By Justin Sink - 09/12/11 07:56 PM EDT
Rep. Steve King (R-IA), a member of the House Judiciary Committee, said Monday that Congress should question President Obama's uncle Onyango Obama to see if he received preferential treatment during his deportation proceedings.
"We have to bring drunken 'Uncle Omar' in front of the House Judiciary Committee, drill down into this, and tell America what's going on," King said on Fox News.
"If any one of us … nearly ran over a police officer, we would face the full fury of the law," King said.
The congressman went on to say that he believed that the president's uncle would receive preferential treatment from the Department of Homeland Security, and cited the case of the president's aunt, who was discovered living in Boston as an illegal immigrant during the 2008 election. An immigration judge reversed an original court order and granted Zeituni Onyango, the president's aunt, political asylum in 2010.
"I watched as President Obama's aunt, Zeituni Onyango, also evaded [Immigration and Customs Enforcement]," King said. "The sympathy, the bleeding heart, of [Department of Homeland Security Director] Janet Napolitano decided to use an administrative authority to grant President Obama's aunt asylum."
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) said last week that he believed that Onyango's release on his own recognizance was indicative of unfair influence.
“It appears there is a double standard — one for President Obama’s family and one for everyone else,” Smith said in a news release. “Last year, President Obama’s illegal immigrant aunt was granted asylum and now his illegal immigrant uncle has been released from [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] custody, even though he was arrested by authorities for drunk driving.”
The White House has said that they have not tried to intervene on Onyango's behalf.
“We expect it to be treated — and I refer you to ICE and [the Department of Homeland Security] — like any other immigration case,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said.
But Republicans see the case as an opportunity to hit the president on his recently announced immigration policy, in which officials were instructed to exercise prosecutorial discretion in deportation cases. Under that policy, the government would focus resources on deporting those considered national security or public safety threats.
“President Obama’s backdoor amnesty allows drunk-driving illegal immigrants like his uncle to remain in the U.S.,” Smith said. “His immigration policies are a risk to both public safety and American lives. Why should citizens and legal immigrants be threatened by drunk driving illegal immigrants when the administration can deport them?”