying to escalate it and we're trying to enrage the citizenry even more'."

Glenn noted how Gov. Northam initially blamed the threat of violence from Antifa for his decision to ban weapons but quickly changed his narrative to blame "white supremacists" to vilify the people who are standing up for the Second Amendment and the Constitution.

"What he's doing is, he's making all all the law-abiding citizens of Virginia into white supremacists," Glenn said.

"Sadly, that's exactly right," Jon replied. "And I think he knows exactly what he's doing."

Watch the video to catch more of the conversation below:

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Ryan: Trump Louisiana Finale

Photo by Jim Dale

Part One. Part Two. Part Three.

At the end of Trump rallies, I would throw on my Carhartt jacket, sneak out of the press area, then blend in with everyone as they left, filing out through swinging doors.

Often, someone held the door open for me. Just 30 minutes earlier, the same person had most likely had most likely hissed at me for being a journalist. And now they were Sunday smiles and "Oh, yes, thank you, sir" like some redneck concierge.

People flooded out of the arena with the stupidity of a fire drill mishap, desperate to survive.

The air smacked you as soon as you crossed the threshold, back into Louisiana. And the lawn was a wasteland of camping chairs and coolers and shopping bags and to-go containers and soda cans and articles of clothing and even a few tents.

In Monroe, in the dark, the Trump supporters bobbled over mounds of waste like elephants trying to tiptoe. And the trash was as neutral to them as concrete or grass. They plodded over it because it, an object, had somehow gotten in their way.

It did not matter that they were responsible for this wreckage.Out in the sharp-edged moonlight, rally-goers hooted and yapped and boogied and danced, and the bbq food truck was all smoke and paper plates.

They were even more pumped than they had been before the rally, like 6,000 eight year olds who'd been chugging Mountain Dew for hours. Which made Donald Trump the father, the trooper, God of the Underworld, Mr. Elite, Sheriff on high horse, the AR-15 sticker of the family.

Ritualistic mayhem, all at once. And, there in Louisiana, Trump's supporters had gotten a taste of it. They were all so happy. It bordered on rage.

Still, I could not imagine their view of America. Worse, after a day of strange hostilities, I did not care.

My highest priority, my job as a reporter, was to care. To understand them and the world that they inhabit. But I did not give a damn and I never wanted to come back.

Worst of all, I would be back. In less than a week.

Was this how dogs felt on the 4th of July? Hunched in a corner while everyone else gets drunk and launches wailing light into the sky? configurations of blue and red and white.

It was 10:00 p.m. and we'd been traveling since 11:00 a.m., and we still had 5 hours to go and all I wanted was a home, my home, any home, just not here, in the cold sweat of this nowhere. Grey-mangled sky. No evidence of planes or satellites or any proof of modern-day. Just century-old bridges that trains shuffled over one clack at a time.

And casinos, all spangles and neon like the 1960s in Las Vegas. Kitchy and dumb, too tacky for lighthearted gambling. And only in the nicer cities, like Shreveport, which is not nice at all.

And swamp. Black water that rarely shimmered. Inhabited by gadflies and leeches and not one single fish that was pretty.

Full of alligators, and other killing types. The storks gnawing on frogs, the vultures never hungry. The coyotes with nobody to stop them and so much land to themselves. The roaches in the wild, like tiny wildebeests.

Then, the occasional deer carcass on the side of the road, eyes splayed as if distracted, tongue out, relaxed but empty. The diseased willows like skeletons in hairnets. The owls that never quit staring. A million facets of wilderness that would outlive us all.

Because Nature has poise. It thrives and is original.

Because silence is impossible. Even in an anechoic chamber, perfectly soundproofed, you can hear your own heartbeat, steady as a drum. A never-ending war.

I put "Headache" by Grouper on repeat as we glided west. We were deadlocked to asphalt, rubber over tarface.

And I thought about lines from a Rita Dove poem titled "I have been a stranger in a strange land"

He was off cataloging the universe, probably,
pretending he could organize
what was clearly someone else's chaos.

Wasn't that exactly what I was doing? Looking for an impossible answer, examining every single accident, eager for meaning? telling myself, "If it happens and matters the next year, in America, I want to be there, or to know what it means. I owe it to whoever cares to listen."

Humans are collectors and I had gone overboard.

Because maybe this wasn't even my home. These landmarks, what did they mean? Was I obvious here? When I smiled, did I trick them into believing that I felt some vague sense of approval? Or did my expressions betray me?

Out in all that garbage-streaked emptiness — despite the occasional burst of passing halogen — I couldn't tell if everything we encountered was haunted or just old, derelict, broken, useless. One never-ending landfill.

Around those parts, they'd made everything into junk. Homes. Roads. Glass. Nature. Life itself, they made into junk.

I cringed as we passed yet another deer carcass mounded on the side of the road.

As written in Job 35:11,

Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth and makes us wiser than the birds in the sky?

Nobody. Look at nature and you feel something powerful. Look at an animal, in all of its untamable majesty, and you capture a deep love, all swept up in the power of creation. But, here, all I saw were poor creatures who people had slammed into and kept driving. Driving to where? For what reason? What exactly was so important that they left a trail of dead animals behind them?

So I crossed myself dolorously and said an "Our Father" and recited a stanza from Charles Bukowski's "The Laughing Heart"

you can't beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.

Out here, nothing but darkness. Needing some light, by God. Give me something better than a Moon that hides like an underfed coward.

Jade told me about some of the more traumatic things she'd seen while working at the State Fair.

"Bro, they pull roaches out of the iced lemonade jugs and act like nothing happened."

"All right but what about the corn dogs?"

"You do not want to know, little bro."

She looked around in the quiet. "Back in the day, the Louisiana Congress refused to raise the drinking age from 18 to 21," she said. "They didn't want to lose all that drunk gambler money. So the federal government cut off funding to highways."

We glided through moon-pale landscape for an hour before I realized what she had meant. That there weren't any light poles or billboards along the road. Nothing to guide us or distract us. Just us, alone. And it felt like outer space had collapsed, swallowed us like jellybeans.

Like two teenagers playing a prank on the universe.

In the cozy Subaru Crosstrek, in the old wild night, brimming with the uncertainty of life and the nonchalance of failure, we paraded ourselves back to Dallas. Alive in the river silence that follows us everywhere.

New installments come Mondays and Thursdays. Next, the Iowa caucuses. Check out my Twitter. Email me at kryan@blazemedia.com

The Iowa primary is just around the corner, and concerns of election interference from the last presidential election still loom. Back in 2016, The Associated Press found that a majority of U.S. elections systems still use Windows 7 as an operating system, making them highly susceptible to bugs and errors. And last year, a Mississippi voter tried multiple times to vote for the candidate of his choice, but the system continuously switched his vote to the other candidate. It's pretty clear: America's voting systems desperately need an update.

That's where blockchain voting comes in.

Blockchain voting is a record-keeping system that's 100% verifiable and nearly impossible to hack. Blockchain, the newest innovation in cybersecurity, is set to grow into a $20 billion industry by 2025. Its genius is in its decentralized nature, distributing information throughout a network of computers, requiring would-be hackers to infiltrate a much larger system. Infiltrating multiple access points spread across many computers requires a significant amount of computing power, which often costs more than hackers expect to get in return.

Blockchain voting wouldn't allow for many weak spots. For instance, Voatz, arguably the leading mobile voting platform, requires a person to take a picture of their government-issued ID and a picture of themselves before voting (a feature, of course, not present in vote-by-mail, where the only form of identity verification is a handwritten signature, which is easily forgeable). Voters select their choices and hit submit. They then receive an immediate receipt of their choices via email, another security feature not present in vote-by-mail, or even in-person voting. And because the system operates on blockchain technology, it's nearly impossible to tamper with.

Votes are then tabulated, and the election results are published, providing a paper trail, which is a top priority for elections security experts.

The benefits of blockchain voting can't be dismissed. Folks can cast their vote from the comfort of their homes, offices, etc., vastly increasing the number of people who can participate in the electoral process. Two to three-hour lines at polling places, which often deter voters, would become significantly diminished.

Even outside of the voting increase, the upsides are manifold. Thanks to the photo identification requirements, voter fraud—whether real or merely suspected—would be eliminated. The environment would win, too, since we'd no longer be wasting paper on mail-in ballots. Moreover, the financial burden on election offices would be alleviated, because there's decreased staff time spent on the election, saving the taxpayer money.

From Oregon to West Virginia, elections offices have already implemented blockchain voting, and the results have been highly positive. For example, the city of Denver utilized mobile voting for overseas voters in their 2019 municipal elections. The system was secure and free of technical errors, and participants reported that it was very user-friendly. Utah County used the same system for their 2019 primary and general elections. An independent audit revealed that every vote that was cast on the app was counted and counted correctly. These successful test cases are laying the groundwork for even larger expansions of the program in 2020.

With this vital switch, our elections become significantly more secure, accurate, and efficient. But right now, our election infrastructure is a sitting duck for manipulation. Our current lack of election integrity undermines the results of both local and national elections, fans the flames of partisanship, and zaps voter confidence in the democratic system. While there's never a silver bullet or quick fix to those kinds of things, blockchain voting would push us much closer to a solution than anything else.

Chris Harelson is the Executive Director at Prosperity Council and a Young Voices contributor.