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VICTOR JOECKS: Laken Riley murder shows Biden prioritizes illegal migrants

Joe Biden was angrier about a Border Patrol agent supposedly whipping illegal migrants than about an illegal immigrant allegedly murdering a U.S. citizen.

Last Thursday, University of Georgia nursing student Laken Riley was killed on campus. The 22-year-old had gone for a run and didn’t return. Police found her body with a disfigured skull in a forested area near the school’s intramural fields. Police quickly arrested Jose Ibarra, an illegal immigrant from Venezuela.

This isn’t the first time police nabbed him. The Border Patrol arrested Ibarra in September 2022 for unlawfully entering the country. Instead of being deported or forced to remain in Mexico, he was released. A year later, New York police arrested him for “acting in a manner to injure a child less than 17 and a motor vehicle license violation.” New York City, a sanctuary city, released him before ICE could request a detainer. That’s the process ICE uses to deport illegal immigrants who’ve been arrested. In October 2023, Georgia police cited him for shoplifting without taking him to jail. Authorities issued a bench warrant in December when he failed to show up in court. Georgia isn’t a sanctuary state, but officers don’t access the ICE database until suspects are booked into jail.

So law enforcement had this murder suspect in its grasp three times and let him go.

In case the left wonders what a systemic problem actually looks like, this is it. The system failed.

In a sane country, there would be unanimous outrage. Instead, the Biden White House waited days to put out this pathetic statement.

“People should be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law if they are found to be guilty,” the statement said. It then referred people to “state law enforcement and ICE.”

Contrast this to what happened after Reuters accused a Border Patrol agent on horseback of using a whip to repel illegal migrants crossing the border. The White House reacted almost immediately to that September 2021 report. Biden said the pictures showed “people being strapped.” He also said, “It’s outrageous. I promise you those people will pay.”

Many months later, a massive report found agents didn’t whip anyone. What Biden and the left had a meltdown over were officers twirling horse reins.

The difference in reaction between these two situations is stark and startling. The priority of the president should be U.S. citizens, not citizens of other countries coming here illegally. And yet, that’s not the case.

It makes a twisted sort of sense when you consider that the modern left is deeply ashamed of America. Many believe the country is systemically racist, built on stolen land and responsible for Central American migrants wanting to flee their failing countries. To atone for these supposed sins, this viewpoint holds, the country must prioritize illegal immigrants over protecting citizens such as Riley. That’s exactly what Biden has allowed and even tacitly encouraged. At least 7.2 million illegal immigrants have entered the country since Biden took office.

Few people are looking forward to a rematch of Biden and Donald Trump, but there are major differences between the two. To wit, if Trump had won re-election, Riley would probably still be alive.

Contact Victor Joecks at vjoecks@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4698. Follow @victorjoecks on X.

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