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California Attorney General Xavier Becerra. (Photo: Katy Grimes for California Globe)

California AG Becerra Wants Fast-Track Deportations Overruled

No one is above the law — except illegal immigrants?

By Katy Grimes, September 24, 2019 10:01 am

The Trump Administration issued a new rule in July that expands the use of expedited removal of illegal aliens in the United States.

“The Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security (“DOJ,” “DHS,” or collectively, “the Departments”) are adopting an interim final rule (“interim rule” or “rule”) governing asylum claims in the context of aliens who enter or attempt to enter the United States across the southern land border after failing to apply for protection from persecution or torture while in a third country through which they transited en route to the United States,” the Federal Register reports.

Under the new rule, U.S. Department of Homeland Security immigration officers are allowed to quickly and efficiently remove recent illegal entrants without the need to further clog up the docket of the immigration courts, which are tottering on the verge of collapse from overload, the Center for Immigration Studies said.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said this authorizes DHS “to deport illegal aliens living anywhere in the United States without the due process protections afforded in normal removal proceedings, such as the right to an attorney or a hearing before a judge.”

Becerra said the Trump administration’s policy is just another attempt, “to bully vulnerable immigrant families.”

Several attorneys general, including Becerra, sent a letter Monday “urging” the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to rescind the rule. “In a comment letter, the attorneys general urge the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to rescind the rule, which was issued without advance notice or opportunity for public comment,” Becerra said.

Except the Federal Register summary of this rule does offer a time period for public comment:

Submission of public comments: Written or electronic comments must be submitted on or before August 15, 2019. Written comments postmarked on or before that date will be considered timely. The electronic Federal Docket Management System will accept comments prior to midnight eastern standard time at the end of that day.”

“This rule is another Trump Administration attempt to bully vulnerable immigrant families,” said Attorney General Becerra in a press statement.“Today, 19 states and the District of Columbia are calling on Acting Secretary McAleenan to rescind it. The rule allows line-level immigration officers to kick people out of the country on the spot from anywhere in the United States, with virtually no oversight or review. It is reckless, dangerous, and risks the deportation of lawful residents and legitimate asylum-seekers, who, by law, should be exempt. We’re going to continue to stand with our partners around the country in defense of hard-working immigrants.”

Congress, since 2017, has failed to act to plug the loopholes that are being exploited by coyotes and smugglers, and migrants.

“The massive increase in aliens claiming credible fear, coupled with the low asylum-grant rate for aliens who have received a positive credible-fear finding (and in particular the large number of aliens who fail to appear for court or file an asylum application after a positive credible-fear finding) suggests that many, if not most of the aliens who enter the United States illegally to claim credible fear are really economic migrants,” CIS reports.

The Fourteenth Amendment addresses many aspects of citizenship and the rights of citizens, including due process. Notably, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote, “the Fourteenth Amendment’s Due Process Clause is not a secret repository of substantive guarantees against unfairness.”

In 2004, the federal government extended the use of expedited removal to include undocumented individuals who were apprehended within 14 days of arrival in the United States by land and within 100 miles of any land border.

The Supreme Court has been consistent over the years on illegal aliens’ limited immigration due process rights, saying it isn’t within the responsibility of the courts to approve or order the admission of foreigners who have no formal, legal connection to the United States.

Becerra said, “Lawful residents, U.S. citizens, asylees, or other individuals with legal protections that enable them to remain in the country could be, and have been, mistakenly subjected to deportation.”

Becerra has filed 60 lawsuits against the President and his administration.

The attorneys general of Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, and the District of Columbia, joined AG Becerra in his letter.

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