Immigration agents file lawsuit against Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano
Recent directives reportedly bending rules in favor of illegal immigrants
Ten federal immigration agents say that recent directives involving illegal immigrants are forcing them to break the law - and in response have filed lawsuits against Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. They claim the new directives let some illegal immigrants, such as non-felons as well as those who were brought to the U.S. as children to remain an obtain work permits.
Lead attorney on the case, Kris Kobach, inset, says that the new immigration directives is to allow thousands of illegal immigrants a reprieve to the failed Fast and Furious gun-walking operation.
ICE Director John Morton has also named been named as a defendant.
Lead attorney on the case, Kris Kobach says that the gesture is to allow thousands of illegal immigrants a reprieve to the failed Fast and Furious gun-walking operation.
"In both instances, the Obama administration ordered federal law enforcement agents to break the law, to ignore the laws that they're supposed to enforce, and, in the case of the ICE agents, to actually break federal laws that say you're supposed to deport certain people," he said. "And in each case, the Obama administration seems to be doing so for political reasons."
Kobach is also an adviser to Mitt Romney and a co-author of the Arizona illegal immigration law.
DHS spokesman Matt Chandler maintains that the current policy allows the department to focus on serious offenders, pointing out that ICE removed a record 216,000 criminal aliens in fiscal 2011.
"DHS uses prosecutorial discretion to assist in focusing vigorously on the removal of individuals who are convicted criminals, repeat immigration law violators, and recent border crossers," he said. "This policy is a temporary measure; Congress must still act to provide a permanent solution to fix the broken immigration system."
Napolitano defended the new rules during testimony last month before the House Judiciary Committee.
"These policies promote the efficient use of our resources ensuring that we do not divert them away from the removal of convicted criminals by pursuing the removal of young people who came to this country as children and who have called no other country home," she said.
The Supreme Court has recognized "prosecutorial discretion" in the enforcement of immigration law. In the recent case over the Arizona immigration law, the court defended the government's ability to make "some discretionary decisions."
The agents request a federal judge to block the directives in question, saying they amount to an end-run around Congress and violate the separation of powers between the Legislative and Executive branches.
Republican lawmakers have taken issue with the abrupt turnaround from the Obama administration.
"The Obama administration's amnesty program not only rewards lawbreakers, it also forces ICE agents to violate federal law. ICE agents should enforce our immigration laws and apprehend illegal immigrants. But the Obama administration makes it impossible for ICE agents to do their jobs," House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, said in a statement.
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Keywords: Janet Napolitano, immigration, born in U.S., illegals, lawsuit
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