ICE: A "clean DACA fix" will create an explosion of illegal immigration

At an event sponsored by the Center for Immigration Studies yesterday, outgoing chief of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Thomas Homan shared his thoughts on the possibility of upcoming congressional debate over a “clean” DACA bill. To put it mildly, he was not enthusiastic. If any sort of deal such as the one being described by supporters of the measure were to go through, Homan warned that potential border jumpers would take that as a signal to get into the United States while the getting is good, potentially overwhelming our immigration enforcement officials. (Washington Times)

Passing a “clean” Dream Act to legalize illegal immigrant “Dreamers” will spur a new wave of illegal immigration and create a new population that will need an amnesty 10 or 20 years in the future, the government’s chief deportation official said Tuesday.

Tom Homan, who has been acting as the chief at U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement since the beginning of the Trump administration, said even the talk of a renewed immigration debate on Capitol Hill will entice people to make the perilous journey to try to jump the border, saying during his nearly 35 years in immigration enforcement he’s seen it happen “every time you talk about some sort of benefit” such as legal status for illegal immigrants.

“It certainly increases illegal crossings, that’s been proven for the last three decades I’ve been around,” Mr. Homan said at an event sponsored by the Center for Immigration Studies.

Homan will be retiring at the end of the month, but he clearly doesn’t want to see all of the progress his agency has made washed away in a major setback. And the warning he’s issuing has the ring of common sense to it. Any signal that something resembling a general amnesty with a free pass to American citizenship is in the offing will quickly reach the streets of the countries where most illegal immigrants come from. At that point you’re basically daring them to take a shot at making it into the country any way they can in the hopes of getting in on the action.

And to what end? The discussions of this upcoming deal certainly don’t sound promising. Rather than Lawful Permanent Resident status, members of Congress are now talking about full citizenship rights for an increasingly large number of eligible illegal aliens. (A group which Democrats would immediately begin rushing to register as voters.) And what is being offered in return? All we’ve heard thus far is talk of “a study of future border security needs.”

I’m sorry, but that’s the old Popeye and Wimpy joke, offering to gladly pay us Tuesday for a hamburger today. And as Homan went on to point out, if we trigger a new flood of border jumpers this summer with such a proposal, they might not qualify for a DACA fix today, but we’re “setting ourselves up for another amnesty in the future.”

As I’ve written here repeatedly, the preferred number of people receiving amnesty would be zero. Nobody should be shoved to the head of the line in front of honest immigrants who have been following the rules and waiting their turn for a chance at naturalization. But I’m also aware of the political realities that members of Congress are wrestling with at present. Perhaps we’ll have to accept some sort of limited deal, but we certainly need to be getting a lot more out of it than the promise of “a future study.”

We need full funding for the border wall, the passage of Kate’s Law nationally, more immigration judges and ICE/CBP officers, mandatory E-verify and probably a few more things. We may not get all of it, but accepting none of it in exchange for a massive amnesty which includes citizenship should be off the table. And if such an abomination actually passes both chambers, the President needs to be standing ready with his veto pen in hand.