In a key move for the November elections, and a very smart move at that, on the 30th anniversary of the Supreme Court judgment recognizing entitlement of public education to children of illegal immigrant parents, President Obama announced that he was stopping deportation of the children of illegal immigrants for two years. The move would affect close to 800,000 people and prevent their immediate deportation. Talking to his detractors, the President said “Let’s be clear, this is not amnesty, this is not immunity, this is not a path to citizenship, this is not a permanent fix … This is the right thing to do.”
The order bypasses the Congress and works partly towards achieving the objectives of the DREAM Act, which intends to open the path for citizenship to young people who came illegally to U.S. but are in college or in the military. The administrative order stipulates that it would affect only those illegal immigrants who:
- Came into U.S. before the age of 16 years
- Are still younger than 30 years
- Have been in the country for at least 5 years
- Have no criminal history
- Have graduated from a U.S. high school/GED
- Served in the military
Allowing an effective green card, the order makes it legal for people who meet the standards to apply for a work permit that would be good for the next two years with no limits on the number of renewals.
The move spells out solidly for these almost 800,000 people that their dream for U.S. citizenship can become real if the present government stays in power. Coupled with moves by the DOJ across the country to block voter screening procedures by state governments, the election strategy becomes clearer. These people would be moving those within their social circles who are eligible to vote to re-elect the government, not for exercising franchisee, but for survival. At least in Colorado, Nevada and Florida, as also other border states, this is going to gain an army of fanatic followers pushing the Obama administration mandates to ensure their own continued existence.
Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas said “President Obama and his administration once again have put partisan politics and illegal immigrants ahead of the rule of law and the American people.”
However, the President said that such people “are Americans in their hearts and minds; in every single way but one – on paper.”
November looming closer helped the President to realize that emotional truth, though his administration has faced criticism from Hispanic groups for deporting at least 400,000 illegal immigrants each year on an average.
Though Lamar Smith called the order “a breach of faith” and that it would have “horrible consequences” for unemployed Americans who are looking for jobs, and which allegation might be true, the order would also encourage illegal immigrants to register themselves and effectively shrink the black-market labor pool.