President Obama Increasingly Refused to Deport Immigration Violators Throughout Presidency

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Over the past eight years, President Obama and his supporters tried to convince the American people that he took a strong stance when it came to enforcing immigration law. Some open borders proponents even went as far as labeling him the “Deporter in Chief.” But last week, United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) released removal statistics for the president’s final year in office. A complete eight-year picture is now available of what the outgoing administration really did when it came to removing those who violate our immigration laws. In short, it is the polar opposite of the picture painted by his administration.

Since taking office in 2009, the truth is that the Obama administration progressively dismantled immigration law enforcement while simultaneously making entitlements more easily available to illegal aliens. These actions, coupled with an improving economy, would appear to be incentives for more people to attempt immigrating into the U.S. illegally. Indeed, the progressively increasing number of illegal aliens turned back while trying to cross the border throughout most of the Obama administration adds evidence to this claim. To hide the ever decreasing interior removal numbers from a public that supports immigration enforcement, the administration started including these border returns in its overall deportation numbers.

This dishonest maneuver was necessary because interior removals looked miniscule compared to the already underwhelming deportation statistics under previous administrations. In FY 2009, approximately 240,000 interior removals were conducted by ICE. That number has steadily decreased by an average of 25,000 per year. In 2016, only 65,000 immigration violators were removed from the interior of the United States. (click for larger version of graphic)

ice-removals-2008-2015

In addition to drastically scaling back removals, the Obama administration opened up the floodgates in other areas of immigration as well. During his administration, approximately 605,000 refugees, many from terrorist hotbeds, have been admitted despite undergoing minimal vetting. Furthermore, the president enacted the Priority Enforcement Program (PEP), which required that only immigration violators who had committed other crimes, of a more severe nature, could be placed in removal proceedings. This resulted in the release of some 90,000 criminal aliens back into society. By creating programs like these, combined with a non-enforcement policy, the administration succeeded in making the United States a de-facto open border nation.

Donald Trump made immigration reform a central issue of his successful presidential campaign. Based on how badly President Obama failed at immigration enforcement, President-elect Trump seemingly has nowhere to go but up. However, the American people sent a clear message to Washington, D.C. by electing someone who promised to enforce immigration law. President-elect Trump and the GOP-led Congress can expect to be held accountable and suffer the consequences should they fail to deliver on their promise to repair the currently ineffective and broken system.

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About Author

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Spencer joined the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in 2015. He conducts research, and writes content for FAIR’s publications and website. He brings previous experience in state politics, gubernatorial and district campaigns, and D.C. political non-profits. Spencer holds a B.A. in Government from the University of Texas at Austin.

26 Comments

  1. avatar

    CUT OFF ALL BENEFITS TO ALL ILLEGALS, NO FING WELFARE, NO FOOD STAMPS, AND NO UNEMPLOYMENT, AND SEE WHO CRIES THE LOUDEST THEN PUT THEM ON A DRONE PLANE AND SEND IN OUT OVER THE OCEAN THE BLOW IT UP, THEIR NOT COMING BACK, ARE THEY.

      • avatar

        30 million illegal aliens is not unreasonable. Google fake I.D.s in Google and you will discover they offer excellent, excellent product. They were also offering excellent fake I.D.s around the town squares down in Mexico. Down there.. $500 for three fake I.D.’s. The PC enable huge improvements in those I.D.s, and if you don’t tell anyone what I am going to tell you, we had a way of identifying fake I.D.s for years.
        The California DMV sent our Licenses to us with a instruction sheet stapled to the front. The Cops would hold the licenses up to the light, and if the licenses had two holes where the instruction sheet was stapled when it was sent, ……it was a good drivers license.

        We need a REAL ID that kicks you in the teeth NOW!

  2. avatar

    Which president has deported the most illegal immigrants?
    Obama’s government has deported more than 2.5 million people—up 23% from the George W. Bush years. More shockingly, Obama is now on pace to deport more people than the sum of all 19 presidents who governed the United States from 1892-2000, according to government data.

    • avatar

      And you just read an article where it is proven that his record deportation numbers were bogus because he counted border turnarounds, which no other administration counted. As pointed out above what everyone considers to be true deportations, from the interior of the country, are down from 240,000 in 2009 to only 65,000 last year. But it’s no wonder you like him because you both prefer lies over truth.

      • avatar
        Not Politically Correct on

        Leland,

        He won’t believe you because you come at him with facts. Facts scare trolls.

        • avatar

          Not Politically Correct just do a simple 5 year old search and see the gov wrestles you knuckle head!!!

          • avatar

            It is important to know that Obama was desperate to continue allowing illegal aliens to continue to come. There for, when someone who was NOT a citizen came up to the desk and asked to be admitted, and was turned away, it was counted in the deportations of the illegal aliens. THAT is such a crummy trick and everyone who trusted him knows.. Obama was a shameful President.

  3. avatar

    I worked for 7 consecutive Chief Executives. In 1997 I was contacted by the local Florida Dept. of Motor Vehicles. They asked for my help (local Special Agent, U.S. Customs). The female office Captain reported that they had a Mexican alien in their office with obviously fraudulent identification papers, seeking a Florida drivers license. She requested help. I contacted the Border Patrol, 30 minutes away in Jacksonville and advised them of the situation. The BP office supervisor told me that they would not dispatch a vehicle to “…pick up one illegal…”. When I asked him what I should tell the DMV Captain , the supervisor told me, “Tell her to issue the license.” and hung up on me. This was 5 years into the Clinton administration, it was internal policy THROUGHOUT INS, BP and others, and this policy was in effect over 25 year ago! The liberal/progressive movement has been stuffing your nation with “democratic” voters for decades. And this is news? Wake the hell up and smell the tortillas in the bazaar!

  4. avatar

    The last 8 years have been an education. I have learned that I should feel guilty because of my color. that all police are racists. I have learned that the president can lie to the American people about health care, immigration, terrorism, transparency, hostage’s, economy, anyone who opposed him, the media, etc., etc. He even ended with oratory that included possible self delusion but also lies.

    I do not feel safer or more secure after his presidency! I do not feel economically secure after his presidency! I do not feel race relations are better after his presidency! I am not health care secure because health care is not insurance. i have less confidence in the federal government given the performance of the IRS, Immigration, Interior, Budget office, State Department, veterans Health Education and Welfare and Justice Department. I have always questioned the Post office, EAP and Energy Departments but the others in the last 8 years.

    The lack of accountability for workers, supervisors, managers and appointees during this administration was abysmal. The lack of true transparency and overt action to hide records was embarrassing for the promised “Most transparent Administration in history” .

    Even when the Inspector Generals of the multiple government entities noted barriers and efforts to thwart law the Obama administration ignored the problem.

    Whistleblowers retaliation is Federal agencies and departments was not addressed and continued during this administration that then says that there were no scandals!!!

    .

  5. avatar

    Really?….. That is not what all reports have shown…He just ended the Cuban dry wet foot policy …. He just made history …Big time?!!

  6. avatar

    The very definition of fake news. He himself said it in October 2011: “The statistics are a little deceptive”, and he went on to say they were counting those returned at the border, which were never counted as deportations before. Yet the media has continued to repeat this myth of “record” deportations when the evidence showing otherwise is easily available.