Tags: Fox News | Homeland Security | Immigration | immigration | political | asylum | restrictions

Critics Want Crackdown on Immigrant Asylum Claims

By    |   Monday, 11 May 2015 10:23 PM

Immigration critics are demanding that border security start with tighter restrictions on people claiming political asylum, Fox News reports.

An internal Department of Homeland Security report obtained by the House Judiciary Committee last year showed that at least 70 percent of asylum cases contain proven or possible fraud, the Washington Times reports.

"Almost anyone at all can call themselves an asylum seeker and get in. It's a global joke," Kenneth Palinkas, president of the National Citizenship and Immigration Services Council, told Fox News. "It's not border security if anyone can recite the magic words and get waved right on in."

Current policy allows immigrants caught at the border without documentation to claim asylum and get authorization to work in the United States, Fox News reports.

The work permit then allows the person to get a Social Security card and some taxpayer-funded benefits, including Supplemental Security Income, SNAP/food stamps, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and Medicaid, according to Fox News.

"Unfortunately, our generous asylum polices have become subject to ever-increasing levels of abuse largely due to the Obama administration's pattern of rubber-stamping 'credible fear' claims and asylum cases," Virginia Republican Rep. Bob Goodlatte, chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary, told Fox News.

"Instead of detaining asylum seekers while the government determines whether their cases are legitimate, the Obama administration simply releases them into the United States."

According to the committee, credible-fear claims have increased by 586 percent, Fox News reports.

The misapplication of "credible fear" and a lack of detention jeopardize the entire system, says Jan Ting, a law professor at Temple University.

"Asylum is the trump card of immigration," Ting told Fox News. "Credible fear was an informal procedure intended to keep people out. What it's doing now is letting people in. People have learned the right words and phrases, whether true or not."

According to Ting, poverty and violence are not grounds for political asylum and officials are watering down and misapplying the basic threshold.

"A natural disaster or flood of bullets flying around your neighborhood doesn't meet the standard," according to Ting. "If the government wanted to deter illegal immigration, they would alter the cost-benefit analysis. Instead, they are looking for ways to help them stay."

"It isn't border security if all you need is a story," Ting said.

Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, also blames a December 2009 policy directive from then-Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director John Morton. It provided that any undocumented immigrant who could argue a "credible fear," establish his identity, and be deemed not a flight risk should be released.

"Once they're here, it's not a priority for immigration. They're in the wind," Vaughan told Fox News.

The House Judiciary Committee in March released a bill to address some of the issues regarding asylum, and while it would beef up the standard for "credible fear," Vaughn told Fox News that it would not go after the incentives that go along with the standard.

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Immigration critics are demanding that border security start with tighter restrictions on people claiming political asylum, Fox News reports.
immigration, political, asylum, restrictions, border, immigrants, illegals
Monday, 11 May 2015 10:23 PM
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