By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Friday President Obama announced that he was ordering that U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to stop deporting illegal aliens under that age of 30. The President announced that undocumented workers with a high school diploma or GED, no criminal record, who have been in the country at least five years, who testify that they were brought here by their parents could remain in the country for two years. The President promised work visas for those young immigrants.
Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard (R) from Auburn made a statement late Friday in response to President Obama’s decision. Speaker Hubbard said, “It doesn’t surprise me that the most liberal president in history is refusing to enforce our nation’s immigration laws. In Alabama we are working to shut off the magnet that is drawing illegal immigrants to this state and nation, and President Obama just made that magnet much stronger.”
The Speaker continued, “This action simply encourages more immigrants to break the law and enter this country illegally instead of playing by the rules. There is no limit to how reckless and irresponsible this president is willing to be if there’s a chance he can win some votes. We need serious immigration reform at the national level, but the president is more interested in playing politics.”
“States truly are the last line of defense to protect the people and their rights from the liberal policies of President Obama and the Democrats,” the Speaker of the Alabama House of Representatives said.
Critics of the President’s plan including U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions (R) from Alabama said that the President’s criteria made the deportation process unenforceable. Many illegal aliens do not have documentation so knowing whether they are 29 or 39 is impossible and since they entered the country illegally most do not have any record of when they entered the country.
If an immigrant crossed the border tomorrow, was later captured by ICE, he could claim that he had been here for five years and met the other terms. The government would then have to prove that he did not meet the qualifications a procedure that could slow the whole deportation process down by months leading to thousands of people filling ICE detention facilities. The more that ICE detention facilities are filled with migrants awaiting hearings, the fewer illegals that ICE can detain from lack of space to house them. Thousands of illegal aliens are arrested by local law enforcement every year already on other crimes, but are turned loose because ICE does not have the resources to transport nd house all of them.
Under Speaker Hubbard’s tenure as Speaker of the Alabama House, the Alabama legislature passed the Beason-Hammon Alabama Citizen and Taxpayer Protection Act (HB56) which is the strictest state anti-illegal immigration law in the country. President Obama has sued the state of Alabama to keep the state from enforcing the law arguing that the President and the President alone is the ultimate authority in the area of immigration. The case is currently on hold in the Federal 11th Circuit Court of Appeals while the court waits for guidance from the Supreme Court on a similar law in Arizona.
Speaker Hubbard is currently on a book tour across the state promoting his book, ‘Storming the State House.’ The book tells the story of how Rep. Hubbard, then also Chairman of the Alabama Republican Party successfully led an effort by Republicans to wrest control of both houses of the Alabama legislature from Democrat control for the first time in 136 years during the election of 2010.