Stupid, dumb, insane, dangerous. These are all words that apply to US immigration policy for who knows how long. Whoever came up with the immigration lottery system combined with chain migration must have been on one of the drugs we see flooding over our borders now causing our current opioid crisis. They did not have the best interests of the United States of America in mind.
To chain migration and the lottery, we add the infamous “anchor baby” provision in immigration law. This provision says any person born on US soil is automatically a citizen. The result has been pregnant women who are not citizens make great effort to give birth to a baby while in the United States. The mother may have been pregnant when crossing the US border illegally or may have been an illegal alien already in the country. Then what happens: chain migration makes the parents permanent legal residents and along come many others who are related.
Now we are faced with what to do with the 800,000 illegal immigrants in the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) program illegally initiated by President Barack Obama. Obama simply decreed in 2012 anyone in DACA would be allowed to stay in the USA and not be subject to deportation. Obama publicly stated he did not need Congress to take this action. He could do this with the stroke of his pen although he, a self-proclaimed Constitutional lawyer, knew full well his action was illegal. Congress only has the authority to make immigration law. Obama acted like a dictator or king; something he was used to doing too often.
And who are these DACA folks: any individual having come to the United States or who over stayed a visa illegally prior to turning age 16. The individual also had to be in or have completed school, and could not have a criminal record. DACA protection allowed recipients to lawfully hold a job or purchase a home. They could attend college or join the military. They could do all of these things without the threat of deportation. Over 600,000 DACA recipients are from Mexico, the remainder being mostly from Central and South America.
The undeniable problem with the DACA program is that it is illegal. Obama violated immigration law by executive order. It should never have existed in the first place. President Trump refused to illegally continue the program beyond extending it for six months. He passed the responsibility for any change in immigration law for DACA individuals back to Congress where it should have been in the first place.
There is now a huge problem: what to do with 800,000 or more illegal aliens. No one is proposing all 800,000 with their parents be deported. Few are proposing total amnesty for all either. It is likely Congress will adopt something in between.
I propose a pathway to citizenship for those who have completed or who are in post high school education (college or technical school) and graduate or have a productive job or who have served in the military. Deport all who are on public assistance programs along with their illegal resident parents. The USA keeps the best and deports those who are a drag on taxpayers. And…. no chain migration allowed except for the parents and siblings of those who qualify for the citizenship pathway.
This plan, which is a compromise, must be tightly linked to the ending of the anchor baby provision, the ending of chain migration, the ending of the immigration lottery AND the full funding of the southern border WALL. Our country must gain total control of its southern border to prevent illegal immigration and stem the flow of illicit drugs into our country. Those drugs are killing us and we must know who is seeking entry into the United States. As citizens, we have been incredibly naive and negligent too long. It is long past time to drastically reduce annual immigration numbers and put what immigration is allowed onto a merit based system.