Compromise is key to passing immigration reform, but some advocates believe promises by the pro-legalization movement to accept enforcement measures ring hollow.
They say the "dirty little secret" is immigrant rights groups know such promises won't actually happen because judges will block any agreed upon enforcement.
The Center for Immigration Studies presented a report earlier this month on what they characterized as an attack on plenary power, a 19th century doctrine that gives the legislative and executive branches of government power over immigration regulation.
The center says there is a movement by immigration attorneys and others to erode this power in favor of a judicially administered immigration system.
Mark Krikorian, executive director of the center, said this will allow judges to block enforcement measures such as mandatory use of the E-Verify system, which checks the Social Security numbers of job applicants, or more cooperation between local police and federal immigration authorities.
“If there’s no guarantee of enforcement measures actually making it through court, then the whole concept of a deal is completely undermined,” Krikorian said.
Krikorian, citing the 1986 amnesty, says history shows that promises of legal status for tougher enforcement may not be held up.
Photo: steakpinbal, CIS