U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced a 21 percent drop in the number of young DACA illegal aliens who applied for protection from deportation by the October 5 deadline.
Officials expected 154,000 applications for the two-year renewals. But only 122,000 applications had been received by the deadline. The final numbers won’t be available until late next week at the earliest, according to USCIS.
Under former President Barack Obama’s 2012 DACA amnesty, almost 800,000 illegal aliens applied and were allowed to remain in the United States. They were also given two-year work permits. However, many have dropped out of the amnesty program, leaving roughly 690,000 were enrolled in September.
The October 5 date was the last chance for existing beneficiaries to renew their two-year permits. The DACA permits will start expiring in March 2018, and all will expired by March 2020.
USCIS did not explain the 21 percent drop, but federal officials promised to implement a more rigorous security check than allowed by Obama’s deputies.
A former manager of the agency’s investigative unit, Matt O’Brien, said in September that the fraud rate for DACA could be “40 to 50 percent.”
“Based on what I had seen and what I discussed with my colleagues, the fraud rate is 40 to 50 percent,” O’Brien said in an interview with LifeZette.
The declining number of DACA applications will impact the Democratic Party’s effort to push their huge Dream Act amnesty to President Donald Trump’s desk before March 5, when the first DACA permits expire. The Dream Act could provide an amnesty to 3.3 million people, far more than the 800,000 who enrolled in the DACA amnesty.
Meanwhile, CNN has reported that Democrats “are raising alarms” that so few of the eligible DACA illegal aliens are reapplying for the program.
“We are very concerned that because DACA recipients were not individually notified of their eligibility for renewal, tens of thousands of DACA recipients could lose their work authorization and DACA status protections,” Congressional Hispanic Caucus leaders wrote in a letter to acting DHS Secretary Elaine Duke on Tuesday repeating its request to talk about extending the deadline.