A federal judge has a message for President Obama: Stop bypassing Congress on immigration.
Obama issued a directive in June 2012 halting the deportation of many young illegal aliens after Congress refused to pass the DREAM Act, which would have provided conditional permanent residency to young illegals.
A federal judge in Dallas is now threatening to reverse that directive.
U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor said Tuesday that he will likely rule in favor of a lawsuit seeking to overturn the new policy. He has asked both sides to file additional arguments by May 6.
The administration’s policy directs U.S. Immigration and Customs, or ICE, agents to defer deportation for illegal aliens under 30 who entered the country before the age of 16, are in school or have a high school diploma, haven’t been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor or multiple misdemeanors and are not a threat to public safety or national security.
The ICE agent union challenged the policy, arguing that the Obama administration is disciplining agents who enforce federal immigration law.
The president of that union, the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council, also said the policy is being abused.
In his April 8 testimony, Christopher L. Crane said, “Officers are applying the directive to people detained in jails, not kids in school.”
He told the court, “It is now the story in the jails for aliens to use to avoid arrest and deportation.”
Those aliens appear to be taking advantage of the policy with great success. National Review found, “Since the policy took effect in August 2012, the Obama administration has approved 268,361 applications for ‘deferred action’ status, and denied just 1,377 – an approval rate of 99.5 percent.”
While critics argue the policy is ineffective in securing the border, Judge O’Connor indicated it’s also illegal for the Obama administration to tell immigration agents not to arrest an illegal alien who is a low priority.
“The court finds that DHS (Department of Homeland Security) does not have discretion to refuse to initiate removal proceedings,” Judge O’Connor wrote.
O’Connor issued a court order stating that Congress, not the president, sets priorities for arresting illegal aliens and that the law requires them to face deportation.
A recent analysis by Politico based on U.S. Census and Pew Research Center estimates of illegal alien populations by state brings into question the Democrats’ motivation for what they call comprehensive immigration reform – also dubbed “amnesty” by critics.
After crunching the numbers, Politico said the immigration proposal now in Congress would give Democrats a decisive advantage at the polls for a generation or more.
It would happen by “pumping as many as 11 million new Hispanic voters into the electorate a decade from now in ways that, if current trends hold, would produce an electoral bonanza for Democrats and cripple Republican prospects in many states they now win easily.”
William Gheen, president of Americans for Legal Immigration PAC, or ALIPAC, told WND the legislation would “completely wipe out the center-right group of people that have governed America for over 200 years. And it would replace true conservatives with illegal immigrants willing to vote for anyone willing to give them more power and control.”
Gheen believes the DHS policy is in response to a drop in illegal immigration after the economy began plummeting into recession in 2008 and states began cracking down on illegal immigration.
“If the ICE agents can win their case and we can stop amnesty, the American public may get one more shot at this in the 2014 election, in which case we could restore the reversal of illegal immigration,” he said.
Gheen said ALIPAC may file a friend-of-the-court brief to help the ICE agents’ union.
“To us its very clear that the U.S. Constitution says immigration is the purview of the U.S. Congress. And the fact that Obama’s memo, or decree, so perfectly emulates failed legislation reinforces our belief this should have been done legislatively, it if were done at all.”
Gheen added, “[W]e have contended for years, and accurately so, that those very powerful groups behind the deadly and costly illegal immigrant invasion of the United States are not concerned about democracy; they’re all about authoritarian governance. It’s just part of what it’s going to be like if they ever get their group of 20 million illegal immigrants on board as a new voting bloc.”
He said those “powerful groups” include Fox News.
“I know that Fox News is pushing amnesty. They’ve had very few anti-amnesty people on at all, except for Ann Coulter and Michelle Malkin. All of their main hosts, Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity, have come out in support of amnesty,” he added.
Gheen also cited what he called bogus immigration polls by Fox News.
“This time, the amnesty battle is different because two high-profile groups have run designer polls and paid for the results, with Fox News and the Associated Press trying to convince Americans that if they’re against amnesty they are in the minority. It is a very powerful and Orwellian thing that we have to deal with,” Gheen contended.
He added, “We have a whole list of polls showing our position of enforcement rather than amnesty are supported by a supermajority of Americans, and we’ve been collecting those polls for eight years at Alipac.us.”
The ALIPAC website currently features a Reuters poll released Tuesday showing “more than half of U.S. citizens believe that most or all of the country’s 11 million illegal immigrants should be deported.”