In Immigration Spat, Advocacy Group Defends Maryland Gov. O'Malley | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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In Immigration Spat, Advocacy Group Defends Maryland Gov. O'Malley

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Supporters of Maryland governor Martin O'Malley are coming to his defense following his dust-up with the White House this week over the growing number of immigrant children coming to the U.S. from Central America.

Maryland's top immigrant advocacy and services group, Casa De Maryland, is backing O'Malley after he disagreed with the policy sought by the administration of president Barack Obama, a fellow Democrat, to speed up the deportation of those newly arrived children.

"We have a long tradition as Americans of providing protection to refugees when they show up on our doorstep. And I believe also as Americans and human beings, we should treat all children decently," Gov. O'Malley said. "Most especially when they find themselves as orphans."

The White House was not pleased with O'Malley's stance, and conversations between the governor and administration officials were leaked to the press, leading to reports that O'Malley did not want immigrant children sent to Maryland.

The governor responded claiming that he only didn't want them sent to a Carroll County facility that was targeted with anti-immigrant graffiti, and that he is working with the federal government to find other suitable sites in Maryland.

In a statement, Casa De Maryland said O'Malley's thoughts were in line with the policies he has sought for immigrants as governor.

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