The crisis on the border is no longer in the shadows. In broad daylight on Monday planes from Texas landed in San Diego and were met by buses, all transporting more illegal immigrants into the United States. It’s certainly a strange sight to watch the federal government facilitate illegal immigration into the United States at such a grand scale.
Meanwhile, the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco “blocked Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s policy of denying driver’s licenses to young immigrants who have gotten work permits and avoided deportation under an Obama administration policy.”
Arizona had revised its law to refuse driver’s licenses to anyone who received a deportation deferral after the Obama administration had unilaterally decided to defer removal proceedings for illegal aliens who were brought to the United States as children. While a sympathetic move by the administration, it directly conflicts with the law.
In a statement regarding the Ninth Circuit ruling, Brewer noted that the DACA program (Deferred Action for Child Arrivals) has not only led to the current crisis on the border but that the Ninth Circuit effectively granted the Obama administration power to write law without Congress.
The DACA Program, the decision to not enforce federal law, has directly led to the massive influx of illegal crossings and the crisis we are witnessing today. If the Ninth Circuit ruling is allowed to stand, the President, as he has already threatened, can contrive a new program refusing to deport the latest arrivals, issue employment authorization cards, and Arizona would have to issue licenses to them as well.
Arizona law, A.R.S. § 28-3153(D), is very clear: ‘Notwithstanding any other law, the department shall not issue to or renew a driver license or nonoperating identification license for a person who does not submit proof satisfactory to the department that the applicant’s presence in the United States is authorized under federal law.’ As a result, the Arizona Department of Transportation has a policy that DACA—as well as deferred action and deferred enforced departure individuals—do not demonstrate authorized presence under federal law.
Our country is a country of immigrants that has a large amount of empathy for those willing to risk their lives to come here for a better life. Our nation has successfully integrated waves of immigrants precisely because we are a nation of laws. Declining to enforce and actively subverting the law with “good” intentions is inspiring the humanitarian crisis we are now seeing at our borders. As Kevin Williamson noted, this humanitarian crisis has put the U.S. government in position of assisting cartels and sex trafficking, besides violating our own immigration laws.
Nearly 200,000 illegals have crossed into Texas’s Rio Grande Valley this year, and the cartels that oversee the coyote operations have the local landowners terrorized into compliance. This includes the trafficking of minors and others destined for the sex trade; perversely, the Department of Homeland Security has been known to send minors trafficked across the border on to their final destinations, thus ‘completing the criminal mission’ of the traffickers, in the words of one federal judge.
While the Obama administration appears to be oblivious to the crisis on the border, towns like Murrieta, California are questioning whether they can afford to continue existing each new bus arrives. “As federal officials have begun to send the expected 240,000 migrants and 52,000 unaccompanied minors who have crossed the border illegally in recent months in the Rio Grande Valley to cities around the county, Murrieta so far is the only place that has managed to turn them away.”
Scenes like those happening in Murrieta, where ordinary citizens are questioning the actions of the Obama administration, may become more frequent in the coming weeks. While Murrieta is the only town to have physically protested the situation, Americans are following this crisis and largely blame the administration. According to a recent Investor’s Business Daily poll:
The poll found that 59% of those closely following the immigration crisis agree that ‘current administration policies and lack of focus on securing the border’ are behind the human tide of illegal crossings. Six in 10 say that the children should be ordered to leave the country. (The survey found that 73% of Americans are following this story closely.)
Any party who is pro-immigration must demonstrate the ability to enforce the border and laws if they expect to have credibility on immigration reform. As a nation, we find ourselves in the strange position of watching our federal government facilitate breaking the law while judges like those at the Ninth Circuit actively support their efforts to create documentation without legislation. We are being led by those who refuse to respect the law. Their acts are more criminal than those seeking to cross our border.
In the end, the biggest winners are the cartels, who continue to have unencumbered access to a fluid border under the cover of thousands of poor migrants from Central America. Protecting a nation’s border is a fundamental expectation of its citizens. The Obama administration is demonstrating incompetence on a grand scale, and the American people are watching.