Temporary Protected Status: Amnesty-Lite

Parsing Immigration Policy, Episode 5

By Mark Krikorian and Robert Law on May 27, 2021

View Podcast Archive

Listen to "Temporary Protected Status: Amnesty-Lite" on Spreaker.


The Biden administration recently granted Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to all Haitian illegal and legal aliens in the United States. TPS prevents the deportation of illegal aliens, but more importantly, it rewards them with work permits, drivers’ licenses, Social Security numbers, and the ability to travel abroad and return. Under the law, countries should only be designated for TPS due to (1) ongoing armed conflict; (2) an environmental disaster; or (3) extraordinary and temporary conditions, and it only applies if these conditions prevent the safe return of nationals.

Robert Law, the Center’s Director of Regulatory Affairs and Policy, discusses the abuse of this statutory authority that has grown the TPS population to well over half a million illegal alien beneficiaries from 12 countries, whose "temporary" status is routinely renewed, sometimes for decades. Law also offers several recommendations on how, by regulation or by statute, limits can be placed on executive authority to provide amnesty-lite to aliens.

There's nothing more permanent than Temporary Protected Status!

Related Reports

Biden Administration Doubles the Haitian Amnesty-Lite Population

Mark Krikorian Discusses TPS for Haitians

‘Temporary’ Protected Status: A Tool for Executive Mischief

Immigration Brief: Is There a Deal to Be Made on TPS?

320,000-Plus Venezuelans Receive Amnesty Lite

TPS Syria 'Redesignation' Decision Politically Driven


Mark Krikorian is the Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies.


Robert Law is the Director of Regulatory Affairs and Policy for the Center for Immigration Studies. He is a recognized expert on the legal immigration system, with particular understanding of the impact that employment-based immigrant and nonimmigrant policies affect the wages and opportunities for American workers.



Follow Parsing Immigration Policy on Ricochet, Apple Podcasts, Amazon MusicSpotify, StitcherGoogle Podcasts

Intro Montage

Voices in the opening montage:

  • Sen. Barack Obama at a 2005 press conference.
  • Sen. John McCain in a 2010 election ad.
  • President Lyndon Johnson, upon signing the 1965 Immigration Act.
  • Booker T. Washington, reading in 1908 from his 1895 Atlanta Exposition speech.
  • Laraine Newman as a "Conehead" on SNL in 1977.
  • Hillary Clinton in a 2003 radio interview.
  • Cesar Chavez in a 1974 interview.
  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaking to reporters in 2019.
  • Prof. George Borjas in a 2016 C-SPAN appearance.
  • Sen. Jeff Sessions in 2008 comments on the Senate floor.
  • Charlton Heston in "Planet of the Apes".