Garland: Let's make it harder to eject criminal illegal aliens

Michael Reynolds/Pool via AP

If Title 42 ends later this month (currently held up in the courts), the Biden Border Crisis is projected to grow even worse than it already is. So it would make sense to have the Justice Department look into what we might be able to do about it, right? Perhaps that’s what Attorney General Merrick Garland had in mind when he decided to weigh in on one aspect of how we deal with criminal illegal aliens who are caught sneaking across the border. But rather than finding a way to make the border more secure or scheduling such individuals for a more rapid removal from the country, Garland decided that perhaps they all just need a good mental health evaluation, and those found to have mental issues can stay here in the country. (Fox News)

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Monday said that immigration judges can now consider the mental health status of an illegal immigrant convicted of an aggravated felony when considering their asylum claim or whether to withhold their deportation — overruling a prior decision by a top immigration appeals board.

The Immigration and Nationality Act makes illegal immigrants ineligible for both asylum and withholding of removal — where illegal immigrants are not returned because they have a fear of persecution if returned to their country of origin — if they have been convicted of a “particularly serious crime” that constitutes a danger to the community.

It’s not entirely clear what prompted Garland to weigh in on this issue to begin with. The rules regarding criminal illegal aliens have been established and in place for quite some time. Those found to have been previously convicted of “serious crimes” are not eligible for asylum or immunity from deportation. In fact, the immigration courts delivered a specific ruling in a 2014 case that said “a person’s mental health is not a factor to be considered” when evaluating the migrant’s status as a potential danger to the community.

Even absent that ruling, this really should be a matter of common sense, though that commodity is frequently in short supply when it comes to the illegal immigration debate. It’s bad enough that people who refused to follow the established rules for seeking asylum and crossed the border illegally are being considered for asylum in the first place. In the case of those with violent criminal records, even more so. But now we’re going to say that those rules are okay but we’ll let the crazy ones stay?

Mental health issues are obviously a serious problem and we could be doing a far better job of helping Americans dealing with such conditions. But the mental health of citizens from other countries is not our responsibility. And if they wind up in the custody of the border patrol because they crossed over illegally, that fact is still true. We can’t be the health clinic of the entire world.

It would also be nice if the Attorney General would clarify what he plans to do with illegals who fall into this category. Our detention facilities are already overflowing. The fact that we have almost no room to put anyone else is part of why Joe Biden is loading so many of them on buses and planes and dumping them off in communities around the country. Are we now going to add the literally crazy criminals to the passenger lists? If so, perhaps we should take a page from the Texas governor’s playbook and make sure that those mentally ill illegal aliens are dropped off right outside the gates to the White House. Let the President deal with them.