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Archive for the ‘Immigration’ Category

Jazz Shaw’s post is today’s must reading for immigration hawks. In his post, Jazz cites this article. The highlight of the article comes when it starts citing statistics. Without further adieu, let’s get to those statistics.

The article’s opening paragraph says “Speaking on the second anniversary of the government’s move to seal Hungary’s border with Serbia — which is also an external border for the European Union — Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Chief Security Advisor, György Bakondi, announced that the fences have caused illegal immigration to collapse from 391,000 in 2015, to 18,236 in 2016, to just 1,184 in 2017.” According to Jazz, that’s a 99% drop in illegal immigration. Actually, it’s a 99.7% drop in illegal immigration but what’s seven-tenths of a point amongst friends?

Jazz sums things up perfectly, saying “The math here should be a bit too much for any but the most willfully blind to ignore. In 2015 there were an estimated 390,000 illegal border crossings. Thus far this year the number is barely over one thousand. That’s not just impressive… it’s staggering.

The next time a wobbly Republican or a weak-on-law-and-order-Democrat start whining about the cost of building the wall or how walls don’t work or other BS, point them to this article, then ask them if a 99.7% decrease in illegal immigration is worth paying for. I’m betting that we’ll find that border security isn’t a priority with these politicians. It’s time to let them know that they’re in the minority. Yes, a majority of people want DACA-protected illegal immigrants to stay but it’s also true that they want the border wall built.

This information proves that walls work in keeping out drug cartels while stifling human trafficking in addition to stopping illegal immigration. Democrats and GOP fluffs like John McCain and Jeff Flake don’t support the wall. Is it because they want a deal so badly that they’re willing to ignore the other national security threats posed by lax border enforcement?

Here’s hoping that President Trump plays hardball with Democrats. This isn’t just another issue. To those living along the southern border, it’s a matter of life and death. Literally. Things have improved since President Trump took over, thanks mostly to Jeff Sessions’ work in taking border security seriously. What’s important, though, is noting that, without a wall, Democrats can stop taking border security seriously … again. and we’d be right back with floods of illegal immigrants again.

The wall will stop that flood forever. That’s the last thing that Democrats want, though minds are changing about that. As they settle into this country, lots of Hispanic immigrants start thinking of themselves as white. If that’s the case, then the political advantage for Democrats is overstated, which is a game-changer. At that point, enforcement becomes the most important issue. Once the fight moves onto that turf, Democrats, McCain and Flake lose.

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If Minnesotans needed additional proof that Emperor Dayton doesn’t understand the importance of enforcing our nation’s laws, we got it this week. This past Tuesday, Emperor Dayton said that enforcing our nation’s immigration laws was “lunacy.” While greeting students outside Meadow Lake Elementary School in New Hope, Emperor Dayton said “It’s just shameful. I mean you have Republican members of Congress as well as Democrats saying this is the wrong way to go. Here in Minnesota we have a shortage of skilled workers. So we’re going to take some 6,200 that are here under DACA and send them away? It’s lunacy.”

I know that some Republicans don’t believe in enforcing this nation’s immigration laws, too. Names like John McCain and Lindsey Graham immediately leap to mind. The term “comprehensive immigration reform” immediately pops into my mind, too. Most importantly, the term open borders comes to mind because that’s essentially what we’ve had the past 16 years. This CIS report says that the “total number of illegal immigrants (11 to 12 million) has held roughly constant in recent years because the number arriving has roughly balanced the number going home or getting legal status. This has created the mistaken impression that the problem is largely over. The most recent estimates from the Center for Migration Studies indicate that 1.7 million aliens joined the illegal population from 2009 to 2013 and Pew Research Center estimates indicate 1.5 million, 300,000 to 400,000 a year. The Center for Immigration Studies estimates an additional 790,000 joined the illegal population since 2013 for a total of 2.5 million new illegal immigrants since President Obama took office.”

I’d love to hear Emperor Dayton explain why consistent enforcement of our nation’s laws is lunacy. I’d love to hear him explain why turning a blind eye to illegal immigration is acceptable. President Obama and Emperor Dayton have turned a blind eye towards this problem. As a result, wages have stagnated and economic growth has been pathetic.

When President Obama and Emperor Dayton turned a blind eye towards illegal immigration, things got worse, not better. When Rahm Emanuel turned a blind eye towards gun violence, things got worse, not better. That’s the history of pacifism. Things get worse, not better. Pacifism told Ayatollah Khomeini he could start an Islamic revolution. Pacifism told Hitler that he could conquer Europe without much of a fight. Now, pacifism is telling illegal immigrants that they’re welcome to stay here without impunity.

Pacifism is lunacy. Consistently enforcing the law is the start of sanity.

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Ron Brownstein’s article highlights the upcoming fight over DACA and immigration reform. Brownstein’s article, though, contains some conflicting information that’s worth examining.

For instance, Brownstein wrote “In both 2006 and 2013, a bipartisan group of Senators crafted legislation whose central beam balanced tougher enforcement measures with a pathway to citizenship for 10-11 million undocumented immigrants, so long as they met certain conditions such as learning English. (Around that centerpiece, both bills also explicitly legalized those brought to the U.S. illegally as children, established a guest-worker program, and reformed legal immigration.) Every concerned interest group gnashed their teeth over some element of that composition, but business, organized labor, and immigrant advocacy groups locked arms behind the final product. With that widespread institutional backing, and polls showing support from a clear majority of Americans, the Senate comfortably approved each bill.”

It doesn’t make sense that “a clear majority of Americans” supported comprehensive immigration reform but elected Donald Trump, the biggest hardliner on border enforcement and illegal immigration. The most logical explanation is that people like immigration in the abstract, like health care reform, but don’t like it when it’s put into legislative form. Further, in the Trump era, people don’t trust Washington politicians to listen to them or to do the right thing.

This phrase is the key in explaining things:

With that widespread institutional backing

Apparently, Mr. Brownstein hasn’t figured it out that having Washington’s “institutional backing” is a negative. People have been trying to get politicians to listen for the last 15+ years. If Congress attempts to pass a bill that’s similar to the Gang of 8 legislation, they’d better expect it to get vetoed immediately. That might be what Washington insiders want but it isn’t what the people want.

If Washington, Democrats and Republicans alike, try shoving another Gang of 8-style bill down our throats, they’d better prepare for the end of their political careers. If Congress doesn’t listen to the American people, they’ll deserve the voters’ wrath. Republicans like Jeff Flake will increase the risk of losing in a primary while Democrats like John Tester, Sherrod Brown and Claire McCaskill will likely lose to their Republican challengers.

Washington, including Mr. Brownstein, hasn’t noticed how popular the wall is. Voters know that future administrations can deploy border patrols 50+ miles north of the border. They don’t trust Democrats to do the right thing with immigration. The wall can’t be redeployed. Where it’s built, it’ll stay. It isn’t just that President Trump insists on the wall. It’s that the people insist on it.

If Democrats running in the heartland won’t listen to the people, the outcome of their races isn’t a mystery. They’re cruising for a bruising. Sarah Huckabee-Sanders put Democrats in their place pretty quickly:

Sarah Huckabee-Sanders put Democrats in their place during one of her most recent briefings. She highlighted the question about why Democrats turned a blind eye towards law-breakers. Democrats don’t have an answer to that question. That’s why they keep losing elections.

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This St. Cloud Times article is about 15 students who walked out of their classes to protest President Trump’s decision to rescind DACA.

According to the article, there was a teachable moment. According to the article, “Sartell-St. Stephen Superintendent Jeff Schwiebert, who taught civics in Mount Vernon, Iowa, for 22 years, said the demonstration served as a teaching moment. ‘So we had to have a little conversation about what civil disobedience is,’ Schwiebert said. ‘And when you’re doing a protest, that’s what you’re doing. You’re disobeying or disagreeing with a law that is in place. In this particular case, they responded very, very well to it.'”

It’s indisputable that that’s a legitimate teaching moment. Unfortunately, I’m afraid, another teachable moment might’ve gotten missed. Did Superintendent Schwiebert, or any of these students’ teachers, teach the students about why DACA was unconstitutional. Did these teachers tell these students that DACA would’ve been a legitimate law if Congress had passed it and the president had signed it? Did these teachers explain to the students that the Constitution doesn’t permit a president to unilaterally create new benefits for anyone, especially illegal aliens? That’s exactly what happened.

If these students’ teachers didn’t teach them those lessons, why didn’t they? Is it because the teachers are activists first, teachers next?

The protests in Sartell weren’t the only DACA protests in Minnesota:

There’s a simple solution to this situation. Unfortunately, Democrats have nixed that solution:

A top Senate Democratic aide said that the party would be open to agreeing to items such as additional drone operations, fencing and sensors; but not a “presidential vanity project. We are open to security that makes sense,” the aide said, noting that the party had agreed to a similar exchange—albeit on a much larger scale—when it put together a comprehensive immigration reform deal in 2013. That measure included some $40 billion for border security measures.

Republicans should immediately tell Democrats that a major compromise on the Republicans’ part requires a major compromise from Democrats. The compromise that Democrats proposed represents a major compromise from Republicans. It doesn’t represent a major compromise for Democrats.

This is the sort of deal that President Trump criticized on the campaign trail. If he accepts this deal, his credibility as a great negotiator will instantly disappear. President Trump must insist that his wall gets funded in exchange for DACA. Trump should insist that the wall be built so we don’t have to worry about another batch of DREAMers 5-10 years from now.

Border Patrol agents were deployed away from the border by President Obama so they weren’t in position to prevent illegal immigration, drug smuggling or human trafficking. A serious border wall can’t be deployed away from the border once it’s been built.

That’s a politically defensible position because it strengthens Republicans’ campaigns in blue collar districts in the Midwest. If Democrats insist on getting their way with DACA, they’ll get clobbered in the 2018 midterms.

According to this article, Minnesota State AG Lori Swanson “plans to join suit against Trump over ending DACA.” If she joins that lawsuit, she’s guaranteed to lose. That isn’t just my opinion. It’s Eric Columbus’ opinion, too.

Columbus worked in the Obama/Holder Justice Department. Further, he’s told his Twitter followers that “But on 6/29, ten state AGs wrote DOJ threatening to sue to kill DACA unless Trump agrees by 9/5 to phase it out. Sad to say, I agree with the Trump administration that such a challenge to DACA is very likely to succeed.”

That’s because the arguments against DACA are identical to the arguments against DAPA. In the Supreme Court’s ruling on DAPA, the Court finished in a 4-4 tie. With Justice Gorsuch now filling that 9th spot, it’s difficult to picture him ruling in President Obama’s favor. Simply put, the evidence in this case isn’t in dispute. President Obama’s EO included new benefits for illegal immigrants. I quoted Greg Jarrett in this post as saying “At the end of the 19th century, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that congress has ‘plenary power’ (meaning full and complete) to regulate immigration. Derived from Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, the doctrine is based on the concept that immigration is a question of national sovereignty, relating to a nation’s right to define its own borders and restrict entrance therein. As the high court observed, ‘Over no conceivable subject is the legislative power of Congress more complete.'”

But I digress.

MPR’s article says “The lawsuit filed Wednesday says rescinding DACA will injure state-run colleges and universities, upset workplaces and damage companies and economies that include immigrants covered under the program.” It’s worth noting that isn’t a legal argument. It’s a political argument. That should tell people everything they need to know about Swanson’s motivation in joining the lawsuit. Further, the argument is irrelevant. Even if everything they say is accurate, it’s irrelevant because President Obama overstepped his authority in implementing DACA. That’s the only thing of any importance.

More than anything else, this lawsuit is an attempt by Democrats to make a political case and score political points. It fails on both counts. Does anyone think that voters will walk into a voting booth in November, 2018 and say ‘I can’t vote for the Republican because these attorneys general filed a lawsuit’?

It’s time for Ms. Swanson to admit what Minnesota voters know — that she isn’t a primetime player.

Eric Holder’s op-ed doesn’t sound like a man defending the principle of prosecutorial discretion. It sounds like a man rationalizing the Obama administration’s not enforcing existing immigration law.

In the opening paragraph of Holder’s op-ed, he writes “Our nation’s sense of morality — and of itself — is once again being tested.” Shortly thereafter, Holder wrote “DACA, which gave undocumented young people brought to the United States as children a chance to work and study here without fear of deportation, has been a dramatic success. The program provided a two-year grant of protection and a permit to work legally in the United States, after which enrollees were required to go through a renewal process. To qualify, immigrant youths had to meet a set of stringent criteria: When applying, they were required to have been enrolled in high school, have a high school diploma or equivalent, or have been an honorably discharged military veteran. In addition, they must have lived in the United States continuously at least since June 15, 2007, and not have a criminal record suggesting they pose a threat to national security or public safety.”

First, I’d question why Mr. Holder thinks our “nation’s sense of morality … is once again being tested.” Is it against our nation’s sense of morality to enforce this nation’s laws? Is it against our nation’s sense of morality to give lawbreakers an edge over people who follow the rules? Is it against our nation’s sense of morality to tell law enforcement, in this case border patrol and our nation’s sheriffs, not to enforce this nation’s immigration laws?

Next, I’d like to ask Mr. Holder what he meant when he wrote “Of course, as Sessions emphasized, we are a nation of laws, and the immigration system is no different. We must ensure that our laws are enforced to maintain the vitality, prosperity and security of our polity. But in painting DACA as a flagrant disregard for our constitutional separation of powers, Sessions exhibited a fundamental misunderstanding of what DACA did.” Did Mr. Holder mean that he thinks that presidents should have the authority to unilaterally write new laws? After all, that’s what President Obama did when his EO gave illegal immigrants the ability to get a social security card and to apply for the EITC tax credit. Does Mr. Holder seriously think that President Obama never tried appropriating to the executive branch things that the legislative branch was authorized to do?

If Mr. Holder thinks that then-President Obama didn’t try doing things that only the legislative branch is authorized to do, then I’ll throw the National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning ruling in his face. That’s the case where SCOTUS ruled that only the Senate could determine when the Senate was in recess. President Obama’s solicitor general essentially argued that President Obama determined that the Senate wasn’t in session. President Obama lost that lawsuit 9-0.

I’d submit that President Obama and Mr. Holder “exhibited a fundamental misunderstanding of” the Constitution. Further, I’d submit this video as proof that the Trump administration, especially Attorney General Sessions, knows exactly what he’s talking about:

At what point will Mr. Holder admit that he’s a political hack working for the Democratic Party? It’s painfully obvious that he isn’t constitutional lawyer with integrity.

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Though Democrats insist that DACA is constitutional, it’s been a long time since anyone took their statements seriously. When then-President Obama signed that EO, he did 2 things that won’t pass constitutional muster. First and most importantly, he temporarily exempted an entire demographic group of people from deportation. Then-President Obama’s EO didn’t permanently exempt DREAMers from prosecution or deportation. It just temporarily delayed action on DREAMers. Greg Jarrett’s article sheds an important light on DACA.

In his article, Jarrett writes “At the end of the 19th century, the U.S. Supreme Court declared that congress has ‘plenary power’ (meaning full and complete) to regulate immigration. Derived from Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, the doctrine is based on the concept that immigration is a question of national sovereignty, relating to a nation’s right to define its own borders and restrict entrance therein. As the high court observed, ‘Over no conceivable subject is the legislative power of Congress more complete.'”

Considering this information and considering the fact that there’s a well-known proposal that would protect DREAMers permanently, the question is whether Democrats will be reasonable. At this point, I’m betting that they’ll be unreasonable. I’m basing that opinion partially on this video:

Democrats are insisting that Republicans pass the DREAM Act immediately. If the Democrats’ demands aren’t met, Senate Minority Leader Schumer said that they’ll attach the DREAM Act to every bill that the Senate considers until it’s passed. I’d love to see Sen. McConnell tell Sen. Schumer that DREAMers will get protection the minute Democrats vote to fund President Trump’s wall and not a minute sooner.

This does 2 things to Democrats. First, it forces vulnerable Senate Democrats to vote against building the wall. For senators living on the coasts, that isn’t a big deal. For senators living in the Heartland, that’s a big deal. It’s a big deal because it’s a potentially a career-ending vote. Next, it forces Democrats to make a decision on whether being reasonable is more important than obeying the Democrats’ special interest allies. If Democrats vote with their special interest allies, they’ll identify themselves as defenders of The Swamp.

That’s a difficult position to defend going into an election year. Let’s remember that the people that vote in midterms are more conservative than those that vote in presidential elections. Senate Democrats are already running into strong headwinds because of the red states they’re defending seats in. Couple that with the fact that some liberal senators will be running in some fairly red states and you’ve got the definition of pressure. If Democrats side with La Raza, aka NCLR, instead of siding with the American people, they’ll pay a heavy price in November, 2018.

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It’s pretty much impossible for me to think that Sen. Franken is intelligent. After reading his statement about DACA, it’s impossible for me to think that he isn’t owned by special interest organizations like the ACLU and La Raza.

In his statement, Sen. Franken said “The men and women protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program—commonly known as DACA—are American in every single way except immigration status. Often called Dreamers, these are students, innovators, and entrepreneurs who were brought here as children and grew up in the United States. They’re our friends, coworkers, and neighbors, and they make enormous contributions to the economies of Minnesota and the entire country. The decision by President Trump to end DACA is a disgrace to our moral values and principles. It’s not who we are or should be as a nation. Let me be clear: I promise that I will fight to protect the Dreamers who live in Minnesota and across the country.”

Saying that DREAMers are “American in every single way except immigration status” is like saying that a criminal is trustworthy in every way except that he’s committed a felony. The point is that that’s a pretty significant exception. Sen. Franken’s foolishness didn’t stop there. Instead, Sen. Franken appeared on Hardball:

During the interview, Sen. Franken tried spinning DACA, suggesting that President Obama hadn’t done anything unusual. As usual, Sen. Franken wasn’t being honest. President Obama’s EO entitled DACA recipients to federal benefits:

But DACA allows recipients to apply for social security numbers, which are required to claim the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), a major tax benefit for lower-income earners. The program allows recipients to participate in Social Security and Medicare as well, but they generally cannot receive benefits until retirement age.

None of President Bush’s EOs conferred new benefits to people. That’s because the legislative branch is the only branch of government that can write legislation. The executive branch can suggest legislation but they can’t unilaterally enact legislation. If a president want DREAMers to get specific benefits, then that president must work with Congress to pass legislation.

That isn’t some quaint theory, either. That’s been how the government has done things for 240 years. If Sen. Franken wants to protect DREAMers, there’s a solution. It’s time for Sen. Franken and other Democrats to decide whether they want to protect DREAMers or whether they just want to pick ideological fights with Republicans. If Democrats want what’s best for DREAMers, they can vote for building President Trump’s wall.

I know they don’t want to vote for President Trump’s wall That’s tough. Sometimes, you don’t get everything you want. Democrats, including Sen. Franken, have a decision to make. Will they abandon DREAMers? Will they do NCLR’s dirty work? Finally, will they do what’s right for America?

It’s time Democrats admitted that they aren’t entitled to getting everything they want.

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Sam Stein’s article suggests that someone behind the scenes is pulling strings. Stein’s article starts by saying “President Donald Trump’s decision Tuesday to phase out the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy opened the door for legislative deal making. And no proposed trade has been more widely discussed than one in which Trump gets funding for his beloved border wall in exchange for permanent legal protections for the so-called DREAMers. There are just two major hitches: Democrats aren’t biting and, more significantly, neither are DACA recipients. Those recipients, along with immigration reform advocates, have been lobbying lawmakers to reject any deal that would result in a border wall, Capitol Hill aides and activists have told The Daily Beast.”

This suggests that Democrats want the Mexico-to-the-US pipeline stay open after immigration reform is passed. It also tells me that organizations like La Raza, aka NCLR, are have sold DREAMers a lie. This makes building the wall all the more imperative. If DREAMers want permanent protection, the wall will get built. If Democrats don’t vote for President Trump’s wall, then Republicans should play hardball. Period.

“I’m not going to step on top of my community to get ahead,” said Jose Aguiluz, a D.C. native who was brought by his family from Honduras when he was 15 years old and who received his DACA status in 2012. Aguiluz, a nurse, was outside the White House on Tuesday to protest Trump’s decision. “By me trying to say, ‘Oh, let’s make a deal with the wall,’ it is like I’m stepping up on my community, my parents, uncles, and grandparents, that I’m putting them down so that I can get ahead,” he said. “That’s unfair and it’s not American.”

Democrats have tried painting a picture that these DREAMers a) were brought to the US when they were infants and b) would be “returned to a country” they’ve never lived in. Mr. Aguiluz was brought to the US when he was 15. He definitely doesn’t fit the image that Democrats are painting. Neither does this DREAMer:

Nearby stood Carlos Arellano, who was brought to the United States by his parents from Mexico when he was 15 and received DACA protection at age 26. “DACA changed my life completely,” he said, explaining how the program allowed him to pursue a nursing degree.

Republicans should insist that the wall be built. If Sen. McCain insists on going rogue, Sen. McConnell should inform him that his chairmanship is tied to his supporting the bill.

That likely will be met with criticism from the media wing of the Democratic Party and his relatives. It might not get him to change his vote but it will send the message to everyone that this isn’t negotiable. Lest there be any doubt, there will be lawsuits filed. Watch this video and tell me that the ACLU isn’t spoiling for a fight:

The best witness that DACA wasn’t implemented properly is President Obama. This is a collection of times when President Obama admitted that he couldn’t unilaterally implement DACA:

The video runs over 3 minutes. A video that runs over 3 minutes essentially repeating a single sentence contains lots of speeches.

If Democrats want to fight against building President Trump’s wall, that’s their decision. Their fighting that funding, though, will hurt the DREAMers they supposedly fight for.

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The thing that stands out in this article is how Rahm Emanuel makes promises he can’t keep. I’m also fascinated by Emanuel’s painting a bull’s-eye on students’ backs.

According to the article, “Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Tuesday assured incoming high schoolers that they need not to worry about President Trump ending the ‘Dreamers’ program, saying Chicago Public Schools are a ‘Trump-free’ sanctuary for young illegal immigrants. ‘To all the Dreamers that are here in this room and in the city of Chicago: You are welcome in the city of Chicago. This is your home. And you have nothing to worry about,’ Mr. Emanuel told a group of freshman on the first day of classes at Solorio Academy High School, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.'”

It’s nice that Emanuel is attempting to reassure these students. It’s foolish, though, to essentially paint a bull’s-eye on these schools. That’s what he’s done essentially.

Unfortunately, that isn’t the end of the smart talk. Chicago Public Schools CEO Forrest Claypool said “We do not allow federal agents on these grounds and in this building. You are safe and secure here to learn, to grow and to pursue your dreams and we hope that you do so.”

Whether Chicago allows them or not, the truth is that law enforcement can go wherever they want if they have either probable cause or a warrant. They don’t need Claypool’s or Emanuel’s permission. Emanuel’s act of defiance suggests that he’s thinking about running for president.

Hopefully, by that time, the wall will have been built and this issue will have been resolved.