In our days at the immigration court, it always was a serious and somber moment when at the conclusion of a hearing we rendered a decision finding an illegal alien inadmissible or deportable, denying all applications for deportation relief, and issuing an order removing that alien back to their home country. The issuance of such an order would immediately be followed by an advisory letter to the alien explaining their rights to appeal and warning them of the criminal consequences of re-entering the country without proper authority. But now, that process is entering into the absurd.
Our former colleagues are now being forced to tell deportable aliens that the final deportation order they’re issuing isn’t actually an impediment to receiving the President’s grants of deferred action. Even though the alien’s violated our immigration laws (and dozens more in some cases), they’re now being advised that they can receive work permits, a social security card, tax benefits, parole, travel documents, and, if the alien is from Central America, the opportunity to bring qualifying family members to the United States at taxpayer expense. And even they’re not eligible for deferred action, they know they should simply sit tight as DHS may issue more policy memoranda expanding eligibility for deferred action and additional benefits.
Past and continuing lapses in enforcement policy have resulted in nearly 900,000 illegal aliens who have received final orders of deportation and have exhausted all appeals but who are still in the United Sates. Nearly 175,000 of these aliens with final orders are convicted criminals and 167,000 of these criminal aliens remain at large. The number of “non-departed” aliens grew by about 25,000 cases from 2013 to 2014. It is evident that current immigration enforcement policy under the Obama Administration is increasing and promoting illegal immigration rather than solving the illegal immigration problem.