In its rush to welcome over one million illegal immigrant youths from Latin America, the Obama administration turned a blind eye to criminal acts and eased rules governing legal entry, according to newly uncovered documents.
Emails, budgets and training manuals provided to the Immigration Reform Law Institute show, for example, that the controversial Obama program to defer deportation allowed them to stay if they held several documents, such as Social Security numbers and federal tax return checks, that are illegal for non-citizens to have.
What's more, the rules for winning Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, required that those seeking it had to prove they were in the country illegally as of June 15, 2012, cementing their status as illegal and subject to deportation.
The DACA program is coming in focus this fall as President Trump and Congress determine if it should continue as pro-immigration advocates want or be curtailed or even killed as critics and candidate Trump demanded.
Among the key issues involved are how many of the 1.267 million DACA recipients won their deportation deferrals under the Obama-era rules that allowed them to provide illegal documents such as fraudulent or stolen Social Security numbers for background checks.
According to the documents provided under a Freedom of Information Act filing to IRLI -- and shown to Secrets -- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services required legal documents from the illegals to prove that they had been in the United States.
They included: Money order receipts for cash sent in our out of the country; passport entries; birth certificates of children born in the U.S.; dated bank transactions; U.S. Social Security card; automobile licenses; non-U.S. authorized cards issued by Mexican consulates; deeds or mortgages; tax receipts; W-2s; federal tax returns.
The papers also showed that the agency had to devote hundreds of staffers, at a cost of some $42 million, just to handle the administration's immigration push.
"The documents we've obtained show just how low the bar was on DACA background-checks and how much in personnel the agency had to take on to process the flood of applications," said IRLI Executive Director Dave Wilcox.
"This is yet another pile of evidence showing how damaging the program has been and why it has to end," he told Secrets.
The upcoming review of DACA comes as the administration is stepping up deportation of criminal illegals and their associates who are also in the United States illegally.
Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org