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Obama Adminstration Halts Some Deportations

Obama Adminstration Halts Some Deportations


In another push to get Congress to pass some kind of comprehensive immigration reform, the Obama administration announced it will stop deporting students and other unauthorized immigrants who do not pose a public safety threat and allow them to work in the country legally.

As part of this policy change, a new federal group will review the 300,000 backlogged deportation cases with an eye toward prosecuting criminals and similar high-priority cases. But for those cases involving upstanding high school and college students who were brought here illegally, military veterans and adults with no criminal record and strong family ties to the US, federal officials will effectively close those cases.

It’s about time.

Critics were quick to jump on the announcement as “administrative amnesty” or “backdoor amnesty,” while most Democrats applauded the measure.

The policy only affects those who have already been placed into deportation proceedings. And those immigrants who are deemed a low priority are not free from prosecution. Immigration officials will simply close their file but have the ability to reopen the case and continue with proceedings at any time.

Administration officials hope the case-by-case review will save time and resources by allowing immigration authorities to focus first and foremost on the most dangerous in their custody.

It is too soon to tell the immediate impact of the policy change, but at least on the surface this represents a big change in direction and is a good reminder that DREAM Act legislation would have passed this Congress, had Republicans shown enough statesmanship to put it up for a vote.

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Photo from barnaby via flickr.

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2:51AM PDT on Oct 27, 2012

Thank you.

2:50AM PDT on Oct 27, 2012

Thank you.

3:46PM PDT on Oct 29, 2011

This is a great step. It's been a long time coming. This makes me really happy, and anyone with a heart should be happy too. All you cold-hearted cynics can just shut it.

7:14PM PDT on Sep 4, 2011

Anyone here illegally should be deported ASAP! They do not belong here. They are breaking our laws. So why are they being rewarded with free housing and food stamps. We have American citizens who get less help than they do. This is soooo wrong!!

12:04PM PDT on Aug 27, 2011

I think that this reform is good. Children especially who were born here even though their parents are illegal, it's not their fault. They don't know any country except the US and ther is no reason they can't be good citizens

9:11AM PDT on Aug 24, 2011

Undocumented immigrants have been "invited" here by US employers. Undocumented immigrants have largely been productive, contributing citizens. Some people who fall under undocumented immigrant status have been in the US for decades...they are parents, grandparents, of US citizens. Undocumented immigrants have given to our country in so many ways, and I think it's time to give them justice for there contributions. I know you will say, John, that "justice" means punishment, deportation, etc. We disagree, and both hold our opinions, obviously so strongly and deeply, that all we can do is agree that we profoundly disagree. Time will take this issue one way or the other, and both of us will have to live with wherever it takes it.

7:49AM PDT on Aug 24, 2011

Miranda what do you don't get illegal means illegal and by letting them stay here or say well there paying into the system you are rewarding them for breaking the law . What we need to do if your going to turn your back on this law let's throw out all laws in the u.s. .

6:48AM PDT on Aug 24, 2011

(continuing...part 2 to comment below)

...would be a start. The vast majority of illegal immigrants are decent, moral, hard-working people. They are your neighbors.

6:45AM PDT on Aug 24, 2011

The whole "anchor babies" business is pretty much nonsense, more right-wing calculated stirring up of anti-immigrant hysteria. Any realistic solutions to the "problem" of illegal immigration must include the historical and cultural realities at work...the many people who have been here for years, decades, and who do pay taxes...local and state sales taxes, and in many cases income taxes as well as Social Security and Medicare taxes for services which they may very well never to able to receive. Do you know that it is possible to call the IRS and tell them you don't have a Social Security number and would like to have an IRS ID number to use to pay your income taxes? If that isn't a wink-wink-look-the-other-way and take the money and run behavior on the part of our government, I don't know else you can call it. Illegal immigrants support the US economy, support US business with their labor, while having no rights and no standing whatsoever. I live in a part of the country where people have border crossed back and forth for generations, in many cases working here for a season for the same American employers for many, many years. It has been a functional part of the culture. Simple and just solutions exist...beginning with the sane recognition that it is not possible to deport millions of people. Aside from the inhumanity of it, this country does not have the financial resources for such a program. A combination of work visas and amnesty based on rational expectations w

6:34AM PDT on Aug 24, 2011

Mystical v no I wasn't kidding you round up every illegal and the anchore babies and you send them back to there country . I follow the law and I expect you and every American and all politicians to do the same or get the he'll out . Illegal means illegal and you don't reward illegal or law breakers you put them in jail .

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