immigration enforcement

immigration enforcement: Page 1

Discussed in (click each link for the full post):

AP: Obama to deport fewer illegal aliens this fiscal year than since 2007 - 09/12/14

Alicia Caldwell of the Associated Press writes "US sharply cutting deportations" [1]:

President Barack Obama is on pace this year to deport the fewest number of immigrants since at least 2007, even as he has postponed until after Election Day his promised unilateral action that could shield millions more from deportation.

Jeh Johnson's empty pledge to keep unaccompanied children from coming here illegally - 05/18/14

Department of Homeland Security secretary Jeh Johnson is engaged in the policy equivalent of doublespeak: he claims he wants unaccompanied children not to enter the U.S. illegally, but at the same time his other policies encourage a mad rush for the border.

LA Times admits Obama is not the "Deporter in Chief" ("High deportation figures are misleading") - 04/03/14

The Los Angeles Times is perhaps even more in favor of illegal immigration and amnesty than their big brother. But, a select few lies are even too much for the L.A. Times.

DHS admits Obama is deporting fewer illegal aliens than George W. Bush - 03/12/14

So much for the "Deporter in Chief". Pro-illegal immigration activists and incurious members of the establishment media have tried to claim that Barack Obama has deported more illegal aliens than George W Bush.

That's despite the fact that back on September 28, 2011 Obama admitted this [1]:

Human Rights Watch: let criminals stay and come back for amnesty (Grace Meng, immigration) - 06/05/13

Just how uninterested in immigration enforcement is the far-left? For a data point, over to "Don't deport all criminal immigrants" by Grace Meng of Human Rights Watch (bolding added) [1]:

Questions about the "high" cost of immigration enforcement - 01/07/13

The Migration Policy Institute has released a study claiming that the cost of immigration enforcement is too high.

Here are some questions for those leaders who are using the study to push their loose immigration/amnesty agendas. They should be able to answer these questions, yet the chance of any of them doing so is small. Since they won't and can't answer these questions convincingly, please re-evaluate whether you should take their advice on policy.

Obama admin cooked the books: deportations are below 2008 and 2009 - 08/27/12

From their press release [1]:

The House Judiciary Committee has obtained internal U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) documents, which show that the Obama administration is cooking the books to achieve their so-called ‘record’ deportation numbers for illegal immigrants and that removals are actually significantly down – not up – from 2009.

Obama admin shutting down 287g immigration enforcement program - 02/17/12

From this:

The Obama administration is starting to shut down a program that deputized local police officers to act as immigration agents.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials have trained local officers around the country to act as their agencies' immigration officers. Working either in jails or in the field, the officers can check the immigration status of suspects and place immigration holds on them.

Obama declares administrative mini-amnesty: will review all 300,000 facing deportation hearings (UPDATE: open the floodgates?) - 08/18/11

Barack Obama has repeatedly stated that he can't declare a blanket amnesty via executive order to cover all the 10-12+ million illegal aliens in the U.S. However, he's just come close by declaring a mini-amnesty that will cover up to 300,000 illegal aliens (link).

DHS officials misled about backdoor amnesty for illegal aliens (Houston, John Morton) - 06/27/11

From this:

Homeland Security officials misled the public and Congress last year in an effort to downplay a wave of immigration case dismissals in Houston and other cities amid accusations that they had created a "back-door amnesty," newly released records show.

Legal Workforce Act: too many concessions to US Chamber of Commerce? (eVerify, HR 2164) - 06/18/11

A group of House members [1] have introduce the "Legal Workforce Act" ("LFA"), which would require the use of eVerify by most workers nationwide. That would presumably make it difficult for companies to employ illegal aliens.

Obama admits problems caused by mass immigration; panders to illegal aliens; takes foreign citizens' side; opposes non-criminal deportations - 03/29/11

Barack Obama spoke at Bell Multicultural High School in Washington DC yesterday at a townhall conducted in Spanish for the Univision network. The host was anchor Jorge Ramos, a U.S.

WSJ and SEIU complain about immigration audits, show no concern for American workers (Miriam Jordan, Harvard Maintenance, Minnesota) - 03/15/11

As an alternative to the showy immigration raids conducted during the George W Bush administration, the Barack Obama administration has been conducting "paper raids" (see this for an example with the downsides noted; the guidelines were discussed here).

Needless to say, any form of immigration enforcement doesn't sit well with those who seek to profit or enable others to profit from cheap illegal labor. Thus, Miriam Jordan of the Wall Street Journal offers "Immigration Audit Takes Toll/Janitorial Firm Harvard Maintenance to Lose Over Half of Minnesota Work Force" (link). It features the WSJ highlighting complaints about that audit from the Service Employees International Union, without mentioning the fact that the raid might have opened up hundreds of jobs for American citizens and legal workers. The SEIU gets untold millions in dues from illegally-earned paychecks, and illegal aliens also give them poliltical power. Supporting American workers over illegal aliens isn't in their best interests. For the WSJ, supporting American workers over cheaper, more pliable illegal aliens isn't in the interests of those they serve.

Excerpts follow; see if you can find anything supportive of American workers either below or in the whole article:

Harvard Maintenance Inc., a national janitorial company, will lose over half its Minnesota work force after an immigration audit, making it the second major business in that state to be hit by an Obama administration crackdown on employers of illegal immigrants.

The audit by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will result in about 240 workers losing their jobs, the Service Employees International Union said on Monday...

...Harvard Maintenance began issuing dismissal letters to employees in early March and is in the process of terminating workers, according to the SEIU, which represents the workers...

..."Our community is traumatized," said Javier Morillo, president of SEIU Local 26 in the Twin Cities. He estimated Harvard Maintenance has 350 workers in the state. Mr. Morillo said following the audit the union worked with Harvard Maintenance to keep the workers employed as long as possible...

...DeAnne Hilgers, an attorney who advises Minnesota companies, said the business community there was shocked by "what appears to be a surge in audits." She said 10 of her clients in the construction and restaurant industries were being investigated by ICE, a unit of the Department of Homeland Security. "These audits are of great consequence to their businesses" because they result in lost workers and thousands of dollars in fines, she said...

...About 11 million illegal immigrants live in the U.S., according to the Pew Hispanic Center, a nonpartisan research group. Without illegal immigrants, business executives in industries like construction, agriculture and restaurants say they would be forced to radically change how they operate.

3/19/11 UPDATE: Morillo of the SEIU has issued a statement (excerpt from here). He's partially correct, albeit for the wrong reasons:

Under the leadership of Secretary Napolitano the federal government has become an employment agency for the country’s worst employers. With each I-9 audit, the government is systematically pushing hardworking people into the underground economy where they face exploitation. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) reports targeting egregious employers that exploit workers – but it’s become increasingly obvious that this policy is nothing short of lip service. Let’s be clear: I-9 audits, by definition, do not go after egregious employers who break immigration laws because many of them do not use I-9 forms. Human traffickers do not ask their victims for their social security cards.

Secretary Napolitano, Director Morton and the agencies they represent are at the forefront of a damaging policy shift in this country – one in which good, hardworking people are hand-delivered to the underground economy. SEIU fights for economic justice across this country, and we can no longer sit silently while communities are devastated by reckless policies.

As this site has been saying since they started, the "paper raids" simply put illegal aliens back in the labor pool, and many of them will simply find work at other, less-reputable employers. So, Morillo is correct about that, at least partially. What he, the SEIU, and the DHS aren't correct about is the solution to the problem. Those groups want to legalize illegal aliens. The solution that supports U.S. workers is to deport illegal aliens and take them out of the labor pool so that U.S. workers can take those jobs. Due to unemployment and other factors, that would be a net financial gain. The SEIU's idea of "economic justice" is perverse, involving obtaining dues money and political power from those here illegally who are depressing wages and taking jobs from American workers. The SEIU's loyalty is to themselves and to illegal aliens and not so much to American workers.

3/24/11 UPDATE: More from Morillo (link):

"The janitors of the Twin Cities that are in the union, they're not depressing wages for janitors. They're the highest paid janitors," said Morillo. "There are janitorial companies that pay much, much less that actually depress wages that are not being targeted for ICE audits."

Morillo claims ICE targets companies that already check the paperwork of their employees. Employers who pay under the table wouldn't get caught in this net. That underground economy is where he says most of the former janitors will go.

SEIU has tracked the ABM janitors who lost their jobs in 2009. Morillo says hardly any of them have returned to their home countries.

Obviously, Minneapolis only needs so many janitors so the illegal aliens that the SEIU is protecting are taking good-paying jobs away from Americans who might be forced out of work or who might be forced to take lower-paying jobs. And, the last paragraph underlines how Napolitano's "paper raids" simply add illegal aliens back into the labor pool.

ICE cooked the books on record number of deportations - 12/21/10

Earlier this month, the George Soros-funded Center for Investigative Reporting offered this:

For much of this year, the Obama administration touted its tougher-than-ever approach to immigration enforcement, culminating in a record number of deportations.

But in reaching 392,862 deportations, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement included more than 19,000 immigrants who had exited the previous fiscal year, according to agency statistics. ICE also ran a Mexican repatriation program five weeks longer than ever before, allowing the agency to count at least 6,500 exits that, without the program, would normally have been tallied by the U.S. Border Patrol.

When ICE officials realized in the final weeks of the fiscal year, which ended Sept. 30, that the agency still was in jeopardy of falling short of last year's mark, it scrambled to reach the goal. Officials quietly directed immigration officers to bypass backlogged immigration courts and time-consuming deportation hearings whenever possible, internal e-mails and interviews show...

They did that for the same reasons that George W Bush conducted high-profile immigration raids: to make comprehensive immigration reform or lesser amnesties such as the DREAM Act more likely. Obviously their efforts failed, and the question now becomes whether they're going to cut back on deportations and try to ramp up what amounts to de facto amnesty.

Senators: ICE doing selective enforcement, not asking for more resources - 10/27/10

A group of senators [1] recently sent a letter to Janet Napolitano of the Department of Homeland Security pointing out that her version of immigration enforcement is selective and also noting that the DHS hasn't asked for more resources to do their job.

Here's part of the letter (link):

Recently, media reports have revealed that pending removal proceedings are being dismissed in record numbers. That sharp increase in dismissals is the result of a directive from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director (John Morton) to all ICE attorneys to review pending cases and seek dismissal if the cases do not involve [serious] offenders...

Though the reports focused only on cases pending before Houston immigration judges, our understanding is that the ICE directive applies nationwide. Numerous criminal aliens are being released into society and are having proceedings terminated simply because ICE has decided that such cases do not fit within the Department’s chosen enforcement priorities...

...The ICE directive, along with other recently announced detention and removal policies, raises serious questions about your Department’s commitment to enforce the immigration laws. It appears that your Department is enforcing the law based on criteria it arbitrarily chose, with complete disregard for the enforcement laws created by Congress. The repercussions of this decision extend beyond removal proceedings, because it discourages officers from even initiating new removal proceedings if they believe the case ultimately will be dismissed based on the new directive.

Even more disturbing is the fact that your Department has chosen to dismiss cases against criminal aliens, including aliens who have committed crimes involving moral turpitude, crimes of violence, assault, theft, fraud, drug offenses, driving under the influence, and illegal entry.

To be sure, ICE has cited a lack of resources as one of the reasons for its prioritization of cases and for its selective enforcement. But to date, we have not seen any efforts by ICE, your Department, or the Administration to request an increase in ICE funding sufficient to address staffing shortages, detention capacity, and coordination of enforcement efforts nationwide to achieve a streamlined and robust immigration removal system...

They want a list of the cases that the DHS has dismissed, and they also want to know how much the DHS is going to need to do their job.

A DHS spokesman responds (link):

"The idea that DHS is engaged in 'selective enforcement' couldn't be further from the truth," [spokesman Matt Chandler] said. "In fact, this administration has fundamentally changed the way the federal government approaches immigration enforcement, doing more to keep criminal aliens who are threats to public safety - including murderers, rapists and child molesters - off our streets than ever before."

That's a good thing, but at the same time DHS is sending the message that illegal aliens are more or less home free as long as they avoid committing serious crimes.

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[1] Signers: John Cornyn, Jeff Sessions, Jon Kyl, Orrin Hatch, Chuck Grassley, Lindsey Graham, and Tom Coburn

DHS undercuts 287g immigration enforcement in Nashville (wants most screened to be serious offenders) - 10/24/10

From this story about the 287g program in the county containing Nashville, Tennessee:

Earlier this year, federal officials decided the Davidson County Sheriff's 287(g) program that screens the immigration status of incarcerated foreign nationals was targeting too many minor criminal offenders and not enough felons.

Davidson County Sheriff Daron Hall's controversial program is supposed to place a priority on screening foreign nationals who are accused of committing serious felonies, according to last year's revised 287(g) agreement between Metro and the federal government.

But internal U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement memos obtained by The Tennessean show that Hall's program was screening more than twice as many people with minor offenses as those with crimes such as murder, robbery and rape. An ICE memo from April shows that 73 percent of those screened by 287(g) in Nashville during the latter part of 2009 were arrested for minor offenses, while just 13 percent had been arrested for serious crimes...

...A second audit by ICE of Nashville's program from January through March of this year showed the numbers of those screened for minor crimes dropped to 36 percent...

...The series of ICE memos suggest federal officials were satisfied with the corrective action and that the Nashville program received no additional scrutiny.

The unanswered question is whether they were ignoring some major offenders to go after minor offenders; that doesn't appear to be the case. There certainly are only a limited number of resources to go around, but not going after minor offenders as the Department of Homeland Security wants means letting those who are or who might become major offenders off the hook and it's a form of de facto amnesty.

In any case, it's clear that to the Obama administration their use of 287g was too effective: they want as many somewhat law-abiding illegal aliens to stick around in the hopes of getting amnesty and converting them into voters for the Democratic Party.

Note also this:

Since 287(g) was put into place in 2007, the Sheriff's office has screened the immigration status of 12,486 foreign nationals cited and arrested for everything from murder to fishing without a license, according to data obtained in an open records request by the newspaper.

Of those, more than 7,250 immigrants have been processed for removal because of Nashville's 287(g) program. The sheriff's office could not say how many of those processed for deportation came from misdemeanors or felony arrests.

DHS claims to have set record for deportations, fines; Secure Communities - 10/11/10

From a Department of Homeland Security press release [1]:

In fiscal year 2010, ICE set a record for overall removals of illegal aliens, with more than 392,000 removals nationwide. Half of those removed - more than 195,000 - were convicted criminals. The fiscal year 2010 statistics represent increases of more than 23,000 removals overall and 81,000 criminal removals compared to fiscal year 2008 - a more than 70 percent increase in removal of criminal aliens from the previous administration.

DHS has also expanded the Secure Communities initiative - which uses biometric information and services to identify and remove criminal aliens in state prisons and local jails - from 14 jurisdictions in 2008 to more than 660 today, including all jurisdictions along the Southwest border. DHS is on track to expand this program to all law enforcement jurisdictions nationwide by 2013. This year alone, Secure Communities has resulted in the arrest of more than 59,000 convicted criminal aliens, including more than 21,000 convicted of major violent offenses like murder, rape, and the sexual abuse of children.

Since January 2009, ICE has audited more than 3,200 employers suspected of hiring illegal labor, debarred 225 companies and individuals, and imposed approximately $50 million in financial sanctions - more than the total amount of audits and debarments than during the entire previous administration.

The last isn't much of a surprise, but it should also be pointed out that some of the fines date back to Bush-era cases.

[1] www.dhs.gov/ynews/releases/pr_1286389936778.shtm

New DHS policies are de facto amnesty; John Morton thinks ICE has enough money - 09/10/10

The Department of Homeland Security - specifically their Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency headed by John Morton - has instituted new policies that amount to a form of a de facto amnesty. And, all of this has been done without anywhere near the outcry that would occur from an amnesty proposal in Congress. Granted, these policies don't include a "pathway to citizenship" and the other perks that would be included in comprehensive immigration reform. However, they'll let most illegal aliens off the hook for the indefinite future and - just like a real amnesty - that will probably encourage more people to come here illegally. The Obama administration probably considers this a stop-gap measure and after the next election they'll begin a push for a de jure amnesty.

A round-up of the changes is provided by Pro Publica here:

* Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director John Morton ordered agency officials on Aug. 20 to begin dismissing deportation cases against people who haven't committed serious crimes and have credible immigration applications pending.

* A proposed directive from Morton posted on ICE's website for public comment last month would generally prohibit police from using misdemeanor traffic stops to send people to ICE. Traffic stops have led to increased deportations in recent years, according to Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank whose research supports tighter enforcement.

The directive said exceptions would be made in certain cases, such as when immigrants have serious criminal records.

* ICE officers have been told to "exercise discretion" when deciding whether to detain "long-time lawful permanent residents, juveniles, the immediate family members of U.S. citizens, veterans, members of the armed forces and their families, and others with illnesses or special circumstances," Daniel Ragsdale, ICE executive associate director of management, testified July 1 in the administration's lawsuit to block Arizona's controversial immigration law. The law requires police officers to determine the immigration status of suspects stopped for another offense if there was a "reasonable suspicion" they are in the USA illegally. A U.S. district judge has held up the provision pending review.

* A draft memo from ICE's sister agency, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, to Morton discussed ways the administration could adjust regulations so certain groups, such as college students and the spouses of military personnel, could legalize their status or at least avoid deportation if Congress doesn't pass comprehensive immigration reform. USCIS rules on applications for visas, work permits and citizenship. USCIS spokesman Christopher Bentley said the memo was intended to stimulate brainstorming on how to legalize immigrants if new laws aren't passed.

The same group has an interview with John Morton here. For one of them he sounds almost exactly like Michael Chertoff:

If your question is what about the people who are not priorities for the agency, the answer is we're going to continue to enforce the law. We're not giving broad classes of people amnesty or a pass from law enforcement. But we are recognizing that, hey, we only have a limited ability to enforce the law in terms of resources and when we go about saying, 'How should we target enforcement resources?', we're going to focus on three areas overall. And those are criminal offenders, recent entrants and people who game the system.

And, instead of railing at Congress and demanding higher funding, he thinks they have all the money they need:

Our overall budget at the agency is at an all-time high. We are detaining large numbers of people. Our detention budget has not gone down. In fact, it's grown tremendously over the past couple of years... (Because of enormous deficits) there are hard choices that have to be wrestled with every day and ICE continues to be funded at a very high level by Congress.

Over 500,000 fugitive illegal aliens in U.S. (catch and release) - 09/08/10

Per this:

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) says that as of Sunday, Sept. 5, it had caught-and-released 506,232 illegal aliens who are now fugtives. That is more than the population of Sacramento, California, which currently numbers 486,189.

"Fugitive illegal alien" generally means someone who was caught as an illegal alien, who promised to appear in court to answer the charge, and then who never showed up or someone who was ordered deported but never showed up. That's distinct from a "criminal illegal alien", which is an illegal alien who's committed a non-immigration crime. And, it's important to note that the figure is for all time, including the Bush administration which trumpeted having stopped "catch and release", at least on the border.

Where the Obama administration differs from the Bush administration is in this:

“It is important to note that our fugitive operations teams now can spend up to 30 percent of their time arresting convicted criminals at-large,” (Brian Hale, director of public affairs at ICE) said. “Thus, their fugitive arrests don’t reflect all of their work.”

While obviously we want to deport as many criminals as possible, the flipside is that DHS's policy is a form of de facto amnesty.

Interior Dep't environmental regulations hampering Border Patrol (Rob Bishop, HR 5016) - 09/08/10

From this:

...migrants and drug smugglers (marijuana, mainly) are attracted to parts of Arizona for a specific reason. On these federal lands, environmental regulations prevent the Border Patrol from doing its job. That's what the mainstream media won't report... [On the video below], (Rep. Rob Bishop) makes this simple point. The U.S. side of the 1,950-mile border with Mexico is about 60 percent private land and 40 percent federal. "Almost all" of the migrants and drug smugglers come across federal lands, protected by stringent "wilderness" designations or endangered species rules. The federals are submissive before the environmental regs that interfere with border enforcement. The Border Patrol, a division of Homeland Security, has to complete lengthy environmental reports and get permission from the Departments of Agriculture and Interior before it can do anything. This can take several months.

The author contrasts the situation in Arizona with that in Texas where most land is private, which makes some sense. And, he says that Rep. Raul Grijalva - someone on the opposite side from Bishop - "seems to be primarily interested in representing Mexican interests", something I've found to be true. (Unfortunately, the author tries to weave this into a larger libertarian-oriented framework against redistributionism and environmentalism and the like. Giving this issue a partisan sheen isn't generally advised.)

The 37-minute Bishop video from June referred to above is at http://peekURL.com/vq864qf
For the 2-minute version, see http://peekURL.com/vvkj6l2
And, Bishop challenges Department of the Interior secretary Ken Salazar on http://peekURL.com/vum86ga
The reader is encouraged to go to one of Salazar's public appearances and ask him when he'll be doing the items on the last video, or ask him to explain exactly why he won't be doing them.
Bishop is also the sponsor of HR 5016: "To prohibit the Secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture from taking action on public lands which impede border security on such lands, and for other purposes.".

ICE goes easy on both illegal aliens and their employers ("silent raids", audits) - 09/03/10

Under the Bush administration, the Department of Homeland Security engaged in a small number of showy but not overly effective immigration raids. Under the Obama administration, the DHS switched to (in addition generally not doing its job) what are called "silent raids" where they audit a company's employment records and then request that the employees are fired if they can't prove they're here legally. That lets illegal aliens stay in the U.S. and simply go find work at another company. And, that helps the Democrats maintain a power base. (Over nine months ago I urged people to ask Janet Napolitano about this at one of her public appearances).

Not only does the Obama administration cause long-term difficulties for American workers with this policy, but they're also letting employers off the hook (link):

...ICE audit records obtained recently through a Freedom of Information Act request show that the agency has, in many instances, failed to punish companies found to have significant numbers or high percentages of workers with questionable documents... The records show inspectors identified more than 110 companies with suspect documents, with nearly half of those having questionable paperwork for 10 or more workers... In total, the agency ordered 14 companies to pay fines of nearly $150,000, but noted no employer arrests in connection with any of the cases...

ICE doesn't have much of a defense:

[ICE points] to the fact that this fiscal year the agency has ordered businesses to pay a record-setting $4.6 million in civil penalties and has arrested more than 150 employers, managers or supervisors. However, some of the arrests stem from investigations going back several years. And the fines reflect enforcement actions that date as far back as 2007, including $360,000 from the 2008 raid of a Houston rag factory and more than $536,000 from a 2007 Ohio chicken factory raid. ...ICE did not have a breakdown of how much of the $4.6 million or how many of the arrests stemmed directly from the audit initiative, which began in July 2009.

Note also that one of the components of comprehensive immigration reform is increased enforcement, including cracking down on employers of illegal aliens. Some Democrats even stress that they want to do that now. Are you willing to trust that "reform" would include stepped-up enforcement given the above?

Sidenote: the article also quotes Angela Kelley of the Center for American Progress:

"You have this drip, drip, drip of I-9 enforcement audits all over the country, and it has the same effect - people don’t come to work the next day."

Those she's referring to aren't supposed to be here in the first place; she's on their side and not on the side of American workers.

DHS letting deportable illegal aliens go if they could get green card (John Morton) - 08/27/10

From this:

In a new and more lenient policy, the head of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has instructed the agency's legal office to stop the deportation proceedings of foreign nationals who may now be eligible for a green card.

South Florida immigration attorneys and activists said the move is the first solid evidence of more tolerance by ICE toward some foreign nationals facing removal to their homelands.

Affected are possibly tens of thousands who are married or related to a U.S. citizen or a legal resident who has filed a petition for them. The immigrants who will benefit must also not have a criminal conviction.

This policy was disclosed via a memo from John Morton, head of ICE; in the memo he wrote: "Where there is an underlying application or petition and ICE determines . . . that a non-detained individual appears eligible for relief from removal, [its attorneys] should promptly move to dismiss proceedings." The new policy is cheered in the article by Cheryl Little of the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center. In the past, some or most of those covered by the new policy would be deported, but with the new "backdoor amnesty" push from the DHS, they'll get to stay.

To a very, very small extent policies like this are reasonable: ICE says they want to concentrate on the criminals first and points out that they can only deport 400,000 people per year. To a far greater extent, this is indeed a backdoor amnesty and potential illegal aliens in foreign countries will no doubt rush to take advantage of it.

The way to block things like this would have been to do things like really press Janet Napolitano on such policies, as I suggested over nine months ago. No one in the mainstream media is going to really press Obama administration officials, and citizens aren't filling the gap.

Obama admin not deporting some who are deportable; Houston; test program? - 08/25/10

From this:

The Department of Homeland Security is systematically reviewing thousands of pending immigration cases and moving to dismiss those filed against suspected illegal immigrants who have no serious criminal records, according to several sources familiar with the efforts.

Culling the immigration court system dockets of noncriminals started in earnest in Houston about a month ago and has stunned local immigration attorneys, who have reported coming to court anticipating clients' deportations only to learn that the government was dismissing their cases.

Richard Rocha, an Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman, said Tuesday that the review is part of the agency's broader, nationwide strategy to prioritize the deportations of illegal immigrants who pose a threat to national security and public safety. Rocha declined to provide further details.

Critics assailed the plan as another sign that the Obama administration is trying to create a kind of backdoor "amnesty" program.

This might be a test program that they'll be rolling out nationwide. Nine months ago I urged people to ask Janet Napolitano about the DHS refusing to deport those who were involved in immigration enforcement actions ("silent raids"). If you want to stop this apparent test program in its tracks, help promote plans like that. If you don't, all the wailing and gnashing of teeth isn't going to be effective: the Obama administration is just going to do whatever they want to do. Challenging them to their face on video with tough questions would definitely put a crimp in their plans.

ICE memo: deport the criminals first. Will they greatly reduce deporting non-criminals? - 08/09/10

From this:

New guidance telling U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents to focus on apprehending terrorists and criminals has many of ICE's rank-and-file agents wondering who then is responsible for tracking down and detaining the millions of other illegal border-crossers and fugitive aliens now in the country.

The new guidelines are outlined in a June 29 memo from Assistant Secretary John Morton, who heads the agency, to all ICE employees regarding the apprehension, detention and removal of illegal immigrants, noting that the agency "only has resources to remove approximately 400,000 aliens per year, less than 4 percent of the estimated illegal-alien population in the United States."

...More than a dozen veteran ICE agents told The Washington Times in the past week that the carefully worded memo had field agents wondering whether they would be detaining illegal border-crossers in the future and whether those apprehended by other law enforcement agencies would be turned over to ICE for eventual deportation.

Related: a John Morton quote about ICE refusing to deport illegal alien students.

ICE refusing to deport illegal alien students (John Morton, DREAM Act) - 08/09/10

Julia Preston of the New York Times offers this:

The Obama administration, while deporting a record number of immigrants convicted of crimes, is sparing one group of illegal immigrants from expulsion: students who came to the United States without papers when they were children.

In case after case where immigrant students were identified by federal agents as being in the country illegally, the students were released from detention and their deportations were suspended or canceled, lawyers and immigrant advocates said. Officials have even declined to deport students who openly declared their illegal status in public protests...

"In a world of limited resources, our time is better spent on someone who is here unlawfully and is committing crimes in the neighborhood," John Morton, the head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said in an interview. "As opposed to someone who came to this country as a juvenile and spent the vast majority of their life here."

The article also claims that there are 700,000 illegal aliens who'd be covered by the DREAM Act, an amnesty that would allow current or former illegal aliens to take college educations away from needy American citizens. And, it shouldn't be necessary to point out that by refusing to deport illegal alien college students DHS is sending a very strong welcoming message to those in foreign countries who might otherwise think twice about bringing their children here illegally.

Related: ICE memo: deport the criminals first. Will they greatly reduce deporting non-criminals?

John Morton: ICE might not process illegal aliens arrested under Arizona immigration law - 05/20/10

John Morton, the Department of Homeland Security Assistant Secretary who heads ICE, visited Chicago yesterday and promised to ramp up immigration enforcement. Then, he said this (link):

Echoing comments by President Barack Obama and others in the administration, Morton said that Arizona's new law targeting illegal immigration is not "good government." The law makes it a crime to be in the state illegally and requires police to check suspects for immigration paperwork.

Morton said his agency will not necessarily process illegal immigrants referred to them by Arizona officials. The best way to reduce illegal immigration is through a comprehensive federal approach, not a patchwork of state laws, he said.

"I don't think the Arizona law, or laws like it, are the solution," Morton said.

When illegal aliens are fired, Americans rush in to take the jobs (Pro's Ranch Market, Arizona) - 05/01/10

From this April 22 story from Phoenix, Arizona:

Job hunters turned out in the hundreds to fill recently-vacant positions at Pro's Ranch Market stores, where a federal audit led to the firing of some 300 workers.

Roxanne Nieves, one of the many that came out in search of a job, said she came to apply after she heard about the layoffs.

"We heard they are firing a lot of illegal people, so we're here to apply," she said.

This same pattern has repeated itself several times: each time there's an immigration raid or other enforcement action, American workers rush in to disprove the jobs americans wont do talking point.

Nieves feels sorry for those who were fired, but the simple fact is that jobs are at any point in time a limited resource, and it's much better that one should go to a U.S. citizen than to a foreign citizen who's here illegally. Rather than agitating to help illegal aliens take jobs from Americans, leftwingers should encourage reforms in Mexico and other sending countries.

Note also that the company's lawyer is Julie Pace; see that link for more on her.

Luis Gutierrez *complains* about Arizona human trafficking sweep - 04/17/10

Rep. Luis Gutierrez offers "Obama Must Act To Ease Arizona's Deportation Panic" (link), showing for the millionth or so time that the far-left has little or no interest in immigration enforcement. The far-left is strongly behind comprehensive immigration reform, something that would supposedly contain increased enforcement. Yet, they support that part of "reform" in completely bad faith: if "reform" passes they'd oppose any enforcement it mandates just as they do now, leading to an eventual repeat of the current situation.

After hyperventilating against an Arizona bill that isn't even law yet, Gutierrez says:

Then Thursday, the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency compounded the panic with one of the biggest Arizona enforcement actions in history, taking down an alleged state-wide smuggling ring. Let's be clear, I support targeted enforcement against smuggling rings exploiting our broken immigration system and preying on vulnerable immigrants, but the timing of this show of force could not have been more destructive.

Television screens across the state flashed images of 800 federal officers unleashed in Phoenix and Tucson, taking people to jail and multiplying the sense of siege in immigrant and Latino communities. After years of Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Latino neighborhood sweeps, harsher and harsher state laws that target Latinos and immigrants, and escalating federal deportation, I'm afraid we have turned a very dangerous corner in the war on immigrants.

There's always a "but", isn't there? Of course he supports enforcement, just not in this case (or any other case).

30 Members of Congress form the Reclaim American Jobs Caucus: free up jobs through immigration enforcement - 03/19/10

From Reps. Lamar Smith, Sue Myrick and Gary Miller comes this:

...By simply enforcing immigration laws already on the books, we could create job opportunities for American citizens and immigrants who played by the rules to enter the U.S. Instead, the Obama administration has all but abandoned worksite enforcement efforts. In the past year alone, administrative arrests fell by 68 percent; the number of criminal arrests fell by 60 percent; the number of criminal indictments fell by 58 percent; and the number of criminal convictions fell by 63 percent. This is unacceptable and is an insult to unemployed and underemployed American workers.

Recognizing the direct link between unemployment and illegal immigration, we have formed the Reclaim American Jobs Caucus. Comprised of 30 members of Congress, we are dedicated to promoting policies that will help citizens and legal immigrants reclaim the eight million jobs held by illegal immigrants. Specifically, the Caucus seeks to expand use of the E-Verify system that allows employers to validate the eligibility of new hires, enforce workplace immigration laws, encourage attrition through enforcement, and oppose policies that encourage illegal immigration...

The best way to encourage immigration enforcement is to make it difficult for politicians to be on the other side, whether actively or passively. If most politicians realized that not supporting real enforcement would have an impact on their political careers the problem could be solved over time. And, the best way to get their attention is to ask politicians tough questions about immigration on video. Street protests are largely useless, even if they make some people feel better. Voting only goes so far. But, embarrassing a politician on a video that hundreds of thousands of people might see by exposing their lies or their flaws in their policies would be very effective and would send a message to the others. Please help promote the plan at the link.

Pilgrim's Pride slapped on wrist; won't be prosecuted for hiring illegal aliens - 12/30/09

From a Department of Homeland Security press release (link):

Immigration and Customs Enforcement have reached a non-prosecution agreement to resolve an investigation with respect to the hiring and employment of unauthorized aliens at Pilgrim's Pride's plants in the Eastern District of Texas... Under the terms of the agreement, Pilgrim's Pride agrees to pay $4.5 million [NOTE: over three years] and adopt more stringent immigration compliance practices to ensure that its work force is composed of employees legally entitled to work in the United States. In return, the U. S. Attorney's Office agrees to conclude its immigration-related investigation of Pilgrim's Pride and any current or former employees... "This case demonstrates that the government and business, working together, can go a long way to resolving the issue of employment of illegal aliens," said U.S. Attorney Bales. "Pilgrim's Pride has cooperated with the United States during this investigation and acknowledged the company's desire to implement rigorous standards to comply with immigration-related laws. With this agreement, Pilgrim's Pride sets itself up as an industry leader in adopting recommended immigration practices. I commend the thorough investigation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, without which this agreement would not have been possible," Bales said... "ICE's goal is to reduce the opportunity for illegal work in the United States," said John Morton, Department of Homeland Security Assistant Secretary for ICE. "This settlement acknowledges that Pilgrim's Pride is committed to adopting a rigorous immigration compliance program."

For the backstory, see the other entries on the Pilgrims Pride page.

Details on CIR ASAP amnesty: as bad as you'd expect, Part 1 - 12/15/09

This post has excerpts from the first part of the outline of the "Comprehensive Immigration Reform for America's Security and Prosperity Act of 2009" (amnesty) that was unveiled today by Luis Gutierrez. The backstory and more details are here.

DHS claims will audit 1000 employers for immigration compliance - 11/19/09

From this:

About 1,000 employers nationwide will be audited for possible immigration violations in an escalation of the Obama administration's effort to increase pressure on business owners not to hire illegal immigrants.

The businesses will get a notice that the government intends to audit their compliance with immigration laws, the Department of Homeland Security said. The sweep follows a similar action in July during which authorities audited 654 employers. Agents will check the eligibility of workers at each firm, with violations potentially leading to fines, as well as civil or criminal charges.

As the article points out, this happens at the same time as the Obama administration is pushing comprehensive immigration reform. To whatever extent this is a crackdown, they're trying to appear that they're doing something in order to make amnesty more likely, just as the Bush administration did.

DHS worksite enforcement against illegal aliens plummeted under Obama, Napolitano - 11/19/09

Per this:

Criminal arrests, administrative arrests, indictments and convictions of illegal immigrants at work sites all fell by more than 50 percent from fiscal 2008 to fiscal 2009... Fiscal 2008 ran from Oct. 1, 2007, through Sept. 30, 2008. Fiscal 2009 began Oct. 1, 2008, and ran through Sept. 30 of this year.

The exact figures are:

* Criminal arrests: down 60%
* Criminal indictments: down 58%
* Convictions: down 63%
* Administrative arrests: down 68%

The DHS is a bit defensive:

Toothless Obama admin immigration enforcement: 100s janitors fired, not deported (+how many SEIU members are illegal aliens?) - 11/09/09

In Minneapolis, Minnesota earlier this year, the Department of Homeland Security sent no match letters or a variant to around 1200 janitors employed by the major corporation ABM informing those employees that there was a mismatch between their Social Security numbers and other information. They were required to provide documentation by October, and when all or almost all didn't, ABM fired them; presumably all or virtually all are illegal aliens (link). However, rather than trying to deport them, DHS simply concentrated on the company. Needless to say, that makes it easy for a fired illegal alien to go to work down the street, while waiting for the Obama administration to push for amnesty:

John Keller of the Immigrant Law Center says of the 1,200 fired janitors, about 10 might have a path to citizenship under existing laws. The rest, he says, will probably try to wait it out, hoping for the laws to change so they can work herelegally.

The article also says that "ABM janitor jobs make up one-quarter of SEIU's membership"; whether "membership" means just the number in Minneapolis or of the Local involved or is a national figure isn't known, but in any case a large number of SEIU members are here illegally; that means that a portion of the money that the SEIU receives in dues is earned illegally. That would be a good thing to ask them.

And, as with other cases, Americans or legal foreign workers have filled the jobs previously taken by the illegal aliens. It would also be a good thing to ask Democrats, Republicans, pundits, major bloggers, and the like why they aren't calling for more enforcement in order to free up jobs for Americans (and take them off unemployment insurance).

Yale Law students, Wishnie sue ICE over 2007 immigration raid (after Elm City card passed) - 10/28/09

Yale Law students - led by professor Michael Wishnie - are suing various current or former ICE (part of the Department of Homeland Security) officials and agents over a 2007 immigration raid in New Haven, Connecticut.

Obama admininstration prosecuting illegal aliens at greater rate than Bush admin (up 110% from 2004) - 09/21/09

Daphne Eviatar of the George Soros-funded Washington Independent tizzily offers "Immigration Prosecutions Up 110 Percent From 2004" (washingtonindependent.com/60323/immigration-prosecutions-up-110-percent-from-2004); expect other far-left groups to go ballistic over the fact that the Obama administration is prosecuting illegal aliens in

American Apparel to lay off quarter of workforce, presumed illegal aliens - 09/04/09

Miriam Jordan of the Wall Street Journal informs us that American Apparel will be laying off about a quarter of their workforce due to a "crackdown" by the Department of Homeland Security (link).

In a letter to employees in English and Spanish, Chief Executive Dov Charney said he was "deeply saddened" that the company has to shed workers who have been at the company for several years.

Mr. Charney, a champion of immigration reform, promised to give the workers priority for jobs when "you are able to get your immigration papers in order."

...American Apparel is likely to face thousands of dollars in penalties for hiring workers who weren't eligible to be employed. The government has said fines may exceed $800 per employee.

While it's good that the DHS is taking some steps, most of the newly-unemployed illegal aliens probably won't return to their home countries. Most will probably remain in the U.S. and seek employment with the sweatshop down the street. See the enforce labor but not immigration laws posts; Janet Napolitano wants those workers to remain the U.S. in order to give them amnesty rather than doing her job and deporting them.

It's also worth noting that AA's lawyer is/was the Mexican government-linked Peter Schey, and that actions like this by the DHS - even if they could be stronger - run counter to the wishes of Antonio Villaraigosa and Fabian Nunez. They and others wanted to make AA a "protected" company.

UPDATE: A copy of Charney's letter is at gawker.com/5352731/dov-charneys-tear+stained-letter-to-his-1500-laid+off-employees
For once the snark exhibited at sites like that is welcome.

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