CNN Sympathizes With Illegal Immigrant, Forget Obama 'Ripped Families Apart'

On Thursday, CNN's New Day sympathetically profiled an illegal immigrant mother of four who has been taking shelter in a Colorado church to avoid deportation. "She was, at first, speechless, then in tears, her nightmare coming true," said CNN reporter Ana Cabrera. However, the report failed to mention that such deportations also occurred under the Obama administration. 

Jeanette Vizguerra had six stays of deportation, but Immigrations and Customs Enforcement officals denied her request for another one. Her attorney and pastor represented plead her case with ICE officials at a meeting while Vizguerra took cover in the basement of a Denver church where she recieved the news from her lawyer over the phone that her request to not be deported has been denied. In accordance with ICE policy, immigration enforcement is typically not carried out in houses of worship and other "sensitive locations."

In an interview with Cabrera, Vizguerra said: "It's difficult. My kids are my life. My family is my life. No it's my country, but it's my house. It's my house and my kids. It's the country of my kids."

The segment profiled Vizguerra's background, such as illegally crossing the border in 1997. Her three kids were born in the US and are protected under President Barak Obama's DACA program, which protects children of illegal immigrant parents from being deported.

"She's the backbone of her family. Without her, my kids wouldn't know their grandma anymore," Vizguerra's daughter, Tania Baez, said.

Vizguerra has been fighting immigration officials since 2009, when she was arrested at a traffic stop for having a fake ID and a fake Social Security number.

According to ICE, Vizguerra “has two misdemeanor convictions. On November 18, 2011, a federal immigration judge originally issued her final orders of deportation to Mexico. Based on these factors, Jeanette Vizguerra-Ramirez is an I.C.E. Enforcement priority.”

Toward the end of the report, Cabrera said, "For now, she's moved into this Denver church basement, an informal sanctuary where immigration officials have not yet dared to go."

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Cabrera's report evoked a feeling of awe from co-host Alisyn Camerotta. "Very fascinating, the look at her story. As we know, President Trump has said he will go after the hardened criminals, the violent criminals, the gang members. She's not one of those, and he has also said I'm going to be very compassionate. My policy is not going to rip families apart, it's going to very compassionate."

Ironic, considering immigrants were also crying foul during the Obama administration that the then-President was ripping families apart. In 2014, there were protests at the White House against Obama's immigration policies.

Here is the February 16 report:

New Day

02/16/2017

8:39:45 AM – 8:43:56 AM

CHRIS CUOMO: So an undocumented mother of four is taking sanctuary in a Denver church. Her name is Jeanette Vizguerra. She was supposed to check in with immigration officials yesterday. Instead, she headed to the church. Why? She's hoping to gain a stay of deportation. There's a story behind this. CNN's Ana Cabrera has it. 

ANA CABRERA: Demonstrators outside the immigration office in Colorado supporting a mother of four from Mexico, Jeanette Vizguerra scheduled to check in with I.C.E. Her attorney and pastor entered without her. 

HANS MEYER: We'll go in and talk to immigration. We'll be back in a second. 

CABRERA: She chose not to show up, instead taking refuge inside a church where she received the bad news by phone. 

ATTORNEY: They denied her stay. 

CABRERA: Her request for a temporary stay denied despite six previous stays that were granted. She was, at first, speechless, then in tears, her nightmare coming true. We talked with her prior to the check-in about her fear. 

JEANETTE VIZGUERRA: It's difficult. My kids are my life. My family is my life. No it's my country, but it's my house. It's my house and my kids. It's the country of my kids. 

CABRERA: So this is your home, this country? 

VIZGUERRA: Yes. It's my home. I'm living more years here than my country. 

CABRERA: She came to the U.S. In 1997, three children ages 6, 10 and 12 born in the U.S. Her oldest is Tanya, 26, with three children of her own. She has legal status through DACA, an Obama administration policy that protects immigrant youth from deportation. 

TANIA BAEZ: She's the backbone of her family. Without her, my kids wouldn't know their grandma anymore. 

CABRERA: This family's future in limbo since 2009 when Vizguerra was arrested following a traffic stop. She had a fake Social Security number on a job application in her car. She’s been fighting deportation ever since. 

CABRERA: Did they give you specific reasons for denying the stay this time? 

MEYER: When you have a blanket deportation policy, you don't need to have specific reasons. You just say no, that's exactly what they did. 

CABRERA: The local I.C.E. Office provided the following response, saying she “has two misdemeanor convictions. On November 18, 2011, a federal immigration judge originally issued her final orders of deportation to Mexico. Based on these factors, Jeanette Vizguerra-Ramirez is an I.C.E. Enforcement priority.”

PROTESTERS: Down, down with deportation. Up, up with liberation. 

CABRERA: The news triggering a protest in D.C. Meantime, Colorado congressman Jared Polis has filed a private bill in the House of Representatives hoping to help plead her case. For now, she's moved into this Denver church basement, an informal sanctuary where immigration officials have not yet dared to go. She addressed supporters through a translator this afternoon. 

TRANSLATOR: I know my fight will continue even though I'm still -- even though I'm inside these walls, there's much I can do to continue organizing and continue to support my community. By “my community,” I don't just mean the Mexican immigrant community, I don't just mean South Americans. There are people from all over the world that are in the exact same situation as I am. 

CABRERA: How long are you prepared to stay here? 

VIZGUERRA I don't know. It's possible days, months or years. 

CABRERA: Anna Cabrera, CNN, Denver. 

ALISYN CAMEROTA: Very fascinating, the look at her story. As we know, President Trump has said he will go after the hardened criminals, the violent criminals, the gang members. She's not one of those, and he has also said I'm going to be very compassionate. My policy is not going to rip families apart, it's going to very compassionate. So we'll see. There are lots of people in her situation. 

CyberAlerts Immigration CNN New Day Video Journalistic Issues New Day Ana Cabrera Alisyn Camerota
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