The courts are well on their way to actually outlawing immigration laws, one of the most basic jobs of the federal government.
No, I’m not kidding. The courts are in the process of making amnesty the law of the land and laws regulating immigration unconstitutional. Immigration enforcement is now declared unlawful by the courts; sanctuary cities are above the law and even required by the unelected courts. And it appears that the Trump administration is legitimizing these acts of judicial lawlessness from puffed-up district judges rather than following the Constitution.
Late last week, in two separate district courts, radical leftist judges engaged in civil disobedience against our national sovereignty and violated the separation of powers. Again.
New York judge deems DACA standing law
New York District Judge Nicholas Garaufis threatened to force a delay of the Trump administration’s phase-out of Obama’s illegal amnesty in order to give Congress time to pass legislative amnesty.
In a Thursday hearing over a lawsuit brought by an illegal alien demanding the renewal of his amnesty “DACA” card, a case that should never have had any standing in court, Judge Garaufis seemed very sympathetic to the side of illegal aliens in general. But in this particular hearing, he entertained arguments from plaintiffs that because of the hurricanes in Texas and Florida, some of the illegal aliens whom Trump is allowing to renew their DACA status by October 5 will not be able to submit their applications in time. Thus, the judge is treating a patently illegal program as if it is legitimate law and as if the Trump administration must adhere to Obama’s self-made “law” instead of long-standing legitimate, Congress-passed statutes.
Here is the kicker, from Reuters:
At a hearing in a federal court in Brooklyn on Thursday, U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis said the administration’s “arbitrary” deadline is destructive, and extending it would give Congress time for a legislative solution.
“No one will be harmed by extending this deadline,” Garaufis said, “especially the 800,000 people who are sweating about whether someone is going to come knocking on their door and send them back to a country that they don’t even know and where they don’t speak the language.”
This is simply incredible. Even putting aside the fallacious political arguments that these people don’t know any other country or language, why is a judge making any political arguments? And how can a judge demand an extension of a deadline for an unconstitutional amnesty program that violates immigration law? Even if one believes a president has the broad discretion not to deport some people, a subsequent president certainly has the discretion to follow the letter of the law and deport them and most certainly to suspend their positive benefits from the previous president.
Imagine a scenario where President Trump, after expressing frustration with Congress on tax reform, decided to unilaterally direct the Treasury Department to withhold 10 percent less in taxes from American workers. Now, suspend your disbelief and indulge the impossible outcome of Democrats going along with this lawless act for the remainder of his presidency. Then, after Trump’s term, President Elizabeth Warren continues the program — let’s call it “deferred action for taxed Americans” (DATA) — for seven months and even allows taxpayers to renew their DATA status for another month thereafter. Could you imagine a judge threatening the president that he will extend the deadline to keep a patently unconstitutional tax amnesty program unless a Democrat president does so administratively?
Courtrooms have now become forums for district judges to unilaterally debate purely political issues. And they have been afforded exclusive and final power over anything the other branches or the states do, even when the Constitution and statute are incontrovertibly opposed. Democrats have successfully codified their political arguments on immigration into contemporary jurisprudence. Rather than immediately suspending all of Obama’s amnesty, the Trump administration is now actively considering extending the deadline for additional illegal renewals yet again in order to comply with the capricious whims of a lawless judge.
Rather than equivocating over Obama’s amnesty, he should have declared it unconstitutional and terminated it unconditionally from day one. His continued diffidence on the issue will only invite more liberal judges to expand their tentacles into an issue that doesn’t belong to them.
Sanctuary cities are now the law of the land
We’ve warned about courts mandating sanctuary city policies, blocking federal immigration authorities from issuing detainers, and preventing states like Texas from clamping down on sanctuary cities. On Friday, a district judge in Chicago ruled that Attorney General Sessions could not cut off law enforcement grants to sanctuary jurisdictions pending the outcome of a lawsuit brought by the crime-ridden Windy City. U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber, a Reagan appointee, issued a preliminary injunction against the Department of Justice policy of cutting off law enforcement grants to cities that refuse to cooperate with ICE detainers. Previously, leftist judges have said that DOJ could not deny non-law enforcement grants to sanctuary jurisdictions. Now they are taking it a step further and creating an inalienable right to federal funds even for the very programs that were designed to ensure that illegal aliens don’t benefit from taxpayer funds.
Last month, a Texas judge blocked the state from fighting back against sanctuary cities; now the judiciary is hampering the federal government from doing so.
Worse, the judge continued the erroneous practice of issuing a nationwide injunction outside his own case. This is what has made the judiciary an ad hoc veto on the other branches, rather than a co-equal branch. This is the ruin of our system of governance.
We have a judicial crisis that not even the most concerned judicial skeptics of the last generation could ever have envisioned. Yet there is complete silence from Republicans. Israel is experiencing the same problems with courts that give rights to illegal immigrants, but at least there, it has become a national issue. In our country, few people aside from yours truly have even covered this problem.
Much attention went to comments from now-retired Judge Richard Posner that he paid “very little attention to legal rules, statutes, constitutional provisions.” But even many conservative legal eagles who express outrage at Posner’s sentiments refuse to recognize that these are the undocumented views of more than half of the federal bench, including many GOP appointees. At least Posner is honest about it — now that he’s retired.
Unless we have a national debate over the role of the courts in our constitutional system as a co-equal branch, not a supremacist branch, there is no point to pursuing our agenda politically. The Constitution is all but dead, with immigration laws buried six feet under.
Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.