Imagine you’re about to sit down for supper when suddenly 760 folks show up on your front porch wanting fried catfish and hushpuppies. You’d be fit to be tied as they say in Tennessee.
And Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam is fit to be tied.
The Obama administration recently released 760 illegal immigrant children to sponsors in the Volunteer State without any warning, the governor charged.
There was not so much as a text message or tweet.
“It is unacceptable that we became aware via a posting on the HHS website that 760 unaccompanied children have been released by the Office of Refugee Resettlement to sponsors in Tennessee without my administration’s knowledge,” the governor wrote in a strongly-worded letter to President Obama.
Haslam, a Republican, said he still has not been contacted by the Obama administration – and has no idea where the illegals were resettled.
“I still have not been contacted and have no information about these individuals or their sponsors other than what was posted on the HHS website,” he wrote.
The Office of Refugee Resettlement says sponsors are typically a parent or relative who can care for the illegal immigrant child while their immigration case is processed. All sponsors are required to undergo background checks.
It’s also unclear why the ORR is handling the children – since they are illegal immigrants and not refugees.
It’s been the Obama administration’s standard operating procedure to release the illegals into states without notifying local or state government officials.
White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest told reporters that the illegal immigrant children have a right to privacy. He said privacy rights of the illegals are more important than the public’s right to know what’s happening.
Haslam warned the sheer number of illegals could “have a significant impact on state and local governments.”
Specifically, he feared whether the massive numbers will complicate the start of the new school year.
“An influence of unaccompanied immigrant children to the state, with little information being made available to the public or to state leaders, creates confusion and could be very problematic,” the governor wrote.
Dan Howell, a Republican state house candidate, said the administration’s actions are outrageous and commended Haslam’s letter.
“I believe in legal immigration but I support Gov. Haslam's response to the president's decision which is an outrage,” Howell told me. “It's unfortunate the president's actions are putting a strain on Tennessee's resources but what's more unfortunate is the hardship his actions are imposing on these children and the fact the president is ignoring the law and refusing to seal the border.”
Meanwhile, Haslam is demanding the Obama administration answer eight questions about the illegals dumped in his state.
Among the most pressing questions, he wants to know if the children were given medical screenings, how their sponsors were screened, the official immigration status of the illegals and their sponsors, the localities the children were placed, and how long they plan to be residents of the Volunteer State.
Gov. Haslam has a right to be concerned.
If Obama is truly acting in the best interests of the nation – why is he cloaking this nefarious scheme in a shroud of secrecy?
Todd Starnes is host of Fox News & Commentary, heard on hundreds of radio stations. His latest book is "God Less America: Real Stories From the Front Lines of the Attack on Traditional Values." Follow Todd on Twitter@ToddStarnes and find him on Facebook.