(National Review) One of the myriad loopholes in the Senate immigration reform bill could allow illegal immigrants who are known members of criminal gangs to become legal residents.
The proposed law stipulates that prospective immigrants determined to be involved in gang-related activity are inadmissible to country, and that illegal immigrants already living here would be ineligible to receive legal status. This would not only apply to individuals who have been convicted of a gang-related offense, but also to those who “willingly participated in a criminal street gang with knowledge that such participation promoted or furthered the illegal activity of the gang.”
Such individuals (non-convict gang members) could still achieve legal status, however, if the DHS secretary grants them a waiver. All they would be required to do is “renounce” their gang affiliation. Furthermore, the bill’s wording is specific enough (e.g., “willfully participated . . . with knowledge”) so as to provide considerable wiggle room from a legal standpoint.