Sunday, April 29, 2012

Some Clarity on Selective Enforcement

I’ve commented before about the disarray our politicians have created in the simple checks-and-balances process.  The President is creating laws, Congress is hold hearings and the Courts are changing the original intent of the legislation.  What a mess.

One of the ways a President changes the law is to use his limited funds to enforce certain laws he likes while ignoring others because of a lack of resources.  Every President in my adult life has done this in one form or another.

Most government agencies are governed by rules rather than legislation.  OSHA and the EPA are prime examples.  A left-leaning President will likely put forth stronger enforcement efforts against business than a rightie.

When it comes to immigration, GWB’s efforts are instructive.  For much of his tenure Bush Jr. ignored enforcement legislation.  In fact, Bill Clinton carried out more worksite raids than Bush…until 2006.  At that point Bush realized that his amnesty plan wasn’t going anywhere in Washington without a show of enforcement.  Only then did you see serious fence building, border patrolling and worksite raiding.

Obama did not take the hint and started looking the other way.  He immediately ended worksite raids, thus sending the message that working illegally in the USA was OK with the Executive Branch.

He dismantled the 287(g) program and Secure Communities a couple of years later in the name of civil rights.

He effectively halted the creation of detention beds (a key component of enforcement) by insisting on turning them into dorm rooms rather than jail cells.  The message here: Unlawful presence is no big deal and illegal aliens should not be treated as though they were…well…illegal.

He cooked the books on deportation statistics by cranking up Bill Clinton’s Port Court program and including arrests at the border in the deportation tally.

Obama’s coup de grace was his cancellation of about 300,000 legitimate deportation orders, calling for a reevaluation of all of them.  This was a fiat, a procedural order.  He had no Congressional authority to do that.

To that point, selective enforcement by the Executive Branch, IRLI sends a court brief to Utah.  They are crying foul.  The Obama administration cannot dictate priorities to the states, especially when the legislation calls for action.

Follow the link to a good read about a President trying to erase existing law for his own political gain.

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