White House Plan Would Expand Deportations

Proposal gives Homeland Security greater powers
By Linda Hervieux,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 15, 2017 6:40 AM CDT
White House May Give DHS Greater Deportation Powers
In this Feb. 16 photo, Delilah Gutierrez, 10, holds a sign during a protest against President Trump's efforts to crack down on immigration.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

A White House plan under consideration could lead to a vast expansion of the policy to deport undocumented immigrants without a court hearing. According to a memo obtained by the Washington Post, immigrants who are detained and cannot prove they have lived in the US for more than 90 days would face expedited deportations. The Department of Homeland Security would see its powers greatly extended under the plan, which would not require congressional approval. Trump administration officials floated the 13-page internal memo in May. A DHS spokeswoman told the Post the new guidelines are a draft and that no decisions have been made. She said the changes "would allow DHS to more efficiently use resources to remove persons who have been illegally present for relatively brief periods of time while still observing due-process requirements."

Immigration advocates disputed that, saying the changes would be a "radical departure from current policy" that move "one giant step towards implementing Trump’s deportation force across the nation." Since a Bush administration change in 2004, the DHS has been permitted to move to expel immigrants nabbed within 100 miles of the border living in the US for less than two weeks. The new rule would apply to immigrants anywhere in the US. Since he took office, President Trump has vowed to crack down on illegal immigration by hiring thousands more Border Patrol agents and building a wall, the Hill notes. The White House has also shelved an Obama administration policy that protected illegal immigrants with no criminal records and who were parents of US citizens. (For now, young "dreamers" are safe under Trump policy.)

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