News & Politics

DoJ Rescinds 'Zero-Tolerance' Policy for Illegal Immigration

(AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

In his eagerness to overturn every Donald Trump policy within reach, Joe Biden is substantially changing some valuable policies.

The “zero-tolerance” policy relating to illegal immigrants is a good example. It was a deterrent to illegal immigration in that it left no doubt in any illegal’s mind that they would be sent home if caught. It’s hard to prove how many people didn’t cross the border because of it, but it clearly had an effect.

The policy was referred to as “cruel” by open-border advocates, but the fact is, the United States has a fundamental, universally-recognized right to safeguard its border. And forcing everyone who enters the United States to do it legally is as fundamental as it gets.

Prosecuting those who break the law is a no-brainer. If you think the law is unfair, change it. But when you can prove your moral superiority by declaiming against “heartless” immigration enforcement, it becomes a matter of politics — not security.

Associated Press:

“Consistent with this longstanding principle of making individualized assessments in criminal cases, I am rescinding — effective immediately — the policy directive,” Wilkinson wrote.

Wilkinson said the department’s principles have “long emphasized that decisions about bringing criminal charges should involve not only a determination that a federal offense has been committed and that the admissible evidence will probably be sufficient to obtain and sustain a conviction, but should also take into account other individualized factors, including personal circumstances and criminal history, the seriousness of the offense, and the probable sentence or other consequences that would result from a conviction.”

Let’s examine that statement: Has a federal offense been committed and is there admissible evidence? It’s a federal crime to enter the United States illegally and the “admissible evidence” is the illegal alien’s presence in a country that he entered illegally.

“Personal circumstances. criminal history, the seriousness of the offense, and the probable sentence or other consequences that would result from a conviction” all relate to the fundamental tenet of security. The most lenient sentence should be for the illegal alien criminal to be allowed to go back to his country of origin and apply for entry into America legally. If other circumstances apply, have the illegal alien claim refugee status and look to be accepted legally into the country that way.

Open-border advocates talk as if there are no other options than sneaking into the country illegally. It’s a bogus argument and shows how unserious they are about the law and security.

While the rescinding of “zero tolerance” is in part symbolic, it undoes the Trump administration’s massively unpopular policy responsible for the separation of more than 5,500 children from their parents at the U.S-Mexico border. Most families have not been prosecuted under zero tolerance since 2018, when the separations were halted, though separations have continued on a smaller scale. Practically, the ending of the policy will affect mostly single men who have entered the country illegally. Prosecutions had dropped sharply after the Trump administration declared a pandemic-related health emergency that allows them to immediately expel Mexicans and many Central Americans without applying immigration laws.

The “family separation” policy will go down in history as the most deliberately misrepresented policy in history. The alternative — the one that open-border advocates wanted — was to let the parents and children enter the country with no strings attached except a piece of paper telling them when their court date was going to be — usually 3-5 years from the date of their illegal entry.

Whose fault was “family separation”? Weren’t the parents at fault for knowingly trying to bring their families into the United States illegally? How can we absolve the parents of all responsibility for their own actions? It is illegal to enter the United States without being minimally vetted and obtaining the proper documentation — just like it’s illegal to enter Mexico or Guatemala or Honduras, or any other country where these illegals come from without the proper clearances.

If you don’t like the system — and I agree it’s truly screwed up — work to change it legally. And that includes enforcing the laws on the books against illegal entry into the U.S.

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