‘Administrative amnesty’ is a scandal

Published 9:20 pm Saturday, September 17, 2011

By Joe Guzzardi

Immediately after Congress returned from its August vacation, U.S. Representative Steve King (R-Iowa) called for oversight hearings to investigate President Obama’s administrative amnesty for illegal aliens. Obama’s unconstitutional measure, announced by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on Aug. 19, will cancel at least 300,000 aliens’ deportation orders.

Two weeks later, public outrage escalated when Obama’s Uncle Onyango apparently became one of the new policy’s first beneficiaries. Onyango, arrested for drunken driving, had an outstanding deportation order against him issued nearly 20 years ago. During the intervening years, he had been working as a liquor store clerk — a job, by the way, Americans would do. King wants Onyango to testify.

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Yet despite King’s repeated calls for a hearing, so far nothing is scheduled. To move forward, Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), the chairman of the Congressional Oversight Committee, has yet to get on board.

Issa is preoccupied with another Obama scandal. He has launched a probe into what he views as an inappropriate and potentially illegal overlap between Obama’s official and political activities.

Under Issa’s direction, the committee, as part of its most pointed inquiry into the White House and the Democratic National Committee’s fundraising activities, recently sent a letter to White House counsel Kathy Ruemeller. The letter requested hundreds of internal documents relating to what Issa termed “an array of potentially illegal fundraising behavior.”

Among Issa’s concerns are a March Obama White House meeting organized by DNC officials and held with large Wall Street donors. In Issa’s opinion, the meeting violates the Hatch Act, a law that restricts federal employees from doing partisan work financed by taxpayers.

Issa questions the Obama administration’s decision to provide access to administration officials, including the White House chef, to large donors and also questions a campaign video shot in the White House that advertised a raffle offering a dinner with the president and Vice President Joe Biden in exchange for contributions. In his capacity as oversight chairman, Issa has the power to issue subpoenas.

In the meantime, those in favor of Obama’s administrative amnesty are hard at work trying to increase the alien base that would benefit from it.

According to the immigration lawyers’ website, ILW.com, the expanded objective includes going back to reopen cases of aliens previously ordered removed to change the decision retroactively. This would serve as one of many ways that the so called “low priority” 300,000 presented as a ceiling could become a larger number.

Immigration lawyers also are pressing to be included among those who decide which aliens will or will not be deported. According to Senator Dick Durban, the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security are working together to determine what defines a low-priority deportation case.

But, describing themselves as uniquely qualified, private immigration practitioners want to add their opinion to those of the DOJ and the DHS. No group is more predisposed to siding with aliens than immigration lawyers. If allowed to sit at the table, few aliens’ cases will be rejected.

The more time that passes before hearings, the more entrenched Obama’s backdoor amnesty becomes. That’s bad news for Americans determined to restore immigration law enforcement.

Joe Guzzardi is a Senior Writing fellow for Californians for Population Stabilization. Contact him at joeguzzardi@capsweb.org.