The National Catholic Review

Los Angeles Archbishop José Gomez issued the following statement today on the Supreme Court decision to review Texas v. the United States of America:

I am pleased that the U.S. Supreme Court has decided to take up the case of Texas v. United States of America.

I cannot speak to the constitutional questions in this case. I speak as a pastor. And as a pastor, I know that the situation is unjust and intolerable for millions of people who are forced to live in the shadows of our great country. Every day in our parishes and schools and neighborhoods, we see the rising human toll of our failure to enact comprehensive immigration reform, especially on families and children.

Nationwide, more than two million undocumented persons have been deported in the last eight years alone, including thousands who are mothers or fathers forced to leave behind their spouses and children. Millions more are living in constant fear that they too might be rounded up for deportation, that one day without warning they won’t be coming home for dinner and may never see their families again.

The executive actions at issue in this case are temporary and they are no substitute for the comprehensive immigration reform our country needs. But these actions would be a measure of mercy, providing peace of mind to nearly nine million people, including 4.5 million children.

People do not cease to be our brothers and sisters because they have an irregular immigration status. No matter how they got here, no matter how frustrated we are with our government, we cannot lose sight of their humanity — without losing our own.

Until lawmakers in Washington can find the humility and courage to set aside differences and seek a common solution, the Supreme Court may be our last best hope to restore humanity to our immigration policy.

Texas v. the United States of America is a lawsuit filed by the Texas Attorney General on behalf of 26 states challenging President Obama’s right to expand immigration programs to allow millions of undocumented individuals to remain in the United States and apply for a temporary work permit. In February 2015, Judge Andrew S. Hanen of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Brownsville Division issued an injunction against President Obama's executive action, delaying their implementation throughout the country; in May that decision was affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.


Don Honda | 1/21/2016 - 12:20pm

When the pope visited, I didn't see him being concerned with giving compassion to US Citizens who are poor, uneducated, who have lost their jobs to Illegal Aliens. This effect was warned about in 1965:

“In light of our 5 percent unemployment rate, our worries over the so called population explosion, and our menacingly mounting welfare costs, are we prepared to embrace so great a horde of the world’s unfortunates? At the very least, the hidden mathematics of the bill should be made clear to the public so that they may tell their Congressmen how they feel about providing jobs, schools, homes, security against want, citizen education, and a brotherly welcome… for an indeterminately enormous number of aliens from underprivileged lands.” “We should remember that people accustomed to such marginal existence in their own land will tend to live fully here, to hoard our bounteous minimum wages and our humanitarian welfare handouts…lower our wage and living standards, disrupt our cultural patterns.” Myra C. Hacker, Vice President of the New Jersey Coalition of Patriotic Societies, on the 1965 Hart Celler Act

“Whatever may be our benevolent intent toward many people, the bill fails to give due consideration to the economic needs, the cultural traditions, and the public sentiment of the citizens of the United States.” Myra C. Hacker, on the 1965 Hart Celler Act

Also, isn't it interesting that the catholic church is one of the largest recipient of financial "donations" in the world? If the pope is so concerned for these migrants, then why doesn't he exhort those countries (including his native Argentina) to take care of their citizens in need?
Catholic Church collects $1.6 billion in U.S. contracts, grants since 2012

"Not to be lost in the pomp and circumstance of Pope Francis’ first visit to Washington is the reality that the Catholic Church he oversees has become one of the largest recipients of federal largesse in America."

Don Honda | 1/21/2016 - 12:19pm

Here's where Obama and his administration are now devising four ways to circumvent DAPA injunction:
Leaked DHS memo shows Obama might circumvent DAPA injunction

"The internal memo reveals four options of varying expansiveness, with option 1 providing EADs to “all individuals living in the United States”, including illegal aliens, visa-overstayers, and H-1B guest-workers, while option 4 provides EADs only to those on certain unexpired non-immigrant visas. Giving EADs to any of the covered individuals, however, is in direct violation of Congress’s Immigration & Nationality Act and works to dramatically subvert our carefully wrought visa system. "

Here's the link to this leaked memo:
Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) For Certain Beneficiaries Of Approved I-140 Petitions

Here's where Obama and his administration has already defied the injunction by giving previous DACA recipients benefits under his EO (Memo):

Here's where the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed another “Advisory” with U.S.
District Judge Andrew Hanen, confessing that the Department of Homeland
Security (DHS) had given three year DACA permits to 2,000 applicants
even after Judge Hanen issued an injunction on February 16 blocking all such approvals.

Don Honda | 1/21/2016 - 12:17pm
For Obama, Executive Order on Immigration Would Be a Turnabout
"President Obama is poised to ignore stark warnings that executive action on immigration would amount to “violating our laws” and would be “very difficult to defend legally.”

Those warnings came not from Republican lawmakers but from Mr. Obama himself."
Obama’s Immigration Amnesia

"..., Obama said he lacked the legal authority to suspend deportation of family members. Now, he says he has just such legal authority."

Don Honda | 1/21/2016 - 12:16pm
30 Million Illegal Immigrants in US, Says Mexico’s Former Ambassador on MSNBC

"The former ambassador stated,” If you were to deport the 30 million undocumented immigrants in the United States that’s going to cost you about 130 billion dollars.”
Thousands of unaccompanied children crossed US-Mexico border in October
US Border Arrests Of Immigrant Children And Families Increased 52 Percent in August

"According to statistics released by the U.S. Border Patrol nearly 10,000 unaccompanied minors and families were arrested in the month of August, a 52 percent jump from last year."
Immigration Reform 2015: Immigrant Families Surging Again At US Border, Homeland Security Says

"Federal border officials might have spoken too soon when they predicted earlier this year that the level of illegal immigration to the U.S. among mothers and children would decrease. There was actually a surge of immigrant families crossing U.S. borders last month [July 2015], a top Department of Homeland Security official told a federal court Thursday."
Surge of illegal children, families accelerates 10,000 caught at border in September

"The surge of children and families crossing the southwest border illegally accelerated again in September, leaving fiscal year 2015 the second-worst on record, according to numbers released Wednesday by the Border Patrol."
Ongoing Migration from Central America: An Examination of FY2015 Apprehensions
Agents say just 40 percent of U.S.-Mexico border under control
20 percent of illegals caught at border have criminal records

"Less than half of the U.S.-Mexico border is under “operational control,” and one out of every five illegal immigrants caught there has a criminal record, the chief of Border Patrol agents’ labor union told Congress Wednesday when detailing violence that increasingly spills over the international boundary."

Don Honda | 1/21/2016 - 12:15pm

NOTE & WARNING: The links provided below contain direct quotes from Obama and his officials.
Obama gives free pass to businesses that hire illegals
Audits, fines drop for employers

"President Obama took office vowing to go after unscrupulous employers who hire illegal immigrants, but worksite audits have plunged over the last year and a half, according to a report released Tuesday by the Center for Immigration Studies, tumbling along with the rest of immigration enforcement."

The Left-Leaning LA Times posted an article that shows that the Obama administration, the Illegal Alien lobby, and the major media outlets have been in collusion to depict the "high" deportation numbers. The exact opposite is true since the beginning of the current President's policy. Interior deportation has and will be lower than 1973 rates. This is leading towards more people overstaying their visas and currently, more Illegal Alien minors crossing the border. Obama has just recently instructed border patrol to not turn back those Illegal Aliens on record as having entered illegally as priors, but to let them pass IF they don't have a major criminal record. After the first Illegal Entry, it is a felony each time thereafter.

Even Obama in 2011, called the deportation numbers deceptive when talking to Hispanic voters. President Obama said statistics that show his administration is on track to deport more illegal immigrants than the Bush administration are misleading.

“The statistics are a little deceptive,” he said Wednesday in an online discussion aimed at Hispanic voters."

"If you are a run-of-the-mill immigrant here illegally, your odds of getting deported are close to zero — it's just highly unlikely to happen," John Sandweg, until recently the acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement,0,545192...
Immigration Reform 2015: Obama's Priority Enforcement Program Protects 87 Percent Of Undocumented Immigrants, Report Finds

"The refocus in law enforcement efforts has effectively protected 9.6 million of the United States’ estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants from deportation, the report found. In all, a full implementation of Obama’s changes would reduce annual deportations to approximately 25,000..."
"The federal government’s chief deportation agency has seen its success plummet under President Obama, and its chief, Sarah R. Saldana, will tell Congress on Tuesday that they’ve had trouble adapting to the changing face of illegal immigration and a lack of cooperation from both American cities and from foreign countries.

Ms. Saldana, director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), says in testimony prepared for the House Judiciary Committee that the dramatic drop in deportations is a reflection of a trickier set of circumstances and pressures from all sides.

She said she had to pull agents off their regular duties during last summer’s illegal immigrant surge at the border, which meant fewer people focusing on deporting the longtime illegal immigrants living in the interior of the U.S. And she said the lack of cooperation from states, counties and cities when agents ask them to hold an illegal immigrant for pickup has also hindered efforts."

John Walton | 1/20/2016 - 11:15pm

Why not fix the problem at its origin. Expand economic opportunity.

Henry George | 1/20/2016 - 11:37pm

If the 1 % would share some of their Billions we might not have this disaster in Immigration.
However, they won't and they expect the rest of us to pick up the bill.

Is it fair and just that a local community has to pick up the cost of caring for migrants who suddenly
move into their community or are moved into their community by the Federal Government ?

You know and I know that 10,000 migrants will not suddenly show up in Georgetown, or Dupont Circle,
or Brentwood, of Pacific Heights or the Upper East or West Side...perhaps America House would like to take
in 500 migrants this they will show up in rural communities and inner cities - the very places
that can least afford to help them. Perhaps the Federal government will help out, perhaps it will not,
but in the long run the poorest people in America will be expected to foot the bill and face the social consequences.

Is it justice that the elite, to ease their consciences, expect the poorest in this country to bear the brunt of their
"legal charity".

We need massive Migrant Reform, Federal Funding of any education deemed required by the Supreme Court,
Federal Funding of Medical needs and housing needs and all those funds should come from the Elites who open the doors to this country to the poorest of the poor - only so they can have:
Nannies, Gardeners, Maids, Drivers who are not poor Americans -
but rarely their hearts and never their pocketbooks.

Vincent Gaglione | 1/20/2016 - 9:45pm

Finally, a clear statement from a Bishop of a large and significant Catholic diocese in the United States speaking out strongly on the moral dimension of the irrational fears and bigotry currently being purveyed in this country against undocumented immigrants and refugees from violence and terror. Why isn't it a joint statement from every Bishop in the United States? Both the Old and New Testaments speak clearly to our obligations to the stranger, to the poor, to the dispossessed. Those obligations are not conditional on our self-interests. That's what makes "Christians" Christians. The "Christian right" has been turned into a misnomer.

Robert Hugelmeyer | 1/20/2016 - 7:44pm

Must be clearly vetted and found not to be connected to ISIS terrorism which at this point not possible. Therefor, pause from allowing anyone from Syria with the exception of vetted women and their children.

J Cabaniss | 1/20/2016 - 12:12pm

We have become so accustomed to our bishops taking sides on political issues that their involvement in the issue-du-jour no longer raises a concern. That is unfortunate. There are several things objectionable about Bishop Gomez's comments, but I will address only two. In asserting that "I speak as a pastor" he is clearly implying that those who oppose his position are not merely taking an incorrect position, but one that is less than moral as well. He is setting up a moral distinction between his position and whoever opposes it. I cannot think of a more harmful way to frame the debate. In fact this precludes the possibility of a debate: how does one compromise with that which is immmoral? This distinguishes not between concepts, but between people, not between what approach will achieve the best overall result, but between those who are concerned, and those who - at best - don't care.

The second concern is equally grave. After conceding that "I cannot speak to the constitutional questions in this case." he concludes by asserting "the Supreme Court may be our last best hope to restore humanity to our immigration policy." That is to say, he is indifferent to what the Constitutional issues are, he is only concerned that their ruling supports his position. To cede to the courts the right to decide matters of policy is to abandon the Constitution altogether. It says that what is important is implementing one's policies, and how that is accomplished is not the primary concern.

I'm sure many will find this overly harsh, and I'm sure the bishop himself doesn't think this way. The conclusions, however, do seem to follow from what he himself has said. He should have been more circumspect.

Robert Hugelmeyer | 1/20/2016 - 7:58pm

Well said and with respect. The Bishop's Pastor reference allows him to focus on providing care and ignore the high probability of allowing terrorists to enter the country by posing as an immigrant.