Most of the politicians in Washington who speak about “comprehensive immigration reform” are still abjectly ignorant about the ins, outs, loopholes, and lax enforcement that characterize our chaotic, security-undermining deportation policies. It’s an endless appeals process and immigration litigation lottery played by deportable aliens and their open-borders lawyers. Capitol Hill compounds the problem with a raft of special private relief bills that protect illegal alien criminals.
The Center for Immigration Studies is out with a brand new report today on deportation basics.
Among the key findings:
* A large percentage of aliens flee from removal proceedings – perhaps as many as 59 percent of all those released to await hearings. On a cost basis from the alien’s perspective, this makes sense. If you are in proceedings and have little chance of relief, why not treat the bond money (if it’s even required) as the cost of having been caught, and then flee, hoping to stay under the radar for as long as possible, perhaps until the next amnesty?
* Though fashionable in the Obama administration, the exercise of “prosecutorial discretion” is problematic for ICE field officers. If the alien that they decline to remove goes on to commit a heinous act, they could be subject to lawsuits from victims and will be held accountable by their own agency (even if agency leadership encourages them to use the tool).
* Even in today’s technology-driven world, charging an alien with immigration violations is a paperwork-intensive, cumbersome process that requires agents to fill out nearly 20 different forms each time.
* ICE officers are supposed to consider two key factors in determining whether to detain or release an alien in proceedings – if the alien is a flight risk and if he is a risk to the community. The latter factor obviously is given serious consideration, but it is equally obvious from the large number of absconders that officers don’t give the same weight to the likelihood of flight, especially considering the scarcity of funded detention space.
* The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provides for several types of due process for aliens, depending on their circumstances of arrival and stay. The law does not require that all removals be ordered by an immigration judge.
* The option of Voluntary Return, where the alien requests to be returned home in lieu of formal removal proceedings, is not really “voluntary,” but is beneficial to the alien because it carries fewer consequences if the alien returns illegally. It also has become subject to overuse or misuse in recent years as a tool to increase the volume of removals, at the expense of more formal methods of removal that have more deterrent value.
* Immigration law provides for seven ways to remove an alien, which are explained in the report. Four of these options are relatively efficient, but used less frequently. If ICE chose to expand their use, the workload of the immigration court could be reduced and the immigration enforcement system would be less dysfunctional.
* The total number of apprehensions of illegal aliens by immigration enforcement agencies is less than half of what it was five years ago. For instance, the drop in apprehensions by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is often explained by improvements in border security; however, this rationale is suspect, as has been pointed out by the Rand Corp. in a study of border metrics. But ICE apprehensions also have dropped steeply, although there has been only a modest drop in the size of the illegal population inside the United States.
The report comes as left-wing religious leaders continue to lobby for the DREAM Act illegal alien student bailout. Make sure you are armed with the facts to counter the emotion-driven juggernaut:
As the effort to pass the DREAM Act hits its 10th anniversary, churches, synagogues and mosques around the country will devote a September weekend to teaching their congregations about the faith-based reasons to work for its passage.
Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., flanked by priests, bishops, rabbis, ministers and an imam, announced July 12 in a news conference at the Capitol that Sept. 23-25 will be DREAM Act Sabbath. Faith leaders said they and their fellows would devote time during or after worship services to explaining the legislation and offering testimony from young people who would be affected by it, all geared toward mustering legislative support.
…Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, retired archbishop of Washington, said at the press conference that “these are Americans, for all practical purposes,” and that many DREAM Act supporters, who call themselves “Dreamers” risk deportation in order to advocate for the chance to become U.S. citizens through its provisions.
“Why would we not want to embrace their dedication, energy, talents, and courage — characteristics that have made our nation great? It would be to our detriment to forsake them.”
He said that speaking on behalf of fellow bishops, “we plan to promote the DREAM Act Sabbath.”
The Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, linked the effort to Scripture. “Christ himself admonished us to permit the little ones, the children, to come to him for the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to them.”