Jon Feere's blog

Legal Policy Analyst


Contact - Biography - Publications

Obama's amnesty benefits lawbreaking employers

By Jon Feere, December 11, 2014

From the start of my op-ed posted today at TheHill.com:

President Obama's decision to grant work permits and Social Security accounts to millions of illegal aliens guts the central enforcement provision of the 1986 amnesty bill and simultaneously illustrates why he cannot be trusted to carry out comprehensive reform of our immigration laws.
. . .
And now Obama has rewarded these unscrupulous employers by giving work permits to their illegal laborers. It is a slap in the face to business owners who have played by the rules.

Obama's Immigration Plan Isn't Worth the Paper It's Printed on

By Jon Feere, November 24, 2014

The start of my recent op-ed at TheHill.com:

Though he didn't discuss the details during his speech, President Obama has issued a series of memos that reveal exactly why unilateral, lawless actions from him aren't worth the paper they're printed on. His planned changes to his Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program illustrate exactly why the criteria illegal aliens must meet to obtain his amnesty are utterly meaningless and can change at any time. In making these changes, Obama highlights the deeply problematic nature of his lawless policymaking.

Fox News Interviews CIS's Jon Feere on Driver's Licenses for Illegal Aliens

By Jon Feere, November 19, 2014

Early this morning I was interviewed by Fox News' Elisabeth Hasselbeck on California's plan to grant driver's licenses to illegal aliens. It is part of a state-level attempt at amnesty that many states are engaging in. California wants to blur the line between legal residents and illegal aliens while creating an environment that is very welcoming to foreigners who believe they are above the law. Read more...

Driver's Licenses for Illegal Immigrants an Issue in Three States

By Jon Feere, October 27, 2014

The start of my op-ed posted today at TheHill.com:

In Colorado, Oregon, and California, the granting of driver's licenses to illegal aliens has generated controversy and raised national security concerns that have gone largely unreported. Unfortunately, many activist groups and politicians have concluded that helping illegal aliens hide their lawlessness is more important than preventing another 9/11. Congress should consider tightening up the REAL ID standards. If problems like this continue, it wouldn't be surprising if voters in many states initiated referenda or legislation aimed at stopping the issuance of driver's licenses to people in the country illegally.

TSA: Oregon's Proposed Driver's Licenses Would Allow Illegal Aliens to Board Airplanes

By Jon Feere, October 8, 2014

Voters in Oregon will soon be deciding whether to allow illegal aliens to receive driver's licenses, but a new statement from an official from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is creating confusion about how these cards will be used and raises the question of whether Oregon plans to violate federal law, thereby creating a national security threat to all Americans. Read more...

Obama's Lawless Immigration Plan Is a Gift to the 1%

By Jon Feere, September 22, 2014

The start of my op-ed posted today at TheHill.com:

Unlike most political issues, immigration is not really a right vs. left or Republican vs. Democrat issue. Instead, immigration is better understood as an elite vs. public issue where the elite in our society tends to support higher levels of immigration and where the general public tends to support lower levels of immigration. For politicians of all political stripes, the question on immigration is whether they will side with the elite or the public.

Many No-Shows in Immigration Court; Some Hearings Scheduled for 2020

By Jon Feere, August 22, 2014

The Heritage Foundation's news site The Daily Signal ran a piece Friday on one reporter's observations at an immigration court in Arlington, Va. The docket was made up of juveniles, though not youths affiliated with the recent border influx. I happened to attend a day of the juvenile docket in the same courtroom the day after the reporter and his article is quite accurate and worth reading. There is one thing the reporter did not mention, however, and that is the turnout rate. Read more...

CNN Publishes Error-Filled, Pro-Amnesty "News" Article

By Jon Feere, August 15, 2014

On Monday, CNN.com published an article by CNN's Senior Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh titled "Republicans ignoring their own advice on immigration". Though it is apparently meant to be a news article, it comes across as an editorial written by a pro-amnesty activist who is upset that the American people were able to stop Congress from passing a bill that would allow millions of foreigners to get away with violating U.S. sovereignty. On top of that, the article contains a number of factual errors, as detailed below. I have sent inquires to both the article's author and CNN.com about the errors, and should they be corrected, this post will be updated.

Here are the obvious factual errors: Read more...

Amnesty Would Make Border Crisis Worse

By Jon Feere, August 14, 2014

The start of my op-ed posted today at TheHill.com:

Any legalization of illegal immigrants — either through legislation or executive fiat — would undoubtedly encourage more illegal immigration, making the current crisis look almost insignificant by comparison. This should be well-understood by former La Raza Vice President Cecilia Muñoz, who currently serves in the White House as assistant to President Obama and director of the Domestic Policy Council.

Only four years after the comprehensive amnesty of 1986 was signed into law, Muñoz authored a report for La Raza in which she noted that the amnesty did not stop illegal immigration. ...

Read the rest here.

Read more...

Could Obama Amnesty Illegal Aliens via the Pardon Power?

By Jon Feere, August 8, 2014

Townhall.com's Guy Benson has raised some interesting questions about the extent to which President Obama might use his pardon power to initiate a mass amnesty of illegal aliens. The article is worth reading and thinking about as the nation awaits the Obama administration's controversial plans to decree an amnesty despite its failure to get an amnesty by constitutional means.

Benson reasons that Obama might use his presidential pardon power to legalize a sizeable number of illegal aliens, explaining that an "immigration pardon-o-rama could be a particularly devious method of achieving most of what Obama wants on this issue, and doing so with a patina of legality." Read more...

Trafficking Law Largely Inapplicable to Border Crisis

By Jon Feere, July 24, 2014

The start of my op-ed posted today at TheHill.com:

Despite all the attention it has received, the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 – a law aimed, in part, at "unaccompanied alien children" who are victims of trafficking – appears to have little applicability to the current situation on the border. There are at least three reasons why the Obama administration is wrong when it asserts that the 2008 trafficking law binds their hands and requires them to grant most young illegal immigrants and their families a day in immigration court, lawyers and other benefits. ... Read more...

Unsecured Border: Interview with a National Border Patrol Council Representative

By Jon Feere, July 3, 2014

Read and view our entire Unsecured Border Series

Along the Rio Grande near Mission, Texas, Albert Spratte, the Sergeant-at-Arms of the National Border Patrol Council Local 3307, speaks with the Center for Immigration Studies. Spratte points out a Mexican park across the river which he explains often is the launch point of jet skiers who work as human smugglers. It’s one of the most highly-trafficked areas for people crossing illegally into the United States. In the video, Spratte notes the times of day and types of people who attempt to cross illegally, as jet skiers travel up and down the river, as if on cue. Read more...

Deferred Action Renewals to Benefit Unemployed Dropouts

By Jon Feere, June 10, 2014

When President Obama's lawless Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy came into effect, its supporters argued that it was designed to benefit illegal aliens who were either in high school or already in college. While some illegal aliens applying for DACA are in school, the DACA guidelines never required applicants to actually graduate from their education program. Read more...

DHS Secretary Johnson Not Doing Everything in His Power to Prevent the Release of Criminal Aliens

By Jon Feere, May 30, 2014

At a hearing before the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee on Thursday, members of Congress questioned Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on a number of issues. Many of the questions were focused on the Obama administration's controversial immigration policies.

One issue that came up involved a section of federal law (8 U.S.C. § 1253) that requires the State Department to stop issuing visas to citizens of countries that refuse to take back their citizens when the United States attempts to deport them. The law comes into effect when the DHS secretary consults with the State Department about difficulty deporting someone. Read more...

Washington Post Misleads Readers on DACA

By Jon Feere, May 13, 2014

Some writers at the Washington Post haven't done their homework and are lazily repeating the taking points of amnesty advocates in describing President Obama's lawless Deferred Action policy. Either that, or the writers consider it their job to promote the controversial policy. Read more...

California Threatens Another 9/11 with Lax Driver's License

By Jon Feere, May 8, 2014

Every day TSA screeners at airports around the country are tasked with determining whether people are allowed to board airplanes. One thing TSA agents look for is a valid form of identification, usually a driver's license. After it was determined that the 19 9/11 terrorists had nearly 30 driver's licenses between them, each with varying information, the 9/11 Commission recommended some license standardization amongst the states. Read more...

Getting the Facts Right on Virginia's Grant of In-State Tuition to Illegal Aliens

By Jon Feere, May 4, 2014

The governor and attorney general of Virginia have misled the public and the media on their plan to grant in-state tuition breaks to illegal aliens. Last week Attorney General Mark R. Herring (D) sent a letter to presidents of the state's colleges and universities advising them that Virginia would begin recognizing President Obama's lawless Deferred Action (DACA) policy as justification for granting illegal aliens in-state tuition. Read more...

The Boston Marathon Bombing, Assimilation, and Amnesty

By Jon Feere, April 15, 2014

On the one-year anniversary of the attack on the Boston Marathon, a question that continues to be asked is how two immigrants welcomed into the United States at a relatively young age apparently never assimilated into American culture, and never really accepted the United States as home. On this anniversary, as that question remains unresolved, many members of Congress are working to incorporate illegal aliens into our military. These amnesty advocates have concluded that foreigners who enter the United States by their teenage years are fully American, and consequently not a threat, even though our nation's experience with Boston bombers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev suggests otherwise. Read more...

CPAC's 2014 Amnesty Panel

By Jon Feere, March 7, 2014

Nearly every speaker at the first day of the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) avoided any discussion of immigration or amnesty, a sign that Republican politicians are starting to understand that conservative voters have very little interest in doubling legal immigration and amnestying illegal aliens. Read more...

Utah Likely to Push Back E-Verify Mandate (Again)

By Jon Feere, February 28, 2014

Two facts have been missed by media outlets reporting on Utah's plan to push back the start date of the state's controversial (and unlikely) guestworker program: (1) this is the second time that Utah has delayed the guestworker program's start date, and (2) the state's E-Verify mandate is contingent on the guestworker program coming into effect, and thus will also be delayed. Read more...

CNN Publishes Push Poll, Promotes Amnesty

By Jon Feere, February 12, 2014

Yet another flawed push poll has been released and the media have used it to promote the idea that Americans support President Obama's amnesty agenda. This time, the flawed poll comes from CNN/ORC International. It was conducted January 31 through February 2 and included 900 registered voters.

Each of the questions asks about an immigration plan that has never been promoted by any amnesty advocate, has never been introduced in Congress, and likely will never be introduced. See if you can spot all the flaws in the central question asked of respondents: Read more...

DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson Unaware of Existing Law, Job Responsibilities

By Jon Feere, February 7, 2014

Speaking at the Wilson Center on Friday, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson pushed amnesty for illegal immigrants, calling it "a matter of homeland security." He argued that "we should encourage these people to come out of the shadows of American society," apparently believing that an amnesty program is the only way to determine the identities of those living here illegally. Read more...

Fox News Publishes Push Poll, Pushes Amnesty

By Jon Feere, January 24, 2014

Nearly all of the polls allegedly showing public support for amnesty suffer from the same defect: they are designed to "push" respondents towards a certain answer. In other words, they are written in a way designed to elicit a pro-amnesty result with the use of tired pro-amnesty talking points that are meant to make the "pro-enforcement" option seem less attractive. Read more...

Predictions, Predictions

By Jon Feere, December 31, 2013

We can't let 2013 expire without noting the confident predictions that didn't pan out. Like a contractor on a kitchen renovation who for a whole year says the job will be done in just two more weeks, open-border advocates repeatedly promised in 2013 that amnesty was right around the corner. These promises encouraged new illegal immigration and helped persuade lobbyists to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on the effort. Since the last failed amnesty attempt in 2007, lobbyists and business groups have spent $1.5 billion pushing the unpopular idea of doubling legal immigration and amnestying illegal aliens. Read more...

Obama's New Military-related Amnesty Raises Questions

By Jon Feere, December 9, 2013

Late on a Friday afternoon, the Obama administration quietly announced its decision to exempt a new category of illegal aliens from immigration enforcement. Unlike President Obama's lawless Deferred Action program which grants legal status, work permits, and Social Security accounts to nearly any illegal alien up to age 31, the new policy is aimed specifically at the illegal alien children, spouses, and parents of people who are currently serving or who have previously served in the U.S. military. At first blush, such a policy seems at least somewhat reasonable considering the sacrifice our service members are making for the country.

But new information from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) indicates that the Obama administration's arguments for crafting the policy have little to do with the actual implementation of the policy. Read more...

Journos Still Don't Understand House Cannot Act on Senate Amnesty Bill

By Jon Feere, December 3, 2013

Journalists should really do their research before writing on the status of the Senate amnesty bill, particularly if they plan on pressuring House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) to pass an amnesty.

Those paying close attention know that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) never sent the Senate's gargantuan amnesty bill (S.744) over to the House of Representatives. Reid has refused to do so because he knows his bill is unconstitutional because the bill raises revenue; the Constitution requires all bills raising revenue to originate in the House, not the Senate. Mr. Reid is well aware that, if he were to send the bill to the House, it would be "blue-slipped" — stopped by a legislative procedure that allows House members to shut down a bill that runs afoul of the Constitution's Origination Clause. Read more...

USCIS Announces New E-Verify Security Enhancement

By Jon Feere, November 25, 2013

The free and easy-to-use employment verification program E-Verify has been upgraded with a security feature that will help U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) detect whether a Social Security number (SSN) is being used fraudulently. All too often, American citizens will have their identities compromised by an illegal alien who steals the name and identity of the American in order to acquire a job. If the name and number match up, it can be difficult for E-Verify to detect the fraud. Read more...

D.C. to Grant Driver's Licenses to Illegal Aliens

By Jon Feere, November 8, 2013

States have a role to play when it comes to the issue of illegal immigration, and the choice is simple: Should states encourage or discourage illegal immigration? The latest move by the District of Columbia is to encourage illegal immigration and illegal hiring practices by providing driver's licenses to illegal aliens. I discussed this topic on American University's WAMU Radio alongside D.C. Councilmember Mary Cheh (D-Ward 3), Maryland State Senator Victor Ramirez (D-Prince George's County), and Brad Botwin, Director of Help Save Maryland. The complete interview is available here. A small clip is available in the video below. Read more...

Yelp Gives Five-Star Review to Amnesty; So Do Virgin America, Overstock.com, E-Bay

By Jon Feere, October 18, 2013

More than 450 corporate interests and advocacy groups recently signed a letter calling for doubling legal immigration numbers and legalizing the 11 million illegal aliens currently living in the United States. The letter – available in PDF format – calls for enacting "Immigration Reform NOW". (A similar pro-amnesty letter was recently released by 100 corporate interests from the Cheesecake Factory to Hallmark Cards. An analysis of that letter is available here.) Read more...

Cheesecake Factory, Hallmark, Disney, and Others Now Pushing Amnesty

By Jon Feere, September 11, 2013

Officials representing over 100 corporate interests issued a letter to Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) demanding the legalization of 11 million illegal aliens and increased legal immigration through the creation of new visa programs. As these companies put it in their letter:

[W]e strongly support efforts to bolster the availability of a workforce at all skills levels, through a separate visa program as well as by creating a path to legal status for those already here.