Mandy Peterson of Fergus Falls has a thing for truthiness.
In President should take a cue from previous U.S. leaders, a letter to the editor of the Fergus Falls Daily Journal, she repeats a bit of inbox garbage that's been frequently failed by fact checkers.
And of course, she does this because she so loathes "dishonesty" in her political opponents.
Here's the "liepie" letter wherein Peterson sources the "facts" to an unnamed article from the many publications she claims to read (you'd think this lack of sourcing might hip the editors to asking her for a source before publishing distortions, but whatever on that):
I read many papers and magazines. Recently I read about three past presidents of the U.S.A. and how they dealt with a problem which still creates turmoil in our nation.
Did you know that at the beginning of the Great Depression in the 1930s, President Hoover ordered the deportation of all illegal aliens to make jobs available for the American citizens who were desperate to find jobs?
President Harry Truman deported more than two million illegal aliens to free up jobs for veterans returning from World War II.
President Eisenhower began the deportation of illegal aliens in 1954. His intent was to free up jobs for veterans returning from World War II and the Korean war. The program led to approximately 13 million illegals being deported. We currently have at least that many illegals here today, taking jobs from millions of unemployed Americans.
So, if Presidents could deport illegal aliens in those past times, our current President could do so today. It is fair to ask, why can’t this be done today?
And, the answer is simply that Hoover, Truman, and Eisenhower were men of honor, not dishonest politicians looking for votes.
Today’s untrustworthy politicians instead want us to pay our recently increased taxes so they can fund the many benefit giveaways to the 13 to 24 million illegals here today. So, don’t forget to pay your taxes cheerfully.
Most of the wording isn't even original to Peterson, who so fears the dishonest and untrustworthy or at least, plagiarizes from those who claim to so so when they distort history.
In 2010, Factcheck reported in Hoover, Truman & Ike: Mass Deporters?:
This distortion of history has been going around for some time, but has picked up momentum as the immigration debate has heated up again. So we contacted researchers at the Hoover, Truman and Eisenhower libraries to ask if the historical record backs up the claims that these presidents ordered mass deportations. It doesn’t. We also consulted the Office of the Historian of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and a leading academic historian as well. We got the same answer. This e-mail message is bogus.
The true history of presidential policy toward illegal immigration, and of deportations, is neither as simple nor as successful as claimed.
- Hoover did not use immigration policy to "create jobs" and never "ordered the deportation of all illegal aliens." During his four-year presidency, roughly 121,000 persons were officially deported or induced to leave through threat of deportation, according to our analysis of official statistics. (We explain our sources and analytical methods fully in the "Where We Got The Numbers" section below.)
- Truman did not try to "create jobs for returning veterans" by ordering deportations. In fact, he signed legislation protecting the rights of Mexican migrant laborers recruited legally to help harvest U.S. crops, and was unable to win congressional approval of measures to crack down on employers of illegal immigrants. During his nearly eight years in office, about 3.4 million were deported or left "voluntarily" under threat of deportation.
- Eisenhower did not deport 13 million Mexicans. Only one-tenth that number was ever claimed by the federal officials in charge of "Operation Wetback," and even that figure is criticized as inflated by guesswork. Officially, just over 2.1 million were recorded as having been deported or having departed under threat of deportation.
Historian Mae M. Ngai calls the message "a most interesting distortion of history," and our research backs that up. Ngai, now at Columbia University, told us that "none of these presidents presided over any general deportation campaign."
So this e-mail’s claim that a president could "sure do it today" — that is, easily deport all the estimated 12 million illegal immigrants now in the U.S. — is a conclusion based on false evidence. No relocation effort nearly so large has ever been attempted, let alone accomplished "in two years" as this e-mail states. . . .
Read the rest at FactCheck.
People commenting online at the Journal finding the same fact checks, although one reader adds a slightly different perspective to the dogpile:
Larry Erickson July 18, 2013 at 8:43 am Link
It’s common knowledge there were a record number of deportations in 2012 and that they have been at all time highs for almost all of the Obama administration. Mandy could be ill-informed but, if you look closely at her comment, she might be suggesting the efforts of President Obama, his admistration, the Justice Department under the control of Eric Holder should continue. (Why is it so hard for conservatives to give credit where credit is due?) On the other hand, if her comments are as they appear at first glance I hope the MN Department of Education looks closely at the kind of “education” some children receive. Society does have a right to protect itself.
Oh, snap. That claim can be fact checked. In 2012, Poltifact asked Has Barack Obama deported more people than any other president in U.S. history? and found:
According to current figures from Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- the federal agency responsible for deportations -- Obama has removed 1.4 million people during his 42 months in office so far. Technically, that's fewer than under George W. Bush, whose cumulative total was 2 million. But Bush’s number covers eight full years, which doesn’t allow an apples-to-apples comparison. If you instead compare the two presidents’ monthly averages, it works out to 32,886 for Obama and 20,964 for Bush, putting Obama clearly in the lead. Bill Clinton is far behind with 869,676 total and 9,059 per month. All previous occupants of the White House going back to 1892 fell well short of the level of the three most recent presidents. We wondered whether there might have been a surge of undocumented immigrants that explained the increase, but there wasn’t. During the first two years of Obama’s tenure, the Pew Hispanic Center estimated the illegal immigrant population nationwide at 11.2 million, compared to an average during Bush’s eight-year tenure of 10.6 million. And illegal immigration actually peaked late in Bush’s second term, at which point the recession hit and the numbers declined under Obama. Such patterns do not explain the 57 percent bump in monthly deportations that we found under Obama. . . .
Perhaps Peterson will start touting the records of Clinton, Bush and Obama, instead of Hoover, Truman and Ike, but Bluestem isn't holding our breath.
Image: Herbert Hoover may look tough enough in this photo to have single-handedly deported all undocumented residents during the beginning of the Great Depression. But he did no such thing.
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