By Joe Guzzardi
July 5, 2012
Capitol Hill insiders learned last week that President Obama will continue along his devious, likely unconstitutional path to grant amnesty to aliens age 16-30. On June 15, Obama issued an executive order that eliminated deportation possibilities for more than a million illegal immigrants who will also get work permits.
As part of the same announcement, Obama assured a stunned nation that the Department of Homeland Security would initiate due diligence to assure that those amnestied meet the basic qualifications.
Specifically, DHS would identify which candidates came to the U.S. before 16, graduated from high school or earned an equivalency degree, have not been convicted of major crimes and have been living in the U.S. continuously for at least five years. DHS predicted that it would need until August 15 to get its bureaucratic requirements in place.
Critics speculated that doing background checks on one million applicants would be too huge a task to accomplish in a mere two months. As it turned out, the doubters were spot on.
Representative Lamar Smith has discovered that federal immigration authorities, disregarding their own established time frame, have begun to grant tentative legal status to some aliens. In those cases, the administration’s eligibility rules have been ignored, thus allowing many who shouldn’t qualify to slip in under the radar. According to Smith, “Amnesty has been granted to those who have been here for a shorter [than five years] or even unknown period of time.”
Residency is only the tip of the fraud iceberg. Since many immigrants have multiple surnames, used at different times for different purposes, establishing criminal history will also be a challenge.
The standard Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) argument made in DHS’s defense is that by excusing younger, non-threatening aliens, the agency will have more time and resources to focus on criminals. But only scant evidence exists that Obama is serious about deporting bad guys. On the other hand, an abundance of proof is available that he’s bound and determined to grant amnesty to the most aliens possible.
Obama, by edict, has established his own personal immigration policy. His great enabler is the Republican Party. Going back more than a year when Obama first introduced prosecutorial discretion to remove from deportation proceedings so called “low priority” aliens, the doormat GOP hasn’t offered even token resistance save for some widely scattered lone voices.
One of the brave few is Representative Steve King (R-IA), a member of the House Immigration Policy and Enforcement and the Constitution subcommittees. Saying that he is “stumped” by what Obama could possibly perceive as his constitutional authority and calling the president’s amnesty “a violation of the separation of powers…established by Article I in the Constitution,” King vows to sue. King is consulting with the “best legal minds” to determine how best to proceed. According to King, who added that he’s “not bluffing,” his case against Obama transcends immigration and is rather about constitutional violations.
King’s Herculean task will need, at a minimum, support from his so far wishy-washy Congressional Republican colleagues. Win or lose, King’s suit would represent an excellent opportunity for Republicans to highlight Obama’s blatant disregard for Congress, the Constitution and disgruntled Americans. That alone would give some Republican leaders much more credibility on this issue.
Joe Guzzardi is a Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow. His columns have been syndicated since 1986. Contact him at [email protected]