DACA

End DACA now

Alan Gallagher, of Canby, writes in the Capital Press of September 21 that “Systematic breaking of American law should not be rewarded. Illegal aliens and DACA recipients have broken American law by illegal entry or overstay, and violated American law every day — every day — by using false/forged/stolen documents to obtain work and benefits, by lying and using false documents on I-9 forms, by tax fraud, driving without licenses and insurance, and so on. These are not minor crimes, and are deeply corrupting to America’s Rule of Law.”

His article is titled “Congress has already passed an immigration law” and subtitled “DACA recipients, and their parents, have no respect for rule of law, and believe that they may pick and choose which laws to obey.”  Gallagher presents a strong case for immediately ending DACA as well as DAPA.
 
He concludes:  “ … We would not be sending DACA recipients or illegal aliens to Hell, but to a great country, which needs and wants them (in spite of the potential loss of billions of dollars in remittances, $120 billion in total, $23 billion to Mexico).
 
“Mexico exports its problems to the U.S., and receives $23 billion in remittances annually, while U.S. employers gain cheap employees. The economic advantages to some are clear, but it is morally wrong.”
 
Read the full article here.
 
Gallagher’s letter resulted in editorial comments clarifying the newspaper’s position.  See their editorial here.
 
 

Illegal Aliens Crash Nancy Pelosi’s DACA Press Conference: ‘All of Us or None of Us!’

 A group of illegal aliens calling themselves the “Immigration Liberation Movement” crashed a press conference by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) on Monday, warning the Democratic Party not to “sell [us] out.”

The group shouted down Rep. Pelosi, who struggled to maintain control of the meeting, and unfurled a large banner calling for all illegal aliens to be legalized.

Others held up signs, including: “Fight 4 All 11 Million,” referring to the estimated total of all illegal aliens in the U.S.

In the “mic check” call-and-response style popularized by the Occupy Wall Street protests in 2011, the activists declared:

We remember all too well how for eight years the Democrats laid siege to our communities, raiding and deporting nearly three million people, of our family members and loved ones. Where was your resistance then? Ms. Pelosi, did you think we would forget? We send a clear message to our fellow undocumented youth and community: We are the resistance to Trump! Not the Democrats!

The activists also chanted “Brown power!” In a show of “intersectionality” — solidarity among left-wing groups — they also chanted “Trans lives matter!” and other slogans, while Pelosi stood silently behind the throng.

“You met with Trump, and you call that resistance?” they shouted in unison.

Earlier, Pelosi had spoken at the podium with community leaders and fellow members of Congress from the Bay Area in support of her legislative push for a bill that would legalize the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

President Donald Trump canceled DACA earlier this month, but left Congress a six-month window in which to find a legislative solution for the roughly 800,000 DACA beneficiaries. Pelosi said that she wanted the “DREAM Act,” a long-dormant Democratic Party bill that goes much further than DACA, “to be the basis of how we go forward.”

“We’re not giving up our fight to protect America’s dreamers,” she said.

However, she could not speak over the protests. “It’s clear you don’t want any answers,” she said.

As if to support her point, activists chanted: “All of us — or none of us,” meaning that they would only accept full amnesty for all illegal aliens, not just DACA beneficiaries.

President’s actions could end with deportation of MHS grad

As a middle school student, Hugo Nicolas made a vow to himself.

“I told myself that even if people reject me or deny me things, I will still do my best to uphold the values of this country. I would like to help this nation be better because it gave me so many opportunities and helped me see the world in a different way,” Nicolas said. “Right now, it’s hard because I love this country. It’s just so bittersweet. My emotions are mixed.”

In August 2012, two months after graduating from McNary High School, Nicolas enrolled in a then-new program, called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), authorized through executive action by President Barack Obama. DACA did not confer or create a path to citizenship for undocumented children brought to the United States before their 16th birthdays, but it was a huge shift for Nicolas. At age 11, he walked across a desert hand-in-hand with his mother, through a barbed wire fence and into the United States.

In exchange for registering under DACA, the federal government agreed not to deport Nicolas and allowed him to apply for a renewable two-year work permit. The permit came with a social security number that meant he could be paid above-the-table and enjoy the protections afforded other American workers.

“I was excited about the things I could do like being able to go to college, being able to drive, being able to travel within the United States, being able to contribute and really get involved. I felt empowered to basically have no obstacles,” Nicolas said.

Last week, President Donald Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions slapped an expiration date on Nicolas’ American dreams. DACA privileges will be rescinded for Nicolas and 800,000 other undocumented youths, collectively known as Dreamers, registered through the program. Their best hope now is Congress coming up with an alternative by March 5, 2018. In the wake of the action by the Trump administration, Oregon joined 14 other states and the District of Columbia in a lawsuit to block the termination of the program. Another suit to stop the DACA wind down was filed by three additional states on Monday, Sept. 11.

While those lawsuits travel through the judicial system, Nicolas and his younger brother and sister, who are also registered through DACA, are recalibrating their plans.

Last year, Nicolas decided to take time off from earning his degree at the University of Oregon to focus on saving money if Trump’s campaign promises to end DACA ever came to fruition. With some of the money he and his brother were socking away, they planned to purchase their father a new car, maybe even a new home for their parents. His family sold their car to afford the fees and attorney costs associated with Hugo’s initial DACA application.

“All that’s kind of on-hold now,” Nicolas said.

But, truthfully, the impact of Trump’s words began having an effect on Nicolas long before it was announced DACA would be rescinded.

“I feel like he is trying to paint a picture of immigrants as bad people who are only bringing crime and other problems. It’s totally the opposite of what we have done with deferred action,” Nicolas said. Nicolas is currently working as a personal banker with plans to start earning his investment licenses this month. “It has also made me pay more attention to the announcements coming from the administration every week. I have to be aware and more careful with all the changes that are happening.”

Between the president’s words and actions and the vocal support of both from his fans, Nicolas finds himself questioning how others view him and more driven to tell his story, the crux of which is in that middle school vow.

Even then, Nicolas wanted to go to college. He had his sights on a military or Ivy League school. His undocumented status would have stood in the way of both.

“Thinking about college in high school was depressing and I felt so ashamed,” he said. Still, he wanted to prove his value.

At McNary, Nicolas was a star pupil and an athlete. If there was a project that needed volunteers, he would usually be found on the site. He was a Keizer Fire District Explorer, a Keizer Police Department Cadet, and even served as the youth councilor to the Keizer City Council.

“Being undocumented, there is risk in everything you do – even if you are doing something good,” Nicolas said.

It was the last post, in 2012, where things began to unravel a bit. Near the end of his year as youth councilor, someone alerted the city council to Nicolas’ undocumented status. It prompted councilors to propose a policy change that would bar non-citizens from taking on the youth councilor position. Despite public outcry in council chambers, the “Hugo Rule” was approved. The rule still stands, but was tweaked for exchange students to be part of the youth councilor program.

Once he registered for Deferred Action, the college door swung open. He started taking classes at Chemeketa while working three jobs, eventually transferring to the University of Oregon.

“I could finally stand up and show what I could do if people allowed me that opportunity. I also knew that I was following a procedure and didn’t have to worry about what would happen tomorrow,” he said.

Nicolas is altering some of his plans, but he is also feeling a renewed sense of purpose. He bristles at the language used by Trump and Sessions when talking about immigrants.

“The way Jeff Sessions talked about Dreamers made us sound like criminals and not contributing. We’re teachers and nurses and attorneys and bankers. If someone needs representation and can’t afford it or needs tuition assistance, there is a whole group that chips in to help support them,” he said.

He is reconsidering his plans for taking a year off school with the notion that finishing his education is it’s own form of rebelling against the labels some would stick on him.

Deferred Action recipients have also found resilience in numbers.

“We’re more politically involved than we were and we’ve become more united because we can travel and learn from each other,” he said.

For those who want to help prevent DACA from winding down, Nicolas said there are two ways to act locally. First, contact Oregon Rep. Greg Walden, and tell him you support the Dreamers. Oregon’s other representatives and senators have already voiced their support.

The second is more personal and, potentially, more of a challenge: be vocal in your support of Dreamers wherever you go.

“When Trump is saying things about immigrants that are not true, it makes me hold back more because I don’t know if that’s the way people really see me,” he said. “When I see someone who never supported immigration reform now offering encouragement, that means everything.”
 

Leaf-pile driver gets favorable response from Oregon Supreme Court

The Oregon Supreme Court has ruled in favor of Cinthya Garcia-Cisneros, denying state prosecutors' Petition to Review a May 3 Court of Appeals decision that threw out Garcia's highly publicized "hit-and-run" conviction of January 2014.

Both sides in the case agreed Garcia, a Forest Grove resident, didn't initially realize she'd accidentally driven over two young stepsisters — Anna Dieter-Eckerdt and Abigail Robinson, ages 6 and 11 — who were apparently lying or hiding in a huge leaf pile on Forest Grove's Main Street in October 2013.

Then 18, Garcia spent three months in jail before going to trial in front of Washington County Circuit Court Judge Rick Knapp. A jury found Garcia guilty of two counts of "failure to perform the duties of a driver toward injured persons," a felony.

At the request of the victims' families, Knapp sentenced Garcia to probation and community service.

But the Court of Appeals ruled last May that she never should have been convicted in the first place because Knapp should have granted defense attorney Ethan Levi's motion for acquittal.

The intent behind the "failure to perform duties" law is to "penalize a driver who attempts to escape his financial responsibility for damage or attempts to escape criminal or civil prosecution by fleeing the scene of an accident without giving the required information to the other party," wrote Appeals Court Judge James C. Egan.

Levi said he requested three times — during pre-trial motions, after the state presented its case, and again after the jury pronounced its verdict — that Knapp dismiss the case or aquit Garcia because she didn't realize she had struck or hurt anyone and therefore was not trying to escape any responsibility when she drove away from the scene.

But the state argued — and Knapp agreed — that a duty to return to the scene of the accident was implicit in the statute.

The Supreme Court today, Sept. 14, upheld the Court of Appeals' finding that the statute actually indicates the opposite — that the required duties would be imposed "only on a driver who knew at the time of the accident that he or she was involved in an accident and thus can 'immediately' take action."

Now Levi needs to file another motion for acquittal. If that motion is granted, he will look into expunging the arrest from Garcia's record.

"I just emailed her and she's very happy about it," Levi said. But the shadow of the tragedy hangs over the news, he added. "We're not like, jubilant, because it was this whole horrible thing."

Woodburn police chief aims to build trust after news of DACA repeal

The recent decision by the federal government to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals causes me to once again reflect on the relationship between our immigrant communities and local law enforcement.

As I am out and about in the greater Woodburn community, I hear of continued confusion, fear and mistrust of government among immigrant communities.

Critical to our mission as local police officers is the notion that people in our community, particularly our immigrant communities, trust us and not fear us. Trust cultivates an environment of cooperation with victims and witnesses of crime, cooperation that we desperately need to keep our community safe.

The ongoing controversies surrounding immigration issues in our country unfortunately plays counter to that mission, resulting in emotions encouraging fear — not trust — and stifling any such cooperation.

Oregon law, which we follow and enforce, guides us in our daily work of keeping our community safe. ORS 181A.820 helps reinforce the goal of mutual trust and respect between local law enforcement and immigrant communities.

This Oregon law specifically prohibits local law enforcement from engaging solely in administrative immigration matters.

The statute does, however, allow for local law enforcement involvement in immigration matters when circumstances of a crime are present, including a person subject to arrest pursuant to a warrant issued by a federal magistrate.

The decisions surrounding immigration policy and its future are mired in politics well beyond the reach of local law enforcement. What is within the reach of both local law enforcement and our immigrant communities are opportunities to continue fostering mutual trust and respect.

Now is the time for us to come together and work hard to overcome any fear and mistrust of local law enforcement.

We can do this together through building and maintaining positive relationships, being transparent, practicing the tenets of police legitimacy and procedural justice, and working in partnership to keep our community a safe place to live, work and visit.

Jim Ferraris is the chief of the Woodburn Police Department. To read the Oregon statues mentioned in this letter, go to www.oregonlaws.org
 

Pres. Trump, What kind of deal is this?

 
In Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, he said if elected he’d end the DACA program on day one, and having gained office largely on that and other promises to stop illegal immigration he’s now reversing course and advocating amnesty for Dreamers!  This is a bitter disappointment to voters.
 
His tweet of September 5: “Congress now has 6 months to legalize DACA (something the Obama Administration was unable to do). If they can't, I will revisit this issue!” shows all too well what his true position is.
 
Listen to a veteran of immigration law enforcement, Dan Cadman, who knows the consequences of leniency and weakness in immigration controls.  He has good advice on what should be done now:
 
“ …As I've said before, anything that grants amnesty to people who were smuggled as minors into the United States acts to ensure a future filled with waves of new smuggled minors because it acts as a beacon. The mere talk of an amnesty is often enough to set feet into motion south of our border. I see a perpetuation of this situation as immoral, and the greater sin. Alien minors and family units coming north from the Central American ‘triangle’ countries must traverse jungles, mountains, and deserts; will confront searing heat and bone-chilling cold, usually with inappropriate clothing and supplies; they will face hypothermia and dehydration; and they will be exposed along the way to venomous insects and reptiles, as well as predatory animals and humans, the latter being the worst of all.
“With one short tweet, the president has undercut the political pressures Democrats and Dreamer advocates themselves face in making a deal to get what they want. For a man who touts himself as master of the art of the deal, it's inexplicable.
 
“My advice in response would be simple and twofold:
 
1. Congress should call his bluff and do nothing. It would be hard for a president who campaigned for the job by calling the program an unconstitutional abuse of executive power to reverse course once again in six months time if nothing is done. The cost to him as his base abandons him in droves would be far too dear.
 
2. Texas and the other states need to take heed of this tweet, and pursue the lawsuit; it's clear that the president can't be trusted to be true to his word.”
 

Pres. Trump rescinds DACA program

 
President Trump announced today, September 5, that “…in the best interests of our country, and in keeping with the obligations of my office, the Department of Homeland Security will begin an orderly transition and wind-down of DACA, one that provides minimum disruption.  …”   Read the Presidents’ statement here.
 
At the same time, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced “that the program known as DACA that was effectuated under the Obama Administration is being rescinded.”  His statement, which gives a good explanation of the rationale for rescinding the program, can be read here.
 
A leader in the fight to end DACA, Roy Beck of NumbersUSA, comments:
 
"President Trump has delivered a wonderful Labor Day present to unemployed American Millennials by ordering the end of former President Obama's unconstitutional issuing of work permits under the DACA amnesty. NumbersUSA applauds the President for keeping his campaign promise. Now it is time for Congress to focus on strong immigration enforcement measures and reforms to our legal immigration system that put American workers first."
-- Roy Beck, President & Founder of NumbersUSA
 
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The DACA Amnesty Must Be Ended

An important deadline is approaching for the Trump Administration. By September 5, President Trump must decide whether or not to repeal President Obama’s DACA (“Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals”) executive amnesty for illegal aliens.

The deadline was set by ten States, whose attorneys general (or governor, in the case of Idaho) wrote to Attorney General Jeff Sessions demanding an end to the illegal amnesty. The States are Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Louisiana, Kansas, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and West Virginia. If DACA is not terminated, the States will take the Trump Administration to court.

Candidate Trump promised during the 2016 campaign that he would end DACA. On August 31, 2016, in Phoenix he correctly described DACA as an “illegal executive amnesty.” And he promised that he would “[i]mmediately terminate President Obama’s two illegal executive amnesties in which he defied federal law and the Constitution.” It is time to make good on that promise.

The DACA amnesty allows virtually any illegal alien up to the age of 31 (as of June 15, 2012, when it was announced) who claims that he entered the United States before the age of 16 to gain “deferred action” and lawful presence in the United States. The alien also becomes eligible for employment authorization. In practice, today illegal aliens up the age of 36 are getting the amnesty. It’s not limited to “children” as the Left is so eager to pretend. It’s estimated that the DACA amnesty could extend to approximately 1.7 million illegal aliens. More than 886,000 have already applied for, and received, the amnesty.

The Obama Administration attempted to defend the legality of DACA on a flimsy theory that has already been rejected by multiple courts –  that “prosecutorial discretion” can be used to confer the benefit of lawful presence on millions of illegal aliens, en masse, without any action by Congress. The theory is ridiculous on its face. Prosecutorial discretion is a decision not to prosecute a specific person based on the evidence at hand; it is not a mass changing of legal status for millions of people.

If the States sue, they will win. As a legal question, it’s not even close. DACA is not illegal for just one reason. It’s illegal for at least five reasons – three violations of federal law and two violations of the United States Constitution:

Federal law violations:

  1. 8 USC 1225(b)(2). This statute requires that any alien an ICE officer determines to be inadmissible “shall” be placed in removal proceedings. Congress passed this law in 1996 to stop the “catch and release” policies of the Clinton Administration. Incredibly, DACA orders ICE agents to break this law. In 2012, in the case of Crane v. Napolitano, I represented 10 ICE agents who sued the Obama Administration to stop DACA. Although the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals eventually ruled that the ICE agents didn’t have standing, the district court in the Northern District of Texas had already held that we were likely to succeed on this claim.
  2. The Administrative Procedure Act (APA). Even if there weren’t a statutory barrier to a president issuing the DACA directive, the Department of Homeland Security would still have to promulgate a formal regulation (or “rule”), with notice and public comment, under the requirements of the APA. The Obama Administration violated this federal law as well when it created DACA. The Fifth Circuit already came to this conclusion in Texas v. United States, a case which resulted in an injunction halting the second Obama executive amnesty (which was based on the same theory as DACA).
  3. Prosecutorial discretion” cannot be used to confer federal benefits. Prosecutorial discretion is a decision not to prosecute; it is not a legally-permissible mechanism for granting lawful presence or the valuable benefit of employment authorization. Federal law lays out the only avenues for obtaining either. And DACA doesn’t follow those avenues. The Fifth Circuit reached this conclusion as well in Texas v. United States.

 United States Constitution violations:

  1. The Constitutional Separation of Powers. The granting of the right to remain in the United States, plus employment authorization, to a large number of aliens is a legislative action, not an executive action. The “DREAM Act” legislative amnesty, which DACA mimics, has been introduced and has failed in Congress more than twenty times since 2001. If someday Congress decides to enact the DREAM Act, Congress may do so. But a president may not usurp Congress’s authority, as President Obama did, by imposing the DACA amnesty on the country through executive fiat.
  2. Article 2, section 3, of the U.S. Constitution. This section of the Constitution requires the president to “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” The DACA amnesty is an express order not to execute the multiple federal laws that render these aliens unlawfully present. An order not to enforce the law against 1.7 million specially-designated aliens is a clear violation of this constitutional provision.

Any single one of these legal claims is sufficient to torpedo DACA in court. And three have already been given credence by the courts. Attorney General Sessions knows this. As he correctly told the Senate Judiciary Committee in January, DACA is “very questionable, in my opinion, constitutionally.” He is undoubtedly reluctant to defend this blatantly illegal executive amnesty.

The Department of Justice can’t win the case. The Fifth Circuit has already ruled on the central legal question, and that is where the case would be heard. The Trump Administration would lose in court, and the president would lose a significant section of his political base as well. DACA is inconsistent with the rule of law, inconsistent with the president’s own promises, and inconsistent with the president’s principled stand against illegal immigration. It must end.

Kris W. Kobach is the elected secretary of state of Kansas.  An expert in immigration law and policy, he coauthored the Arizona SB-1070 immigration law and represented in federal court the 10 ICE agents who sued to stop Obama’s 2012 executive amnesty. In 2017 President Trump named him Vice Chairman of the Presidential Commission on Election Integrity. He is also a candidate for the office of governor of Kansas. His website is kriskobach.com.

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