Executive Amnesty: How Big, Mr. Obama?

Executive Amnesty Would be Reckless and Irresponsible | ImmigrationReform.com

October 29, 2014 | TownHall.com

As everyone knows, President Obama bowed to political pressure and decided to wait until after the election to issue his latest, greatest amnesty decree. He did so because Democrats in close races were concerned that the President’s imperial gestures on behalf of the illegal alien population might collide with the needs and interests of American citizens voting today.

So be it. But here’s a concern: If the Democrats lose the Senate and Obama’s immigration gamesmanship gets the blame, won’t the president figure, well the damage is already done, let’s just “go big” on amnesty? The American people have the right to ask, “So just how big is it, Mr. President?”

His 2012 Deferred Action program (DACA) has already included nearly 600,000 aliens into its kingly sweep. The unlegislated amnesty we are likely to see after the election will dwarf that number. No principled limitation on this power has been identified by this administration, and yet those who have received this royal pardon seem unconcerned about future enforcement action.

This campaign season has featured an unprecedented spectacle of illegal aliens harassing elected officials and candidates in public forums – all unleashed by the brazen power politics of the administration. This is surely an outrage – and the president must know it is viewed this way. He also must know that despite his efforts to draw arbitrary lines based on his apparently superior moral compass, he will never succeed in justifying a broad overreach of executive authority to grant de facto amnesty and work authorization to millions of illegal aliens.

After the election, especially if the Republicans take the Senate, the president will view himself as ruling alone. Thereafter, what remains to constrain him? Every day, his administration is finding new ways to evade immigration limits and laws, using parole and refugee policies as well as limitless non-existent discretion to accelerate the admission of otherwise inadmissible aliens.

Getting the usual pass from what now passes for the American media, the president must truly believe that ancient maxim “the king can do no wrong.” Having already demonstrated an utter contempt for the enforcement of statutory immigration limits enacted by Congress, we can expect a truly lawless, alarming abuse of power. This civic breakdown constitutes a troubling threat to the fabric of our society because it affirms that a growing number of the nation’s laws can be broken at will.

As Allan Bloom has observed, “Once the law is broken with impunity, each man regains the right to any means he deems proper or necessary in order to defend himself against the new tyrant, the one who can break the law.”

MPI Provides Analysis on How Deportations Could Be Reduced

ice arrestsOn October 16, the Migration Policy Institute released a new report entitled “Deportation and Discretion: Reviewing the Record and Options for Change.” The report is full of data on deportations of illegal aliens over a ten-year period (2003-2013). It looks at how the pattern of deportations has changed during the Obama administration compared to the pattern during the preceding Bush administration.

The report is not just benign statistical analysis, however. It goes on to analyze how deportations might be further reduced. That is apparently aimed at the Obama administration’s stated interest in policy changes that could be made by executive action to liberalize immigration enforcement. The report identifies the following steps that could reduce the number of deportations:

  • Exclude immigration crimes, e.g., failure to report for deportation. This could eliminate 7 percent of current deportations.
  • Exclude traffic offenses other than DUI. This would be another 7 percent reduction.
  • Exclude convictions for minor crimes (level 3). An 11 percent reduction.
  • Exclude convictions for all non-violent crimes. A 15 percent reduction.
  • Exclude failure to report for deportation. A 7 percent reduction.
  • Exclude failure to report for deportation if more than 5 years earlier. An 8 percent reduction.
  • Limit the period of illegal presence in the U.S. constituting recent arrival. If reduced from the current 4 years to 3 years – a 7 percent reduction. If reduced to 1 or 2 years, an 8 percent reduction. If reduced to 14 days, a 9 percent reduction.

Why anyone would want to reduce the deportation of illegal aliens is difficult for me to fathom, but that apparently is a central objective of the Obama administration’s review of possible erosion of immigration enforcement policies currently being pursued.

The report’s principal author, Marc Rosenblum had the temerity to state during the report’s unveiling that there is not much difference statistically between the composition of deportations during the Obama administration compared to that during the Bush administrations, and that you could, therefore, say that the Bush administration adhered to the same prioritization for deportations as adopted by the Obama administration. The implausibility of that statement is obvious when it is recalled that the prioritization system adopted by the Obama administration was adopted in order to stop the deportation efforts against all but the highest priority cases. In 2007 and 2008, the Bush administration engaged in a number of enforcement activities such as worksite raids and prosecutions of employers for knowingly employing illegal aliens that have been virtually abandoned by the Obama administration. The result has been that illegal aliens are virtually assured that they can continue to work illegally in the United States as long as they do not engage in violent criminal activity.

To its credit, the MPI analysis does document the end to increased interior enforcement after 2009 and a major reduction in interior immigration enforcement beginning after 2011. That trend is a direct result of the administration’s prioritized restrictions on enforcement.

The ACLU Again Uses the 9th Circuit to Undermine the Voters Intent and Will

9th circuit court of appealsOn Wednesday, the 9th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals struck down a voter approved amendment to the Arizona Constitution that required the state to detain illegal aliens accused of serious felonies until trial. The case is Lopez-Valenzuela v. Arpaio, and once again the ACLU has successfully used a class action lawsuit to undermine legitimate efforts to ensure illegal immigration is deterred.

The amendment passed with 78 percent of the vote in 2006. This was a strong indication of voter interest in 1) ensuring illegal aliens who commit felonies show up for trial, and 2) ensuring that people with no right to be in the country do not flee before deportation. The court used the bogus pseudo-reasoning behind what’s called “substantive due process” to engage in a subjective bit of policy gamesmanship to strike down the constitutional amendment. This area of “substantive due process” has become nothing more than an arbitrary vehicle by which a court is allowed to substitute its political judgment for that of the voters (or legislators as the case may be).

Once again, the judiciary has intervened to ensure illegal immigration continues unabated and the community is unprotected. The people have come to expect this endless legislating from the bench. There was a time when courts were very respectful of voter-approve state constitutional changes; a court would be loathe to strike down any law enacted by direct citizen participation. The three judge panel that initially reviewed the case did just that.  But, as we all now know, the ACLU will never give up until it destroys all remaining U.S. immigration controls. It sought an on-banc review and achieved this victory at the expense of community safety and the integrity of our criminal justice system.

Read the decision here. (PDF)

Obama’s Threatening Amnesty is Killing Americans’ Economic Outlook

people-305418_640Only 1 in 4 Americans feel confident about President Obama’s plan for the economy, according to a new CNBC All-America Economic poll. That number is down nearly 10 points since last summer to a record-low 24 percent. The new decline is evidence of workers’ fear of losing jobs if the White House grants 12 million illegal aliens the right to work and permanently remain in the U.S.

The president’s promised executive action would doom millions of employed Americans who recognize that corporations would welcome the opportunity to hire immigrants willing to work at cheaper rates. It’s not that Americans do not want to do certain jobs but that the average individual cannot financially support a family on the hourly wages that large companies would like to shrink their pay to.

That is why Americans voice despair at the mention of the economy. Just last week, 79 percent of Americans rated the economy as fair or poor. People know wage growth has remained stagnant since Obama took office in 2008, regardless of how the government portrays itself.

The government needs to consider the best interests of its 300 million legal citizens. The economy, and just as importantly, Americans’ view of the economy, is not going to improve unless leaders stand up for the working class, instead of focusing energy all of their energy on destroying the dreams of Americans.

Want to know what you can do? Read Obama’s Executive Amnesty: What You Can Do.


Holder Quits After Gutting Immigration Enforcement and Rule of Law

EricHolderAGNomineeAttorney General Eric Holder is retiring and leaving behind an immigration system he helped put in ruins.  No replacement has been announced. Although there is little reason to expect that his replacement will be committed to upholding immigration laws, it will be hard for anyone to be more antagonistic than Holder.

In 2009, Mr. Holder was sworn in to be the chief law enforcement officer of the United States government. In practice, he was the chief dismantler of laws, notably immigration laws. During his tenure at the Department of Justice, Holder relentlessly undermined immigration enforcement through dubious interpretation of statutes, intimidation and dereliction of duties.

Mr. Holder gave President Obama what he needed: flimsy legal pretenses on how the administration could bypass the laws enacted by Congress using so-called prosecutorial discretion. Until Holder got to town, prosecutorial discretion had been regarded as the latitude afforded to judges to provide relief from deportation in rare and exceptional circumstances.  The Attorney General interpreted it as a license to simply ignore laws and applied it broadly as a foundational tool used by the Obama administration to selectively choose which aliens, if any, would be removed and which laws it would enforce.  Millions of illegal aliens are now being granted administrative stays of removal, deportations are dropping, and enforcement of the laws as Congress intended is disappearing faster than Lois Lerner’s emails.

Mr. Holder retooled the DOJ into a blunt instrument of intimidation to be used against states daring to defy the Obama administration’s non-enforcement agenda.  Shortly after President Obama took office and weakened many immigration enforcement programs, Arizona put in place its own initiative (SB 1070) to help it combat the cost and impact of illegal immigration. Other states followed Arizona’s lead but, like Arizona, all faced the iron-fisted tactics of Holder’s DOJ which successfully squashed local efforts by suing or threating lawsuits.

FAIR’s comprehensive report, President Obama’s Record of Dismantling of Immigration Enforcement chronicles an aggressive, concentrated campaign by Mr. Holder in 2010-2012 to shut down all state action.

  • March 2010: DOJ Threatens Employers Who Use E-Verify with Discrimination Investigation.
  • July 2010: DOJ Files Suit to Stop Arizona’s SB 1070.
  • August 2011: DOJ Files Suit to Stop Alabama’s HB 56.
  • October 2011: DOJ Files Suit to Stop South Carolina’s S 20.
  • November 2011: DOJ Files Suit to Stop Utah’s HB 497.
  • May 2012: DOJ Sues Maricopa County.
  • June 2012: DOJ Sues Florida over State’s Effort to End Illegal Alien Voting.

Holder’s efforts were successful; no state since has enacted broad immigration enforcement legislation, despite the escalating costs and other consequences of illegal immigration.

Finally, Mr. Holder neglected his duties of office by ignoring state and local violations of federal immigration laws. While he zealously brought to bear the full weight of the DOJ against states attempting to assist in the enforcement process – claiming that immigration enforcement is exclusively a federal function – he willfully ignored states that were implementing sanctuary policies which overtly ignore federal law.

Holder defended his negligence by saying, “There is a big difference between a state or locality saying they are not going to use their resources to enforce a federal law, as so-called sanctuary cities have done, and a state passing its own immigration policy that actively interferes with federal law.”  What Holder refused to admit is that the states were complementing federal law, not interfering with it.  The truth of the matter is that the Attorney General of the United States did not like our immigration laws, and spent his tenure in office demolishing it.

His refusal to enforce the law did not go unnoticed by jurisdictions anxious to expand illegal alien benefits.  Of 103 cities, towns and counties across 33 states that now have some form of sanctuary policies, the majority have occurred since Mr. Holder was appointed in 2009.

Eric Holder aided and abetted the systematic dismantling of America’s immigration laws and his legacy is defined by iron-fisted intimidation tactics, a disregard for right of states to protect the interests of their citizens, and an outright contempt for the constitutional authority of Congress.

Don’t let the door hit you on the way out Mr. Holder.