Tuesday 4 June 2024

Josh Hawley Accuses Biden of Granting ‘De Facto Amnesty’ to Illegal Aliens via Immigration Courts

 Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) says President Joe Biden is giving “de facto amnesty” to hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens, using the federal government’s immigration courts.

Federal data published this week reveals an alarming trend on Biden’s watch, where migrants who have been released into the United States interior are increasingly having their deportation cases closed despite not having secured asylum.

“Thus far during the Biden administration, the proportion [of migrants] allowed to remain in this country has risen to 77 percent, and those ordered removed has been just 22 percent,” researchers at Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) write.

Migrants are processed by the U.S. Border Patrol at a new makeshift camp after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border on May 26, 2024 in Jacumba Hot Springs, San Diego, California. (Qian Weizhong/VCG via Getty Images)

On Tuesday, Hawley sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, questioning him over the administration’s mass closure of deportation cases.

“I write with alarm that your Department once again appears to be circumventing its duty to enforce immigration laws — this time by granting de facto amnesty to hundreds of thousands of illegal migrants,” Hawley writes:

According to recent reports, since 2022, the Biden Administration has closed the asylum cases of more than 350,000 migrants without a decision on the merits. These migrants are then no longer required to check in with authorities and can pursue other avenues to obtain legal status and remain in the country. Let’s be clear: granting mass amnesty to illegal migrants contradicts any Biden Administration claim that it is now somehow getting “tough” on the border. You must immediately reverse course and put an end to your covert mass amnesty program. [Emphasis added]

According to data gathered by Syracuse University’s Transactional Record Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), the Biden Administration has closed more than 350,000 asylum cases since the beginning of 2022, an unparalleled abuse compared to recent years. Individuals whose asylum cases are terminated are no longer tracked by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and can pursue potential pathways to gain legal status. Effectively, you have allowed hundreds of thousands of migrants to remain in the United States indefinitely — for no other reason than the fact that their immigration case was not heard. In other words, you have created a mass de facto amnesty program that shields migrants from deportation. [Emphasis added]

This maneuver poses grave threats to the safety and security of the American people. The closed cases pertain to migrants who did not have a criminal record, but ICE officers have reported to news outlets an increase in cases of migrants committing crimes after their asylum cases have been closed. Just recently, reports indicated that a Venezuelan illegal alien accused of shooting of multiple New York Police Department officers had his immigration case closed in early May 2024. Migrant crime continues to be a major program in this country. Of course, Jose Ibarra, the alleged murderer of Laken Riley, was illegally paroled into the United States by the Biden Administration. Your failure of leadership and complete unwillingness to uphold the law continues to imperil the well-being and lives of American citizens. [Emphasis added]

Chart via Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse

By June 17, Hawley is requesting information on those hundreds of thousands of migrants whom the government has closed deportation cases for despite their not securing asylum, including if DHS is still tracking the migrants, whether they have sought to bring family members on visas to the U.S., and the total of those who have gone on to commit crimes. 

“The American people deserve answers about the Biden Administration’s attempts to create a mass amnesty program for illegal migrants,” Hawley writes.

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