On Monday, President Trump announced the deportation of millions of illegal aliens beginning “next week,” vowing that ICE agents would remove such aliens “as fast as they come in.”
Here are the two pertinent tweets from the president:
Critics and supporters alike are asking for details on how Immigration and Customs Enforcement will process the millions here illegally. As I write this post, I’ve just listened to part of Ben Shapiro’s podcast on the announcement; he argues that a surgical, case-by-case approach is preferable, as some illegal aliens possess skills we would want in the United States.
While I appreciate Shapiro’s measured response, I can’t agree. As I wrote in “Deportemal,” the time for half-measures has passed. A lengthy review process of the millions of illegal aliens—which could be anywhere from 11 to 33 million (PDF; that document shows an illegal population of 12 million as of 2015), and maybe higher (that no one can know for sure is a major part of the problem)—would bog down for years, if not decades. Another visa process ladled on top of inherent law-breaking will merely exacerbate the problem.
Consider: our current catch-and-release system—migrants show up to one court date, get a temporary visa and orders to report back to court, then disappear into the countryside, never darkening an immigration court again—already gives migrants an easy in. Essentially, touching American soil is like tagging home base: once you’re here, you’re in.
Now, imagine adding an individual review process to that. First, you’d have to assume good-faith on the part of illegals in the country. They have virtually no incentive to come to another hearing. Yes, they have the opportunity to be absolved of their illegal status (I’m assuming that’s what Shapiro is proposing), but if they think they don’t, they’ll avoid the process.
Second, a whole cottage-industry of gaming the individual amnesty system will emerge. Lawyers skilled in the ins-and-outs of this fresh bureaucratic hell will profit at the expense of their countrymen and poor illegals. Appeals—and you know with the federal government there would be a lengthy appeals process—would linger on for months, even years, further adding to the administrative load of ICE and our courts.
If we were dealing with a few thousand people, we could demonstrate some mercy and approach this issue with a lighter touch. Unfortunately, we’ve failed to enforce our border laws for so long that we’ve allowed this crisis to metastasize, to the detriment of American citizens and potential immigrants alike.
Republicans squandered a golden opportunity to make some real strides on immigration reform during the 2017-2019 congressional session. President Trump has moved mountains since then via constitutional executive orders and international diplomacy, particularly his threat of slapping hefty, incremental tariffs on Mexico. Increased enforcement of Mexico‘s southern border has, according to Shapiro, already eased the number of arrests on the American border.
In the wake of President Trump’s massive 2020 reelection campaign launch last night in Orlando, Florida, it is imperative for immigration patriots to run (and win!) in 2020, and for Americans to support Trump’s reelection. It’s our best hope to resolve this crisis, to the benefit of Americans and the world.
For more of my writing on immigration, check out “Lazy Sunday XIII: Immigration.”
Consider supporting the blog at my SubscribeStar page. $1/mo. gets you exclusive access to new posts every Saturday.