President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden met in the Oval Office on Tuesday with three people who are in the country in violation of U.S. immigration laws but who have received “deferred action” allowing them to stay in the country under the terms of a “memorandum” issued unilaterally last year by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.
While conceding that she had no legal authority to change the “immigration status” of illegal aliens or provide them with a “pathway to citizenship,” Napolitano instructed the top officials at Customs and Border Protection, Citizenship and Immigration Services, and Immigration and Customs Enforcement to use what she called “prosecutorial discretion” in not enforcing the immigration laws against certain classes of immigration lawbreakers.
These included illegal aliens who arrived in the United States before their sixteenth birthday, had graduated from high school or served in the military, had not been convicted of “significant” or “multiple” misdemeanors, and had not yet turned thirty.
In all, Obama and Biden met on Tuesday with eight people who are advocating immigration reform, according to White House readout of the meeting. The White House readout listed three of those as having received “deferred action.” Most others were legally in the United States with relatives who were illegal aliens.
On Tuesday, the Senate Judiciary Committee sent an immigration bill to the full Senate. It includes what its supporters call a “pathway to citizenship,” and what its opponents call “amnesty.”
The White House listed the following people as having participated:
– “Angie Kim. Angie is a South Korean immigrant who resides in New York, New York; she received deferred action.”
– “Kevin Lee. Kevin is a South Korean immigrant who received deferred action. He currently resides in Los Angeles, California. Both of his parents are undocumented.”
– “Justino Mora. Justino received deferred action; he currently resides in Los Angeles, California.”
– “Diana Colin. Diana is a legal permanent resident who currently resides in Los Angeles, California. One of her brothers received deferred action.”
Bob Dane, spokesman for the Federation of Americans for Immigration Reform, said this shows disrespect for the law from the president who swore to uphold the laws of the United States.
“It’s staged to reinforce the one message that for this president is unambiguous–violating immigration laws now, in and of themselves, is just entirely inconsequential,” Dane told CNSNews.com.
“The laws will not be enforced, and the public just needs to get used to it. Illegal aliens are here. They’re proud. They’re not going anywhere, and they can sit and stand anywhere they want, including the United States Capitol and the White House, and this president will bend the laws to suit their circumstances, and his political needs, with no regard whatsoever for American workers and taxpayers,” he added.