FRONT PAGE CONTRIBUTOR
The Permanent Cessation of Deportations
One question that proponents of endless amnesty can never answer is how they ever plan to stop future waves of illegal immigration if they continue to telegraph the message that deportations are taboo. That as long as they can reach our shores and “become part of the fabric of society,” they are here to stay.
Indeed, Marco Rubio presciently warned about this lax attitude towards enforcement when he was running for Senate in 2009:
“If you grant amnesty, the message that you’re sending is that if you come in this country and stay here long enough, we will let you stay. And no one will ever come through the legal process if you do that.”
This is why many of us believe that to the extent amnesty can ever work as a final solution, it must be preceded by a resolute determination to enforce deportations against future illegal entrants. The Senate immigration bill, however, does just the opposite. Aside for the fact that it will be virtually impossible to decipher all the new illegal immigrants from the plethora of those eligible for legal status, thereby ostensibly halting all deportations, this bill explicitly grants wide latitude to DHS and immigration judges to suspend future deportations. We’ve already noted how the bill grants DHS authority to legalize current illegals who would otherwise be ineligible for RPI status “for humanitarian purposes, to ensure family unity, or if such a waiver is otherwise in the public interest.”
Section 2313 (page 328) of the bill adds in the following discretion to judges overseeing removal proceedings:
In the case of an alien subject to removal, deportation, or exclusion, the immigration judge may exercise discretion to decline to order the alien removed, deported or excluded from the United States and terminate proceedings if the judge determines that such removal, deportation, or exclusion is against the public interest or would result in hardship to the alien’s United States citizen or permanent resident parent of a child, spouse, or child,
On Page 330, similar discretion is granted to the Secretary of DHS:
‘‘(w) SECRETARY’S DISCRETION.—In the case of an alien inadmissible under this section, the Secretary of Homeland Security may exercise discretion to waive a ground of inadmissibility if the Secretary determines that such refusal of admission is against the public interest or would result in hardship to the alien’s United States citizen or permanent resident parent, spouse, or child
What about those aliens who have already been deported and have reentered a second time? Under current law (8 U.S.C. 1231(a)(5)), “the prior order of removal is reinstated from its original date and is not subject to being reopened or reviewed, the alien is not eligible and may not apply for any relief under this Act, and the alien shall be removed under the prior order at any time after the reentry.” This bill (page 331), once again, adds on that broad exception:
“unless the alien reentered prior to attaining the age of 18 years, or reinstatement of the prior order of removal would not be in the public interest or would result in hardship to the alien’s United States citizen or permanent resident parent, spouse, or child.’’
Couple these waivers with Section 3717 (page 653), which places the burden upon ICE to prove that a given alien should be detained, and this bill ensures we will have millions more illegals by the time the current crop receives their voting cards. There are already tons of migrants from Central America traveling through Mexico to reach our porous border and take advantage of the permanent free-for-all.
This comprehensive immigration deform bill is a lot more than amnesty. It is a mockery of the rule of law.