“As a result of this [planned] executive amnesty, millions here illegally will be able to compete for any job in America… The result would be disastrous for struggling workers… [Senate Democrats] have refused to support the House-passed legislation to block the President’s executive actions, surrendering the Senate and their citizen constituents to an unconstitutional scheme to nullify America’s sovereign laws and sovereign borders… But the citizens of this country retain the ultimate power, as they always have. They will not let this stand. They will demand a Senate vote on the House bill to stop this executive amnesty. And they will hold accountable any and all in Congress who fail to resist the President’s lawless decree.”
WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, issued the following statement today as details of the President’s planned executive amnesty continue to emerge:
“Two astounding events occurred this week.
First, the White House Press Secretary publicly confirmed that President Obama is going to keep his self-imposed deadline of issuing executive immigration actions at the end of summer.
We know, from multiple White House sources and reports, that this action will likely take the form of a massive executive amnesty and work authorization for 5–6 million individuals who illegally entered the U.S., illegally overstayed a visa, or illegally defrauded U.S. immigration authorities. As a result of this executive amnesty, millions here illegally will be able to compete for any job in America—taking jobs needed by American workers.
We further know that these executive actions will likely also include a massive importation of new foreign workers—on top of the large existing flow—to take even more jobs in the United States. The result would be disastrous for struggling workers—coming on the heels of four decades of continued record immigration into the U.S., coinciding with falling wages and a shrinking middle class.
The second astounding event was silence. The roaring silence from Senate Democrats in the face of a clear and present danger facing their constituents. They have refused to support the House-passed legislation to block the President’s executive actions, surrendering the Senate and their citizen constituents to an unconstitutional scheme to nullify America’s sovereign laws and sovereign borders.
We already know from ICE officers and USCIS officers that they are routinely barred from enforcing bedrock immigration laws such as visa overstays, illegal entry, and illegal residence—for both current and future immigration violators. If implemented, the President’s new executive actions would functionally end what little remains of interior immigration enforcement, giving free license to every person in the world—here today or planning to come tomorrow—to violate our immigration laws with impunity.
But the citizens of this country retain the ultimate power, as they always have. They will not let this stand. They will demand a Senate vote on the House bill to stop this executive amnesty. And they will hold accountable any and all in Congress who fail to resist the President’s lawless decree.”
Chris Crane, head of the ICE officers’ association, testified before Congress that:
“Most Americans would be surprised to know that immigration agents are regularly prohibited from enforcing the two most fundamental sections of United States immigration law. According to ICE policy, in most cases immigration agents can no longer arrest persons solely for entering the United States illegally. Additionally, in most cases immigration agents cannot arrest persons solely because they have entered the United States with a visa and then overstayed that visa and failed to return to their country. Essentially, only individuals charged or convicted of very serious criminal offenses by other law enforcement agencies may be arrested or charged by ICE agents and officers for illegal entry or overstay.”
Ken Palinkas, President of the USCIS agents’ association, wrote last year:
· USCIS adjudications officers are pressured to rubber stamp applications instead of conducting diligent case review and investigation. The culture at USCIS encourages all applications to be approved, discouraging proper investigation into red flags and discouraging the denial of any applications. USCIS has been turned into an ‘approval machine.’
· USCIS has created an almost insurmountable bureaucracy which often prevents USCIS adjudications officers from contacting and coordinating with ICE agents and officers in cases that should have their involvement. USCIS officers are pressured to approve visa applications for many individuals ICE agents have determined should be placed into deportation proceedings.
· USCIS officers who identify illegal aliens that, in accordance with law should be placed into immigration removal proceedings before a federal judge, are prevented from exercising their authority and responsibility to issue Notices To Appear (NTAs).
· The attitude of USCIS management is not that the Agency serves the American public or the laws of the United States, or public safety and national security, but instead that the agency serves illegal aliens and the attorneys which represent them. While we believe in treating all people with respect, we are concerned that this agency tasked with such a vital security mission is too greatly influenced by special interest groups-to the point that it no longer properly performs its mission.
· DHS and USCIS leadership have intentionally established an application process for DACA applicants that bypasses traditional in-person investigatory interviews with trained USCIS adjudications officers. These practices were put in place to stop proper screening and enforcement, and guarantee that applications will be rubber-stamped for approval, a practice that virtually guarantees widespread fraud and places public safety at risk.
· U.S. taxpayers are currently tasked with absorbing the cost of over $200 million worth of fee waivers bestowed on applicants for naturalization during the last fiscal year. This is in addition to the strain put on our Social Security system that has been depleted by an onslaught of refugees receiving SSI benefits as soon as their feet touch U.S. soil.
· Large swaths of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) are not effectively enforced for legal immigrants and visa holders, including laws regarding public charges as well as many other provisions, as USCIS lacks the resources to adequately screen and scrutinize legal immigrants and non-immigrants seeking status adjustment. There is also insufficient screening and monitoring of student visas.
U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL) serves on four Senate committees: Armed Services, Judiciary, Environment and Public Works, and as Ranking Member of the BudgetCommittee. Visit Sessions online at his website or via YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. Note: Please do not reply to this email. For further information, contact Sen. Sessions’Press Office at (202) 224-4124.