House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and Senate Judiciary Committee Ranking Member Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) today sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano expressing concern about the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recent decision to put several deportation cases on hold in light of the administration's backdoor amnesty directives. The letter urges both Attorney General Holder and Secretary Napolitano to make clear to the Court that the administration will enforce immigration laws, including the deportation of removable illegal and criminal immigrants who lose their cases in the federal court of appeals.
Below are excerpts from the letter.
"The Ninth Circuit's decision to put several deportation cases on hold is an overreach of judicial authority and shows the inherent danger in this administration's backdoor amnesty policies. Instead of deciding these cases under the law of the land, the Ninth Circuit has asked the Obama administration whether it intends to grant the illegal immigrants amnesty under the prosecutorial discretion initiative announced last year.
"The orders appear to be the court's attempt to suspend its everyday review of immigration cases due to the administration's plans to close tens of thousands of cases for the 300,000 aliens who are in removal proceedings. The Ninth Circuit has acted beyond the bounds of its judicial role and is inserting itself into an area -- prosecutorial discretion - reserved solely to the executive branch.
"In responding to the Ninth Circuit's question, the administration will be required to reveal whether it intends to manipulate our legal system and waste taxpayer dollars, as part of it efforts to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants. Your response to the Ninth Circuit's order must clearly and unequivocally indicate that the government will enforce the immigration laws, including promptly deporting all removable aliens who lose their cases in the federal courts of appeals.
"If the administration responds to the Ninth Circuit orders by indicating that the illegal and other removable aliens will be granted relief via amnesty, then it must explain to the American people what that answer means for the integrity of our legal system and why their tax dollars are being spent on prosecutions that the Obama administration has no intention of enforcing with deportation.
"We are seriously concerned that the Ninth Circuit's order ignores the rule of law and confounds constitutional principles, and we would like to know who how you plan to respond to the Court's actions."