by: the Common Constitutionalist
Late last summer 10 Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents filed a federal lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
What did the lawsuit pertain to, you may ask? Might it have been a workplace incident such as sexual harassment? Maybe they filed suit over unsafe working conditions or unfair advancement procedures. No? ICE works with illegal aliens and border security. It must be that they’re being forced to be too hard on and are trampling on the rights of undocumented would-be citizens. That’s not it either?
Simply put, the suit the agents filed against the DHS and the Obama administration is to just maintain their right to uphold the law.
If you recall, last summer, when Obama realized that the “Dream Act” legislation would fail to pass proper legislative muster, he simply did what any right-thinking monarch would do; write an executive order preventing the arrest and deportation of illegals under 30 years of age. It was amnesty by dictatorial Fiat and in practice would extend to all illegals other than violent offenders.
The ICE agents union president, Chris Crane, contends correctly, that the decree prevents agents from fulfilling their sworn oath to uphold the law and defend the United States Constitution; upholding laws such as the one passed in 1996 and signed by our first black president Bill Clinton, making it mandatory that all illegal aliens be deported.
Crane said, “The president’s Directive instructs ICE agents to refrain from placing certain aliens who are unlawfully present in the United States into removal procedures. The Directive further instructs officers to take actions to facilitate the granting of deferred action to aliens who are unlawfully present in the United States. It also directs DHS personnel to grant employment authorization to certain beneficiaries of the Directive.”
Mr. Crane further explains, “The directive commands our agents to violate federal law and our oaths to uphold federal law. We are federal law enforcement officers who are being ordered to break the law. This directive puts ICE agents and officers in a horrible position. This administration has engaged in a sustained, relentless effort to undermine America’s immigration laws.” Chris Crane knows of what he speaks, for he is not only the union president but also a veteran ICE agent. He has been on the front lines.
Former police commander David Scher added, “Sec. of Homeland security Janet Napolitano and her underlings want their agents and officers to just take the word of an illegal alien without verifying his or her statement. It is as ridiculous as releasing a suspected bank robber who states he didn’t commit the robbery without any verification by police officers.”
“The Directive is an extension of the DREAM act, which repeatedly failed to pass through Congress, and aims to grant an amnesty to 1.7 million illegal aliens,” said Chris Kobach, the attorney for the plaintiffs. “It violates federal immigration laws that require certain aliens to be placed in removal proceedings, it violates the Administration Procedure Act, and it encroaches upon the legislative powers of Congress as defined in Article I of the United States Constitution.”
Encroaches? It stomps all over the constitutionally mandated authority of the Congress to pass laws.
“Any threat of harm to our nation’s immigration officers for enforcing the law is a threat against the livelihoods of average American workers,” said Roy Beck of NumbersUSA. “Congress passes laws to determine how many and which citizens of other countries are allowed to enter U.S. job markets to compete with American workers. Fortunately during this long period of high unemployment, Congress has refused to add further competition through amnesties that would give millions of illegal aliens access to the legal U.S. job market. The Napolitano amnesty directive does the opposite. If immigration agents are not allowed to enforce the laws as decided by Congress, the wages and jobs of American workers are at risk.”
In my humble opinion, this is where we on the right get hung up. As with every issue, the left deals and pure emotion and we allow it. We permit the argument to be driven by the left and their emotional response to everything. They set the tone of the discussion and the right falls dutifully on the defensive.
Rather, the right or true constitutional conservatives must reject the premise and merely insist on upholding the guiding principles of this country.
It simply doesn’t matter whether the dictate is considered fair to workers and their jobs. The Constitution is quite clear on who makes the law and who simply signs it. Congress makes the law and the president is duty bound to uphold and forced the law, period. If they don’t like it, they may attempt to amend the Constitution, which is been done many times. This is what should be argued, and only this. Everything else is just window dressing.
After many months there is an update to this story. Recently, federal District Court Judge Reed O’Connor ruled that the 10 agents and officers have standing to challenge Obama’s “Dream” decree in federal court.
There is something seriously wrong when federal agents have to go to court for the right to do their jobs and demand that they not be ordered to violate federal law.
With any luck, and strict constructionist judges, the agents will win the day.