Immigration Law: A Dead Letter?

I wrote the other day that if the Supreme Court validates Obama's lawless amnesty decrees, much of immigration law will effectively be rendered null and void. I was referring to the many criteria for admission and exclusion, which Obama claims he can ignore at will.

Of course he's already ignoring much of the law anyway, choosing not to enforce the law against virtually all illegal aliens under the pretext of "prosecutorial discretion." (The Supreme Court case is about Obama's attempt to go the next step and formally award them work permits and Social Security accounts.)

The Democratic candidates in last night's debate suggested Obama was too strict on immigration, and tried to outdo each other in pledging to gut the law even further.

Underlying the pandering to Univision's audience is a principle that needs to be exposed in the coming campaign. That is that the Democratic party now seems to formally view violation of the immigration law as a "secondary offense". To illustrate: In some states, you can be cited for not wearing your seat belt, but you can't be pulled over just for that. There needs to be some other, primary, offense — like speeding or whatnot — to justify the traffic stop, and then, if you're also not wearing your seat belt, you can get an additional ticket for that.

Clinton and Sanders (and Obama) view the entire immigration law that way. In other words, only illegal immigrants who have committed some other offense might be subject to deportation. Jorge Ramos, to his credit, pinned them down on this. Bernie was forthright:

RAMOS: And can you promise not to deport immigrants who don't have a criminal record?

SANDERS: I can make that promise.

Hillary, given the mendacity that pervades her at the cellular level, was less willing to give a direct answer, but Ramos finally pinned her down too:

RAMOS: But again, yes or no, can you promise tonight that you won't deport children, children who are already here?

CLINTON: I will not deport children. I would not deport children. I do not want to deport family members either, Jorge. I want to, as I said, prioritize who would be deported: violent criminals, people planning terrorist attacks, anybody who threatens us. That's a relatively small universe.

RAMOS: OK. So I want to be very specific. So you are telling us tonight that if you become president you won't deport children who are already here?

CLINTON: I will not.

RAMOS: And that you won't deport immigrants who don't have a criminal record?

CLINTON: That's what I'm telling you.

There you have it. The only illegal aliens whom the Hillary Clinton administration will consider deporting are "violent criminals" and "people planning terrorist attacks". Because her party now considers Title 8 of the U.S. Code to be merely a backup measure, applicable only after blood is shed.

Now, if Hillary only were to also designate violations of the Internal Revenue Code as secondary offenses, that I might be able to get behind. After all, why should hard-working, otherwise law-abiding American families be punished simply for not paying their taxes?