Former Immigration Judges Call Current Process Absurd

Former immigration court judges Hon. Elizabeth A. Hacker and Hon. Mahlon F. Hanson expose how America’s immigration courtrooms have slowly become a joke to millions of illegal aliens.

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.

Judges Hacker and Hanson explain the rigorous process used by immigration court judges and how in the past these forums were a respected and important part of immigration law enforcement.  That was before Obama’s DHS began to undermine the legitimacy of immigration courts.

DHS has also no statutory authority to ignore or rescind an immigration judge’s final deportation order and yet this is what’s happening. Immigration judges retain jurisdictional authority over all immigration cases until the alien is physically removed from our country. Any rescission or reopening of a final order must be done by the immigration court or appropriate appellate body. DHS is only a party to an immigration proceeding and is subject to the immigration court’s authority and must be compliant with the court’s orders. Although DHS has been delegated with the ministerial duty to execute the removal order and physically remove the alien from this country that does not mean it is empowered to formulate policies for the removal of illegal aliens which conflict with the immigration court’s directives and the statutory removal process.

Obama has placed his hand-picked bureaucrats in power over highly-trained judges.

It is particularly egregious for DHS to empower midlevel bureaucrats with limited knowledge or experience in administering all the other provisions of the INA to adjudicate deferred action applications. The department guidelines they apply in rubber-stamp fashion nullify the orders of immigration judges who after a full hearing has analyzed the alien’s case and rendered a decision in conformity with the INA and established case law precedent. Deferred action adjudicators within the department could not be expected to know if an alien has a permanent bar to adjustment of status which would not be discoverable in the partial screening of such cases. Examples would be aliens who have made a false claim to citizenship, filed a frivolous asylum application, or participated in marriage fraud.

Obama’s minions at the DHS use the law much like their boss, as a way to get the result they want regardless of the actual language in a statute.

DHS acknowledges that being granted deferred action does not confer legal status to an illegal alien. But, in a tribute to circular reasoning, they assert that by using their authority in granting deferred action they have bestowed upon the alien the right to be ‘lawfully present’ even though they have no legal status and have not been granted visa or any other document establishing their legal basis to be here.