In other news that won’t get covered, illegal immigration scored a major victory this week in federal court, where a judge ruled in favor of a group of illegal aliens who're contesting the federal practice of arresting potential deportees at their hearing.
U.S. District Judge George J. Hazel ruled that six Maryland couples, in which one of the partners is on the verge of being deported, can move forward with a class action lawsuit against the government’s practice of arresting illegal aliens who show up to their hearing.
The couples are not seeking individual decisions in their cases, but rather "a single, classwide remedy that ends defendants' allegedly unlawful practice of systemically interfering with the provisional waiver process by arresting, detaining, or removing noncitizen spouses at their provisional waiver interviews," Judge Hazel said in his decision.
Here’s the background: in 2016, under then-President Barack Obama, the federal government launched a new program offering provisional waivers to illegal aliens who’ve been given final orders of removal but are trying to stay here anyway, including those with criminal histories. One of the ways to get such a waiver is on the basis that the person has gotten married and is now seeking to stay in the U.S. to be with their spouse. The waiver would speed up what’s known as “consular processing,” a mandatory period of time in which the alien has to return to their home country before re-entering the U.S. legally in order to qualify for a marriage visa. Under normal circumstances, the process can take some time; but if granted a waiver, it’s expedited and the deported person can return much more quickly.
However, under President Donald Trump, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has begun arresting illegal aliens who’ve been ordered deported when they show up to their provisional waiver hearing. The government has argued that many of these are criminals who’ve been issued a final order of removal because they’ve been convicted of crimes or didn’t show up for their previous immigration hearings.
But the Maryland couples argue that arresting and deporting these illegal aliens who’ve already been ordered removed by a U.S. court interferes with the provisional waiver process – a stance with which Hazel apparently agrees.
Of course, those with half a brain and any basic ability to logic might wonder whether such a provisional waiver lends itself to open fraud and abuse by those looking to stay in the U.S. by any means necessary, particularly when they've already shown themselves willing to break laws.