In the Obama administration’s continuing efforts to sidestep the deportation of illegal immigrants, it is now proposing, in a new policy manual, to make it even easier to skirt deportation. According to the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS):
“Here’s the situation: An illegal alien (let’s say the alien is male) is about to be deported, but he seeks a waiver on the grounds that such a move would bring an “extreme hardship to his citizen wife” so he should be allowed to stay.
OK, but what if the wife dies? What if she dies and the illegal has re-married? Can the hardship on the former (and now dead) wife be used to seek the waiver that will allow him to stay?
One would think not. The former and now dead wife is as immune to hardships as she is to the joys of life.
But in the administration’s efforts to tear down our borders, in all ways small and large, it has included in a proposed policy manual a provision where the illegal alien in these circumstances can still argue that his forced departure should be cancelled because of the hardship on the wife who is now dead.”
There are already laws in place that contain waivers which allow an illegal immigrant to remain in the country if certain family members (referred to as “qualifying relatives”) would suffer “extreme hardship.” But, “extreme hardship” isn’t even defined. On top of that, Immigration Impact has reported that, “over the years, the agency has failed to apply the hardship standard consistently.”
Moreover, the new proposal states that it is not necessary to demonstrate that any one hardship alone rises to the level of “extreme.” So, a potential deportee could list a series of negative, but non-extreme circumstances, and that would suffice. And, who hasn’t experienced a few instances of unpleasantness?
President Obama’s Priority Enforcement Program (PEP) dictates that only the three prioritized categories of illegal immigrants are to be focused on in terms of deportation:
The highest level of targets, such as terror suspects and other national security risks, various felons and various gang related crimes.
This category deals with persons who have three or more misdemeanors, or a more serious misdemeanor for crimes such as domestic violence, gun-related offenses, drug-related crimes, burglary and crimes for which a sentence of 90 days or was imposed.
Priority category #3 represents the least priority given to deporting people. This group consists of persons issued a final order of removal after January 1, 2014.
It should be noted that there are exceptions those who are targeted for deportation can use in order to remain in the country. Also significant is the fact that it is left up to the potential deportee to choose which official (on a list of designated officials) to submit the reconsideration request to. Essentially, all a potential deportee need do is pick the official who would likely be most sympathetic to approving a waiver.
How is it decided who qualifies for an exception? DHS personnel are advised to use the following factors as a guide:
- “Extenuating circumstances involving the offense of conviction;
- Extended length of time since the offense of conviction;
- Length of time in the United States;
- Military service;
- Family or community ties in the United States;
- Status as a victim, witness or plaintiff in civil or criminal proceedings; and compelling humanitarian factors such as poor health, age, pregnancy, a young child, or a seriously ill relative.”
Parts of President Obama’s 2014 executive order are still tied up in the courts. But, even if those remain blocked, up to 87 percent of illegal immigrants in the US will most likely not be targeted by immigration authorities, according to a report released by the Migration Policy Institute. The above-mentioned new categories target a much smaller percentage — less than half — of immigrants than did the 2010-11 enforcement priorities.
Additionally, just for good measure, the DOJ is planning to release 6,000 federal prisoners, 2,000 of whom are foreign citizens. But, don’t worry–officials have promised they will be “quickly deported.” But, when, under the Obama administration, has deportation ever been quick? This, the largest one-time release of prisoners, is scheduled to occur between October 30th and November 2nd.
This is being done, presumably, in order to reduce overcrowding. The release is also intended to reduce the sentences of drug offenders, who have received what are considered to be tough sentences, over the past 30 years.
Jackson County, Texas Sheriff Aj (Andy) Louderback is not too keen on the administration’s latest scheme, saying: “Law enforcement should always be concerned when this number of criminals will be released.” Louderback added that he is, “also concerned that although the federal government claims they will be deported, as many as 2,000 illegal aliens could be released into our communities.”
In an attempt to counter the Obama administration’s deportation policy and to thwart sanctuary cities, Kate’s Law was introduced into Congress earlier in the year. The bill was introduced in order to bring attention to the appallingly tragic case of Kate Steinle. Steinle was murdered in July, by an illegal alien named Francisco Sanchez, who, despite being a repeat offender who had been deported five times, was still in the country. Kate’s Law would mandate a minimum five-year prison sentence for any illegal immigrant who reenters the country after committing a crime. This legislation can be tracked at GovTrack.us.