Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., again described the United States current immigration system as “de facto amnesty” today, a refrain that has become popular among pro-amnesty Republicans.
National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council President Chris Crane, the leader of the nation’s largest immigration enforcement officer union, has responded with a letter, addressed to Rubio, claiming that the immigration legislation Rubio is currently supporting, S. 744, would do nothing to solve the problem.
From the letter:
Millions of dollars have been spent on television advertisements which feature you and call on Americans to support your bill to end the nation’s practice of de facto amnesty. Yet your bill does nothing to end de facto amnesty, and only guarantees that it will continue.
De facto amnesty is a failure to enforce the nation’s immigration laws on the interior of the United States. It is not a border issue. … 40 percent of all illegal immigrants currently in the United States did not illegally cross the border, but instead entered legally with a visa and didn’t leave when it expired. The 40,000 border patrol agents provided in your legislation will never come in contact with these individuals as they never attempted illegal entry into the United States.
5,000 ICE immigration officers spread across 50 states, Guam and Puerto Rico, currently attempt to enforce U.S. immigration laws on the interior of the United States. … The number of additional ICE Immigration officers provided by your legislation to perform interior enforcement to stop de facto amnesty is zero.
Every foreign national in the United States, either legally or illegally present, not just visa overstays, is the responsibility of ICE to police. That number currently stands at 40 million. The family unification provisions in your legislation are estimated to increase that number to 70 million. 5,000 ICE officers will attempt to police 70 million foreign nationals spread across the entire nation. The task you ask of us is impossible. Enforcement will not happen in the future as it doesn’t now, ensuring the United States maintains the status quo of de facto amnesty.
Like the IRS, U.S. State Department, and Department of Justice, political appointees at INS, ICE, and DHA have carried out their own political agendas by abusing discretionary authorities. … Instead of reducing the discretionary authority of political appointees at ICE and DHS to end these abuses and stop de facto amnesty, your legislation increases their discretion thereby guaranteeing it will continue.
This bill will not end de facto amnesty. In fact, it will not address the majority of problems facing our broken immigration system. It will tie the hands of officers even more and will prevent effective enforcement of out nation’s laws – ensuring future illegal immigration and de facto amnesty.