I'm infuriated to learn that the Obama administration is deliberately disobeying the law of the land by taking steps to halt the deportation of certain categories of illegal immigrants. The Washington Times reports:
Bowing to pressure from immigrant rights activists, the Obama administration said Thursday that it will halt deportation proceedings on a case-by-case basis against illegal immigrants who meet certain criteria, such as attending school, having family in the military or having primary responsible for other family members’ care.
The move marks a major step for President Obama, who for months has said he does not have broad categorical authority to halt deportations and said he must follow the laws as Congress has written them.
But in letters to Congress on Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said she does have discretion to focus on “priorities” and that her department and the Justice Department will review all ongoing cases to see who meets the new criteria.
. . .
The move won immediate praise from Hispanic activists and Democrats who had strenuously argued with the administration that it did have authority to take these actions, and said as long as Congress is deadlocked on the issue, it was up to Mr. Obama to act.
“Today’s announcement shows that this president is willing to put muscle behind his words and to use his power to intervene when the lives of good people are being ruined by bad laws,” said Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez, Illinois Democrat, who has taken a leadership role on the issue since the death of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy in 2009.
The new rules apply to those who have been apprehended and are in deportation proceedings, but have not been officially ordered out of the country by a judge.
Ms. Napolitano said a working group will try to come up with “guidance on how to provide for appropriate discretionary consideration” for “compelling cases” in instances where someone already has been ordered deported.
. . .
The top House Republican on the Judiciary Committee said the move is part of a White House plan “to grant backdoor amnesty to illegal immigrants.”
“The Obama administration should enforce immigration laws, not look for ways to ignore them,” said Rep. Lamar Smith, Texas Republican. “The Obama administration should not pick and choose which laws to enforce. Administration officials should remember the oath of office they took to uphold the Constitution and the laws of the land.”
There's more at the link. Bold print is my emphasis.
I couldn't agree more with Rep. Smith. I took the oath of office as a Federal law enforcement official when working for the Bureau of Prisons as a chaplain. I guess the difference between me and those implementing this new immigration policy is that I meant it when I swore that oath. Clearly, they didn't . . .
Just what the hell is happening to this country when duly elected and/or appointed officials, who've sworn to uphold and obey the Constitution and laws of the United States, are allowed to ignore their oath of office and 'reinterpret' those laws at their whim and pleasure? Are we a nation of laws, or are we now no more than a banana republic? Is President Obama following the example of President Chavez of Venezuela, who rides roughshod over his country's laws by simply ignoring them?
Why are the Federal law enforcement officers affected by this new policy not resigning en masse in protest at being required to violate their oath of office in this way? Are they so bereft of honor that violating their oath no longer matters to them?