Boston Manhunt: Sen. Chuck Grassley Implies Weak Immigration Enforcement Indirectly Caused Boston Attack

As media coverage continues to dominate the massive manhunt in search for the surviving suspect linked to the Boston Marathon bombings, one U.S. senator has provided his own two cents on the matter. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) warned the Senate Judiciary Committee Friday that stricter immigration policies will prevent more events of this nature from happening. While the Boston Marathon attacks raise valid concerns on national security, the senator's sentiments may be a little erroneous. Claiming that the immigration system had loopholes which allowed the two suspects to enter the country is not entirely valid. 

The Senate committee is beginning to address immigration reform policy. Sen. Grassley took the opportunity to state his case about how to better improve the current system.

"Given the events of this week, it's important for us to understand the gaps and loopholes in our immigration system. While we don't yet know the immigration status of the people who have terrorized the communities in Massachusetts, when we find out, it will help shed light on the weaknesses of our system," Grassley said.

The two suspects that have been the focus of an extensive manhunt in Boston are brothers Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26. In a bizarre turn of events, the duo reportedly set out to rob a 7/11, which resulted in a violent police chase in the middle of the night Thursday into Friday. In the crossfire, Tamerlan was fatally shot. In addition, a MIT police offer was killed and a MBTA officer is currently in critical condition. Authorities are now attempting to locate Dzhokhar, calling for the Greater Boston area to be shutdown. 

As for the two suspects, it has been confirmed that they entered the U.S legally from Chechnya and became permanent citizens. The FBI has been in contact with authorities abroad in Russia and Turkey to discover if the duo received any military experience or have criminal backgrounds.

The biggest criticism against Sen. Grassley is that his sentiments are based on pure assumptions. The fact of the matter is that the Tsarnaev brothers could have completely clean records. It is still unclear what kind of past they may have had, but making claims on pure assumption lacks credibility. Immigration reform is a prevalent topic in Washington, but reform needs to occur for other reasons. If the suspects have no criminal background, then authorities could not have a valid way of predicting these events to occur.

I'd like to believe that these men were just a couple of bad seeds that were able to enter the U.S. However to claim that the entire immigration system is flawed based on faulty assumptions is not right.

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Shawna Gillen

Shawna is currently studying Political Science and Psychology at Marist College. She has a passion for politics and is an aspiring lawyer. In her spare time she likes to play club women's rugby, and contributes as the Co-News Editor for Marist's student newspaper.

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