|For Immediate Release
September 9, 2011
Contact: Jessica Baker, (202) 225-3951
Smith: President’s Uncle Benefits from Backdoor Amnesty
Washington, D.C. – According to media reports, President Obama’s illegal immigrant uncle, Onyango Obama, has been released by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after being arrested in Massachusetts for driving under the influence, driving to endanger and failing to use a turn signal. According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Onyango Obama has a final order of removal pending from 1992.
This move follows the Obama administration’s decision to create a new deportation policy that amounts to a backdoor amnesty. Political appointees at DHS have announced that they will review illegal immigrants in removal proceedings with a final order of removal and consider allowing them to stay in the U.S.
House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) issued the statement below.
Chairman Smith: “It appears there is a double standard—one for President Obama’s family and one for everyone else. Last year, President Obama’s illegal immigrant aunt was granted asylum and now his illegal immigrant uncle has been released from ICE custody, even though he was arrested by authorities for drunk driving.
“Last month, President Obama made several changes to our deportation policy and his illegal immigrant uncle might be one of the first illegal immigrants to benefit from it. Who are influencing the President’s immigration policies—illegal immigrants or the American people?
“President Obama’s uncle is a test case for why this new policy is a threat to the American people. President Obama’s backdoor amnesty allows drunk-driving illegal immigrants like his uncle to remain in the U.S. His immigration policies are a risk to both public safety and American lives. Why should citizens and legal immigrants be threatened by drunk driving illegal immigrants when the administration can deport them?
“The United States was founded on the rule of law and the American people expect their President to enforce all of our laws. The President’s backdoor amnesty is just further proof that he is siding with illegal immigrants and not the American people. President Obama and his administration should enforce all immigration laws, not just the ones they like.”
On June 17, 2011, ICE issued a memo detailing how agency officials are to exercise prosecutorial discretion. One of the guidelines is whether the illegal immigrant is a national security or public safety concern. But it appears drunk driving may not be considered a public safety concern by the Obama administration. In August 2010, Chairman Smith sent a letter to DHS requesting that all illegal immigrants arrested for Driving Under the Influence (DUI) be detained and removed, but DHS rejected his request.
Unfortunately, this decision by the Obama administration places American lives at risk. In August 2010, an illegal immigrant – who was ordered deported and released by federal authorities – killed a nun and critically injured two others in a drunken driving crash. Prior to this, he was arrested two times and charged with DUI.