Politics

Obama split 500,000 American families to legalize illegals before 2012 election

Neil Munro White House Correspondent

President Barack Obama’s 2012 unilateral legalization of 500,000 young illegal immigrants helped him win the 2012 election — at the cost of splitting 500,000 innocent, law-abiding American families for months on end, according to a New York Times article.

The ruthless political calculation was buried deep in the low-key article, which was published on page 20 of the local “New York edition” of the national newspaper.

Obama directed officials to award work permits to the illegal immigrants, preventing them from preparing green cards for Americans’ foreign-born spouses and children.

One American, Jessica Veltstra, applied last March to bring over her Dutch husband. “But he is still in the Netherlands, and she is rooming with relatives in New Jersey, unable to make plans,” the New York Times reported.

“Their older daughter, who is 4, refuses to speak to her father on the phone in Dutch, her first language, and bursts out crying when she sees a photo of him,” the article continued.

The scandal likely will be cited by advocates of immigration reform to show that Obama places his partisan calculations above his duty to implement the law, and above his inauguration oath, which says “I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States.”

Last week, House Speaker John Boehner said he has to slow his push for a sweeping, business-backed immigration increase until Obama shows he can be trusted to follow the laws. (RELATED: Wealthy, liberals unite to support increased immigration)

“Frankly, one of the biggest obstacles we face is the one of trust,” Boehner said Feb. 6. “The American people, including many of our members, don’t trust that the reform we’re talking about will be implemented as it was intended to be.”

“The president seems to change the healthcare law on a whim, whenever he likes,” said Boehner, who is widely expected to continue his closed-door push for the immigration increase. (RELATED: ANALYSIS: Boehner’s mysterious immigration comments)

The New York Times article buried the most shocking elements of the political scandal 335 words into the article, much of which was spent describing the pain suffered by an American whose Australian wife and two kids remains stuck on the other side of the world.

“Until recently, an American could obtain a green card for a [foreign] spouse, child or parent — probably the easiest document in the immigration system — in five months or less,” the article eventually reveals.

“But over the past year, waits for approvals of those resident visas stretched to 15 months, and more than 500,000 applications became stuck in the pipeline, playing havoc with international moves and children’s schools and keeping families apart,” said the article.

Just over 800 words into the article, the New York Times explains why Americans and their families are being torn and kept apart.

“After Mr. Obama announced the deferral program, known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, in 2012, he gave Citizenship and Immigration Services only two months to get it running,” the article said, without noting that the program had not been approved or funded by the nation’s elected Congress.

“Agency officials scrambled” to implement the president’s diktat, the newspaper said, adding that “soon after the deferrals were underway, Americans with green card applications felt the impact.”

Since June, officials have worked hard to register the illegal immigrants and to issue them with two-year residency permits and work permits that allow them to compete for jobs sought by Americans, including American Latinos and African-Americans. “As of last week, 521,815 youths had received deferrals, with the agency handling more than 2,000 applications a day,” the New York Times reported.

The lede of the newspaper article downplayed the drama, and portrayed it as a bureaucratic foul-up, rather than a successful presidential campaign ploy to spur support among Latino citizens. Because Obama did not even try to seek approval and funding from Congress for the mini-amnesty, the agency didn’t have the funding to implement his campaign strategy while providing green cards to Americans’ spouses.

“Many thousands of Americans seeking green cards for foreign spouses or other immediate relatives have been separated from them for a year or more because of swelling bureaucratic delays at a federal immigration agency in recent months,” said the lede.

The article was researched and written by a reporter, Julia Preston, who believes amnesty to be a “civil right.” (RELATED: New York Times reporter calls amnesty for illegal immigrants ‘a civil right’)

But the soft lede may have been written by an editor at the elitist newspaper, which frequently tries to stigmatize mainstream public opposition to amnesty and to immigration increases that can reduce Americans’ wages and job opportunities.  A June 2013 Gallup poll showed that only 25 percent of Hispanics support an amnesty, while 30 percent oppose an amnesty.

The second paragraph only hinted at the president’s role in the harm done to Americans, and shifted the blame to an agency.

“The long waits came when the agency, Citizenship and Immigration Services, shifted attention and resources to a program President Obama started in 2012 to give deportation deferrals to young undocumented immigrants, according to administration officials and official data.”

The well-researched article includes an admission of the delays from an agency spokesman.

“Christopher S. Bentley, a Citizenship and Immigration Services spokesman, said the agency had seen ‘a temporary increase in processing times,'” the article said.

The article said that officials admitted in November that the wait times were 10 months, instead of five, the newspaper said, highlighting complaints from American families, even as it downplayed Obama’s role in the scandal.

Forrest Nabors, 47, a professor at the University of Alaska in Anchorage,is one of the American victims of Obama’s political campaign. In July, he applied to get a green card for his Czech wife, Zdenka. But because of administration decisions, Nabors said, “you end up seeing a steep decline in approvals for people like me who followed the law,” according to the New York Times.

In New York, Andrew Bachert remains separated from his wife and two kids in Australia because of the president’s policy, the NYT reported. Two months after his son broke his arm in a bicycle accident, “Bachert shuddered to recall the episode, although his son’s bones have healed. ‘No parent,’ he said, “should be separated from their family in periods such as that.”

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