ICE Boss Pleads ‘Limited Resources’ While He Ties Up Officers



With detentions of illegal aliens at record lows and deportations tumbling, the acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) claims his agency lacks the resources to do its job.

That’s nonsense.

A careful reading of Tae Johnson’s Feb. 18 memo reveals how ICE leadership is expending time and resources to stymie removal of illegal aliens by adding layers of administrative red tape.

“Aliens who Congress says should be removed will have not one, but two chances to show that they are not ‘priorities’ for enforcement under the arbitrary and ridiculous (and possibly unlawful) guidelines that Biden’s ICE minions have foisted on the agency’s career officers and agents,” writes Andrew Arthur, of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS). “That means those aliens’ cases will either be slowed to a halt or simply dismissed.”

Johnson’s memo repeatedly cites “limited resources” as a reason for not enforcing immigration laws. Yet his directive implements a top-heavy bureaucratic case-review process led “by a senior reviewing officer based in Washington, D.C.”

In other words, “ICE has enough money to pay a high-ranking official — and likely many, many others, plus local and regional officials — to decide which aliens not to deport, at the same time it contends it lacks the money to actually deport removable aliens,” Arthur notes.

“The Biden administration is wasting … its $8 billion ICE budget deciding which aliens not to deport, based on a risible contention that ICE’s resources are ‘limited.’ It is not deporting most aliens because it doesn’t want to deport most aliens,” says Arthur, a retired immigration court judge and former legal counsel at the old Immigration and Naturalization Service.

In rescinding previous enforcement programs, such as Trump’s order “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States,” Team Biden “appears to be exempting all aliens from immigration enforcement,” CIS’s Rob Law concluded this week.

Meanwhile, Johnson’s boss, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejando Mayorkas, announced his intention to allow more migrants to enter the U.S. by broadening grounds for asylum claims. How’s that for stretching “limited resources”?

Two states – Arizona and Montana – have gotten wise to the ruse; they are suing the administration for failing to carry out its enforcement duties and thereby putting their states at risk. More states should follow suit.

About Author

avatar

Bob Dane, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR)'s Executive Director, has been with FAIR since 2006. His deep belief is that immigration is the most transformational determinant of where we are heading as a nation and that our policies must be reformed in the public interest. Over many years on thousands of radio, TV and print interviews, Bob has made the case that unless immigration is regulated and sensibly reduced, it will be difficult for America to reduce unemployment, increase wages, improve health care and education and heighten national security. Prior to joining FAIR, Bob spent twenty years in network radio, marketing and communications after an earlier career in policy and budgeting within the Reagan Administration. Bob has a degree from George Mason University in Public Administration and Management.