According to a report on the NumbersUSA website, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has agreed to comply with a ruling by a District Court that abolished the significantly limited priorities for Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The DHS made the following statement:
“While the Department strongly disagrees with the Southern District of Texas’s court decision to vacate the Guidelines, DHS will abide by the court’s order as it continues to appeal it.”
The statement further added that during this appeals process, ICE agents and officers would be making enforcement decisions case-by-case, professionally and responsibly, with reference to their experience as law enforcement officials. Another factor cited by the DHS to be considered by its officers in making arrests was to do so “in a way that best protects against the greatest threats to the homeland.”
NumbersUSA is a leading nonpartisan immigration-reduction advocacy group founded by Roy Beck in response to two national commissions on immigration issues. One was a bipartisan congressional commission chaired by former Rep. Barbara Jordan, and another was a commission created under presidential authority and chaired by former Sen. Tim Wirth. Both commissions found that reducing immigration numbers towards their historical average was in the best interest of the United States and its authorized residents.
Judge Drew Tipton, from the Southern District of Texas, issued an order earlier this month that nullified the memo put forth by DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas substantially limiting which illegal aliens were subject to arrest and deportation by ICE. Additionally, Tipton issued a stay on his order with a duration of seven days that expired when the Biden Administration started its appeals process.
The NumbersUSA article cited reporting from Fox News that the September memo solidified temporary guidance which had been given in February of 2021, and resulted in limiting agents to making a priority of recent border crossers, threats to national security and those who had committed certain “aggravated” felonies.
In the September memo, DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas stated the following:
“The fact an individual is a removable noncitizen therefore should not alone be the basis of an enforcement action against them. We will use our discretion and focus our enforcement resources in a more targeted way. Justice and our country’s well-being require it.”
Subsequent to the release of the memo, NumbersUSA reported, both arrests and deportations of criminal illegal aliens have plummeted. For FY2021, ICE arrested 74,082 aliens and deported 59,011. For that period, only 47,755 arrests occurred after February 18, the time when implementation of the new priorities took place. Moreover, only 28,677 of the total deportations happened after February 18.
For further context, in FY2020 103,603 arrests and 185,884 deportations occurred. In FY2019 there were 143,099 arrests and 267,258 departures.
Roy Beck, who worked as a journalist covering politics in DC before becoming a policy analyst specializing in immigration and U.S. population issues, founded NumbersUSA to encourage government policies that benefit society by enabling the government to choose the optimal number of authorized immigrants to enter the country. NumbersUSA has more than eight million participants including conservatives, liberals and moderates. Its members are encouraged to lobby public officials to reduce immigration numbers toward traditional levels in order to help current and future generations enjoy a standard of living that isn’t diminished by excessive immigration.
Judge Tipton made the point in his ruling that by broadly limiting ICE arrests and deportations, the government “offers an implausible construction of federal law that flies in the face of the limitations imposed by Congress.” The judge further stated the following:
“True, the Executive Branch has case-by-case discretion to abandon immigration enforcement as to a particular individual. This case, however, does not involve individualized decision making. Instead, this case is about a rule that binds Department of Homeland Security officials in a generalized, prospective manner–all in contravention of Congress’s detention mandate.”
In its article addressing the subject, Fox news concludes as follows: “the DHS memo itself now has a statement attached to it: ‘On June 10, 2022, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas issued a final judgment vacating Secretary Mayorkas’s September 30, 2021 memorandum Guidelines for the Enforcement of Civil Immigration Law. Accordingly until further notice, ICE will not apply or rely upon the Mayorkas Memorandum in any manner.'”