Obama Staffers Propose Methods To Keep Illegal Immigrants In U.S.
Staffers at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), have proposed non-legislative alternatives to comprehensive immigration reform which includes protection and extended benefits to immigrants that are in the U.S. illegally.
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The proposal, contained in an 11 page memo to USCIS director Alejandro N. Mayorkas, "offers relief options to . . . reduce the threat of removal for certain individuals present in the United States." The memo goes on to state that, "In absence of Comprehensive Immigration Reform, USCIS can extend benefits and/or protection to many individuals and groups by issuing new guidance and regulations."
Proponents of tougher immigration control and enforcement of the current immigration laws, see the USCIS proposal as an attempt on the part of the Obama Administration to thwart Congress and establish a "back door" method to grant amnesty to immigrants that are in the U.S. illegally.
The Washington Times reported that, "The memo suggests that in-depth discussions have occurred on how to keep many illegal immigrants in the country, which would be at least a temporary alternative to the proposals Democrats in Congress have made to legalize illegal immigrants."
The memo was obtained by Sen. Charles E. Grassley, Iowa Republican.
Mr. Grassley said it confirms his fears that the administration is trying an end-run around Congress. "This memo gives credence to our concerns that the administration will go to great lengths to circumvent Congress and unilaterally execute a backdoor amnesty plan," Mr. Grassley said.
On May 11, Mr. Mayorkas testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee and confirmed that Administration officials discussed various options that would make it easier for illegal immigrants to remain in the U.S. and not be subject to current immigrations laws.
Sen. John Cornyn, Texas Republican and the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Immigration, Border Security and Citizenship Subcommittee, told Mr. Mayorkas, "The American public’s confidence in the federal government’s ability and commitment to enforce our immigration laws is at an all-time low." Mr. Cornyn went on to say, "This apparent step to circumvent Congress – and avoid a transparent debate on how to fix our broken immigration system – threatens to further erode public confidence in its government and makes it less likely we will ever reach consensus and pass credible border security and immigration reform.”
Survey data from most major political polling organizations supports Senator Cornyn's contention that the American public's confidence in the federal government's commitment to enforce the immigration laws is at an "all-time low".
Polls indicate that a large majority of American voters want tougher enforcement of the immigration laws and would like to see their states pass laws similar to Arizona's SB1070. Arizona passed SB1070 in response to the federal government's repeated failure to enforce the immigration laws and curb the flood of illegal immigrants into the state. The law allowed local law enforcement to arrest immigrants that were in the state illegally. However, at the behest of President Obama, U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton, on July 28, issued a partial injunction against most of the tougher aspects of Arizona's SB1070. In her ruling, Judge Bolton stated that SB1070 is unconstitutional, because " . . . the power to regulate immigration is vested exclusively in the federal government."
The Washington Times reports that, new figures from Immigration and Customs Enforcement, indicate that the Obama Administration has stepped up its efforts to deport illegal immigrants convicted of crimes, but removal of "non-criminal" illegal immigrants has slowed so far in fiscal 2010.
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