We need to be smart about our immigration laws

There is a lot of talk about immigration reforms.  As expected, the left wants an omnibus immigration reform.  The answer should be a resounding no to any further omnibus bills of any type.

Are immigration reforms even needed?  The immediate answer is again no.  As with so many things, we have adequate laws on the books.  We merely need to enforce them as written, not as a sitting president wishes they were written.  Then and only then can we proceed intelligently.

Our immigrations laws provide for admissions at our borders.  All persons seeking admission to the United States are subject to examination by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officers.  That is a required first step.  You must have proof of your right to enter our country.  U.S. citizens and permanent resident aliens are passed through, although even they are subject to detention where appropriate.  An alien from another country, however, must show a right of entry.  This can be showing a passport from a country with whom we allow visa waivers.  Otherwise, a visa needs to be shown or some other acceptable reasons for entry.

The flood of alleged immigrants entering our country today largely claim to be refugees or seeking asylum.  Let's look at these laws.

A refugee is defined in 8 USC 1101 (a)(42).  A general summary of a refugee is someone who is outside his country and persecuted, or who has a well founded fear of persecution, on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinions, in his home country.  As to political opinions, there is recent language regarding abortions.  Please note that merely seeking a better life, seeking to escape poverty, wanting better employment opportunities, or however you wish to define it is not grounds to be classified as a refugee.

According to USCIS, those seeking asylum must (1) meet the definition of a refugee, (2) be in the United States, and (3) be seeking admission at a port of entry.  Note that, as with a refugee, merely seeking a better life, seeking to escape poverty, wanting better employment opportunities, or however you wish to define it is not statutory grounds for asylum.  Further, swimming across the Rio Grande in the middle of nowhere is not a designated port of entry.

The human-traffickers have told their "clients" to say they fear such to get their foot in the door.  It is our mistake to let them enter the country without more proof.  Currently, we are merely releasing them into the country with a promise to show up at a future hearing.  This isn't working.

At a June 2019 congressional hearing, the acting secretary of Homeland Security, Kevin McAleenan, was asked how many aliens were showing up at their asylum hearings.  He testified that they did a study, and in that study, 90 percent failed to show up for their hearings.  In other words, 90 percent of them are now illegal aliens without question and with removal orders against them.  We need more people at the border who can make the decision on the spot and reject those who do not qualify.

There are also exceptions as to who can claim asylum.  In 8 USC 1158 (a)(2), we find the following language:

(2) Exceptions

(A) Safe third country

Paragraph (1) shall not apply to an alien if the Attorney General determines that the alien may be removed, pursuant to a bilateral or multilateral agreement, to a country (other than the country of the alien's nationality or, in the case of an alien having no nationality, the country of the alien's last habitual residence) in which the alien's life or freedom would not be threatened on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion, and where the alien would have access to a full and fair procedure for determining a claim to asylum or equivalent temporary protection, unless the Attorney General finds that it is in the public interest for the alien to receive asylum in the United States.

At this point, I am not sure what "determinations" have been made by the attorney general, but I believe I would be safe in saying those determinations are in the interests of the aliens and not the United States.  In this context, one might even include Democrats within the word "aliens."

We as a nation have a duty to protect our borders.  A nation with no border is not a nation or won't be for long.  Despite the recent rants by the babblative groundling serving as our current president, our border is not secure.  He has become so sensitive to this obvious failing that his rants about it in the presence of ladies require him to apologize for his vulgar language.

If we were to strictly enforce our existing immigration laws as written, we could correct our border catastrophe very quickly and without further laws.  We should do this, see how well it works, and only then consider what tweaks, if any, need to be made.  No omnibus, but rather piecemeal corrections, where we can understand precisely what is being legislated.  We need to be smart about it.

Image: woodleywonderworks via Flickr, CC BY 2.0.

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