Obama’s illegal move on immigration

David B. Rivkin Jr. and Lee A. Casey
The Washington Post
9/2/2011

Only Congress has constitutional authority to establish U.S. immigration policy, and fundamental reform requires legislative action. Thus the administration’s recent announcement that deportation will be sought only for undocumented immigrants who have committed crimes in the United States violates the separation of powers and is unconstitutional.

No president, of course, can hope to expel every undocumented person in the United States — they number perhaps upward of 11 million people. Human and financial resources to identify, apprehend, process and promptly deport millions have been lacking for years as has, arguably, the political will to do so. In this environment, immigration enforcement authorities, under administrations of both parties, have performed as best they could given their resources. Still, millions have been deported over the years. And while many had been convicted of serious criminal offenses, most deportees have not been in that category.

The policy that Obama unveiled last month differs fundamentally from the spotty immigration enforcement records of previous presidents. The administration indicated that, henceforth, deportation will be focused solely on illegal immigrants who have criminal records and that no enforcement resources will be expended on those who do not pose a threat to public safety. The effect is that undocumented individuals who have avoided apprehension at the border and not been convicted of a serious offense since arriving to the United States will no longer face the prospect of deportation, the most basic means of immigration enforcement.

This goes far beyond merely prioritizing the use of limited immigration enforcement resources. And it exceeds the president’s constitutional authority by, in effect, suspending operation of the immigration laws with respect to a very large and identifiable class of offenders…

The article continues at The Washington Post.

H/T Weasel Zippers

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