Republican lawmakers who, when opposing amnesty for illegal immigrants, talk about how rules must be followed and lawbreakers should not be rewarded are now demanding a pair of convicted felons be rewarded with a presidential pardon. Ex-Border Patrol agents Jose Compean and Ignacio Ramos were sentenced to 12 and 11 years for shooting unarmed suspect Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila and covering it up. Compean fired at least 14 rounds and Ramos fired once, the agents then collected the shell casings and filed reports that made no mention of the incident.
None of this is heroic, except to the anti-immigrant mob, which has been making excuses for Compean and Ramos while calling the prosecuting U.S. Attorney an agent of the Mexican government. In recent months, the cause of Compean and Ramos has been picked up by anti-immigrant groups, congressional Republicans, Minuteman vigilantes and talk show hosts on radio and television.