Joe Guzzardi: For immigration expansionists, everything isn’t enough

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In this March 19, 2021, file photo, migrants are seen in custody at a U.S. Customs and Border Protection processing area under the Anzalduas International Bridge, in Mission, Texas. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)

Imagine if White House officials, the Chamber of Commerce, the establishment media, corporate America, and ethnic identity advocacy groups agreed to an immigration roundtable. Then, further, imagine that the moderator asked three questions.

The first question: “Given that fiscal year 2022 ended with a record 2.4 million migrant encounters exclusive of 599,000 known ‘gotaways,’ but including 238,000 in September alone, how many more migrants should be admitted before enforcement begins?”

Second: “Assuming Congress passes amnesty for every unlawfully present alien, would you agree to stop or at least pause in your support for unlimited immigration?” Finally: “Research indicates that loose borders harm mostly black Americans in terms of depressed wages and lost job opportunities. Immigration also provides higher incomes and profits for businesses while redistributing wealth from the native poor to the native rich. Do those findings cause you to question your immigration advocacy?”

A decade ago, advocacy groups agreed to participate in such a discussion; the hypothetical others weren’t present. No matter how the moderator pressed for answers to questions about how many immigrants were too many, no specific response was forthcoming.

The moderator prefaced his questions by acknowledging that most legal and illegal immigrants are hard-working individuals who want better lives for their families and that, with the exception of having broken civil law by being in the U.S. without permission, most aliens are law-abiding.

For their part, the pro-immigration debaters insisted that family reunification remain unchanged and that employment-based immigration continue indefinitely. And while vaguely concurring that some numerical limits should be set, none of the participants was willing to set a fixed total. Either speaking on behalf of their group or expressing a personal opinion, the participants refused to discuss, even hypothetically, what the maximum number of immigrants should be or what might represent permissible enforcement regulations. Advocates repeatedly stressed what they perceived as immigration law’s “inhumanity,” but at the same time, wouldn’t specifically define why open borders should be perceived as humane. In summary, the open borders coalition demanded unlimited immigration but rejected border or interior enforcement as quid pro quos.

Ten years later, the Biden administration has rewarded immigration advocates with a clearcut victory. Their immigration wish list, identified a decade ago, has come true beyond their wildest imaginations. While Congress hasn’t passed an amnesty per se, interior enforcement is gutted, making removal unlikely for most illegal immigrants. Moreover, many of the millions of migrants have been granted parole, a misused and abused immigration status that includes work authorization. Not precisely an employment-based visa, parole nevertheless effectively provides the same affirmative immigration benefit – legal access to U.S. jobs.

Going beyond complying with advocates’ wish list, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has diluted the citizenship test. Long used as the basic guideline for identifying which among the recently arrived lawful permanent residents qualify for coveted naturalization, the standards have been dramatically loosened. USCIS director Ur M. Jaddou said that, under certain circumstances, the exam can be bypassed. This represents how the agency “is removing barriers to naturalization…” Jaddou’s reasoning: the public is “better served” by “eliminating questions and language barriers that no longer have practical utility and were redundant.”

At first glance, the Biden administration, through its various immigration violations, which some dismiss as merely loosening inconvenient laws, is an overt attempt to swell the Democratic voter base, especially among Hispanics. But with porous borders having pushed Hispanic voters away, the inescapable conclusion is that the administration’s primary goal is to cancel, by any and all possible means, sovereign America.

Joe Guzzardi is a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist who writes about immigration and related social issues. Joe joined Progressives for Immigration Reform in 2018 as an analyst after a ten-year career directing media relations for Californians for Population Stabilization, where he also was a Senior Writing Fellow. A native Californian, Joe now lives in Pennsylvania. Contact him at jguzzardi@pfirdc.org.