President Donald Trump’s deputies have formally killed off President Barack Obama’s final attempt to create a national amnesty for roughly 4 million illegal aliens, dubbed “DAPA.”
Since 2016, the amnesty has been frozen by the courts, and the end was announced late Thursday by the Department of Homeland Security:
On June 15, Department of Homeland Security Secretary John F. Kelly, after consulting with the Attorney General [Jeff Sessions], signed a memorandum rescinding the November 20, 2014 memorandum that created the program known as Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (“DAPA”) because there is no credible path forward [in the courts] to litigate the currently enjoined policy.
The DAPA amnesty policy had much support from Democrats and ethnic groups, who may ask judges to keep the amnesty alive.
Obama announced the DAPA amnesty in 2014. The announcement came just after voters decisively rejected his very unpopular push for the “Gang of Eight” amnesty law, and also awarded the GOP 10 extra Senate seats and the Senate majority.
Obama’s DAPA amnesty was not a law, but consisted of Oval Office instructions to deputies that they should not enforce immigration laws against illegal aliens who had children in the United States, sometimes called “anchor babies,” but must instead award work permits to the roughly 4 million illegal-alien parents.
Obama’s DAPA promise of work permits for illegals was quickly blocked by a Texas-based judge, Andre Hanen, amid a lawsuit by a coalition of Governors and Attorneys General. The national GOP played little part in the lawsuit, titled United States v. Texas. The judge’s order later was backed by a Supreme Court decision in June 2016, in which all four of the Democratic-appointed judges supported Obama’s Oval Office amnesty.
Since November, the Texas judge and agency officials have been waiting to see if Trump’s administration would defend Obama’s amnesty in court.
The DAPA amnesty was a more ambitious move than Obama’s 2012 “DACA” amnesty for illegals who claimed to have been brought into the United States as children. That summer 2012 amnesty survived one limited lawsuit and has not been rolled back by Trump. Under Obama’s DACA, roughly 765,000 younger illegals have been given work permits and Social Security Cards. Since January 2017, Trump has allowed the DACA program to renew work permits held by the illegals and to give work permits to more than 17,000 new applicants.
However, the defunct DAPA plan also expanded the DACA amnesty to include additional young illegals and directed officials to award work-permits valid for three years instead of two years. Those DACA extensions have been formally canceled by the new DHS statement.
A few days after Obama announced his DAPA policy, he showed his radical, open-borders ideology by declaring in a Chicago speech that Americans do not have the right to decide who can immigrate into the United States. He said:
Sometimes we get attached to our particular tribe, our particular race, our particular religion, and then we start treating other folks differently. And that, sometimes, has been a bottleneck to how we think about immigration. If you look at the history of immigration in this country, each successive wave, there have been periods where the folks who were already here suddenly say, ‘Well, I don’t want those folks’ — even though the only people who have the right to say that are some Native Americans.
Obama made the same claim in September 2015:
When I hear folks talking as if somehow these [foreign] kids are different than my kids or less worthy in the eyes of God, that somehow that they are less worthy of our respect and consideration and care, I think that’s un-American. I don’t believe that, I think it is wrong and I think we should do better, because that’s how America was made.
While the lawsuit was debated in 2016 by the judges, Trump won the GOP primary campaign by strongly opposing Obama’s amnesties. When he was inaugurated, Trump declared his administration’s policy would be “Buy American, Hire American.”