Heritage Foundation: DACA Amnesty Will Lead to More Illegal Immigration

Jacquelyn Martin/AP

A plan where nearly 800,000 illegal aliens shielded from deportation by an Obama-created program are given amnesty to permanently remain in the United States would lead to more illegal immigration, conservative think-tank The Heritage Foundation says.

Analysis by Heritage on what would occur following a deal where hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens covered by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program are given amnesty found that instead of the plan leading to an end of illegal immigration, it would only exacerbate the problem:

An amnesty-centric approach to immigration reform does nothing to discourage additional illegal immigration. The Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986 provided 2.7 million illegal immigrants with legal status and access to citizenship. The House committee that crafted the legislation claimed “a one-time legalization program is a necessary part of an effective enforcement program.” When Senators discussed the final bill, the sponsor, Senator Alan Simpson (R–WY), promised “that this is it. It is one time. You either show up on this one or you will be rejected.” With 11 million to 12 million illegal immigrants now living in the country, and with a constant push for new amnesties, these promises have proven empty.

More recently, this lesson of history repeated itself, as President Barack Obama’s DACA program and general weakening of immigration enforcement contributed to the surge of unaccompanied minors and families at the U.S. border. Fleeing from violence in Central America, these illegal immigrants “consistently” believed that they were eligible for a legal pass or “permiso” to enter and stay in the U.S., according to data collected by the Department of Homeland Security.

History has proven time and time again that amnesty and non-enforcement policies only encourage more illegal immigration.

Like pro-American immigration reformers, Heritage analysts say that an overhaul of the legal immigration system and stricter immigration enforcement would need to be implemented before any plan is passed on what to do with the remaining 12 to 30 million illegal aliens residing in the country.

“Amnesty proposals that incentivize more illegal immigration and do not solve the fundamental problems with the U.S. immigration system must be rejected,” Heritage researcher David Inserra wrote, adding:

Congress should fulfill its responsibility—with active cooperation of the executive branch—of achieving a proven and effective enforcement process and a legal immigration system that ensures safe and effective admissions that benefit the United States as a whole.

The Heritage analysis comes after House and Senate Republicans are reportedly working on multiple amnesty bills for DACA illegal aliens, both of which will lead to floods of chain migration to the U.S., as Breitbart News reported.

Republicans in Congress seemingly ignored President Trump’s popular pro-American immigration priorities which include:

  • Construction of a border wall
  • Deporting unaccompanied alien children who are not at-risk in their native country
  • Preventing criminal illegal aliens and gang members from receiving immigration benefits
  • Mandating E-Verify, which weeds out illegal aliens from taking U.S. jobs
  • Eliminating the diversity visa lottery
  • Classifying overstaying a visa as a “misdemeanor”
  • Restricting certain federal grants to sanctuary cities that refuse to detain criminal illegal aliens
  • Ending family-based chain migration
  • Enacting a merit-based legal immigration where only qualified immigrants can enter the U.S.

Immigration reformers like Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR), has previously stated that Trump’s immigration priorities would need to be implemented before any deal on illegal immigrants is considered.

“Democrats have made clear that they desperately want a DACA legalization yet are unwilling to consider any reforms that truly benefit the American people and reflect the national interest,” Stein said. “Any DACA program will have an enormous and immediate downside, increasing pressure on our borders by those who wish to cash in on a legalization. The plans detailed in the administration’s agenda must be in place prior to any DACA negotiations, to ensure that DACA doesn’t ignite yet another crisis at the border.”

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.


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