February 19, 2013, - 2:38 pm
Obama’s J-No Says US Has No Idea How Many Visa Violators Are Here; Rubio’s Amnesty Bill Won’t Address This
Over the years, I’ve told you that the United States does NOT track visa holders who come to this country, even though they are a large segment (nearly half) of those who eventually become illegal aliens on our soil. Once they are here we have no idea where they go, with whom they meet, whether or not they abided by the conditions of their visas, or if they are still here and have overstayed. If and when immigration amnesty happens, whether it’s Obama’s plan or Marco Rubio’s Senate Gangbang of Eight Plan, we will not only not have secure borders (contrary to Rubio’s claims), we will continue to allow visitors to the U.S. and let them stay here forever, without ever making sure they go home. And so the illegal alien problem will not end. Today’s Wall Street Journal, in “U.S. Struggles to Nab Visitors that Overstay,” reports that the problem has not only gotten worse, but that Marco Rubio and his Senate Gangbang of Eight’s immigration amnesty package does NOT address the problem and will NOT track visa holders once they get here (and, as is often the case, choose to never leave).
More than 150 million non-U.S. citizens legally entered the United States per year in each of the last five years for which data are available. Shouldn’t we track whether or not they leave? We don’t. And Rubio’s bill won’t change that.
The same thing was promised in 1996 with the last immigration amnesty which was implemented, and it didn’t materialize, as I reported back in 2003, when I noted that Michigan’s Lebanese Arab Republican U.S. Senator Spencer Abraham blocked visa-tracking efforts at the behest of pro-Hezbollah/HAMAS Jim Zogby and his Arab-American Institute:
Abraham was Senate Immigration Subcommittee Chairman through the end of 2000. Abraham routinely caved to the demands of Arab/Muslim leaders, such as the Arab American Institute’s James Zogby, on national security matters, especially immigration.
“Ever since (I first met) him, Abraham has been coming to us and giving advice, support and the benefits of his leadership,” Zogby told The Detroit News.
And taking Zogby’s advice, too.
Abraham actively worked to delay computer systems to track foreign visitors, which Arab/Muslim groups, including Zogby’s, strongly opposed. 1996 immigration law required computerized entry and exit tracking of all temporary visas, but was gutted by Abraham and other legislators. They refused to allocate money for the program and delayed its full implementation until 2005. In 2000, Abraham, as Chairman of the Immigration Subcommittee, delayed implementation of other requirements of the 1996 immigration measure, including university-assisted enforcement student visa laws and collection of fees from foreign students to pay for computer tracking.
These programs might have prevented the Sept. 11 attacks. But Abraham desperately craved the Arab/Muslim vote in Michigan.
I’ve also told you that systems to track visa holders have either been starved of cash (such as by Sen. Abraham at the behest of Arab and Muslim interests) or they were simply canceled, including several such efforts begun and ended by the Bush Administration when the pro-Hezbollah/HAMAS, Muslim-dominated American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) whined endlessly about it. G-d forbid we should actually keep tabs on those who enter the U.S. and disappear, right? And, as I’ve told you, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents who work the cases of visa holders who’ve overstayed are rewarded not for finding the visa violators, but for opening and closing files (regardless of whether or not the illegal alien is located and deported). And it gets worse.
Janet Napolitano expressly said she doesn’t want to spend the money on checking the fingerprints of those who leave, even though it is the only reliable way (other than DNA tests or retina scans, which are more expensive) to make sure that the person who came here on a visa to the U.S. is the one leaving, as a common trick in the Muslim community is to come here and send a relative home on the visa. Plus the airlines don’t want to get involved by making sure the aliens board the plane and actually leave. More:
A long-standing problem in immigration enforcement—identifying foreigners who fail to go home when their visas expire—is emerging as a key question as senators and President Barack Obama chart an overhaul of immigration law. The Senate is discussing an overhaul that would require the government to track foreigners who overstay their visas. The problem is the U.S. currently doesn’t have a reliable system for doing this. . . . An estimated 40% or more of those now illegally in the U.S. entered with a valid visa.
Congress moved to tighten the system after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. Foreigners now get their fingerprints taken when they enter the country. A similar biometric system to track exits also was mandated. But it proved costly and tricky to set up, and it wasn’t put in place. Among other things, airports have no obvious place to do the checks. . . .
Nobody is sure how many people are in the U.S. on expired visas. The most commonly cited figures equate to some four million to five million people. But that is based on a 2006 study by the Pew Hispanic Center, which relied on a formula that was created using 1990 data.
In 2011, there were 159 million nonimmigrant visits to the U.S., according to the Department of Homeland Security. More than three-quarters were for pleasure. But millions also involved business travelers, temporary workers and students.
A handful of other countries have established systems for monitoring visa overstays, according to the Migration Policy Institute, a nonpartisan think tank that studies immigration issues.
The institute singles out Australia as having a particularly effective system. Information is collected and electronically recorded for all visitors entering Australia, and then checked again on the spot as people depart. People who have overstayed their visas are flagged for a secondary inspection upon departure. The institute also points to Japan, which implemented an entry-exit system in 2007 that includes fingerprinting visitors.
If Australia and Japan can do this, we certainly can. But we won’t. Because America really doesn’t have the testicles to actually enforce immigration law. Not now, not with or after amnesty, not ever. We could have instituted such a system before Australia and Japan, but we never do. And we never will. Because we really aren’t serious about national security or keeping America safe and intact as a viable country.
The Senate legislation under discussion wouldn’t create any additional enforcement program to track down people who overstayed visas, Senate aides in both parties said. Still, they said it is important to understand the scope of the problem, and that tougher employment-verification systems contemplated by the legislation would deter future visitors from overstaying their visas.
Yeah, you keep tellin’ yourself that. Hilarious. No one is deterred from overstaying his or her visa. That’s, after all, how nearly half of the illegal aliens are here. They came legally and never left.
The Department of Homeland Security . . . is no longer focused on implementing a biometric system, one relying on fingerprints or other unique personal markers, to make sure someone leaving the country is the same person who entered on a particular visa. Instead, the department has begun comparing lists of people with expired visas with lists of foreigners who depart through airports and seaports.
Again, this will NOT work, because someone else can leave on a visa that was used by a different person to enter the U.S., meaning that first person will remain here and we will NOT know the difference.
The department has no current way of tracking foreigners who leave by land. And officials said the department still can’t say how many people are in the country on an expired visa.
Another problem is that some of the people who haven’t left the country have found legal means of staying—such as getting employment or student visas, or gaining refugee status. Officials said they are working to integrate all these databases now.
“They are working.” Yeah, right. Um, it’s 11.5 years since 9/11 and they are still “working” on it. Manana, manana!
At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last week, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said that her department should be able to report the rate of visa overstays by the end of the year.
Um, why doesn’t she know that now? And, if she doesn’t know the number, why on earth are we discussing amnesty for these people? If we don’t even know how many are here, we’re not gonna know how to find them and how to solve the problem. And yet we are pushing for this absurd amnesty anyway? I know–flying blind is the way we do business in this country, especially with national security . . . which is why we don’t have any.
A biometric system that included measures like fingerprints, she said, would be “extraordinarily expensive.”
So? Securing borders is expensive. But it’s the primary purpose of government. If we don’t spend money on that, we shouldn’t spend money on anything, especially the Department of Homeland Non-Security.
The department tested three possible biometric checkpoints in pilot programs, and all had problems. The first checked travelers when they got their boarding passes. But airlines balked at that additional responsibility, and officials concluded it would be easy for travelers to “check out” at the counter and then simply leave the airport.
A second option was processing people at the security checkpoint. But that diverted officers’ attention from their prime responsibilities, and slowed the lines, officials said. Plus, travelers could still leave the airport after going through security.
The final option was to do the checks in or near the jetways to capture people just before boarding.
But it was difficult to find space at the gates, a senior homeland security official said, and airlines again balked at any additional responsibilities, arguing that this is a government function.
Yup, those airlines . . . always looking to help keep America secure, right? I guess losing a bunch of planes, employees, and customers on 9/11 and nearly losing more, many other times, didn’t mean much.
Without making sure that those who enter this country with visas leave when they are supposed to, we will never have secure borders. And we won’t do this. America, we’re screwed.
Have fun with amnesty. And all the illegal aliens that come after that.
Artwork by David Lunde/Lundesigns
Tags: amnesty, biometric system, DHS, Homeland Security, Illegal Aliens, Immigration, Janet Napolitano, Marco Rubio, Pew Hispanic Center, visa overstay, visa overstays, visa tracking, Visa Violators