What the DHS Secretary and the Obama Administration Just “Don’t Understand” about Immigration Enforcement

Jeh Johnson confirmed as DHS SecretaryDepartment of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson claims that the Obama Administration does enforce immigration law.  The reason people assert the Administration has failed is unknown to the man who leads the agency charged with immigration enforcement. On an interview airing yesterday on ABC News, Johnson claimed, “We are enforcing the law every day.”  He added, “I don’t understand those who say we are not enforcing the law.”

What’s not to understand?

The history of non-enforcement actions in the Obama Administration speaks for itself.  Since taking office in 2009, the Obama Administration has systematically gutted effective immigration enforcement policies, moved aggressively against state and local governments that attempt to enforce immigration laws, and stretched the concept of “prosecutorial discretion” to a point where it has rendered many immigration laws meaningless.  See President Obama’s Record of Dismantling Immigration Enforcement.

Then, at the urging of the open borders lobby, DHS in early 2011 began to implement formal measures to relax the enforcement of U.S. immigration laws through a series of memos issued by ICE Director John Morton.  Together, these memos constitute nothing less than the granting of administrative amnesty to hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens currently in the United States. See The Morton Memos.

As head of DHS, Secretary Johnson should ask all law enforcement officers in DHS about immigration, and actually listen to what they have to say.  The heads of the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Union have spoken out about the lack of enforcement at DHS:

  • The USCIS union president said the agency has become an “approval machine” whereby 99.5% of applicants are granted Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) with a rubber stamp and without adequately conducting background checks.
  • The ICE union leader declared that agents are “prohibited from enforcing immigration violations and document fraud and from cracking down on illegal employment.”

Instead, last week, Secretary Johnson met with 24 individuals who represented illegal alien advocacy groups, cheap labor lobbyists, and other outspoken opponents of immigration enforcement.  If these 24 invited guests are the individuals invited to influence immigration policy by the Obama Administration, it doesn’t take a genius to understand what direction immigration enforcement is going.

About Author


Content written by Federation for American Immigration Reform staff.


  1. avatar


  2. avatar
    LC in Texas on

    “In the first place, We should insist that if the immigrant Who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person’s becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American…There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn’t an American at all. We have room for but one flag, the American flag… We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language… And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.”
    Words of: Theodore Roosevelt

  3. avatar

    They probably understand it alright, but they just won’t enforce the laws we have.
    They want to go around the law.

  4. avatar
    Grasshopper on

    Please tell me exactly what good does it do to complain? They just keep coming and coming, and coming. If there were no jobs for them here, and welfare checks not given to illegals, they would go back home where they belong! I believe all companies or even persons that hire them should be fined substantially for each and every one they hire, and make it law that each and every person applying for welfare be given a complete background check. Now, please do not tell me it would be too expensive to check them all, as it would save so much money by not handing out those checks like candy. I have just had enough of this crap!

  5. avatar

    Want to know if the socialist now in power are really enforcing the laws? Ask the workers actually on the front lines and you will get the truth – those laws are not being enforced.. Those at the top are merely telling what obama & his gang are ordering them to say. Just more lies & spin.

  6. avatar
    The Old Chip on

    The bogus president of the United States takes the side of drug cartels and ILLEGAL aliens against law abiding citizens. Obummer’s treasonous policies cede an 80 mile strip of the United States to ILLEGALs and drug smugglers. His minions tell border guards not to arrest ILLEGALs, just shoo them back to mexico. Arrests don’t show up on official records so DHS could lie; saying fewer ILLEGALs are being arrested so border security is working.
    Hey obummer; we are damned angry on this issue! NO weasel words, NO “double speak”, NO “amnesty” or “guest workers” or “paths to citizenship.” NO $4.2 BILLION to ILLEGALS though tax fraud, NO “dream act”, NO release of thousands of low level criminals, and NO ILLEGALS in the military!
    NO federal funding for racist groups like the National Council of La Raza (NCLR)
    DO YOUR JOB for once; seal the border, enact E-Verify, heavily and immediately fine employers of ILLEGALS – ILLEGAL MEANS ILLEGAL; Just plain, NO ILLEGALS.
    Comprehensive Immigration Reform; Easy – In the U.S. ILLEGALLY, GET OUT, NOW, take the family with you.

  7. avatar
    Winston Smith on

    The Libocrites go on and on about “just fifty million!” hmm.
    1, That’s more than the population of Chicago, New York and LA COMBINED
    2, How do “they” know … they’re UNDOCUMENTED!
    3, If ever any sort of Amnesty becomes fact however many there are, today, will only be the vanguard and that number WILL quickly double … triple …
    4, DECENT Mexicans who are contributing to the Mexican society are NOT as likely to “emigrate” as the dregs of Mexican society … ESPECIALLY those with a desire to avoid criminal prosecution at home
    It would be bad enough if it were “just” Latinos pouring into America illegally – taking jobs and milking the system! But it is CLEAR that more than a few are coming in from FAR more unfriendly regimes with the AIM of DESTROYING the system!

  8. avatar

    Turning people back at the border is NOT deportation. And we will remain a country without enforced immigration laws until everyone who is here without permission, or who has overstayed his/her visa, is sent home. And I think we all know that “they” will never have their backgrounds checked, nor to learn the language or pay a fine. These promises are as empty as “we need to secure the border,” that comes so easily and so falsely from the lips of our elected officials.

  9. avatar
    Mass Legalization Is Unsustainable on

    “I don’t understand those who say we are not enforcing the law.”

    Talk to this guy: “If you are a run-of-the-mill immigrant here illegally, your odds of getting deported are close to zero — it’s just highly unlikely to happen,” John Sandweg, until recently the acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, said in an interview.

  10. avatar

    You should not deferring these illegals for deportation!! Send them home. If they desire to be here they can come back here the legal way or forget it. I do not. WILL NOT support amnesty in anym! for

  11. avatar

    The ABC news interview repeated the same old false “record deportations” line. Our media would make their brethren in the old Soviet Union proud. They can propagandize with the best of them.

    Immigration advocates have been trying to deny that businesses in their immigration paradise of California are leaving the state. Now Toyota, which has had it’s US headquarters in California since 1957, is leaving for Texas. Just like a lot of film companies film elsewhere. Because these companies are simply tired of being drained of every penny by a state that insists on allowing millions of poor people to move there, have families, and then having the taxpayers pick up all the expenses.

    And a lot of individuals, a lot just middle class, are leaving. Between high sales taxes, a high state income tax even on fairly modest salaries, and skyrocketing property taxes, people have nothing left. So you got your paradise, advocates, unaffordable housing, a high tax, debt ridden, drought stricken state, and you still insist more immigration is the ticket to prosperity.

    • avatar

      Oh really you counted them yourself? the only thing you are right is that the media is not to be trusted BUT A FACT that deportations are happening a lot worse……………you are in denial…..may be too old?