The Obama administration has been getting creative to finagle a way to reward illegal aliens and thereby suck up to Hispanics with a scary-to-Dems election looming. (Party elites believe that Hispanics universally want amnesty for illegal aliens, which is not entirely true.)
Suing Arizona was one strategy, to punish the citizens who are trying to enforce immigration laws because the feds have dropped the ball.
Feds moving to dismiss some deportation cases, Houston Chronicle, August 24, 2010
The Department of Homeland Security is systematically reviewing thousands of pending immigration cases and moving to dismiss those filed against suspected illegal immigrants who have no serious criminal records, according to several sources familiar with the efforts.
Culling the immigration court system dockets of noncriminals started in earnest in Houston about a month ago and has stunned local immigration attorneys, who have reported coming to court anticipating clients’ deportations only to learn that the government was dismissing their cases.
Richard Rocha, an Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman, said Tuesday that the review is part of the agency’s broader, nationwide strategy to prioritize the deportations of illegal immigrants who pose a threat to national security and public safety. Rocha declined to provide further details.
Critics assailed the plan as another sign that the Obama administration is trying to create a kind of backdoor ”amnesty” program.
Oh no, Administration suits said: we are just prioritizing.
But then a memo appeared, revealing a change in policy.
New Immigration Policy to Halt Some Illegal Immigrant Deportations, Fox News, August 27, 2010
Federal authorities have issued a new policy aimed at stopping deportation proceedings for some illegal immigrants, according to a memo issued by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
The memo, which ICE released on Aug. 20, could affect up to tens of thousands of illegal immigrants who are married or related to a U.S. citizen or a legal resident who has filed a petition on their behalf. Illegal immigrants with criminal convictions will not qualify under the plan. ICE Assistant Secretary John Morton wrote the memo to Peter Vincent, principal legal adviser and head of the agency’s removal operations.
The memo directs ICE attorneys to check cases of detained illegal immigrants for any ”serious” or ”adverse” factors weighing against dismissal, including criminal convictions, fraud, national security and public safety considerations.
”If no investigations … or serious adverse factors exist, the offices of chief counsel should promptly move to dismiss proceedings,” the memo reads. ”Once the Field Office Director is notified, the FOD must release the alien.”
The change in policy could affect thousands of the estimated 17,000 pending removal cases. According to ICE data, nearly 40,000 immigrants obtained U.S residency status due to sponsorship of relatives who were legal residents in fiscal year 2009. By comparison, more than 393,000 illegal immigrants were deported during that same span.
Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, likened the change to a ”free pass” for illegal immigrants, a characterization federal authorities denied.
”Actions like this demoralize ICE agents who are trying to do their job and enforce the law,” Grassley told The New York Times. ”Unfortunately, it appears this is more evidence that the Obama administration would rather circumvent Congress and give a free pass to illegal immigrants who have already broken our law.”
Mentioned in passing in this Fox Video is the fact that DUI is still considered a minor misbehavior, a misdemeanor in legal jargon, despite the number of Americans who are killed every year by drunk-driving illegal aliens.