Your Tax Dollars Hard At Work...Defending Illegals

Written By BlabberBuzz | Thursday, 13 January 2022 20:30

According to a report by an immigration reform group, state and local governments have set aside at least $5.6 million to pay lawyers for illegal immigrants who are fighting deportation this year.

Following a review of local and city governments that partnered with a group that seeks to provide counsel to noncitizens, the Immigration Reform Law Institute found that at least $5.6 million in taxpayer funds from state and local communities were earmarked for these deportation defense programs.

These funds are described as "a conservative estimate [that] does not include numerous other localities that fund their own independent anti-deportation programs."

"These programs are an insult to every law-abiding American citizen and legal resident," said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI, in a statement. "Our laws clearly state that noncitizens charged with civil offenses do not have a right to legal representation. Yet we have radical anti-borders groups starting these programs and sticking unknowing citizens with the bill. It's outrageous."

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Tuesday, The Washington Free Beacon detailed the Immigration Reform Law Institute report. The Institute inspected 22 state and local governments partnered with the SAFE Initiative program. According to the Beacon, the program is operated by the nonprofit Vera Institute of Justice, which provides legal help to those noncitizens facing deportation.

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Lora Ries, a senior research fellow for Homeland Security at the Heritage Foundation, informed the Beacon of the public funding's conflict with the Immigration and Nationality Act, which "states that an alien in removal proceedings has the privilege of being represented by counsel, but at no expense to the government."

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"Because removal proceedings are civil, not criminal, there is no constitutional right to a publicly funded attorney in immigration court," Ries stated. "U.S. citizens do not receive publicly funded attorneys for civil proceedings so to provide that generous benefit for deportable aliens treats them better than U.S. citizens."

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Ries went on to say: "This is a fiscal bottomless pit. American taxpayer funds should instead be used for U.S. citizens and lawful residents."

The Institute noted that questions were raised by the study on whether state and local governments are adequately supervising the legal aid centers. A report in November stated less than a third of immigration cases processed during the final three months of that fiscal year resulted in deportation.

Department of Homeland Security officials told The Washington Times that the lower deportation numbers were the result of a push to expand the reach of "prosecutorial discretion" — meaning thousands of migrants were released even though judges did not rule in their favor.

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