In response to reports that the Obama Administration issued its first deportation reprieves under an ongoing review of approximately 300,000 illegal immigrants, Congressman Duncan Hunter reiterated his intention to introduce previously drafted legislation to help alleviate backlogged immigration cases. Hunter also said the decision to begin issuing reprieves shows a "blatant disregard for the law."
"Laws are meant to be followed and not ignored for convenience or political advantage," said Congressman Hunter. "If someone is in the U.S. illegally, then that person is subject to deportation under the law, plain and simple. What the Administration is doing is sending a loud message across our borders that we are not serious about enforcing our nation's immigration laws while backdoor channels remain wide open to millions of others.
"The decision to grant deportation reprieves is just another attempt to provide amnesty by circumventing Congress and ignoring the calls of the American people for stronger border security and workplace enforcement."
When the legislative session resumes in the coming weeks, Congressman Hunter will introduce the Immigration Backlog Reduction Act. The legislation, which was drafted before the Administration's announcement, would specifically:
Require that immigration officers order the immediate removal of an alien not continuously present in the U.S. for a period of four years, unless the alien has been charged with a crime, indicates an intention to apply for asylum or is determined to be a national security risk by the Secretary of Homeland Security;
Require that immigration officers, in cases where an alien indicates a desire to apply for asylum, refer the alien to an asylum officer only if it's determined that the alien has been physically present in the U.S. for less than one year;
Clarify and strengthen the authority of the Secretary of Homeland Security to order the expeditious removal of criminal aliens;
Limit the ability to grant stays of removal to aliens ordered removed.