Shocking DHS Illegal Immigration Secret: Background Checks Suspended

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Immigration Bill

Last week the “Gang of Eight’s” immigration reform bill, which provides instant legal status and a path to citizenship for tens of millions of illegal aliens, passed a procedural hurdle in the United States Senate.

Per Fox News:

The Senate passed preliminary but key votes Tuesday in its march to approval of sweeping, bipartisan immigration reform, but final passage remained uncertain as Republicans pushed for tighter border-security provisions and tougher rules for those seeking legal status.

The two procedural votes effectively put the bill formally before the Senate and open for amendments. Both drew more than 80 votes, reflecting a bipartisan desire to have the debate that now is expected to last three weeks.

Earlier in the day Tuesday, President Obama continued to push for passage of the mammoth illegal immigration reform bill, saying the “moment is now”:

Referring to the 11 million currently in the country unlawfully, he said, “Yes, they broke the rules; they didn't wait their turn. They shouldn't be let off easy.  They shouldn't be allowed to game the system.  But at the same time, the vast majority of these individuals aren't looking for any trouble.  They're just looking to provide for their families, contribute to their communities.”

Allow me to read between the lines. The president is effectively saying that because most illegal aliens are nice people, we should overlook the fact that they broke the law. And since they can’t be allowed to “game the system,” instead we’ll change the system to accommodate their law-breaking and give them the privileges of legal residency, taxpayer-subsidized benefits and then citizenship.

And let’s not let the president’s wild claim that illegal aliens are only here to contribute to society go uncontested. We’ve heard this before, as a justification for the Obama administration’s “prioritized deportation scheme,” which supposedly only allowed peace-loving illegal aliens to escape deportation.

Here’s the problem. JW was able to prove through documented evidence that the Obama administration abandoned deportation proceedings against illegal aliens convicted of serious and sometimes violent crimes. Time and time again, we’ve seen illegal alien criminals harming American citizens after law enforcement authorities, following sanctuary policies, sent them back onto the streets. (In fact, as JW previously disclosed, one of the Boston bombers should have been deported in accordance with the law.)

Moreover, the Obama administration has no idea how dangerous some of these illegal aliens are because, according to documents we recently obtained through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) stopped doing background checks late last year!

Instead, the agency adopted costly “lean and lite” procedures in an effort to keep up with the flood of applications spurred by President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) directive, which grants illegal aliens a two-year deferment from deportation. This DACA program is one of Obama’s lawless initiatives through which he unilaterally is ignoring the law to let these illegal aliens avoid deportation.

Here’s how we obtained these documents. Acting on a tip from a whistleblower at a federal law enforcement agency, Judicial Watch filed a FOIA request with DHS, for “all communications, memoranda, emails, policy guidance, directives, initiatives, and any other correspondence respecting the scope and extent of background checks to be performed (or not) on aliens applying to the Obama administration’s DACA program.”

JW filed the FOIA request on October 26, 2012. The Immigration and National Security Act (INA) mandates a “coordinated, uniform, and efficient,” system of background checks. Instead, the FOIA documents reveal a costly, haphazard process, with only cursory review for the backgrounds of illegal aliens seeking “deferred status.”

Here are some of the highlights from the records:

  • In a series of agency memos beginning in September 14, 2012, field offices were told to expect the National Benefits Center (which collects all DACA applications) to conduct only “lean & lite” background checks on illegal alien applicants, and that, henceforth, “NBC will not perform full TECS checks or any evidence review on these cases before we ship to the field.” An October 14 memo reiterated that under the new “lean and lite” policy, “Hits will be sent to the field without resolution.” On October 25, the St. Paul Field Director conceded to staffers that the new “lean & lite” procedures were for an indefinite period of time, saying, “I just can’t tell you when things will revert back to the way they used to be.”
  • An email chain from September 5 and through November 14 indicates managerial pressure not to turn any illegal alien applicant away for lack of ID, including the explicit directive in an October 3 memo, “Biometric processing should not be refused solely because an applicant does not present an acceptable ID.” In an October 1 memo further restricting independent action by agency personnel, they were instructed, “Every two weeks field offices will report the number of DACA requestors who appear for biometrics collection at an ASC during the previous two week period, but were turned away without fingerprints or photographs being taken. Field offices will also need to provide the reason why the DACA requestor was turned away by the ASC ISO.”
  • The documents suggest added taxpayer costs for the new deportation deferral program. On June 28, 2012, all Regional Service Managers were informed that they were to “come up with the number of guards that would be required and a dollar amount” in order to meet the new DACA processing requirements. On July 31, 2012, the agency announced, “In support of the President’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) initiative, USCIS is procuring 40 additional biometrics workstations.”
  • On November 9, 2012, just three days after Obama was reelected, in an “!!! IMPORTANT DACA MESSAGE!!! The agency was directed to: “Please put all DACA work on hold until further notice.” There are no later-dated documents in the production to indicate how or when USCIS resumed DACA background checks or application processing.

The documents also reveal that, contrary to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano’s claim that DACA applied only to minors who came to this country illegally “through no fault of their own,” the directive actually created a new avenue of chain migration, whereby immediate relatives of DACA requesters could be approved for legal status. As a result, according to a June 18, 2012, agency memo from District 15 Director, David Douglas, “some of the districts closer to the U.S./Mexico border have been inundated.”

These smoking gun documents show that the Obama administration seems to be throwing public safety and national security out the door in implementing its illicit and unilateral legalization program for illegal aliens. Whatever happens in Congress, we must confront Barack Obama’s scheme to enact illegal alien amnesty via executive fiat. It’s wrong, unconstitutional, and it’s dangerous.

And as it relates specifically to the Gang of Eight legislation in the Senate, the costs and security lapses of this program show that this administration can’t be trusted to implement any of the new security measures, weak as they are, in the bill in the Senate.

So we have two issues before us. The current crisis caused by Obama’s unilateral actions, contrary to law and the Constitution, to suspend enforcement of our immigration laws. And the second crisis is the current legislation in the U.S. Senate that both fails to address Obama’s lawlessness and further undermines the law by rewarding lawbreakers with legal status, citizenship, and taxpayer cash.

I encourage you to let your views be heard in Congress. Right now, you should call your Senators. You can reach them at 202-224-3121.



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